Wednesday, January 21, 2009

My Rant

We all know of them, or at least heard of them. The people that decide to add a new puppy to their household. The excitement of getting a puppy, or even an adult; the excitement is the same. Lots of planning involved, we hope. Training, new food to buy, toys to purchase, more vet visits, oh what fun. But, what happens to the other pets in the household? Did they think about them when deciding to add another pack member?

We hear about people all the time getting rid of their pets. Many different reasons they all give. The dog is old, they need to make room for a puppy. Perhaps they are moving, new jobs, to save money, new kids, the list goes on.

One person I came across this past week has a four month old puppy. She also has a 7 year old cat. She has had the cat since she was a kitten, and has always been an indoor only cat. Now since the cat is afraid of the puppy, instead of working with the introductions and taking it slow, the cat has been banished to living outside. Why? Why do people do this?

Another scenario just this week. Similar, but different. In this case, the new dog is a 1 year old , and does not get along with the 10 year old dog that has lived there all his life, so they took the 10 year old to the shelter. Why? This was his home for 10 years, and was a very good dog.

Animals are a commitment. They are a living being. They are not disposable. When will people wake up and understand once they commit to bringing a pet into their home it should be a lifetime commitment. It is their responsibility, a huge responsibility. I understand there is that rare situation that it is in the best interest of the pet to be rehomed, but most times it is just greedy, uncaring individuals that want a new puppy, without having to put any time into proper training, introductions, and socializing. They don't want to put any effort into making it work.

Have you ever taken a walk through your local shelter, and walked by each cage, one by one, and wonder how that dog or cat found themselves there? What is their story? Have you looked at the card on their cage where it has a date, and spells out when their time is up? The next day you go back to check on that particular dog or cat, only to find their cage empty. Afraid to ask, hoping they were lucky enough to be adopted, but you know the truth.

They all have a story to tell. They all have a past. Many had wonderful homes, until they found they were being replaced by the new puppy or kitten.

People ask me all the time, why I do what I do with the strays and ferals. Why do I care? They are not my problem, I didn't cause their fate. Well, I can't just look away. They are all a living being. I can't save them all, but they all deserve a chance, because they all matter. Each and every one of them, cats and dogs, matter.

18 comments:

Stacy said...

AMEN!!!!
That kind of stuff angers me to no end!
It's not like you got a new pair of jeans so you can throw the old pair out! It's just NOT like that!
They are just what you said, a COMMITMENT!
They love and trust you and here you go showing them your true colors.
These types of people shouldn't have ANY pets EVER.

Dog_geek said...

It is inconceivable to me when people do things like that. One of my husband's coworkers asked me recently if I know anyone who wanted a 10 year old lab mix. I guess they had gotten the dog as a puppy 10 years ago for their kid, and now he's going to be leaving for college next fall, so they are looking to get rid of the dog. After 10 years!!! Gah!!

Betty said...

My tears are actually flowing...such a horrible thing to do to a living being...especially one with whom you have shared your life for years...how COULD they??

Great 'rant' on your part...I wish everyone who's considering such an act could read this blog...but then, they probably wouldn't 'get it'!

Good on ya!

Jan said...

Very thought provoking. Love your blog. I will be back too.

Mrs.Ruiz said...

People like that make my stomach sick:( Im with Betty, this post makes me cry:( I wish I could afford to have more animals. You are a special individual:)

Daniela said...

OH you speak of something near and dear to my heart. Being in veterinary medicine, I hear these same stories every day and it breaks my heart. I have a very very old poodle. I can't imagine, sending her away just because a new animal comes in to my house.

It's such a universal problem. Thank you for posting about this. Hopefully someone will take this information and use it in the future.

Take care lady, and keep up the good work.

Sally said...

I almost couldn't read this post... know only too well what you mean. I think we have two "chosen" animals, the rest all rescues or strays one way or another. Two feral cats living with us; can't even touch them, but love and care for them anyway... Keep up the good work, T.

Carolina said...

OK, I'm crying too. It's just unbelievable!

Carolina said...

I have posted a story about this subject on my blog and referred to yours. Hope you don't mind, if you do, let me know and I will remove the referral.
Thanks.

Andrea said...

So well said! I cannot understand anyone who would get rid of pet...it is unfathomable to me. You expressed yourself beautifully in this post...I wish more people thought like you.

Suldog said...

Came here from Brinkebeest.

You are a wonderful and caring person, and I'm glad I read what you wrote.

My cousin has devoted much of her later life to feeding, sheltering, and otherwise taking care of a colony of feral cats. I regularly donate to a shelter for cats, and have had cats my entire life, many coming from folks who were either going to find it a home with me or have it's life ended (unable to have a cat for some years now, since MY WIFE is allergic to animal dander.) In any case, I know and love animals, and I agree wholeheartedly with this "rant". Good for you!

® ♫ The Brit ♪ ® said...

Hi T,
I'm totally with you on this!
I have 3 Daughters (my dogs) and they are a HUGE part of my life! I couldn't live without them!
As I have already wriiten on Carolina's blog I have a very cruel neighbour who is mistreating her dogs terribly and I am about to report her...
On top of leaving her 4 dogs outside in the cold weather and rain with no kennel, shelter or food (what I can see) she changes her dogs as if they are cars...
She got a black Labrador a while ago and instead of having her sterilized like I have done with my girls and be responsible to avoid unwanted pregnancies she has allowed her male Golden Retriever to impregnate the female...
Now, around 8 weeks ago, her dog gave birth to 7 puppies and the Mother is in no conditions to have puppies as she is so very, very skinny and I can't imagine she has enough milk or vitamins for her offspring.

Now the female dog has suffered the worst (and the predictable) as a van turned up at the neighbour's house the other day and a man took the mother and all puppies with him (I think he was from some vets or a breeding farm) and I heard her saying "It's terrible, I really can't afford to keep her or the puppies! and they are crying all the time..." - so don't have dogs you stupid bitch! or have them neutered and be responsible!

The icing on the cake was that she "swapped" the mother and puppies for a 20kg bag of dog food for her other dogs... I was absolutely disgusted and thought to myself "Is that all they are worth to her? a bag of dog food?!"
I am so disgusted and sickened by the whole story that the next time I meet her in the street I am going to say something to her and tell her how worthless she is... thsi is how I feel, I need to say something... but I am in 2 minds whether to do that or just keep quiet as to not cause trouble for myself and anonymously report her to the animal humane society here...

I feel so very sad for those dogs... and I only hope that the mother and her puppies went to a good home and weren't put down and euthanized... it kills me to think of that possibility...

As for animal shelters: I can't go to these places as I would come home with lots of dogs.... I went inside one once and had to leave quickly as I got so upset reading all the little cards with the messages talking about what great loving dogs they were and how long they had been there...
I read one that said "I had a Mummy and a Daddy but they got a divorce and now neither of them want me... please take me home and love me!!" it broke my heart and I couldn't control the tears.
Some people are so selfish and so wicked and should be banned for life from owning animals!

All the best!
Fellow animal lover,
Donnie X

caroline said...

I don't understand some people!
I'm glad that you can do what you do, at least some animals get a second chance.

Katt said...

Hey T, you know I totally understand where you're coming from! I've been known to unclench my jaw long enough to tell some of these people off whenever I personally hear an excuse story like those. Makes me sick and more determined to do what I can to help. Just stay positive, think of all of us that love and cherish our four-legged kids and will do anything for them. Those other people don't matter.

troutbirder said...

I totally agree 100%

Mimi said...

You're preaching to the choir with me because I agree with everything you said. Last night it got down to -10. I can't tell you the times tears have come to my eyes when I think about the pets who are out in the cold trying to stay warm...

Drs. Foster & Smith Pet Supplies said...

Perfectly said! Excellent "rant", and excellent blog.

I'd also like to thank you for inlcuding a link to Drs. Foster and Smith pet supplies in your "Cat and Dog Supplies" area---much appreciated.

giantspeckledchihuahua said...

These are among my pet peeves. especially regarding the senior dogs and cats. For a long while all my rescues were seniors, until I couldn't bring anymore home. I hope one day I will be able to open my home again to these great older dogs that really deserve the best in their golden years...not that the younger ones don't.

When my Shepherd was in his prime his future in Schutzhund was bright I had a lot of offers for some big bucks for him. My response was always "I would never even THINK about selling my little brother!!!"

I have traveled, moved back and forth across the country and never had to get rid of one of my dogs, and up until now I have always had at the very least 2 dogs at a time. Not the 150 lb Dobe, not the two standard poodles, not the German shepherd, not the crazy lab. And replacing an older pet with a younger pet is the worst.