pet adoption toronto

People in Toronto are now surrendering their COVID pets to shelters en masse

Naturally, as us humans were stuck inside for months with little to do during lockdown, pet adoptions boomed, with furry new friends providing some much needed love, entertainment, routine and an excuse to get out of the house for some walks.

But as lovely as all of the stories of shelter pets finding their forever homes were, a large portion of them apparently did not end up happily ever after, according to the latest numbers from Toronto Animal Services (TAS).

Pet surrenders to the agency are up a whopping 75 per cent so far this year compared to last, with 327 cats, 151 dogs and 231 other critters brought back to shelters in the first six months of 2022.

The problem is so bad that TAS currently has a waitlist for residents to surrender their pets, while shelters elsewhere in the country and abroad are likewise filling up. The Toronto Humane Society has reported, though, that they have not seen such an uptick in surrenders so far this year — yet.

One of the primary reasons is the fact that people are shifting back into the office after working from home for so long, the city arm told CP24, with larger breeds, pets who have high energy levels and/or who show separation anxiety proving far more likely to be returned.

Other factors include the rising costs of pet food and other pet necessities amid sky-high inflation rates.

Unfortunately, people taking on the responsibility of living things without properly thinking it through or being able to care for them is not an uncommon phenomenon, with bunnies routinely adopted for Easter and then returned shortly after every year as just one example.

Lead photo by

Honey is available for adoption through Toronto Animal Services


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