December 5 is "Celebrate Shelter Pets Day"

December 5 is "Celebrate Shelter Pets Day," which, yes, is one of those fairly recently made-up holidays, but who cares?? It's definitely one I can get behind! National Today explains:

Celebrate Shelter Pets Day started in 2010 as a collaborative effort among the Humane Society of the U.S., the Ad Council, and Maddie's Fund. The event, which started on Facebook and was called "Shelter Pets Take Over Facebook Day," has grown to include all social platforms, and over 100 pets and their owners are now involved.

The Humane Society of the United States (H.S.U.S.) is a non-profit organization in America that specializes in animal welfare and is against animal cruelty in the country. The organization works on different issues, including companion animals, farm animals, wildlife, and equines. H.S.U.S., based in Washington D.C., was founded in 1954 by Fred Myers, Helen Jones, Marcia Glaser, and Larry Andrews. H.S.U.S. does not oversee local shelters, animal care, or control agencies. It is known to promote best practices with a range of services throughout the country.

The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals was formed in 1824 in Britain, and the women in the association formed the first official animal shelter in the country. In 1974 it was reported that about 60% of American households were pet owners, and that number has increased as 67% of American households today own, and pamper, pets. The percentage of pet dogs adopted from shelters increased from 15% in 2006 to 35% in 2016. The internet and social media have helped with the increase in shelter pet adoption.

Head over to National Today to see a quick timeline of animal shelters (the first shelter was formed in the U.S. in 1869 and the American Humane Association was founded in 1877) along with some ideas about how to celebrate, including: 1. Support a shelter; 2. Adopt a pet from a shelter; 3. Spoil your pet.

Celebrating this holiday is easy! Go rescue a shelter pet! And if you already have a rescued pet, love them even more today (if that's even possible!). I am forever grateful for my family's two rescues, Henry Rollins and Jaxson Pawlick, pictured here. I'll give them even more treats and walks and hugs to celebrate!