| A letter from a shelter manager. |
01/02/2013, 02:02 PM
Joined: 30-January 07
I saw this on a page earlier, just wanted to share it.
A Letter from a Shelter Manager:
I think our society needs a huge " Wake-up" call.
As a shelter manager, I am going to share a little insight with you all. .a view
from the inside if you will.
First off, all of you breeders/sellers should be made to work in the "back" of
an animal shelter for just one day.
Maybe if you saw the life drain from a few sad, lost, confused eyes, you would
change your mind about breeding and selling to people you don't even know. That
puppy you just sold will most likely end up in my shelter when it's not a cute
little puppy anymore.
So how would you feel if you knew that there's about a 90% chance that dog will
never walk out of the shelter it is going to be dumped at? Purebred or not!
About 50% of all of the dogs that are "owner surrenders" or "strays" that come
into my shelter are purebred dogs.
The most common excuses I hear are;
"We are moving and we can't take our dog (or cat)." Really? Where are you moving
to that doesn't allow pets and why did you choose that place instead of a pet
Or they say "The dog got bigger than we thought it would". How big did you think
a German Shepherd would get?
"We don't have time for her". Really? I work a 10- 12 hour day and still have
time for my 6 dogs!
"She' s tearing up our yard". How about making her a part of your family?
They always tell me: "We just don't want to have to stress about finding a place
for her we know she'll get adopted, she's a good dog."
Odds are your pet won't get adopted & how stressful do you think being in a
shelter is? Well, let me tell you, your pet has 72 hours to find a new family
from the moment you drop it off. Sometimes a little longer if the shelter isn't
full and your dog manages to stay completely healthy. If it sniffles, it dies.
Your pet will be confined to a small run/kennel in a room with about 25 other
barking or crying animals. It will have to relieve itself where it eats and
It will be depressed and it will cry constantly for the family that abandoned
If your pet is lucky, I will have enough volunteers in that day to take him/her
for a walk. If I don't, your pet won't get any attention besides having a bowl
of food slid under the kennel door and the waste sprayed out of its pen with a
If your dog is big, black or any of the "Bully" breeds (pit bull, rottie,
mastiff, etc) it was pretty much dead when you walked it through the front door.
Those dogs just don't get adopted.
It doesn't matter how 'sweet' or 'well behaved' they are. If your dog doesn't
get adopted within its 72 hours and the shelter is full, it will be destroyed.
If the shelter isn't full and your dog is good enough, and of a desirable enough
breed it may get a stay of execution, but not for long.
Most dogs get very kennel protective after about a week and are destroyed for
showing aggression. Even the sweetest dogs will turn in this environment.
If your pet makes it over all of those hurdles chances are it will get kennel
cough or an upper respiratory infection and will be destroyed because shelters
just don't have the funds to pay for even a $100 treatment.
Here's a little euthanasia 101 for those of you that have never witnessed a
perfectly healthy, scared animal being "put-down"....
First, your pet will be taken from its kennel on a leash. They always look like
they think they are going for a walk - happy, wagging their tails.
Until, they get to "The Room", every one of them freak out and put the brakes on
when we get to the door. It must smell like death or they can feel the sad souls
that are left in there, it's strange, but it happens with every one of them.
Your dog or cat will be restrained, held down by 1 or 2 vet techs depending on
the size and how freaked out they are.
Then a euthanasia tech or a vet will start the process. They will find a vein in
the front leg and inject a lethal dose of the "pink stuff".
Hopefully your pet doesn't panic from being restrained and jerk. I've seen the
needles tear out of a leg and been covered with the resulting blood and been
deafened by the yelps and screams.
They all don't just "go to sleep", sometimes they spasm for a while, gasp for
air and defecate on themselves.
When it all ends, your pet's corpse will be stacked like firewood in a large
freezer in the back with all of the other animals that were killed waiting to be
picked up like garbage.
What happens next? Cremated? Taken to the dump? Rendered into pet food? You'll
never know and it probably won't even cross your mind. It was just an animal and
you can always buy another one, right?
I hope that those of you that have read this are bawling your eyes out and can't
get the pictures out of your head I deal with everyday on the way home from
I hate my job, I hate that it exists & I hate that it will always be there
unless you people make some changes and realize that the lives you are affecting
go much further than the pets you dump at a shelter.
Between 9 and 11 MILLION animals die every year in shelters and only you can
stop it. I do my best to save every life I can but rescues are always full, and
there are more animals coming in everyday than there are homes.
My point to all of this: DON'T BREED OR BUY WHILE SHELTER PETS DIE!
Hate me if you want to. The truth hurts and reality is what it is.
I just hope I maybe changed one person's mind about breeding their dog, taking
their loving pet to a shelter, or buying a dog.
I hope that someone will walk into my shelter and say "I saw this and it made me
01/02/2013, 02:50 PM
Joined: 14-January 09
Train your dog, it's worth it!
I think you'll find that the Letter is from an American shelter manager.
In this forum, we don't support puppy mills, BYBer, those who think their dog 'should just have one litter' or other irresponsible behaviour that adds to the unwanted pet problem.
We do support ethical registered breeders, however. We have several of them who share their experience with us.
However, there are oodles of oodles on rescue sites. Pages, and pages of them, and other designer breeds. You're not correct in suggesting that this is not a major source of unwanted animals in this country. They are. They also lead people to think that BYB could be profitable - and that any old mix will do.
Depending on which state you're in, you might want to lobby your State government in tightening their companion animal legislation, so that people cannot sell undesexed animals to people who are not registered (as in with the canine council or cat fancier association) and microchipped. And severely penalising people who do, with the funds raised from those penalties being passed on to our animal rescue societies and associations.
01/02/2013, 02:56 PM
Joined: 3-January 11
I think I've seen that email go around since the mid-90s and to be perfectly honest I think its an American writing and addressing the American homeless pet situation and it is DEAD EASY to get a purebred pedigree homeless dog in the States. Even pretty rare breeds, if you're willing to wait and not go "I need it today" - though if you need a popular breed today, you can be obliged.
My family's had two Akitas and a Bouvier des Flanders through rescue - the Bouvier had a temperment issue due to maltreatment (not mean, but damaged) but the Akitas were only too big, sheddy, and inconvenient - not that Akitas are ever small and non-shedding. My mom had a poodle before I was born - toy poodle, non-shedding. It's easy to get oodles of all sizes, from retriever crosses down to toys.
The 2nd Akita did have rampant kennel cough and nearly died - my mom knew he was sick but she had loved the 1st rescue Akita so much she couldn't walk away. If they wanted a 3rd or 4th (the 2nd Akita has passed away at age 12) I could probably find them one with a few minutes of Googling. If they needed one TODAY I might have to get them a Chow, which is similar temperment but smaller and more popular, but I doubt it would be that long.
That said, here in Oz, I have longingly window-shopped rescue sites, and I've seen plenty of oodles and poodles, just not puppies.
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