According to NPR, over 100,000 pets are abandoned during summer vacation in France alone due to owners being unwilling or unable to take their pets along and find suitable care in their absence. Consequently, shelters see an influx of animals brought in by owners who feel this is more humane than simply releasing them.
Ironically, visitors to France are struck by the fact of how pet friendly the country is with nearly half of French households having pets. It's not uncommon for restaurants and pubs to welcome to dogs or have a cat mascot.
While this may seem incomprehensible to Americans, it probably mirrors a similar problem shelters report here. Some owners, when moving, treat animals (especially cats) like unwanted furniture left at the curb. They are left to fend for themselves, and these animals are not prepared for such a drastic lifestyle change.Â They often become disoriented, skittish, and may be difficult to adopt with fearful, unsociable behaviors if apprehended by animal control services.
Photo by Dineshraj Goomany.