Animal advocates: Pets as gifts not recommended

YOUNGSTOWN — Local animal advocates warn against surprising a loved one with a pet for a holiday or birthday, especially for a child.

Diane Less, founder of Angels for Animals in Green Township, said shelters have struggled with people adopting animals, especially dogs, to give as gifts, only to return them a couple weeks later when the novelty wears off.

“We don’t like to adopt animals to people as gifts unless they bring the person they are buying it for with them; we don’t believe in putting the puppy in the box and putting it under the tree,” Less said.

Gary Pilcher, executive director of the Animal Welfare League of Trumbull County, said his organization also doesn’t allow people to give animals as gifts without the potential owner being present. The organization noticed an influx of surrenders around March or April, just a few months after Christmas.

“You are coming in because you want it, or you are paying for it and someone with you is picking it up; that tremendously increases the chance of the animal having a good adoption,” Pilcher said.

For the complete story, read Tuesday's Vindicator and

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