Member for Goulburn Wendy Tuckerman is urging residents to realise the many benefits of dog ownership and adopt a rescue pooch on International Dog Day.

Mrs Tuckerman said August 26 was the perfect opportunity for residents to welcome a new furry family member into their home by adopting not shopping.

“As anyone who has ever rescued a dog will tell you, they make wonderful and loyal companions,” Mrs Tuckerman said.

“Rehoming abandoned or lost dogs also reduces the burden on pounds, shelters and rehoming organisations and, importantly, helps lower euthanasia rates.

“I encourage our residents to consider adopting a rescue dog today by visiting our council’s animal shelter and meet their new furry best friend.”

Minister for Local Government Shelley Hancock said the Government provided half-price pet registration for anyone adopting a rescue dog from council pounds and shelters and rehoming organisations.

“Anyone buying an animal from council pounds and shelters as well as 95 rehoming organisations can benefit from a 50 per cent discount on pet registration fees as part of the Government’s efforts to make dog ownership more affordable,” Mrs Hancock said.

“Since 2015, 43,000 pet owners have saved a total of nearly $1.2 million in reduced pet registration fees.

“I encourage anyone thinking about welcoming a dog into their lives to visit an RSPCA shelter, any NSW council pound or shelter or one of the many approved rehoming organisations across the State to rescue an animal in desperate need of a home.”

Mrs Hancock said all pet owners could help reduce the numbers of dogs and cats ending up in pounds and shelters in the first place.

“The easiest way to reduce the numbers of lost and unclaimed dogs needing to be rehomed is to follow the three easy steps of responsible pet ownership – microchipping, de-sexing and registering your pet,” she said.

“Keeping contact details up to date on the NSW Pet Registry also helps ensure a joyful reunion should your beloved cat or dog be lost, stolen or injured.”