Another bad pet rescue story....

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by minnikin1, Jul 13, 2005.

  1. minnikin1

    minnikin1 Shepherd

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    A relative of mine seems to have gotten a special case of a german shepherd. The dog is very "spazzy", not tolerant of childred and pets, and is generally not fitting in to an already hectic household. (They have another shepherd, who is doing fine...)
    They have struggled and tried everything within their means to deal with her.
    We suggested that it might be best for her to contact a rescue to see if they could assist in finding a more appropriate home for the dog, as the situation quickly getting out of hand as the dog grew larger.
    She agonized over it, but finally contacted one.

    Imagine my horror when this is the reply she received from a german shepherd rescue in central NY:
    **********************************************

    Subject: GSRCNY Site Email

    Hi Kathy, I am sorry to hear of the dilemma with your girl. It saddens me more to hear of another dog such as yours that has fallen into the hands of an owner who did not take the time to research this wonderful breed and now that lack of training and time have taken their toll, she is to be removed from the home she has been raised in and loves. It is always such a problem when we have to "rescue" these dogs and then try to fix what their owners did not do to assure them of a happy well adjusted life. The worst scenario is when their behavior just cannot be repaired due to their improper upbringing. We do take young dogs, and when doing so require they be altered, updated on all shots, are heartworm negative, and we do require a donation to offset their care and training while in our possession. If you are planning to place her yourself, please be cautious and willing to find someone who IS willing to devote themselves and their family to this dog. It is horrible when improperly placed, they get shuffled from home to home dragging their baggage behind them becoming worse each household they encounter then finally either being lucky enough to find a rescue that will take them or being euthanized at a shelter as a last resort due to their behavior. Please drop me a line letting me know what you do with this misplaced girl. Pat
    *****************************************************

    A real "expert" would have known not to make assumptions and to assess the pet and the environment before sending such sanctimonious drivel.....
    If any of you belong to other forums where this inquiry-turned-disaster can be a positive learning experience for others, will you pass it on?

    Thanks,
    Minnikin
     
  2. trappmountain

    trappmountain Well-Known Member

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    I had to comment on this. I think I would find a way for your sister to do something about this letter. How dare they put the blame on her. They do not know her or how her household works. Obviously if one shepherd is doing well it may be the dog and not the owner.

    I to understand how they feel about a dog being shuffled from household to household. I have one of those dogs. Since the worst of his problems seemd to be his terrible chase instinct(he killed one of my chickens) and I have been able to rememdy that situation he will be staying. But if I couldn't remedy it he would have gone back.

    It is a great thing to rescue an animal but when everything you try is not working it is best that a more suitable home is found.

    At The VERY Least, your sister should call them and ask to talk to someone in charge and complain how assumptions were made about her and that she has another shepherd that is just fine. In this case, not in all of them, it was a bad dog not a bad owner. OR at the very least it was a bad former owner and not your sister.
     

  3. starjj

    starjj Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I can understand being offended by the letter (I probably would be too) but please see the other side of the coin. It seems like alot of people make their decisions on their choice of dog based on looks not how it fits into your lifestyle or their ability to train it. This wasn't the choice in your sister's case I am sure since she has another shepard. I think these animal rescue or breed rescues get jaded as they have heard all the stories and all the excuses for bad dogs. Yes it is poor judgement to ASSUME your sister fit into the same catagory. I would let them know you (your sister) is offended and put off by their lumping her into a group of people that made poor decisions in their choice of dogs. I am pretty sure it was not their intent.
     
  4. Little Quacker in OR

    Little Quacker in OR Well-Known Member

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    :) You did not tell us how old this dog is, why and how the sister got it, how long the sister has had it, how much obedience training and in what classes this dog has had and lot's of other things.??????????????/

    In rescue it is very often ...and I would guess that at LEAST 99% of all dogs placed in rescue or the pound are dogs which are given up because of lack of socialization/lack of training. That is the plain truth.

    Now, if this dog was purchased from a breeder, then it should go back there. IF this dog has been through good socialization classes, obedience classes and then been taken to a qualified canine behavioralist and then pronounced deficient mentally..and this is rare but not unheard of...then put it down, don't just shove the problem off on someone else.

    I saw not a thing wrong with that response...needless to say a lot more info is needed herer and may or may not have been provided to the rescue people.

    If you had a clue about how many really stupid people get a high energy, highly intelligent dog and then just screw them up you would know where that rescue person was coming from. We see it every single day! That does not mean of course, that the sister is one of these..it just means there are a lot of unanswered questions here that need addressing.

    Man, all of us in rescue would never run out of horrible stories of ignorance, cruelty and tragedy if we were asked..the trouble is it just hurts too much to tell them.

    LQ
     
  5. kppop

    kppop Well-Known Member

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    In rescue it is very often ...and I would guess that at LEAST 99% of all dogs placed in rescue or the pound are dogs which are given up because of lack of socialization/lack of training. That is the plain truth.
    *******
    I agree. I know several ppl that do lab rescue and 99% of the time the problem isn't the dog..it's the owner. They buy this cute little pup that quickly grows to 60-120 lbs and now have no clue what to do with it. It's tied in the yard all day and digging holes and barking like mad and breaking free whenever possible. They have allowed the dog to become the alpha and now can't control it and dont' have the time or the desire to get in touch with a trainer or someone to help. This doesn't only apply to labs..it applies to every breed out there. Unless you are willing to take the time to socialize and train your dog..you can't blame anyone buy yourself for an unruly dog.

    I am on a lab board and there are ppl there trying to give up their dogs for a number of reasons..and most are stated above. I just wish ppl would take the time to research a breed before they buy..it would us all alot of headache.

    I don't think there was anything wrong with that letter at all...she was simply pointing out facts to your relative...maybe in hopes of showing her that once she rids herself of this dog that she shouldn't go out and get another. Trust me....ppl do this all the time :( Most rescues run on a very tight budget or none at all and can't take evey dog in...she was right in suggesting your relative to do some of the work and find a home for the dog. It shouldn't be so easy to just rid oneself of a bothersome pet.
     
  6. Reillybug

    Reillybug Active Member

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    As someone who works actively in rescue, as is being discussed on another thread, I have to agree with the intent of the email, but perhaps not the delivery. You wouldn't believe the stories we hear, the reasons that people give up pets, and how many times you want to reach through the phone lines and strangle someone for being so stupid, cruel, or just plain irresponsible. However, despite the fact that many of us who work in rescue are more than a bit tired of hearing lame excuses, we must remember that there are some valid reasons for giving up a pet and perhaps those reasons weren't clearly explained when the rescue was initially contacted. Mostly I've learned through years of experience that a response like that email, while true in text, most often only leads to an annoyed owner who will take that dog, if it's "lucky," to a shelter where it really essentially has no chance at a better life. As hard as it is for me, sometimes I have to shut up in the best interest of the animal because often times the alternative is far worse for the pet.
     
  7. coalroadcabin

    coalroadcabin Well-Known Member

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    If I were your sister, this is the response I would send back:

    "Dear Pat,
    Please disregard my query seeking your assistance in trying to place our dog with a more suitable family. I was under the assumption that your organization would take the time to evaluate our dog and would place her in a home where she would fit in. Unfortunately, your response to my inquiry leaves no room for doubt that your organization would prefer to make an immediate assumption that all dogs are alike and will therefore fit into any loving family. I cannot in good conscience turn (Dog’s Name) over to you as I feel that this would not be in her best interest."

    I would then seek help (her vet would be the first place I would go) in finding a suitable home for her dog.
     
  8. MorrisonCorner

    MorrisonCorner Mansfield, VT for 200 yrs

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    Ok, first of all, I agree completely with Reillybug.. and coalroadcabin... you're so full of it you've obviously never been involved in a Rescue.

    Rescue people DO NOT GET PAID TO DO THIS. They are NOT EMPLOYEES. They do not work for you. They're in it for the dogs and most of them invest much more than just their time, space in their homes, and their hearts. Most of them invest not inconsiderable cash outlay in making Rescue 'work.'

    And while this may not excuse them from being testy, it is an explaination. If I got a note like coalroad is suggesting the returning flame in your mailbox would probably melt your computer.

    This said, occasionally Rescue does attract someone with a bit of a god complex or control issues, who think they know what is best for all dogs or is a little obsessed. Price you pay for having a Rescue to call at all.

    But if you think this rescue cares if someone finds another rescue to run that dog through, you're very mistaken. They're overwhelmed, understaffed, underfunded... and more than happy to "share the wealth" of another hyperactive unwanted dog.
     
  9. Imagoofygoober

    Imagoofygoober Well-Known Member

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    I did not get out of it at all that she was saying that about your relative, but the PREVIOUS OWNERS. Dealing in rescue myself, I really do see her point. I think the intent of that sentence may have been misunderstood. :shrug:
     
  10. cricket

    cricket Well-Known Member

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    Wow...perhaps I misunderstood what rescues are supposed to do...rescue dogs.


    Not all rescues are that asinine and most people are genuinely nice. Yes, they do see the same crap everyday and most have horrible stories to tell and it is very frustrating. However, with a response like that, I'm not sure I would turn over my dog to someone who would write a letter like that. Obviously they need a vacation or a new line of work. Just because you see it and hear it every day doesn't give you licsense to be a jerk.

    Tell your sister to send the above letter and then go to a breeder or the vet or to a local trainer. Also, you can usually post ads at the shelter. If I'm not mistaken, there are mulitple shepard rescue organizations...try another one. Only this time request to talk to someone rather than just emailing them.

    One word of caution though...if the dog is really psychologically unfit, have it put down. Please. If the dog is truly unsafe, it is the responsible thing to do...even though it's horrifying and tragic.
     
  11. Thatch

    Thatch Well-Known Member

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    Guess I've never much got the point of most animal rescue, especially for this animal. Sounds all the world like a cull to me. Why would you pass along a problem animal to someone else, even a well meaning rescue? I don't understand the inability to come to terms with the necessity of putting down unwanted animals, making them live on in situations that serve neither the animal nor human.

    I don't mean to be negative about the person trying to place the animal. They are trying to make the easy decision. The persons response is out of line. I guess I don't get the whole "no kill" rescues that are out there. I see the warehousing of social animals and wonder who is benefiting from this. What need is there that is filled by taking in animals thats very makeup cries out for a place, a social standing and for what ever reason, either problems with the home or problems with the animal itself keeping them on forever regardless of the ability to place them within a new social order, a new pack.

    If you don't agree with me, just ignore me as an unenlightened thug. I probably should keep my thoughts to myself.

    J
     
  12. sullen

    sullen Question Answerer

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    WAIT a minute.....I am the child of a animal rescue household, we had tons of dogs that other people could not take care of all my life and we never talked to people like that. My Mom is 65 and not "jaded" about any of it. In fact, 2 of the dogs she has now were left in her yard. One was thrown from a car while on fire. She is still not judgemental. We gladly take the animals other people can't take care of.
    I had a dog breeder talk to me like that letter, and I did nothing to deserve it. People jumping to conclusions are all over. The only good thing is I saw her recently (years later) and she exclaimed how nice my dogs were. (She originally refused to sell me any dogs because I wanted one without a tail in case it got in the way. ) I told her how I tried to get the same breed from her but she turned me down and she was suprised. I said I hoped I had caught her on a bad day before. She drove away quickly with her foot in her mouth. My dogs are happy and loved, and my dd recently stared amazingly at a dog because she had never seen a tail before!
    So I stand with the poster of this thread. :hand:
     
  13. crystalniche

    crystalniche Well-Known Member

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    Not all dogs fit in with all families. Some dogs would do very well in a family without kids or other pets. Nothing wrong with trying to find a home that fits the dog! They have personalities and likes/dislikes too. Some dogs like kids and some don't and they would be much happier in an all adult home. I saw this happen with a mixed breed called Missy a few years ago. She had been in the pound and in real trouble for her not getting along with kids. She was on her way to being PTS when an older couple took her in, she settled right down and was the ideal dog for them. No more problems. I think that if rescues were to address this then they would be further along in ending the homeless dog problem.
     
  14. minnikin1

    minnikin1 Shepherd

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    I'm so tired of hearing about the poor, abused rescue person who doesn't make any money doing this...

    That's the point.
    People call you and not a shelter because you claim to to be fighing for the dogs best interest.

    My family now adopts all our pets via rescue rather than purchase. We are aware every time we call a rescue that we are getting an animal that
    someone else could not deal with - for whatever reason. We're not in it to judge the previous owner, only to judge if we are the right family for a particular pet.
    There have been some pretty excellent animals we had to pass up because they just weren't right for us...
    For instance, we have a big oaf of a setter who would stomp some fragile animals, and yet there were rescues that tried to make us feel guilty because we refused to adopt a senior, handicapped animal who would not have the agility to get out of his way!
    Both of my current dogs were rescued. Both came into our home with problems (or "baggage, as the rescue above called it.) We expected that and were prepared to accept it when we adopted them. We looked for very specific baggage that was within our ability to deal with. In our case, it was the means to access vet care. Our poodle required extensive surgeries to be able to walk. Now she runs....
    Thank god the rescue who put us together did not belittle the owner who could not afford to fix her lameness!!
    I agree with coalroadcabin and think that would have been a most appropriate response. A loser would have simply put the dog down or abandoned it. Anyone who bothers to take the time to contact a resuce first has the dog's interest at heart, even if they do not have the means or ability to provide.
    Pet care is 90% dealing with humans, not animals. Professional rescues should know that. If the animal were the true bottom line, letters like that would never be wriiten. Pat's letter was more about a self-righteous ego.
    It was an "I'm good - you suck" response.

    I had to respond to Little Quacker's comment:
    **********************
    Quote:
    Now, if this dog was purchased from a breeder, then it should go back there. IF this dog has been through good socialization classes, obedience classes and then been taken to a qualified canine behavioralist and then pronounced deficient mentally..and this is rare but not unheard of...then put it down, don't just shove the problem off on someone else.

    ***************
    I do not agree with you at all. Appropriate pets should be readily trainable.
    If folks have to go to this extreme, then something is amiss.
    Making the averge person feel guilty for failing to cope with a breeder's failure is absurd.

    A good pet is an animal that can adapt to the average family wthout professional assistance. The idea that folks should have to consult psychologists for their pets is rediculous. Average folks want Lassie.
    Breeders should have been providing that, not the very "pretty" but freaked out animals that the AKC promoted for so many years.

    "Experts" thrust this problem on the public. Now they want to solve it by making a buck ... i.e. "you should pay to take your dog to a shrink or you are a complete loser" .....
     
  15. froggirl

    froggirl Feelin' Froggy

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    This person is supposed to be doing the best for the animal...she should be a professional even if she's a non-profit. There's no excuse for her to jump to conclusions even if the 10 people before your relative were lowlife dog beaters, she should've not made assumptions. :soap:

    She could've looked at it as an opportunity to help this dog and she blew it because she decided to be a self-righteous jerk. Obviously she was having a REALLY bad day.
    I'd tell dog-lady to bite me and try to find a more suitable home thru a local vet. GSD's (like a lot of other dogs) need a job...who knows, this dog may excel in agility or something that burns off her excess nervous energy.
    Best of luck,
    --f.g.
     
  16. foxtrapper

    foxtrapper Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Bzzt! WRONG! Many times they *ARE* paid employees of the local government. In my county for example, we've got about a dozen of them on the payroll.

    The rest of your sanctimonious and arrogant tirade deserves no comment. Consider it flushed as is appropriate for such excreta.
     
  17. trappmountain

    trappmountain Well-Known Member

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    Just a little on SOME rescues. Our humane society does not give enough background info on their animals. They are looking for forever homes for these animals and don't give you background.

    I understand that some of these pets are strays and they don't have any background on them. But what about the ones that are surrendered? What about the info they know from just having the pet in their rescue?

    My FIL adopted a dog a few months ago(he is 75 with a bad leg) and was told this dog was very calm. It jumped up on him all the time and was in need of much excersise. It couldn't be left to run for it would take off. He had it for 3 weeks and now I have him.

    Placing a dog in a household is NOT what is important. Placing that dog in the RIGHT household is important!

    I feel that a write up about the dog should be given to all would be adopters of any dog. Anything that the shelter knows about this dog should be in it. That way adopters would have as much background info as possible and could make an informed decision as to how well this dog will fit into this particular family.

    Tanner did not fit into FIL's family BUT he does fit into our busy family with other pets and children.

    He found the right house with the right family, NOT because of the shelter But because of us getting to know him and deciding he needed more than FIL could provide.

    He needs frequent walks a good run daily and a lot of training sessions. More than my FIL could provide. He was not a dog for a senior citizen. He was a dog for a young family. They should have known that. He had been at the shelter for months.

    The only thing I hate is that he either hasd to be tied while outside or on a leash. He is a runner and probably always will be. :soap:

    I am sure that NOT ALL rescues give a dog so easily BUT ours does!
     
  18. sparrowhill

    sparrowhill sparrowhill

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    I have been very lucky to be the owner of two of these beautiful German
    Shepherd dogs. Our first we had for almost 15 yrs. and our current girl is
    almost 6. Everything I have ever read and observation of my own girls
    would lead me to believe that they are very loyal, family-oriented dogs.
    Our dogs love and accept other pets, small children and visitors (when
    given the all-clear from us). They are completely devoted to their families.
    They even chase stray cats away from our cats to protect them. When our
    oldest dog had to be put to rest, our younger dog grieved, wouldn't eat,
    refused to be apart from us (we couldn't leave her alone, she frantically
    tried to go out the door if she thought we were leaving). We were devastated because we thought we were going to lose her, too. With patience and allowing her to go with us everywhere we went, for almost a year, she pulled through. Now, she will stay at home by herself again.

    Anyway, back to the point I am trying to make. These dogs, by nature, are
    devoted to family. If your relative has one perfectly normal dog and one that
    is "spazzed out", it would seem to me that the blame lies not with your folks, but with the dog itself. I would contact the breeder, people who do not always have the breed at heart, but the almighty dollar.

    As for the "so called" rescue worker, I would have been offended by her letter also. If I found out she was being paid for spewing hate, I would have been even more offened. Many, many people own pets in this country who shouldn't. Right now, my husband and his co-workers are feeding a dog in someone's backyard that sit by his place of work. The owners give it sporadic feedings at best. They contacted the dog warden (also paid) and he said he couldn't do anything about it. By law, you only have to feed a dog every 18 hrs. I wonder if he would go that long without eating! The point being, if you really love and want to care for an animal you just do it.
    There shouldn't be prerequisites for rescuing an animal. There shouldn't be sermons, or judgements. Just help the animal. This "rescue" worker needs to learn that to help animals, she must deal with humans first. If she puts them off and alienates them, the very animal she is trying to help is hurt.

    This dog probably just needs a family without other pets or children. A more quiet setting. She needs another chance to shine. The "rescue" worker might just have given her a death sentence.
     
  19. coalroadcabin

    coalroadcabin Well-Known Member

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    Then it accomplished what I intended.
    :)
     
  20. leaping leon

    leaping leon Well-Known Member

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    This makes me so angry. I disagree that 99% of dog's problems are the fault of the owners.

    Breeders who are only interested in money or championships will breed dogs of questionable or bad temperament; producing animals that are hyper, neurotic, and/or viscious. I've met some of these. Treating them the same as my other dogs didn't work.

    It appears that some animal rights people expect the average owner to spend enormous amounts of time and money on a bad dog; if they don't they're a "bad" owner and they caused the animal's problems. But where does the wellfare of the owner and his family fit into this?

    If the whole animal behavior thing is nurture, and what the dog is born with makes only a 1% difference in what he is like as an adult, then why aren't there as many Rotweillers retreiving birds as Labradors? Why aren't there as many Labradors in police work as German Shepherds?