Updated: Nov 14, 2020
The answer could be very easy: visit animal shelters.
They are crowded, they are sad and yes, we are still euthanizing for space. In very easy words, every time a breeder or a person breeds dogs and cats and sells them for money, animals at the shelter lose. Yes, they lose their lives and they lose their opportunity to find a home.
Why do people want specific breeds of dogs and want to pay thousands of dollars for one purebred dog or cat when there are literally thousands of them available for a very small fee, sterilized, microchipped and up to date on vaccinations? That answer I do not know and I do not understand it.
Also as a veterinarian who has worked in a handful of private practices I have to confess that it was absolutely difficult to keep myself together when I had the "client" who had just purchased a 2,000 dollar puppy from a breeder or imported her/him from another state or country and guess what? The same client would complain about my 50 dollar exam and the price of essential needs like vaccines, flea prevention medication and other needed medical care. I can't help but question- instead of spending thousands of dollars on a pretty much genetic mess, why not adopt a nice mixed animal from a shelter and use those thousands of dollars on veterinary services or even better, a health insurance plan? Why try to undercut the work of professionals who have studied many years of their life in order to be able to help animals?
Yes, some breeds of dogs are special and unique and "we don't want to see them disappear" but I also think it is pretty bad to see thousands of healthy animals being killed every year because of their mixed breed or not "ideal" appearance. A dog is a dog, a cat is a cat, a friend is a friend.
Furthermore, people assume purebreds do not end up in shelters because they are perfect. But the reality is different; purebreds are surrendered/dumped at the shelter for the same reasons as mixed breed animals. Or even worse, they are abandoned because of behavioral or medical issues that are common for the breed. When purebreds are mixed with other breeds, this can help to reduce the incidences of some medical issues, or behavioral issues that come with the breed due to genetics.
If we want to get out of this mess of dog and cat overpopulation on the streets and in the shelters, we need to stop caring about breeding purebreds for their appearance and start caring about living beings at the shelter having a chance to have a happy home. Why do we need a specific breed of dog to be happy when we can save a life?