National Rescue Dog Day

National Rescue Dog Day falls on May 20th every year and is a day created to encourage people to adopt a dog from their local pet shelter. Every year, approximately 3.3 million dogs enter animal shelters nationwide and are in dire need of being adopted. This holiday reminds everyone that these are quality companion animals that are truly worthy of a home—a home that someone participating on this day can provide.

The History of National Rescue Dog Day

This holiday was created after a dog named Cooper was rescued in 2009. It was started by an organization called Tails That Teach, Inc., an organization dedicated to helping young children be kinder to both pets and people. They do this through humane education and by working with their partners around the U.S.

Shelter Dog Facts

Below are some facts that we believe will highlight the importance of people observing this holiday and making room for a shelter pet in their home.

  • There are 3.3 million dogs and 3.2 million cats currently placed into U.S. shelters every year.
  • Every year, over 670,000 dogs are euthanized.
  • Each year, only 1.6 million dogs are adopted. That’s under half the number of dogs that end up in shelters each year.
  • There are an estimated 78 million dogs owned in the U.S.
  • Perceived pet problems account for 47% of the dogs that end up having to find a new home.

The Cost of Buying from a Breeder Versus Adopting from a Shelter

If all of the above facts won’t convince a person to celebrate National Rescue Dog Day and bring home a new member of the family, maybe this section will. Adopting from a shelter can be a lot cheaper than buying a dog from a breeder. While animal shelters usually don’t charge more than $200, sometimes far less than that, breeders can charge hundreds or thousands of dollars for a dog. That makes adopting an abandoned dog from a shelter more fiscally responsible than buying a dog from a breeder. And with millions of dogs awaiting adoption, people have a ton of different types of dogs to choose from.

Observing National Rescue Dog Day

This holiday is one that every person who is capable of observing it should. There are millions of dogs in urgent need of a home and face the possibility of being euthanized. People can solve this problem by observing National Rescue Dog Day and adopting a new furry family member. For those who can’t celebrate this holiday, they can support it by using the hashtag #NationalRescueDogDay on their social media accounts to bring attention to the plight of millions of shelter dogs.

When is it?
This year (2024)
May 20 Monday
Next year (2025)
May 20 Tuesday
Last year (2023)
May 20 Saturday