Editorial: Start the new year by adopting a shelter pet | Editorials

The story of Ellie, the three-legged dog, should inspire people to start the new year with a new member of the family, a cat or dog from one of the many shelters in the area.

Haley Robinson, the Humane Society’s program director for Washington County, said Ellie was a normal dog living a normal life until another dog attacked her and she was so badly injured that she lost her front leg.

“During her recovery, Ellie regained not only her ability to move, but also her confidence in humans and other dogs,” Robinson said. But she still needed a home, and the community set out to find her one.

After a story about Ellie was published in our sister newspaper, Johnson City Press, the community received an overwhelming response through calls and emails from people wishing to sponsor or adopt the dog. Among them was the Miller family of Washington County.

“We did our best to find the most suitable family for Ellie, given her needs,” Robinson said. The Miller family, Sharon and David, meet Ellie on Christmas Eve, sign a healthcare agreement and take her home.

“By the end of the week, they knew they wanted to make her a permanent member of their family,” Robinson said.

Ellie lives at home with another dog, and they are already best friends. She is also pampered by their granddaughter. Ellie’s owners plan to enroll her in training to become a service dog. Sharon wants to take Ellie to the VA to give a little encouragement to disabled and injured veterans. “Ellie would make the best spell ever,” said Robinson.

Not everyone should think about owning a cat or a dog.

AmericanHumane.org says you should think about it if you think caring for a pet for 15 to 18 years doesn’t sound like a lifetime and you don’t mind sharing your home with a pet that glides, tracks cat litter, and sheds hairballs, an animal that doesn’t clean out On his own, he wants to spend money on pet food, toys, veterinary care, and cat litter. You have to spay and fertilize and can’t imagine leaving your loyal pet behind when you move in.

According to Research Gate, owning any pet you adopt from a shelter has been shown to have positive effects on humans’ ability to deal with stress, anxiety, depression and loneliness. Adopting a pet cat or dog can improve your sense of happiness and general well-being, and a recent study found that owning a cat may lower the risk of death from cardiovascular disease and stroke.

The American Heart Association says, “This is an important finding given that stroke is the third cause of death in women and the third in men.”

If you’d like to expand your family with a custom pet, a few options include PETWORKS Animal Services, 3101 E. Stone Drive, Kingsport, 423-247-1671; The Bridge Home No Kill Animal Shelter, 2061 Interstate 75, Blountville, 423-239-5237; Hawkins County Humane Society, 5180 US 11W, Rogersville, 423-272-6538; The Humane Society of Washington County, 2101 W. Walnut St., Johnson City, 423-926-8533; or Washington County Animal Shelter-Johnson City, 3411 N. Roan St. , Johnson City, 423-926-8769.


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