cats adoption

Canada is having a love affair with adopting cats right now

More and more Canadians are realizing that cats are just the best.

Adoptions of the cuddly yet independent pets who may or may not want to kill you are apparently on the rise across the country, according to new data from a federation representing 172 Canadian SPCAs and Humane Societies.

Humane Canada's Animal Shelter Statistics report for 2018 showed a marked increase in cat adoptions nearly every year since 2007, with 62 per cent of all shelter cats finding new homes last year.

Dog adoption numbers have increased or decreased slightly year-to-year, largely remaining about the same, with 47 per cent of shelter dogs adopted out in 2018.

Because so many more cats are admitted to shelters each year — nearly triple the number of cats as dogs in 2018, which translated to more than 81,00 kitties vs. less than 30,000 pups — this means that the percentages above mean drastically different numbers of individual pets.

Around 50,000 people in Canada took home a new feline friend from an SPCA or Humane Society shelter last year alone, compared to just 14,000 or so people who adopted dogs from the same organizations.

These statistics are up from the 43 per cent of shelter cats and 38 per cent of shelter dogs who were adopted when the body started publishing firm data in 2007, as well as from the 2017 numbers (60 per cent of cats and 45 per cent of dogs).

Unfortunately, though a higher proportion of cats are being adopted,  euthanasia rates for kitties are still higher than they should be — seven per cent of healthy, adoptable cats in shelters were put down last year, compared to two per cent of dogs. 

Both numbers are consistent with recent years, though substantially down from the earlier 2000s.

It is worth noting that these stats do not take into account intake, adoptions or euthanasia through private facilities or animal rescues, which are growing in size and number.

Overall, the news is good: the number of pets admitted to these facilities has been dropping while the number of those who find forever homes increases. Humane Canada says in the report that they are optimistic about the "improving situation" for shelter cuties — cats and dogs alike — across the country.

Lead photo by

Vish Gagie


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