Pet Facts


Every day thousands of dogs & cats are put to death in Illinois alone. Animal shelters throughout the state are filled with animals of all breeds, ages & sizes that were given up by their owners or found as strays. Most of those animals would have been loyal & loving companions, enriching the lives of individuals & families, if they had been given a chance to do so. Instead of buying a dog or cat from a pet store or breeder, you can save a life & enjoy the affection & devotion of an adopted animal.

The Top Ten Reasons for Pet Relinquishment to Shelters in the United States

Dogs Cats
Allergies Allergies
Cost of pet maintenance Moving
No time Cost of pet maintenance
Inadequate facilities Landlord issues
Too many pets No home for litter mates
Pet illness House soiling
Personal problems Personal problems
Biting Inadequate facilities
No home for littermates Doesn’t get along with other pets

An estimated 52 million dogs and 57 million cats live with U.S. families.
One female cat and her offspring can produce 420,000 cats in 7 years.
One female dog and her offspring can produce 67,000 puppies in 6 years.
For every human born, 7 puppies and kittens are born.
As many as 25% of dogs entering shelters each year are purebreds.
Approximately 61% of all dogs entering shelters are killed.
Over 75% of cats who enter our nation’s animal control pounds & shelters are killed – feral, stray & companion. That number jumps to virtually 100% for feral cats.
It costs approximately $150 to capture, house, feed, and eventually kill each stray animal — a cost which you, the taxpayer, eventually pay.
Please visit this website – . There is a wealth of information that all pet owners and non-pet owners need to know. You can read more here.

Feral cats choose to reside in locations for a reason: there is a food source (intended or not) & shelter. When a portion of the cats are removed from a location, survivors breed to capacity. When all of the cats are removed, new cats move in to take advantage of the available resources. It’s a documented phenomenon called the vacuum effect, & its one reason that catch & kill is so ineffective.

TRAP-NEUTER-RETURN is a humane approach for feral cats. Through this program, outdoor cats are humanely trapped, brought to a veterinarian to be evaluated, spayed or neutered, vaccinated & ear tipped. Cats that are friendly to humans & kittens should be adopted into homes. Healthy adult feral cats are returned to their outdoor home. Cats are painlessly ear tipped to indicate that they have been spayed or neutered & are members of a feral cat colony.


Behind the glamorous image of fur coats lays the reality of animal pain, suffering & death. Every year, millions of animals around the world are killed in traps, wire snares, or on filthy fur farms – all just to satisfy human greed & vanity. Please encourage people not to buy fur. Contrary to what the fur industry would like the public to believe, animals raised on “ranches” spend their short, miserable lives in dark, filthy cages. Approximately 2 million animals are “ranched” annually for their furs in the U.S. Internationally, about 30 million animals suffer violently & are killed each year on ranches.

Please encourage people not to buy fur!


You’ve probably heard news reports of dogs suffocating inside cars on warm days. Here are suggestions for educating people about leaving pets in cars, and what to do if you see a pet in distress.

The dangers:

It takes only minutes for a pet left in a vehicle on a warm day to succumb to heatstroke and suffocation. Most people don’t realize how hot it can get in a parked car on a balmy day. However, on a 78 degree day, temperatures in a car parked in the shade can exceed 90 degrees — and hit a scorching 160 degrees if parked in the sun!

Even when the outside air temperature is in the 60s, temperatures inside some vehicles can reach the danger zone on bright, sunny days. So many experts recommend not to leave pets or children in parked cars even for short periods if the temperature is in the 60s or higher.

Rolling down a window or parking in the shade doesn’t guarantee protection either, since temperatures can still climb into the danger zone. And if the window is rolled down sufficiently, the pet can escape. Plus if a passer-by claims he or she was bitten through the car window, the pet owner will be liable.

What about leaving the dog in the car with the air-conditioning running? Many people do this, but tragedy can strike — and it has. For example, in 2003, a police dog in Texas died after the air-conditioning in the patrol car shut down and began blowing hot air. The air system’s compressor kicked off because the engine got too hot. Many cars, including modern models with computerized functions, are prone to the same problem. In August 2004, a North Carolina couple lost two of their beloved dogs, and nearly lost their third dogs, as result of a similar failure. They had left bowls of water and ice in the car, and the air-conditioning on, during their shopping trip of less than 30 minutes.

Animals are not able to sweat like humans do. Dogs cool themselves by panting and by sweating through their paws. If they have only overheated air to breathe, animals can collapse, suffer brain damage and possibly die of heatstroke. Just 15 minutes can be enough for an animal’s body temperature to climb from a normal 102.5 to deadly levels that will damage the nervous and cardiovascular systems, often leaving the animal comatose, dehydrated and at risk of permanent impairment or death.


* Leave your dog at home on warm days.

* On trips with your pet, bring plenty of fresh drinking water and bowl.

* Don’t let dogs ride loose in pick-up truck beds. The hot metal can burn a dog’s paws, the sun and flying debris can hurt the dog, the dog can accidentally be thrown out of the truck if the brakes are suddenly applied, and the dog can jump out if scared or upon seeing something interesting to chase. Instead, use a crate to create a safer space for the dog if you can’t fit the dog inside the truck cab.

* Take the dog into the shade, an air conditioned area, or to the vet if you see signs of heat exhaustion, which include restlessness, excessive thirst, heavy panting, lethargy, dark tongue, rapid pulse, fever, vomiting, glazed eyes, dizziness, or lack of coordination. To lower body temperature gradually, give the animal water to drink, place a cold towel or ice pack on the head, neck and chest, and/or immerse the dog in cool (not cold) water. Call your veterinarian.

* Get free brochures (see below) to use to educate pet owners.

If you see a pet in a vehicle on a hot day, take immediate action:

* Note the car make, model, color and tag number, then go to the nearest stores and ask the managers to page the owner.

* Call the police, which usually can respond much faster than can animal control departments. The police have the capability to enter the vehicle and rescue the pet.


It is against the law in most jurisdictions to leave a pet unattended in a standing or parked motor vehicle in a manner that endangers the health or safety of the animal.

Here is an excerpt from the Cruelty to Animals section of the Maryland Legal Code:

(a) A person may not leave a cat or dog unattended in a standing or parked motor vehicle in a manner that endangers the health or safety of the cat or dog.

(b) A person may use reasonable force to remove from a motor vehicle a cat or dog left in the vehicle in violation of the provisions of subsection (a) of this section if the person is:

(1) a law enforcement officer;

(2) a public safety employee of the State or of a local governing body;

(3) an animal control officer under the jurisdiction of the State or a local governing body;

(4) an officer of a society or association, incorporated under the laws of this State for the prevention of cruelty to animals, authorized to make arrests under the provisions of Art. 27, � 63 of the code; or

(5) a volunteer or professional of a fire and rescue service.

(c) A person described in subsection (b) of this section may not be held liable for any damages directly resulting from actions taken under the provisions of subsection (b) of this section. Transportation Article 21-1004.1.

Educating others:

For copies of “Hot Car” flyers, and for educational posters to give to store managers to post in their windows to remind people that “Leaving Your Pet in a Parked Car Can be a Deadly Mistake”: contact the Humane Society of the United States at 202-452-1100 or

To easily download brief leaflets on topics that include pets in hot car and chaining dogs:

To order a Hot Dog car sunshade that bears an educational reminder, call PETA at 1-800-483-4366


I am a pack animal – Since my pack of long ago is gone, you, my human family, have become my pack.
When I’m not with you, I suffer mentally; physically; I’m shut out of my pack; I don’t know why.
I am more likely to bite when chained or penned – I can become very territorial of my tiny space as a result of living alone, I am 2.5 times more likely to bite. I shouldn’t be held responsible if I harm an innocent child because I’ve never learned how to live with people.

Every dog deserves to live as part of his/her human family, regardless of size or breed. I like it outside, yes, but ONLY when you are with me, NOT for life!

When you are inside, I want to be inside with you.

What can you do? Bring me into your home & make me a part of the family! Fence our yard. Take me for walks, take me to obedience training & housetrain me. Let me have a good life like I deserve.

Please remember to feed the outdoor animals.