Shelter Pet Adoption Day 

#AdoptDontShop isn’t just a hashtag. It represents a pet adoption movement. A recognition that we have millions (literally millions) of animals that don’t make it out of shelters and rescues every year. There is still so much work to do to ensure that every adoptable animal finds a forever home. There are some incredibly creative and successful adoption campaigns run in shelters all over the country. From sleepovers and lunch dates to cleverly named campaigns like “TwoferTabbies”, “Find your Diamond in the Ruff” (for overlooked pets) and “Date a Dog”, shelters do the very best they can, often with extremely limited resources, to match every adoptable animal with a loving family. 

The more happy pet adoption stories we can share the better! Share yours and enter to win some treats from @Barkworthies! #chewsrescue #barkworthies Click To Tweet

National Adopt a Shelter Pet day is April 30th.

One company we already love, just made us even bigger fans by launching the “Chews Rescue” campaign to support and celebrate rescues and pet adoption across the country. Barkworthies is kicking off their shelter support efforts on April 30th. As part of the campaign, Barkworthies will be covering the adoption costs for eligible dogs at three shelters – Chicago Canine Rescue, One Tail at a Time and Austin Pets Alive! on April 30th to honor National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day. Not only will this campaign make pet adoption less of a financial challenge for some families who might not otherwise be able to afford adoption fees, but Barkworthies efforts are bringing national attention to the important work that shelters do and the need for more people to consider adoption when looking for a pet. 

To further promote animal rescue efforts and pet adoption awareness, Barkworthies is also hosting a fabulous giveaway on their Facebook page. Share your rescue story there and you will be entered to win one of five Barkworthies prize packages! We also have a mini Barkworthies giveaway going on (enter below) just because we are so excited about the #ChewsRescue campaign! 🙂

Share your pet adoption story on Sarcastic Dod on honor of National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day and enter to win Barkworthies treats!

National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day is 4/30! Enter to win the @barkworthies #chewsrescue #barkworthies share your adoption story campaign! Click To Tweet

How You Can Support Pet Adoption on April 30th

Adopt a Shelter Pet 

If you’ve been thinking about adding a furry friend to your family, visit your local shelter and see if you can find your perfect match. You will find everything from mixed breeds to pure bred animals to totally awesome mutts!

Volunteer at a Local Shelter

Not ready to add a new family member? Volunteer at your local shelter on National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day to help them manage meet-n-greets, walk dogs, cuddle the cats or whatever else they might need to make shelter pet adoption day go smoothly.

Cover an Adoption Fee 

Consider following Barkworthies lead and make a donation to your local shelter to specifically be used to cover an adoption fee on April 30th.

Two Chances to Win Barkworthies Treats!


1. Visit the Barkworthies Facebook page before the end of day on April 30th to share your pet adoption story and enter to win a $100 Barkworthies prize package! 

Share your pet adoption story on Sarcastic Dod on honor of National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day and enter to win Barkworthies treats!

2.When a company we already love steps up to lead the way in creating awareness about a topic that is near and dear to our hearts, we are thrilled to join in and spread the word! Enter below for a chance to win one of three sampler duos (three winners will each win a Barkworthies Salmon Skin Twist & a Beef Gullet Stick).

a Rafflecopter giveaway

By | 2017-04-19T11:50:25+00:00 April 14th, 2017|Adopt Don't Shop, Animal Rescue, Fostering, Rescue|47 Comments

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  1. allison hoffman April 15, 2017 at 9:06 am - Reply

    All of my animals have been shelter pets and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I work at a shelter and see animals come in every day for one reason or another and its heartbreaking seeing the dogs and cats sit there for months or years without being adopted. Shelter animals are so greatfull for loving homes. They may have sad pasts but it doesnt mean they are ruined in any way and they have so much to give back.

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 15, 2017 at 10:53 am - Reply

      We have so much work to do to increase awareness about the plight of animals in shelters. I genuinely hope this Barkworthies campaign helps bring more awareness to the issue. Hoping that your shelter has a successful Adopt a Shelter Pet day!

  2. Sable Markowitz April 15, 2017 at 12:56 pm - Reply

    This story begins when I rescued Dad on December 9, 2006. Originally, I was taken from a kill shelter in Radford, VA and rescued by a family in Lutherville, MD. However, it was obvious they didn’t deserve me and I heard from Aunt Cheryl Haralson and Uncle Ed Haralson that Dad was in need of rescue. So on 12/9, Aunt Deb Adler took me to meet Dad. I was a bit nervous because Aunt Deb put me in too small a cage for the drive (instead of letting me ride shotgun which is where I now always ride). I had to size up Dad to see if he was salvageable. However, after 15-25 minutes or so, I decided to rescue Dad. Since then, his life has been infinitely better. I let him do so many things he’d never done before and have given him so many opportunities. I give him the love he needs. I allow him to give me human food. I allow him to make me brisket, prime rib and other delectable meets. I take him on adventures in the car with me. I allow him to sleep in my Queen Size bed with me and cuddle up against me. I allow him to play with me and watch TV with me. I allowed him to live vicariously through me when I ran the Sable Markowitz Fur President 2016 campaign. I guard him when he’s not feeling well and take care of all his needs. All in all, I’d say I rescued Dad very successfully and he lives very happily with me in MY home!!! As you can see, I’m a loving, caring and wonderful human rescuer! So do I win treats for sharing my story, Aunt Alison Reder?

    • Alison Reder April 17, 2017 at 9:09 am - Reply

      This is a lovely story, sweet Sable. You take such good care of your dad. He’s very lucky! Good luck in the giveaway and thank you for supporting the Barkworthies Shelter program efforts. Maybe April 30th you and your dad should celebrate Adopt a Shelter Pet day by bringing home a buddy for you… 😉

  3. Molly April 15, 2017 at 2:38 pm - Reply

    I have two dogs that were both adopted. The first from the shelter and the second one was homeless. He followed us home on a walk. Adopt, don’t shop!

    • Alison Reder April 17, 2017 at 9:10 am - Reply

      I love hearing about the dogs that so clearly choose use! He must have known he was following one of the good ones!

  4. Sandy Weinstein April 16, 2017 at 10:27 pm - Reply

    i have never adopted a dog from a shelter, but i would. my oldest is not really adopted however, i was her 3rd owner and she was only 6wks old when i got her. so i sort of feel that i adopted her and 3rd try was the winner.

    • Alison Reder April 17, 2017 at 9:13 am - Reply

      What’s the saying, “Third time’s a charm!”? Happy to hear that she found you.

  5. Beth April 19, 2017 at 10:24 am - Reply

    We adopted our dog, Theo, three years ago. He was about 4-5 years old. I’ve adopted puppies before, but this was my first adult dog adoption, and I will definitely do that again! Puppies are fun, but truthfully, I think I’m only going to adopt older dogs from now on. (But, never say never!)
    Beth recently posted…Engaging Tails: Colby the Terrier Mix & Clementine the Chi MixMy Profile

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 19, 2017 at 11:40 am - Reply

      I’ve adopted both a puppy and a teenage dog. I can definitely see adopting an adult or even a senior dog at some point.

  6. Dash Kitten April 19, 2017 at 2:10 pm - Reply

    Our cats have fetched up with us as foster fails and rescues. As we have nine I won’t fill your comments with a War and Peace length novel!! Suffice to say, they are all loved, and cared for and spoiled.
    Dash Kitten recently posted…Tabcat Tracker Helps Locate Your CatMy Profile

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 20, 2017 at 8:27 am - Reply

      Wow! Nine?!? That’s awesome! Those are some lucky cats to have found you 🙂

  7. Jill - CharityPaws April 19, 2017 at 2:22 pm - Reply

    I have only ever adopted! I adopted my girls – pittie sisters from a local SPCA back in 2001 – they recently passed away but man what an amazing life we had together. Cleo just entered our world last August — was only supposed to be a foster, but we failed. The best thing I ever failed at for sure! I am so glad you wrote this post — I am such an advocate for adoption and try to educate about the puppy mill hell that is out there! #dontshopadopt

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 20, 2017 at 8:28 am - Reply

      I always say that if I’m going to fail at anything, I’m happy to foster fail like I did with Piper 🙂

  8. Lola The Rescued Cat April 19, 2017 at 2:44 pm - Reply

    Lexy and I are adopted! Well, I mean, we adopted our mom! MOL We always advocate for adoption and spread the word about pets who need homes. And we donate 10 percent of the sales of our book to shelters.
    Lola The Rescued Cat recently posted…It’s Lexy’s Seventh Gotcha Day!My Profile

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 20, 2017 at 8:29 am - Reply

      We share your commitment to advocate in favor of adoption. I loved reading Lexy’s Gotcha Day story!

  9. Lorie Ham April 19, 2017 at 4:03 pm - Reply

    Almost all of my pets are shelter animals. One that isn’t would have been if we hadn’t kept him ourselves–Xander showed up on one rainy night outside the library where I work just a little scared puppy–now he is a wonderful, loving and very smart dog. Please adopt next time you are looking for a new pet.

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 20, 2017 at 8:31 am - Reply

      I am of the belief that animals often choose us. It sounds like Xander knew where to go on that rainy night 🙂 With so many animals in shelters and rescues waiting for homes, we always say #adoptdontshop

  10. Both Ralph and Luna are adopted and I’m so so happy I did. I think I will always CHEWS RESCUE because I want to give pets another chance and I know how incredible rescue dogs can be. I love this promotion from Barkworthies. It’s so great that they give back!

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 20, 2017 at 8:32 am - Reply

      I completely agree! I am always thrilled when companies actually walk the talk and support rescue efforts. #chewsrescue

  11. Joely Smith April 19, 2017 at 4:47 pm - Reply

    This is a wonderful campaign to increase awareness about adopting pets! A big thanks to you and the sponsor!
    I love the idea of sharing adoption stories too!
    Joely Smith recently posted…Wellness ® Complete Health™ Cat Food #HealthyMeetsHappyMy Profile

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 20, 2017 at 8:35 am - Reply

      I believe that sharing adoption stories can only increase awareness about how many truly wonderful animals are waiting for adoption in shelters and rescues. The more we share, the more people will come to learn that while there are certainly some animals waiting for adoption who may have some challenges, there are so many amazing, adoptable pets available that need loving forever homes.

  12. Alice G Patterson April 19, 2017 at 4:53 pm - Reply

    My dog Franny has a very interesting adoption story. A team of veterinarians were volunteering their services at a reservation in New Mexico. Franny was set to be euthanized, but one young vet stepped up and said she would bring her to Los Angeles. There is a whole long story of how I came to be the lucky taker of Franny, but we’ll just say it seemed like fate brought us together. I was living in an apartment in Hollywood, CA at the time, and poor Franny had never been on a leash nor was she accustomed to the noisy street sounds. Those first couple of weeks were very stressful! I was trying to train her to walk on a leash and she was jumping around like a wild coyote. She was having trouble going to the bathroom because every little sound would spook and distract her. Her first couple of meals she showed some food aggression, but that was quickly nipped in the bud. She also had a major health issue, but luckily for me the vet that rescued her, provided the necessary surgery and chemo at no cost to me as a thank you for taking Franny. I know this isn’t sounding like a happy adoption story, but trust me it is. In a few months time, Franny overcame all of her stress, illness, and aggression and blossomed into the most loving sweet and well behaved dog you could ever meet. Franny literally never does anything wrong! To know Franny is to love her. We’ve been together for about 11 years now and she has been nothing but a joy!

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 20, 2017 at 8:39 am - Reply

      I so appreciate you sharing Franny’s story! I think it’s really important for people to understand how truly resilient dogs can be. The fact that overcame her fears and aggression and was able to relax and become the dog you have shared your life with for over a decade is exactly why rescue and adoption is so critical. As you said, Franny was scheduled to be euthanized and hearing about how Franny has opened up only serves to highlight why adoption is so necessary. #rescuesaveslives

  13. Tonya Wilhelm April 19, 2017 at 6:57 pm - Reply

    My previous dog, Theo, was found in a field with his two brothers. They were brought into a local shelter and held for a week thinking someone would claim them. Nobody did. I was working as a service dog trainer for an organization, so we brought the three 3-month golden retriever puppies into the program and named them Alvin, Simon, and Theodore. I adopted Theo, the other two became service dogs. <3
    Tonya Wilhelm recently posted…Friday’s Favorite Five: Products for Special Needs or Less Active DogsMy Profile

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 20, 2017 at 8:42 am - Reply

      I love this story! I think people often assume that simply because a pet is available for adoption, they are less valuable or less worthy. Imagine the loss had you not had Theo in your life and if Alvin and Simon had not been placed as service dogs!

  14. Kamira Gayle April 19, 2017 at 7:38 pm - Reply

    I totally am an advocate for #adoptdontshop. Ironically the pets I’ve owned or cared for happen to be off the street. My first cat was taken in after a mom had a litter of kittens and we took one. The second time around I went to go grocery shopping for my mother and at the front door a boy was selling kittens in a box off the street for $5. I left the grocery store with eggs, milk, bread and a Siamese /Calico mixed cat I would later call Dusty! Love this cause. Will share!

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 20, 2017 at 8:43 am - Reply

      I love your description of what you left the grocery store with! That would make a great start to a book about animal rescue!!

  15. Sherr April 19, 2017 at 7:54 pm - Reply

    My crazy terrier end up at a shelter – twice – before I took him, from his third home. I’m his final home of course. I like this promotion idea, but worry that if you can’t afford an adoption fee, you can’t afford a pet. That was the reason given when my dog was surrendered the first two times – can’t afford vet bills. Fortunately, I can.

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 20, 2017 at 8:54 am - Reply

      I do understand that concern. In my shelter management course (6 weeks away from my certification!) we talked a great deal about free or reduced cost adoption fees and if/how animals lives were impacted. Ultimately, I think the question has to be, “Is pet companionship reserved for only the middle/upper class?” The studies that I read indicate that whether a breeder is paid, an adoption fee is paid or an animal is acquired for free, it has little impact on whether the animal is loved and cared for. When lower income folks were asked, they regularly indicated that they would feed their animals first. That being said, you raise a really good point about veterinary care, which has become increasingly expensive. If I have to choose whether or not an animal has a home or if I’d rather work to help provide veterinary care resources to communities in need, I come down on the side of placing animals in loving homes and figuring out ways to support communities. I attended a fascinating book reading/lecture on homelessness and pet ownership last night that digs even deeper into this topic. Really interesting! I will be interviewing the author and giving away a copy of her book on the blog later this month.

  16. The Daily Pip April 19, 2017 at 8:04 pm - Reply

    I love that Barkworthies is doing this! Two of the three rescues that they are supporting are in the Chicago area which is pretty cool, too!

    One thing I always like to reflect on – is that if we included stray animals who never even make it into shelters the numbers would be a million times higher. Here in Chicago some estimates suggest there are 100 stray cats per city block on average and in some areas many stray dogs as well. So, in addition to rescuing animals from shelters, taking them off the streets is a great thing, too. The majority of my pets (except Ruby) have come directly from the streets.

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 20, 2017 at 8:57 am - Reply

      You would have loved the lecture/book reading I attended last night. It was about homelessness and pet ownership. I’m excited to meet with the author later this month and talk about her book and her research. Truly fascinating and really asks us to address our biases and assumptions.

  17. Tenacious Little Terrier April 19, 2017 at 10:14 pm - Reply

    One Tail at a Time also has a Portland branch. I’ve seen them at pet fairs before. I hope the adoption day is successful.
    Tenacious Little Terrier recently posted…Spring Fling Pet Blogger Giveaway 2017My Profile

  18. Kitty Cat Chronicles April 20, 2017 at 7:41 am - Reply

    We love when companies promote adoption like this! We will definitely be supporting Adopt a Shelter Pet Day, as we are all adoption supporters over here! All of our babies are rescues <3

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 20, 2017 at 8:58 am - Reply

      We too love when pet industry companies really do walk the talk by supporting animal welfare efforts!

  19. Malaika Fernandes April 20, 2017 at 7:46 am - Reply

    I am pro adoption and have several rescues at home. What a lovely way to encourage people to share their stories of adoption with the giveaway
    Malaika Fernandes recently posted…The Ethical Dog Breeder – A Rare BreedMy Profile

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 20, 2017 at 9:00 am - Reply

      I think we need to share more stories. The more we share our rescue and adoption tales, the more awareness we bring the fact that there are so many animals in need of loving homes just sitting in rescues and shelters. We have so much work to do and if sharing adoption stories helps even one family choose to adopt, I consider that a success.

  20. Cathy Armato April 20, 2017 at 8:32 am - Reply

    It’s definitely so important to encourage pet adoption or rescue whenever possible. Anything that helps raise awareness is a positive step, I love all the creative adoptions shelters have come up with! At my shelter one of our promotions was a Desperate Housecats promo which I thought was so clever.
    Love & Biscuits,
    Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them
    Cathy Armato recently posted…Improve Your Social Media and Blogging Skills At The BlogPaws ConferenceMy Profile

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 20, 2017 at 9:02 am - Reply

      I LOVE the Desperate House Cats adoption promo idea! That is so clever. I hope it was incredibly successful!

  21. Dolly the Doxie April 20, 2017 at 8:43 am - Reply

    Adopt don’t shop can never be promoted too much. People still believe they have to have a certain type of dog or will say what’s wrong with wanting to buy a dog? I’ve actually seen comments like that. It’s always good when pet brands like Barkworthies put their name to something like this.

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 20, 2017 at 9:06 am - Reply

      Agreed! What’s most discouraging is that there are so many breed-specific rescue groups. You can truly find almost any type of dog if you have your heart set on a particular breed. There seems to be such a stigma attached to shelter dogs as though somehow they are less worthy or less valuable or damaged goods. While some rescue dogs may indeed have more challenges, you can generally get a pure bred puppy through rescue so we always say #adoptdontshop

  22. Karrie April 29, 2017 at 4:55 pm - Reply

    Yes..there are so many dogs that are unwanted or have no homes..i think most dogs should be fixed..sigh i dont want to sound extremist here but i have seen all those dogs just looking for a home and a second far my three dogs have been saved and when its time to get another dog it will be from a sheleter

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder April 29, 2017 at 5:04 pm - Reply

      So glad your three rescue pups found you 🙂

  23. Ruth Epstein April 29, 2017 at 8:51 pm - Reply

    Where do I start, I have always had rescued dogs and cats from a kid upwards, only rescue will never pay a breeder.

    Baby RIP was rescued from the SPCA, she was with me during my hard times in a Domestic Violence Relationship, she was my trooper, my everything and when I managed to I ran with her, she became the first dog in a Domestic Violence Shelter. She passed away from IMHA just as I finally found a home for us and was settling down, Only 6 years old, But as a friend said to me she came into my life when we both needed each other and left to make place for a new rescue.

    Three months later, I decided the time had come to welcome new baby, my friend was going to LA on business so he said to me you have five days to look on line and if you find one I will bring her back to you. NOW the reason for that was in my city at the time there were mainly pit bulls and Chihuahuas and Baby had been a chiweenie and wanted something different. So for five days I sat looking at PetHarbor and Petfinder and on the Thursday I saw a matter furry mess sitting in a cage in the Carson Shelter and knew in my heart she was for me, I sent the details to my friend, who gave it to a friend of his who does rescues and she pulled her for me. She called me to say she had a smelly mess on her lap licking her and that was the final decision. She took her home, bathed her, and the following day she came home to me. I called her Layla which means “Night” in Hebrew as she is black and arrived at night.

    Five years later and she is my everything, I am so blessed to have her in my life.

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder May 2, 2017 at 9:28 am - Reply

      Thank you so much for sharing Layla’s beautiful adoption story! 🙂

  24. Jana Rade April 30, 2017 at 1:01 pm - Reply

    I’m very happy to see a good quality product(s) involved in such a great campaign. I remember similar campaigns by say Milkbone; creates a big dilemma because that is not something I’d want to get for my dog(s).

    • Alison Reder
      Alison Reder May 2, 2017 at 9:31 am - Reply

      Well said! It makes me happy that a company I really like shares my passion for adoption and rescue 🙂

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