What Rescue Is and What Rescue is Not
This was passed along to me by a friend in rescue from Rottweiler Rescue of NY. It is an excellent education piece. It’s straight and to the point. The writer doesn’t try to ‘candy coat’ reality or spare anyone’s feelings. Read it and understand!
By Rottweiler Rescue of NY, a fantastic breed specific rescue group
The following information may seem harsh, rude, and perhaps even ignorant. If you plan on pursuing adoption from rescue please continue to read no matter your opinion. The following things are meant as information only. These are not all truths in our rescue, but many of them DO fit, and we want you to be aware of the rescuer’s side of rescue.
We will spell this information out as plainly and distinctly as we can, so that hopefully it cannot be misunderstood or read incorrectly. You may not agree with some of the things said on this page, but please understand that these are the realities of many rescues. This is not to say that it should excuse rude or ignorant behavior, but it lets you have a behind the scenes view.
You may have encountered rescues who didn’t ever reply to your e-mail, never returned your call, never contacted you about your application, wouldn’t let you adopt a dog, wouldn’t let you foster a dog, or a rescue person who was impolite to the point of being rude. As you read the following page you will be given an insight to a rescuers day/week/month, and perhaps you will begin to see why so many rescuers are hardened, snippy, crabby people who don’t seem to be living in the same word as everyone else.
If you take offense to anything below we regret that, but if you are offended it may let you know a little more about yourself and your thoughts on rescue prior to reading it. We are not here to lecture anyone, and if you feel after reading this that you cannot for some reason adopt from our rescue, please find one that you feel you can adopt from.
When you are finished reading this you still may not agree with how some rescues handle themselves (and even many rescuers feel this way) but hopefully you will at least understand a little better WHY they are like that. Our goal is to help educate you about rescue….what it is and what it isn’t.
WE’LL START WITH THE MOST IMPORTANT ONE FOR YOU TO UNDERSTAND
RESCUE IS NOT A SERVICE FOR YOU … PERIOD . NOT FOR YOU TO FIND A DOG,OR TO GET RID OF YOUR DOG.
Rescue is a service for the dogs. We care about them, the dog is who we are here to help. Helping you find the dog of your dreams is a result of that, but our main concern here is the dog and what is best for each individual dog.
RESCUE IS NOT A SHELTER THAT YOU CAN JUST STOP BY TO VISIT, PICK OUT A DOG, AND TAKE IT HOME WITH YOU WHENEVER THE MOOD STRIKES YOU. THERE IS NO PLACE TO DROP BY AND WINDOW SHOP, NO BUSINESS HOURS, AND NO TIMES WE ARE OPEN.
Rescue is a group of people that love their breed. Those people open their homes and hearts to the dogs, give them a place to live, and love them until they find a loving home. We take applications, screen them, and then have people come and visit with the dogs in our homes …. See …. no shelter involved. There is a volunteers’ home on the end of any phone number you are given. Please respect that.
RESCUE IS NOT DIAL A DOG, DIAL A PERSON THAT WANTS TO HEAR ABOUT MY TROUBLES, DIAL A PERSON TO UNLOAD MY DOG .. I’VE HAD IT FOR 10 YEARS AND IT SIMPLY DOESN’T MATCH THE FURNITURE ANYMORE.
Rescue is a phone number or e-mail that reaches right into the home of a volunteer who has little time to deal with the guilt you are feeling over giving up your dog or tossing them out like last nights leftovers. They have even less time to deal with you see-sawing back and forth between keeping the dog and giving it up. If you’ve taken the trouble to find a rescue and call or email, then 99% of people have their minds set on getting rid of the dog. Don’t lie to us or to yourself. Simply tell us the reason you are giving the dog up and answer the questions we ask. If we are going to help you the least you can do is help us speed up the process.
Please do not think us cold or callus, but we don’t have time for every person giving up a dog to cry on our shoulders. We’ve heard all the reasons for giving up a dog before….. including :
* allergies, moving, housebreaking issues, money issues, new baby, too hyper, barking, sick, injured, nasty, uncontrollable, landlord doesn’t allow, parents said no, owner died and nobody wants the dog, divorce, marriage, too many animals, doesn’t like new dog, doesn’t like old dog, chases cars, chases cats, sheds too much, too much trouble, new job, wants too much attention
To the other extreme, which includes
* it’s cross-eyed, it’s ears don’t stand up, it doesn’t match the new couch, it looks at me funny, he doesn’t like it here, and he’s told me he’s not happy.
We’re not cold hearted, we simply have too many things to do and not enough time to do them all and still listen to how sorry you think you are about getting rid of your dog. If you have done everything you could do before coming to rescue, you should not feel guilty. We understand things happen in people’s lives that make hard choices a necessity. We are not judging those who have done everything they could yet still have to give up the dog. We just want those who haven’t taken the responsibility seriously to understand that we are not here to offer emotional support to them when they’ve made a stupid decision and refuse to take responsibility for it.
Rescue should be one of your last resorts. Try obedience training, try crate training, try everything you can before you make the decision to give up your dog. When you’ve done all that you can, then call us and let us know why you’re giving up the dog in the least amount of words you can. We’ll ask questions, you answer them. Quick, Simple, and Honest.
RESCUE IS NOT A PERSON SITTING AT THE COMPUTER OR PHONE ALL DAY JUST WAITING FOR YOU TO CALL OR EMAIL. WE’RE ALSO NOT RUNNING HOME DAILY HOPING WE’LL HAVE LOTS OF EMAIL AND ANSWERING MACHINE MESSAGES. WE’RE NOT RUSHING TO RETURN YOUR CALL OR EMAIL.
Rescue is a group of people who already have a life, a family, a full-time job, their own dogs, foster dogs, 50 e-mail a day looking to adopt or give up a dog, 20 phone messages a day looking to adopt or give up a dog, calls from shelters needing a rescue to take a dog who is about to be put down, not to mention applications to process, vet appointments for foster dogs…..and countless other things that rescue involves.
Of course, this does not include the volunteer eating, sleeping, and having a life, I almost forgot.
RESCUE IS NOT A WAY FOR YOU TO FIND A PUREBRED DOG FOR LITTLE OR NO MONEY
Rescue is a safe haven for dogs of a specific breed, with people that know and understand the quirks and personality of that breed, and have the knowledge needed to handle that breed, it’s medical requirements, and who can access an application to be sure it would be an appropriate home for that breed.
RESCUE IS NOT A BABY-SITTING SERVICE FOR YOUR DOG, A KENNEL,OR A PLACE THAT WILL TRAIN YOUR DOG
Rescue is a place that dogs who are homeless, about to be homeless, or in a shelter, come into where they will receive the medical attention, physical attention, and behavioral attention they need. Rescue is most times the only thing standing between a dog and a lethal injection.
CAN I GET A DOG FROM YOUR RESCUE THAT IS NOT SPAYED OR NEUTERED?
Rescue is not a place where you can pick up a “girlfriend” for BUTCH or a “boyfriend” for FIFI so that you can irresponsibly mass produce puppies, sell them to homes that may very well want them for Pitbull bait, toys for the children, something for the kids to take care of, or something to neglect and then later abandon.
Rescue is responsible about the reproduction of their breed. In fact, rescues believe that they only breeding that should be done is by the FEW responsible breeders out there, and only to improve the breed. And by the way, responsible breeders are not those folks with “free puppies” signs or ads, and doesn’t not include Jane down the street who has a few Chihuahuas she allows to breed whenever they feel like it and then charges $500 for a puppy. Responsible breeders are folks that care about their puppies and take pride in placing them in loving homes where they will be cared for. Responsible breeders have quality pups who are lovingly raised, given proper care, and sold only to homes that are appropriate for the breed.
All rescue dogs are spayed or neutered before adoption so that no “Accidents” happen.
You won’t get a dog unaltered, don’t even bother to ask.
RESCUE IS NOT A PLACE THAT WILL TAKE THE MOST VICIOUS, NASTY, AGGRESSIVE DOGS AND KEEP THEM FOR THE REST OF THEIR LIVES, LIVING HAPPILY EVER AFTER IN THEIR OWNERS MIND WHILE THE DOG IS MISERABLE.
Rescue is a place where the nasty dogs that are not safe for anyone to own, handle or be within 5 feet of are humanely put to sleep where they will be happier, and people will be safer. If YOU don’t want to deal with your dog that bites, whom you’ve loved for 6 years, what on earth makes you think that someone else would want it biting them or their family?
We do work with every dog to see if they are just frightened, or have an issue that is fixable, or if they are just nasty. Those who are scared or have an issue that is fixable we work with and allow them time to adjust and overcome their fear. Those who are nasty are put to sleep – PERIOD. Some people think a rescue that euthanizes is horrible, and that’s fine, but let us fill your house up with dogs you cannot sneeze around without getting bit and let us see you still save the lives of 60+ dogs a year.
RESCUE IS NOT A MAIL ORDER SERVICE TO FIND YOU THE DOG OF YOUR DREAMS, THE DOG THAT LOVES KIDS, CATS, EVERYONE, DOESN’T BARK TOO MUCH, IS PERFECTLY HOUSEBROKEN, IS 3 POUNDS, DOES TRICKS ON COMMAND, AND KNOWS HOW TO ACT IN EVERY SITUATION.
Rescue is the place that gets calls from shelters and owners who have a Dog in need. Sure, we may come across a dog like the one described above, but chances are it will be adopted quickly and it will be a long time before we see another one like it.
We work with each dog to make them better pets than they were when they entered rescue, but we aren’t miracle workers. Every dog has his own personality, and that is what matters. If you want a dog that fits a few certain requirements – okay, that’s realistic. But trying to find one that matches perfection is not going to happen anytime soon, and if one comes in that is perfect we have a line 5 miles long of people waiting for it…
CREDIT FOR THIS GOES TO ROTTIE RESCUE OF NY!
(And thanks to Gypsy!)
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