Petco, a renowned name in the pet retail industry, has always been a subject of curiosity regarding its approach to unsold animals. This page seeks to give a thorough picture of what Petco does with animals that aren’t sold. We will delve into its policies, ethical considerations, and the steps it takes to ensure the well-being of animals in its care.

Let’s embark on this journey to understand how Petco handles this important aspect of its business.

What Does Petco Do with Unsold Animals

What Does Petco Do with Unsold Animals

One question often arises in pet retail is, “What does Petco do with unsold animals?” This question reflects concerns about the welfare of animals in the pet industry, especially those who may not find a home through traditional adoption channels. This article will explore Petco’s practices and how they handle unsold animals, shedding light on their commitment to animal welfare.

Petco is committed to the welfare of animals in their stores. When it comes to unsold animals, they have a well-structured approach in place. Here’s what they do:

Adoption Programs

One primary way Petco deals with unsold animals is through adoption programs. They partner with local animal shelters and rescue organizations to find loving homes for these animals. This helps the animals find caring families and reduces the burden on shelters, which often face overcrowding issues.

Return to Suppliers

In some cases, unsold animals are returned to responsible breeders and suppliers. Petco maintains strict criteria for suppliers to ensure they adhere to ethical breeding practices and the well-being of the animals. This practice helps ensure that animals are kept in a safe environment.

In-Store Care

Petco stores have trained staff who provide proper care to unsold animals. They monitor their health, provide medical attention, and ensure they are well-fed and comfortable. This commitment to care extends to all animals, regardless of whether they are sold.

Education and Awareness

Petco believes in educating customers about responsible pet ownership. They provide information on pet care, adoption, and the importance of not buying animals on impulse. This proactive approach contributes to reducing the number of unsold animals in the first place.

Pet Store Puppies: Why You Shouldn’t Rescue One

Pet Store Puppies Why You Shouldn't Rescue One

A significant pet-specific retailer is Petco Animal Supplies, Inc. The business was established in 1965. San Diego, California, in the United States, serves as its administrative center. Petco’s product categories are available: Dog, Cat, Fish, Small Animal, and Reptile. Additionally, there are bird supplies. Petco offers pet-related services.

Every puppy sold results in the ordering of further puppies. Like any other retail establishment, pet shops have inventory, and puppies are a component. When you enter a store and spot a dejected-appearing dachshund puppy, you buy her to get her out of there, and the business orders another dachshund puppy. The shop sees your thoughtful purchase of pet store puppies as a desire for that breed. You unintentionally contributed to the continued operation of a commercial breeder, broker, and pet shop.

But Shouldn’t I Care About Pet Store Puppies

Yes, but keep in mind that puppies sold as pets are those who have previously left puppy mills. The actual tragedy is that the vast majority of pet store puppies are still being raised in puppy mills, where hundreds of thousands of dogs and puppies exist. Most of these dogs’ lives are spent in teeny, claustrophobic cages with the sole objective of producing puppies for sale in pet shops. By avoiding purchasing a puppy from a store that sells puppies at any time, you can contribute to the closure of puppy mills.

What Happens to Pet Store Puppies Who Aren’t Sold

What Does Petco Do with Unsold Animals

They are put up for sale, just as other unsold stock. Stores purchase puppies for a small portion of what they charge their patrons. The original cost of an eight-week-old puppy in a store may be $1,500. If no one purchases the puppy, the shop will mark it down as the puppy ages. Puppies are eventually discounted to the price the business paid the broker for the puppy mill, typically a few hundred dollars. Stores frequently cut their losses and give away puppies to staff members, friends, or rescue organizations if the animal still doesn’t sell.

I’m not fond of the Thought of Those Puppies in the Store. I Still Want to Rescue One.

What Does Petco Do with Unsold Animals

We advise kind people like you to take a “do not enter” stance. Avoid visiting pet establishments selling puppies, shopping there, or even going in to look. Leave the pet store and visit your neighborhood shelter to adopt a dog if you want to help puppies and dogs.

Adoption Centers and Partnerships

One of the key ways Petco addresses the issue of unsold animals is by operating adoption centers within or near many of its stores. These adoption centers often partner with local animal shelters and rescue organizations. Here’s how it works:

A. Providing Space: Petco provides space for these adoption centers within its stores. This space allows rescue groups and shelters to showcase cats, dogs, and sometimes smaller animals and reptiles available for adoption.

B. Promoting Adoption: Petco promotes the adoption of these animals through its website, in-store signage, and social media. They believe adoption is a responsible way to find loving homes for needy pets.

C. Partnering with Local Groups: Petco works with smaller, neighborhood-based rescue organizations and regional animal welfare organizations like the Humane Society & ASPCA. These partnerships help ensure that animals in need of homes have a chance to find loving families.

No Euthanasia Policy

Petco has a well-publicized “no euthanasia” policy for healthy animals. This means they do not euthanize animals solely due to a lack of sales. Instead, they focus on providing proper care, socialization, and opportunities for adoption. This policy aligns with their commitment to the welfare of all animals in their care.

Adoption Centers and Partnerships

Petco may offer discounts or promotions to expedite the adoption process and find suitable homes for animals in the store for an extended period. These can make it more affordable for potential pet owners to adopt a furry friend. Reduced pricing helps reduce the time animals spend in the store, ensuring they go to loving homes more quickly.

Return to Breeders or Suppliers

In some cases, Petco may have agreements with breeders or suppliers that allow for the return of unsold animals. However, strict standards and regulations generally guide these agreements to ensure the animals’ well-being. Reputable breeders and suppliers must properly meet these standards and care for returned animals.

Animal Welfare and Care

What Does Petco Do with Unsold Animals

Petco takes the welfare of all animals in its care seriously. If an animal becomes ill or requires medical attention, Petco provides veterinary care and meets the animal’s needs. Sick or injured animals are not left unattended; every effort is made to return them to health or find appropriate care.


Petco’s commitment to the welfare of unsold animals is commendable. Through adoption programs, responsible supplier relationships, in-store care, and education, they strive to ensure that every animal in their care receives the love and attention it deserves. By understanding what Petco does with unsold animals, we can all contribute to a more compassionate approach to pet ownership.

Remember, consider adoption as your first option when you adopt a pet. It’s not just a choice; it’s a pledge to provide a loving home to an animal in need.



How Does Petco Help?

Every week, working with Petco and other neighborhood animal welfare partners, we assist in finding homes for tens of thousands of dogs, cats, rabbits, and other creatures. For more, check the Petco shop calendar in your area. Did you get a brand-new pet? A picture of the family would be great!

Will Petco Stop Exploiting Small Birds?

But the big-box pet store has yet to listen to the countless people who have begged it to stop exploiting all animals, including small birds, like these finches a PETA investigator observed while undercover at Sun Pet Ltd. This Atlanta-based wholesale animal dealer supplies animals to numerous Petco stores:

Is Petco a Pet Store?

A significant pet-specific retailer is Petco Animal Supplies, Inc. The business was established in 1965. San Diego, California, in the United States, serves as its administrative centre. Petco’s product categories are available: Dog, Cat, Fish, Small Animal, and Reptile. Additionally, there are bird supplies. Petco offers pet-related services.

What Does Petco Do to Their Animals?

The animals are kept in tiny tanks and claustrophobic cages, unable to behave naturally and frequently lacking the essentials of existence. Anyone with a credit card can buy animals at Petco.

What is the Petco Controversy?

Atlanta – A damning federal inspection report about Sun Pet Ltd., a supplier to PetSmart and Petco, has just been made public. It details violations of six federal regulations, including the discovery of partially eaten bodies of dead hamsters in nearly two dozen enclosures and the eating of an actual hamster.

Does Petco Throw Away Animals?

Petco does not euthanize or “throw away” unsold animals. Instead, it works with adoption partners to find them loving homes.