Why Adopt | PAWS Chicago

Why Adopt?

A few reasons to rescue your next pet

You want a new pet but are unsure the best way to move forward?  

Well, you've come to the right place.  There are so many reasons why adopting a pet from a shelter or rescue group is the best--we'd go so far as to say only--way to get a new pet.  

Here are the top reason why:


With millions of homeless pets killed in the United States each year, it's hard to think of a good reason not to adopt.  Going to any animal shelter or rescue is a good deed, but when you adopt a pet from a No Kill organization, your good magnifies.  Because No Kill shelters manage their population to ensure the save all healthy and treatable pets, when you adopt from a No Kill you save TWO lives--the life of the pet you are taking home and that of another who is now able to come into the adoption program.  You just made room for the No Kill shelter to take in, and thereby save, another homeless pet. 

You can find anything in a shelter or rescue organization.  From big to small; from pure-bred to totally unique; from active to lazy; from young to old; from outgoing to shy; from black to white to red; every combination of pet is available for rescue.  With a transient and sometimes disposable society, anything popular ends up in the shelter system. Regardless your preference, you can find the right cat or dog for you in a shelter!

When patronizing a shelter or rescue group, you are supporting an organization that is not based in bottom line.  The problem with pet stores and breeders trying to profit from selling animals--it is next to impossible to make money if you care for pets humanely.  At PAWS Chicago, on average, our costs exceed the adoption fee by $500 per pet.  And that is with volunteers make up the equivalent of nearly 50 full-time employees.  To provide quality medical care, walks and socialization, and behavioral training, it costs money.  This is why, in commercial puppy mills, moms are bred their entire lives, living in chicken wire cages without walks, medical treatment, love or comfort.  It's cheap and they maximize each pet's profit. When it comes to profiting from animals, ethics disappears.

Buying an animal from a pet store, the internet or a backyard breeder can be significantly more expensive than adopting from a shelter or rescue group. Commercially bred animals are predominantly raised in inhumane conditions where their health was not a top priority and are often sold while susceptible to life-threatening illnesses. When you buy a pet who gets sick, the costly vet bill are passed on to you.

Pets available through PAWS Chicago are up to date on shots, are spayed or neutered, micro-chipped, vaccinated and healthy, which can save a bundle on vet bills. We also partner with veterinarians who offer discounts for pets adopted from PAWS Chicago.

You will receive unconditional love from a shelter pet. Shelters like PAWS have a wide variety of breeds, sizes and ages and one is bound to be the perfect match for you and your family. Our volunteers are experienced and trained to help you find the perfect pet for your lifestyle and home environment.

Welcoming a new pet into the family is a big decision and one that should be made by the entire family. Part of the fun is selecting the new dog or cat together. Consider surprising your loved ones with a trip to PAWS Chicago where you can meet all the dogs and cats and find the perfect match together.  We also ask that you bring any family dogs along so that our experienced support team can introduce your new pet to your canine family member on neutral territory.  Pets are a lifetime commitment so working together as a family is key!

Once you decide to adopt, you will meet with an adoption counselor who will review the most important things to know to integrate your new pet into your family.  If there are challenges during the transition, our team of experts is available to help smooth out any bumps for longterm success.

At PAWS Chicago, we offer a lifetime commitment to every animal who comes through our adoption program. That means that in the event that something happens to you or your family, we ask that you bring your pet back to us so we can find him the right longterm home.

By choosing adoption over buying a pet, you can take pride in knowing that you are taking a stand against inhumane commercial breeding. Puppy mills, the source of most sold pets, raise animals in neglectful, inhumane and unsanitary conditions without proper food, water, shelter or veterinary care. By adopting an animal, you can be proud that you are a part of the solution that will help create a No Kill Chicago.

By adopting from PAWS Chicago, you are part of our family! 

Pets Available

Learn about the pets available from PAWS Chicago