I recieved this e-mail from a friend of mine who does dog rescues, and I just wanted to share it with everyone. Sad, but true. CeCe Dear Mr. and Mrs. Average Idiot,
We receive an extremely high volume of inquiries and requests to accept surrendered animals. To help us expedite your problem as quickly as possible, please observe the following guidelines:
1. Do not say that you are, "considering finding a good home," or, "feel you might be forced to," or, "really think it would be better if," you unloaded the poor beast. Ninety-five percent of you already have your minds stenciled made up that the animal will be out of your life by the weekend or holiday at the latest. Say so. If you don't, I'm going to waste a lot of time giving you common-sense, easy solutions for very fixable problems, and you're going to waste a lot of time coming up with fanciful reasons why the solution couldn't possibly work for you. For instance, you say the cat claws the furniture, and I tell you about nail clipping and scratching posts and aversion training, and then you go into a long harangue about how your husband won't let you put a scratching post in the family room, and your ADHD daughter cries if you use a squirt bottle on the cat, and your congenital thumb abnormalities prevent you from using nail scissors and etc., etc. Just say you're getting rid of the cat.
2. Do not waste time trying to convince me how nice and humane you are. Your coworker recommended that you contact me because I am nice to animals, not because I am nice to people, and I don't like people who "get rid of" their animals. "Get rid of," is my least favorite phrase in any language. I hope someone, "gets rid of" you someday. I am an animal advocate, not a people therapist. After all, you can get counselors, special teachers, doctors, social workers, etc., for your ADHD daughter. Your pet has only me, and people like me, to turn to in his or her need, and we are overworked, stressed out, and demoralized. So don't tell me this big long story about how, "We love this dog so much, and we even bought him a special bed that cost $50, and it is just killing us to part with him, but honestly, our maid is just awash in dog hair every time she cleans, and his breath sometimes just reeks of liver, so you can see how hard we've tried, and how dear he is to us, but we really just can't ... ."
You are not nice, and it is not killing you. It is, in all probability, literally killing your dog, but you're going to be just fine once the beast is out of your sight. Don't waste my time trying to make me like you or feel sorry for you in your plight.
3. Do not try to convince me that your pet is exceptional and deserves special treatment. I don't care if you taught him to sit. I don't care if she's a beautiful Persian. I have a waiting list of battered and/or whacked out animals who really need help, and I have no room to shelter your pet because you decided you no longer have time for your 14-year-old Lab. Do not send me long messages detailing how Fido just l-o-v-e-s blankies and carries his favorite blankie everywhere, and oh, when he gets all excited and happy, he spins around in circles, isn't that cute? He really is darling, so it wouldn't be any trouble at all for us to find him a good home. Listen, we can go down to the pound and count the darling, spinning, blankie loving beasts on death row by the dozens, any day of the week. And, honey, Fido is a six-year-old shepherd mix weighing 75 pounds. I am not lying when I tell you big, older, mixed breed, garden-variety dogs are almost always completely unadoptable, and I don't care if they can whistle Dixie or send smoke signals with their blankies. What you don't realize, though you're trying to lie to me, you're actually telling the truth: Your pet is a special, wonderful, amazing creature. But this mean old world does not care. More importantly, you do not care, and I can't fix that problem.
All I can do is grieve for all the exceptional animals who live short, brutal, loveless lives and die without anyone ever recognizing they were indeed very, very special.
4. Finally, just, for God' s sake, for the animal's sake, tell the truth, and the whole truth. Do you think if you just mumble your cat is, "high-strung," I will say, "Okey-doke! No problem!" and take it into foster care? No, I will start asking questions and uncover the truth, which is your cat has not used a litter box in the last six months. Do not tell me you "can't" crate your dog. I will ask what happens when you try to crate him, and you will either be forced to tell me the symptoms of full-blown, severe separation anxiety, or else you will resort to lying some more, wasting more time.
And, if you succeed in placing your pet in a shelter or foster care, do not tell yourself the biggest lie of all: "Those nice people will take him and find him a good home, and everything will be fine." those nice people will indeed give the animal every possible chance, but if we discover serious health or behavior problems, if we find that your misguided attempts to train or discipline him have driven him over the edge, we will do what you are too immoral and cowardly to do: We will hold the animal in our arms, telling him truthfully he is a good dog or cat, telling him truthfully we are sorry and we love him, while the vet ends his life. How can we be so heartless as to kill your pet, you ask?
Do not ever dare to judge us.
At least we tried. At least we stuck with him to the end. At least we never abandoned him to strangers, as you certainly did, didn't you? In short, this little old rescuer/foster momma has reached the point where she would prefer you tell it like it is:
"We picked up a free pet in a parking lot a couple of years ago. Now we don't want it anymore. We're lazier than we thought. We've got no patience either. We're starting to suspect the animal is really smarter than we are, which is giving us self-esteem issues. Clearly, we can't possibly keep it. Plus, it might be getting sick; it's acting kind of funny.
"We would like you to take it in eagerly, enthusiastically, and immediately. We hope you'll realize what a deal you're getting and not ask us for a donation to help defray your costs. After all, this is an (almost) pure-bred animal, and we'll send the leftover food along with it. We get it at the discount store, and boy, it's a really good deal.
"We are very irritated you haven't shown pity on us in our great need and picked the animal up already. We thought you people were supposed to be humane! Come and get it today. No, we couldn't possibly bring it to you; the final episode of 'Survivor' is on tonight."
I actually agree with everything the post says. I think that is great and working at shelters as many years as I have that is so true. People get a pet and dump it like its tomorrows trash because society is lazy and does not want an animal that they have to put time into. We have even had people bring in Bettas because it is a pain to clean the bowl. WTF ? How are people so lazy that they cant take two minutes a week to change 1/2 the water in a one gallon bowl. If you have ever rescued or fostered dogs you will get very tired of people and there lame excuses. i THINK THAT IS A GREAT POST!!
Ok, I had to read it two times to get it I must be alittle slow:). That email so right on point,people get puppies and pets because their cute but when they get big or have behavorial problems they take the easy way out. To top it off they try to make it look like their being good owners by giving them away so they have a good home. GET REAL....
I don't know how anyone could ever bring themselves to give up a pet if it wasn't absolutely necessary. In one of my earlier posts I wrote about adopting a GSD mix from the shelter and having to return her because of aggression and temperament problems. It was an agonizing decision and was only made after consulting with 2 dog trainers, the vet, and a specialist in animal behavior, and even still it was absolutely heartbreaking to have to take her back. But she was emotionally damaged by abuse beyond what anyone could do to help her. I only had her for 3 weeks and I don't even comprehend how you could have an animal for months/years and then just take it and give it away without a really, REALLY good reason.
In the face truth... every person that ditchs a pet should read that, it kinda makes you wonder why they even attempt to take a pet? then to just throw it away when they are done? my gosh i can barly go to the store with out missing my little guy so much i rush right home.. This is sad but true..
That's a good one alright. Think about how many parents try to buy their kids love by getting them a pet only to realize the kid only wants what he can't have. If only people would really stop and think about how much work and responsibility it is to properly care for a pet... we wouldn't have so many homeless cats and dogs sitting in shelters waiting for adoption.
I got the best phone call yesterday and I wish I had the lady's e-mail address so I could forward this to her.
" We're looking for a puppy because our kids want one. We don't know anything about the breed - so please spoon feed me everything I want to know - but don't tell me the downfalls of the breed because I have my heart set on one because they are so cute and I don't have the brains to realize no dog is perfect. I don't want to spend what you're asking for your puppies - so can you sell one to me for the price I'm willing to pay? I also want one RIGHT now - so can I have it when it's 6-7 weeks old even though your told me that you hold all your pups until 9 weeks. What do you mean I'm going to pay more than $300 for a well bred, good quality dog of this breed? Why would anyone sell a puppy for that much? I found some in the paper for $100... but they don't have a female, and my kids already have a little girl name picked out. Oh, and by the way, I don't want to spay her because I would like to have a couple of litters of puppies out of her in order to get my money back on what I paid for her and hopefully pay for all her costs for the rest of her life... What do you mean you shouldn't just let the dog have puppies in the garage? Dogs can have c-sections??? What are "color genetics"? Don't ALL Sheltie just come in brown - like Lassie? You run a WAITING list? Why do you do that? ...."
ARGH.... I get phone calls like this about once a week from people looking for a dog RIGHT now that know next to nothing about the breed and also think they are going to start breeding dogs because they see how much breeder's are selling puppies for and figure they can make a buck or two. I have NO doubt in my mind that even after I explained to this same lady that she doesn't want a Sheltie puppy that is kennel raised (they tend to be really high strung and barky) and that she wants a good health guarantee that she turned around and called the "Puppy Farm" that is 45 minutes from her (she was 6 hours from me) that happens to advertise on the same site as I do and probably got a puppy that was ready to go home that same day for $300 with breeding rights. It also probably has a parasite problem (the breeder is known for sending out puppies with coccidia, giardia, and worms), is undersized, has terrible bone structure and conformation, and since I know the breeder has a problem with LP and Elbow Displaysia in her line - but only has a 1 year guarantee that covers ONLY hips and eyes - she also probably has a dog that has some kind of joint problem - which she'll discover after she breeds the dog the first time because she'll undoubtedly let her have puppies on her first or second heat cycle...
I HATE people who want instant gratification - and instant gratification works just as well in getting rid of the dog as it does in aquiring it... My vet techs have a variety of animals that people have brought in with minor health issues that require surgery and want them put down rather than shelling out the $1000 for the sugery to correct it. They have the owner sign a release saying they are surrendering the animal, the clinic does the surgery and then one of the vet techs or vet's end up with it. There are 3 clinic cats that have either amputated legs or a missing eye... People just don't want to deal with something that is less than ideal.
On the other side, last time I was in the clinic I guy came in with his dog that had been hiking with him and had fallen from a small cliff. She broke both her back legs and the guy was telling the vet that he would do whatever it took to make sure she was well again - money wasn't an issue and he didn't care what he had to do as far as rehab...
Rather than go into a tirade about what I've seen and heard people do...I'll just say I had to wipe away a couple of tears after reading that. It is a shame that something we care about so much can be just thrown away so callously by someone claiming to care even more. Don't tell me about your intentions and good-heartedness, SHOW me is the attitude most of us develop after a few exposures to the shallow people who get a vanity pet. I don't even work in any area of the pet industry but I try to learn as much as possible because it is the responsible thing to do. It has helped but it has also targeted me for every coworker or kid in the neighborhood who got something they can't keep after it isn't cute anymore to try to get me to agree that they've done all they can. Sorry, no can do.
Abby....I think those same folks are calling me too! lmao I love the...I am getting the puppy for my daughter...she really wants one, it will be for her.... "how old is your daughter" Answer" 8 months Riiight, geesh
Rescuers are no angels either. Their attitude is often what makes people come up with those excuses or just avoid the confrontation and the lecture that is sure to come and dump them at the local shelter, or worse, dump them in the street. If they really care about the dogs’ well being, they should just take them and keep their mouth shut. Berating the person and questioning their reasons may help ease their frustration and make them feel better, but it doesn’t help the situation one bit.
I had a breeder friend who had 10 dogs. Unfortunately, he lived in an area not zoned for more the 3 dogs, so he could not get a kennel license. One day the AC showed up and gave him 2 weeks to get rid of 7 or they’ll take them and fine him. They were mostly older dogs, so he couldn’t find anyone to adopt them in the short time he had.
As last resort, he contacted a breed rescue group to see if they can help. They came over and gave him hell for being a breeder. They made him feel lower then dirt. They could not care less that he didn’t want to get rid of the dogs and that he was forced to. After an hour of degrading comments, they agreed to take 5 dogs if he get them fixed first which he agreed. They also wanted him to fix the remaining dogs he had as a condition for their help but he refused. That brought some more verbal assault upon him. If he didn’t care about his dogs, he would have thrown those people out after 2 min, but instead he bit his tongue and took the abuse as long as his dogs will be taken care of. Finally, they agreed to take the 5 dogs. Then he had to take the remaining 2 that the rescuers did not want to the pound where he got some more dirty looks and snooty comments for doing something they forced him to do.