Saturday, September 3, 2016

Small Rehoming Fee

I've been working with a local rescue, Central Pennsylvania Animal Alliance, for over a year now. Within this time, I've learned a lot about the "rescue world" that outsiders don't see. Some of these things are quite amazing and admirable, while others...are plain disgusting.

Rescues are usually female-based...so, of course, that comes with dramatics. Unfortunately, a lot of rescue then becomes a "popularity contest" and it's more about the drama than the animals. I mean, back in March a Chambersburg woman was charged for using $128k dollars of donated money for personal gain...literally stealing money from homeless pets.

That's their food.
Vet bills.
Toys to make their lives a little bit better.

But this isn't the point of my post.

Being linked to the rescue's Yahoo! group, I see a lot of shared emails between rescues. And being Facebook friends with fellow rescue gals, I come across a lot of "please share" posts. Within these posts are mostly courtesy posts for the rehoming of animals. I read a lot of these ( not all, but most ) and some that I've encountered have caused my blood to BOIL.

The reasonings as to WHY some of these people want to rehome their pet are absolutely absurd! So, I just want to bitch for a few minutes about the top ones I see:

Divorce
This one, I've encountered far too much lately. So you're married...you get a dog together...maybe have some kids. Then shit doesn't work out. You decide to split ways. Now, all of a sudden you need to "find your dog a new home". How do you think that this is okay behavior?! You don't go around rehoming your children now, do you? Not saying that dogs and children are the same, but dogs are not just there. Animals are living, breathing creatures of habit. Your human family is not just being uprooted, but your "furry friend" is, too. And sure, you may have a lot on your plate...and a pet is just another responsibility and stress...but why are you viewing them as such?! Lola has helped me cope with a lot in life. Having a pet around during hard times can actually be a blessing. Is there a fight over who gets the animal? If so, someone needs to step up and decide instead of saying "well, no one gets them then" because, that leaves another animal in a shelter that may not come back out. A month or so ago I came across a post for a 9-year-old Cocker Spaniel mix that needed rehomed due to divorce. That dog was a part of their lives for NINE. FUCKING. YEARS. Now, because of a life event, this so-called senior dog was being cross-posted left and right in hopes that he didn't end up in a shelter. Because, we in the rescue world know, most senior dogs go in...but they don't come out...

Moving
"I need to rehome my dog due to moving and not being allowed to have pets in my new place". I'm sorry, but this is no excuse. When I first got Lola, I was staying in a place that allowed pets. And each time I moved I made sure to find an apartment that allowed pets, because I wasn't going anywhere without her. And that's how it should be. But, clearly, it's not. It's not really that hard to find a place that allows pets. Whether it be higher end or lower end, usually you can find a place that allows you to bring an animal. You may have to pay a small deposit but, in the long run, that's a small price to pay to have your pet by your side. Well, at least for me it is. I think this is a poor excuse for people who just don't want to be responsible for their pet anymore. And yes, there are sometimes legitimate reasons as to why you can't keep a pet any longer: health issues, true financial hardship...but I feel like some people are far too quick to pass their pet off to the next Joe Shmoe.

New Baby
Yes, a baby is a responsibility. A big responsible. But, so is a pet. And you took that responsibility on prior to having the baby. So why now can you not deal? Why is it that when a little one comes into the world, all of a sudden the dog is "too much"? Maybe the dog is curious of the baby. I've seen posts about "the dog isn't dealing well with the baby". Why, because the dog is curious? Dogs don't usually go looking for trouble...and cats, they could care less. Let your dog investigate the baby ( supervised, of course ) Animals can experience jealousy. It's not that hard to spend a few minutes letting your pet know that you still love them. And do you know how valuable it is for kids to grow up with pets?! I for one ( if I ever have a family ) will always have them growing up with my first babies: my dogs.

Work
So, you work a lot...and you don't think it's "fair" to have your pet anymore. You've have this pet for 5 years already. You have 2 kids. How do you feel this is a valid reason to post a rehoming request?? What makes you so busy now that you can't possibly keep your pet any longer? This excuse is lame. If you are so busy, why did you get a pet in the first place? Now, if something happened in your life and you've had to take on 3 jobs and you barely have time to sleep, let alone spend time with your dog...that's different. Shit does happen. But don't use work as an excuse to rid yourself of the responsibility.

Thousands of unwanted pets die every. day. because of the idiocy of humans. Our excuses. Our neglect. Our abuse. Those senior dogs left in shelters for months because their owner moved/had a baby/divorced. Those puppies born to a mother in a high-kill shelter and never even having the chance to be adopted out. Puppy mills and breeders. Uneducated humans taking on breeds that they know nothing about and expecting it to just be 'easy'. 

Cats are pretty easy, but dogs take time and patience...and if you don't have the time and the heart to take that responsibility on, you shouldn't even CONSIDER owning a one. 

Stop the excuses, man up and realize that when you bring a pet into your home, they should be yours until their last breath ( or yours... )