A Virginia veterinary clinic owner recently told USA Today that up to two-thirds of pet owners putting their animals to sleep were doing so because they couldn't afford to care for their pets.
"I've never seen as many people lining up to turn over pets," Mark Kumpf, former executive director of the National Animal Control Association, told the newspaper. "It's heart-wrenching to see so many people come through the door."
But groups across the country are trying to stop this as best they can.
Some provide complimentary pet vaccines, give out pet food and supplies, and spay and neuter for free. Others transport pet owners without cars to and from the vet's office so that their pets can receive the care they need.
Los Angeles families get in-shelter counseling about the many resources that could help them hold onto their animals. And a veterinary clinic in Richmond, Virginia, even offers low-cost surgery -- complicated procedures, not just spaying and neutering -- to help prevent what's called "economic euthanasia."
Here are 13 organizations that are trying to make a difference:
How can you help? Donate, volunteer, foster and adopt. It's that simple. Get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org if you know a rescue group that's doing great work!