According to AID Animals, about 4 million dogs are abandoned every year in the US alone. Sometimes pet owners feel they can no longer afford to care for their animals or decide that their pets are too much of a nuisance. Many times, it coincides with a move or other major change in the family such as divorce or a new baby. 

Pet abandonment when moving is such a common occurrence, one woman decided to create this post on Craigslist:

This is my dog....

I have had her for six years. She has been frustrating and infuriating at times. She has cost me money I wanted to spend on other things. She has been inconvenient at times. I've had to arrange my life with her in mind. I wouldn't trade any of it for anything in the world, because I love her and she brings me joy.Now, to get to the point of this post. I want to tell you about something amazing that I did. I MOVED. I moved three times actually. Amazingly, I KEPT MY F***ING DOG! Can you imagine? Did you know someone can move and still keep their dog? What an amazing concept, isn't it?Oh, I also got married, had a baby, and changed jobs, AND STILL MANAGED TO KEEP MY DOG! Am I the only human being alive who's been able to do this?See that little cat next my dog in the picture, well we just found out she has AIDS, yes, feline AIDS. She will require expensive medicine for the rest of her short life. Guess what? I'M KEEPING THE F***ING CAT TOO. I'm not going to dump her off on Craigslist to assuage some mild hint of guilt I feel because I'm too lazy, weak and irresponsible to fulfill a commitment I made to a living, loving animal.To all you who do otherwise, F**K YOU! I hope your spouse leaves you, penniless and alone. May God keep you, though you don't deserve it.

Although SF Globe relates to the anger expressed by this poster, we know that just being angry does little to help. Here are some things you can do to help reduce the number of dogs that are abandoned or left in shelters:

- Only adopt from shelters. This reduces the incentive for "puppy mills" that overbreed dogs.
- Spay or neuter your pet. Many clinics offer low cost or free spay or neutering for those who cannot afford the costs.
- Volunteer to foster or donate to your local shelter. While working towards reducing the number of abandoned animals, shelters still need support to stretch their resources. 
- Oppose breed-specific laws. Some areas ban specific breeds outright. A family who is moving to such an area may feel they have little choice than to abandon their dog. Even if dropping off their dog at a no-kill shelter, they are taking up a space that another dog might need. Moreover, the dogs most often targeted by breed-specific legislation are also the least adopted. 

This video shows the rescue of one abandoned pup. We can only imagine how frightened and confused she must have been when she was left to fend for herself by the people she once thought of as family. Although the story ends happily for her, there are many others who need help.   

Tell us your thoughts in our comments section.