Demand for new pets certainly seemed to spike when the COVID-19 pandemic reached the United States in early 2020 and forced many Americans to spend more time isolated.
But adoptions from animal shelters and rescues actually fell 17% to approximately 1.6 million in 2020 from over 1.9 million in 2019, according to Shelter Animal Counts, a nonprofit that tracks data regarding animals that spend time in shelters.
How did Americans end up welcoming fewer rescued animals into their homes during the COVID-19 pandemic? The short answer is that there weren’t enough furry friends to go around.
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Volsche, Shelly. (2021). "Americans Adopted Fewer Pets from Shelters in 2020 as the Supply of Rescue Animals Fell". The Conversation, .