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March 14, 2011

Pet Adoption in the Internet Age

Most technologies can be used for good or ill, and that’s certainly the case with the Internet. At its worst, for example, when it comes to animals, it’s been the means of commerce for so-called “animal crush” videos to proliferate and for puppy millers, cockfighters, and other animal-abuse groups to use to organize or peddle their own forms of commerce. But it’s also been a powerful force for the good of our cause.

Adoptable cat Fiona at the Hinsdale Humane Society
Hinsdale Humane Society
Fiona is available for adoption locally from the Hinsdale
Humane Society in Illinois.

HSUS’s undercover video showing the extreme confinement of breeding sows at a Smithfield Foods factory farm has attracted several hundred thousand online views over the last couple of months, and HSUS generally makes incredible use of video, social media, and the Web to drive its message and push ahead social reform for animals.

Without question, the Internet has also catapulted the cause of shelter pet adoption forward. Adopting a companion animal has become easier with the advent of Petfinder.com, The Shelter Pet Project, and other websites that allow anyone to browse potential pets from the comfort of home. If you’re looking for a young or elder animal, a particular breed, or if you want to help a special-needs pet, you can easily find the right match for you online.

Tomorrow, March 15, Petfinder is organizing an online event to promote awareness about shelter pet adoption. On “Adopt the Internet Day,” animal-friendly bloggers and webmasters are joining together to highlight online adoption opportunities. A Humane Nation will, of course, be participating.

Adoptable dog Sparkle at the Sequoia Humane Society
Sequoia Humane Society
Sparkle is available for adoption locally from the Sequoia
Humane Society in California.

You can get involved by visiting Petfinder’s Adopt the Internet Day page and find out more about adoption on our website. If you use Facebook and other social media sites, please spread the word to friends and family by sharing our pet adoption pledge or posting a badge about Adopt the Internet Day, and be sure to “Like” the Shelter Pet Project on Facebook.

If you’re looking to add a new pet to your family, check out Petfinder’s special gallery of adoptable animals. The cat and dog pictured here, Fiona and Sparkle, are waiting for a good home at two Spay Day 2011 participating organizations.

P.S. This coming Saturday is also going to be a big day for awareness about animal issues. It’s the 25th annual presentation of the Genesis Awards, which recognizes the news media and entertainment industry for including animal protection themes in their work. Thirteen Genesis Awards will be presented to writers, producers, journalists, and others gathered at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza hotel in Los Angeles. There are still some tickets available for the animal movement’s most glittering event. Contact our Los Angeles office at (310) 440-0600 for details or go to humanesociety.org/genesis. You won’t want to miss it!

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