December 2nd is National Mutt Day – a day to celebrate and save the lives of mixed breed dogs across the U.S. There’s something inherently lovable and endearing about “mutts”. While every day with a mutt in your life is a great one, having a special day dedicated to their awesomeness is a day worth celebrating!
‘In every heart there is a hole… in every shelter… there is LOVE to fill it.’
So, here’s why we think you should consider adopting a mutt….
1. Mixed-Breed Dogs Can Be Healthier
It is claimed that mixed breed dogs are healthier than purebreds. While this isn’t proven, it is known that certain purebreds are more prone to specific illnesses such as hip and elbow dysplasia, cataracts and even epilepsy. Mixed breed dogs are thought to be less likely to develop these illnesses because even if they are part, say, German Shepard, they have fewer German Shepard genes than a purebred one.
However, while there may be a seemingly higher occurrence of mixed-breed dogs living longer lifespans, it must be acknowledged that healthy pure-breeds can also live long lives — and many without health issues —just as some mixed-breeds may need treatment for medical conditions throughout their lives. Nothing is a guarantee in the canine kingdom, as in life in general.
2. All Mixed-Breeds Are Unique
No two mutts are the same! If you’re looking for a companion with a unique look and personality, then a mixed-breed dog is perfect for you. Quirky patches of color and markings throughout the fur, ears that don’t quite match and a questionable lineage that just keeps you guessing is all part of the fun. You might even discover that your mixed-breed dog inherited some of the best characteristics of all the different breeds in his or her family tree when it comes to intelligence, athleticism, intuition and affection. Plus, when visiting a shelter to adopt a mutt, the selection is more varied and unique than you’d find at a breeder, so you can find the perfect pooch that exactly suits your family!
3. Mixed-Breeds Cost Less Than Pure-Breeds
Most pure-breed dogs are expensive to buy, ranging in cost from $800 to $2000. Many shelters and rescue groups only require a $50 to $200 donation in order for you to adopt a dog. Plus, a mixed breed from the shelter is likely spayed or neutered and is up-to-date on vaccinations, resulting in even more savings.
Keep in mind, however, that all dogs need the same level of loving care no matter what type of breed they are: a good healthy diet, a dog bed, toys, a leash and collar, training and obedience classes, and routine veterinary care.
4. You Won’t Be Supporting Puppy Mills
Large-scale commercial dog-breeding operations make a profit selling puppies to pet stores with little regard for the wellbeing of the dogs.
By choosing to adopt a dog from a shelter or a rescue group, you’re making it more difficult for puppy mills to stay in business.
5. You’ll Save a Life
Everyone wins when you adopt a dog from a shelter or rescue group. Giving an abandoned dog a forever home is life changing — for everyone.
Even if a purebred puppy doesn’t get adopted (which is highly unlikely), the puppy is already living in the home of a breeder, probably even still with its parents. A mixed breed dog living at a shelter, however, has a high chance of being euthanized. Adopting one means you are directly saving a life, a fact your grateful new dog will not soon forget.
6. They can still compete and be trained as service dogs
Think you need to purchase a purebred in order to enter dog competitions? Think again! Mixed breeds can compete in agility competitions through groups like the NADAC, amongst others. Similarly, being trained as a service or therapy dog is no longer limited to just purebreds. Mixed breeds are now considered equally as awesome and capable in this regard!
7. Their awesomeness is contagious
A mixed breed dog is for the adventurer in all of us! With a purebred dog, you’re selecting a specific temperament that has been honed through strict breeding practices over many, many years. With a mixed breed (and especially with a puppy), the unknown genetics leaves all that up in the air and brings a level of spontaneity that makes you awesome by association with the awesome mutt you’ve chosen to adopt.