Thursday, October 18, 2007

Mutts & Moms Rescue

The recent situation exposed on the Ellen show (Ellen adopted a dog with a signed contract not to rehome the dog, but return it to the rescue and she gave it to her hairdresser's family), many questions have come into light regarding rescue organizations. Some are more strict, some are more lenient. This particular organization has a rule about no small pets with children under age 14. Realize that many dogs in rescue have issues with children because of prior mistreatments, and only the rescue knows where the best placement for these dogs would be. However, it would have been nice if they would have been in a position to truly evaluate that particular family, the interaction of the children with the dog, and base their opinion on that.

We have been involved with personal and family rescues and with humane societies, and we do our best to help animals find loving homes, but it is not always easy. The rescues write the rules based on where they have been burned before. Like the dog who had multiple surgeries and months of recovery in the home of a foster to be placed with a nice woman in a nice home. The woman later sold the dog for $100 to a family who had no regard for the animal's health or well-being and the dog was eventually returned to the rescue malnourished, hair matted badly, and with serious dental issues and low state of health. If the dog had been returned to the rescue per the contract, then a more suitable home and the dog could have avoided that dark period of time.

Here is a cross-post relative to this situation that might help someone understand, in part, the daily frustrations of a rescue worker.

Hello: You have reached 555-5555, Tender Hearts Rescue. Due to the high volume of calls we have been receiving, please listen closely to the following options and choose the one that best describes you or your situation:

Press 1 if you think we are veterinarians and want free medical advice.

Press 2 if you know we are a rescue organization but want to save money and have us give you free, untrained medical advice anyway.

Press 3 if you make $200,000 a year but still want us to pay to spay the "stray" in your yard (house).

Press 4 if you have a 10-year-old dog (or cat) and your 15-year-old son has suddenly become allergic and you need to find the dog a new home right away.

Press 5 if you have three dogs (or cats), had a baby and want to get rid of your pets because you are the only person in the world to have a baby and pets at the same time.

Press 6 if your dog (or cat) is sick and needs a vet but you need the money for your vacation.

Press 7 if you just got a brand new puppy (or kitten) and your old dog (or cat) is having problems adjusting so you want to get rid of the old one right away.

Press 8 if your little puppy (or kitten) has grown up and is no longer small and cute and you want to trade it in for a new model.

Press 9 if you are elderly and want to adopt a cute puppy (or kitten) who is not active and is going to outlive you.

Press 10 if your relative has died and you don't want to care for their elderly dog (or cat) because it doesn't fit your lifestyle.

Press 11 if you are moving today and need to immediately place your 150 pound, 8-year-old dog or your 16-year-old cat.

Press 12 if you want an unpaid volunteer to come to your home today and pick up the dog (or cat) you no longer want.

Press 13 if you have been feeding and caring for a "stray" for the last three years, are moving and suddenly determine it's not you r dog (or cat).

Press 14 if you are calling at 6a.m. to make sure you wake me up before I have to go to work so you can drop a dog (or cat) off on your way to work.

Press 15 to leave us an anonymous garbled message, letting us know you have left a dog in our yard in the middle of January, which is in fact, better than just leaving the dog with no message.

Press 16 if you are going to get angry because we are not going to take your dog (or cat) that you have had for fifteen years, because it is not our responsibility.

Press 17 if you are going to threaten to take your ten-year-old dog (or cat) to be euthanized because I wont take it.

Press 18 if you're going to get angry because the volunteers had the audacity to go on vacation and leave the dogs in care of a trusted volunteer who is not authorized to take your personal pet.

Press 19 if you want one of our perfectly trained, housebroken, kid and cat friendly purebred tiny dogs that we have an abundance of.

Press 20 if you want us to take your dog that has a slight aggression problem, i.e. has only bitten a few people and killed your neighbor's cats.

Press 21 if you have already called once and been told we don't take personal surrenders but thought you would get a different person this time with a different answer.

Press 22 if you want us to use space that would go to a stray to board your personal dog (or cat) while you are on vacation, free of charge, of course.

Press 23 if it is Christmas Eve or Easter morning and you want me to deliver an eight week old puppy (or kitten) to your house by 6:30 am before your kids wake up.

Press 24 if you have bought your children a duckling, chick or baby bunny for Easter and it is now Christmas and no longer cute.

Press 25 if you want us to take your female dog (or cat) who has already had ten litters, but we can't spay her because she is pregnant again and it is against your religion.

Press 26 if you're lying to make one of our younger volunteers feel bad and take your personal pet off your hands.

Press 27 if your cat is biting and not using the litter box because it is declawed, but are not willing to accept the responsibility that the cat's behavior is altered because of your nice furniture.

Press 28 if your two year old male dog (or cat) is marking all over your house but you just haven't gotten around to having him neutered.

Press 29 if you previously had an outdoor only dog (or cat) and are calling because she is suddenly pregnant.

Press 30 if you have done "everything" to housebreak your dog and have had no success but you don't want to crate the dog because it is cruel.

Press 31 if you didn't listen to the message asking for an evening phone number and you left your work number when all volunteers are also working and you are angry because no one called you back.

Press 32 if you need a puppy (or kitten) immediately and cannot wait because today is your daughter's birthday and you forgot when she was born.

Press 33 if your dog's (or cat's) coat doesn't match your new furniture and you need a different color or breed.

Press 34 if your new love doesn't like your dog (or cat) and you are too stupid to get rid of the new friend (who will dump you in the next month anyway) instead of the pet.

Press 35 if you went through all these presses and didn't hear enough. This press will connect you to the sounds of tears being shed by one of our volunteers who is holding a discarded old dog (or cat) while the vet mercifully frees him from of the grief of missing his family.


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