A staggering three to four million healthy, adoptable pets are euthanized every year at shelters across the country.  Still others wander the streets, sick and hungry, given up by the families that once loved them. What are the reasons behind the alarming number of animals who are abandoned, unwanted, and euthanized each year, and how can we better ensure they find their way to warm, loving homes?

To help provide answers, American Humane Association’s Animal Welfare Research Institute today released the results of the first phase of a three-part study to better understand pet ownership and retention and discover the most effective strategies to ensure animals find their forever homes.  Phase I of the “Keeping Pets (Dogs and Cats) in Homes Retention Study,” funded through a generous grant from PetSmart Charities®, examines why so many American households don’t have a furry friend at home.

Research indicates that of the 117.5 million households in the U.S., only 46.3 million have a dog in their family and only 38.9 million own a cat. Understanding the reasons why people choose whether or not to own a pet is the first step towards developing effective strategies to increase pet ownership and reduce the alarming number of homeless pets and resulting euthanasia rates.

Article Source: americanhumane.org