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With the current situation of the “Ellen Degeneres dog” incident it has brought up a sore spot with me. Over the years I have adopted 3 dogs and 1 cat from local animal shelters. They were city run shelters, not the “rescues” that you commonly hear about. These shelters just want to get the dogs and cats a decent home and require a vet check (often free), vaccinations, spaying/neutering and license if required. In no case did they want the animal back (but I did return one after a very nasty fight broke out with him and another dog) and they did not “police” your home-life other than make sure you have gotten that license.
Many of the so called rescues go overboard in my opinion, in requiring some very stringent home requirements for their animals. Some require a yard. I guess most of the people in New York city would not qualify for a pet since they live in high rises. Some say no young children. If you get a rescue pet and then a year or so down the road you get pregnant you had better get an abortion because the pet police will come and take your pet away.
Since when do we give more power to so called animal rescues over our lives than we give the government? I do believe it is time for governments, either federal or local to step in and say to the “pet police” knock it off. Once an animal has changed custody through an exchange of money, that animal now belongs to it’s new owner. When you adopt an animal you are NOT leasing it – you own it. The only way a rescue can retain rights on that animal is to foster it out. NO MONEY OR FEES are to be paid to the rescue. In fact the rescue should be paying the foster family, the same way that human foster families are paid.
Here is my statement to all rescues our there:
Get your adoption wording correct. Are you adopting out that animal? That means giving the animal to a good home with no fees attached. Are you selling that animal? That means you are charging an “adoption fee” for the animal. Are you fostering out that animal? That means that you still control the animal and the person that takes of the animal is paid for their time, effort and pet food.
Many people (rescues that is) will complain that we just can’t give the animal away. We spent money on that animal and need to recoup that money some way. I guess you could call it a donation but not make it mandatory. But we all know that you would pressure the “adoptee” to donate. Guess you are the same as breeders that need to recoup the expenses for their breeding operation. Once you start taking money your rescue has become nothing more than any other business.