Animal Shelters Are Struggling To Find Homes For Big Dogs And Ask People To “Love Large”

Big dogs have larger-than-life personalities, think they are lap dogs, and have the biggest hearts. Sadly, many have a hard time finding a forever home due to their size and misconceptions about their needs and care.

Animal shelters across the country are full of large dogs that just want someone to love. Many are in crisis mode as they are at or over capacity and desperately need adopters and fosters.

Best Friends Animal Society, who has the goal of making the entire country no-kill by 2025, wants to help shed light on how amazing big dogs are so they created the “Love Large” campaign.

Photo: Pixabay

They shared the heartbreaking fact that every year thousands of shelter pets are killed. “In 2021, about 355,000 dogs and cats were killed in our nation’s shelters just because they didn’t have safe places to call home.”

Together with your help, they hope to end this by encouraging everyone to adopt or foster.

Love Large

The campaign hopes to squash stereotypes so people will adopt or foster a big dog and then share their story with the world.

Best Friends wrote, “Sadly, due to stereotypes and myths about the space and care that they require, these lovable goof-balls are at higher risk than some other pets of losing their lives in shelters.”

Large dogs are typically any breed or mixed breed over 50 pounds. While some are the perfect running partner or hiking buddy, there are many that would prefer to cuddle on the couch or take a nap in the sun.

Shocking as it might sound, some big dogs can be apartment dogs.

Just like humans, each dog has a unique personality. What each dog needs and deserves is a family who will love them just the way they are.

Big Dog Influx At Shelters

Shelters nationwide are seeing an increase in big dogs. Some are surrendered due to owners who are not able or willing to put the time and effort in to train or exercise the dog properly. Others end up at shelters because their family is forced to move, the owner has become sick or passed away.

Housing is another issue for those who rent. Landlords set the size and breed requirements and charge an additional fee to have a dog in the home.

Inflation has also played a role as prices of food and basic essentials continue to rise.


Adopting saves two dogs, the one you adopt and the one that is helped with the open space.

Are ready to check out some adoptable big dogs but unsure which type of big dog person you are? No worries. Best Friends created a quiz to help you discover which personality of dog would work best with your lifestyle. Check it out here.

The animal welfare organization states, “It’s no small thing- adopt or foster a big dog today!”

Photo: Pixabay/anvel


Another way to save lives is by fostering a big dog. This allows shelters to learn more about the dog while also freeing up space to help another. Plus, you may just fall in love and become a foster “fail”.

Visit your local shelter today to see how you can help.


Photo: Pexels/Nikita Grishin

The best way to show the world how amazing large dogs are is to share their rescue stories and photos with the world. Best Friends urges people who have adopted to share photos and their adorable pup with the hashtag #bigdogs on social media.

Don’t forget to share photos of adoptable dogs as well so they can find their special someone.

Open your heart and home to a big mutt – it will be the best decision you ever made.

Check out the “Love Large” video below.

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