#1 Do NOT abandon your pet outdoors & NEVER leave them inside your home when you move!
Help is often only a phone call away.
We understand how difficult it is to find placement with a no-kill facility and no one wants to face the harsh reality that their beloved pet could die waiting for a new home while in a shelter.
The Ugly Truth...
There are good county facilities & unfortunately there are bad ones. Most often the bad ones are that way because they have no support, funding or resources. The building is old, smelly and in desperate need of repair or demolition. The people that work there (some are paid minimum wage, most are volunteers) may seem a little disinterested in your situation or perhaps even unfriendly. Don’t take it personally. They deal with hundreds of people every single week relinquishing perfectly wonderful pets and have heard every excuse or reason, imaginable. Sadly, they know all too well the consequences of your actions can mean euthanasia.
“My child is allergic, my fiance doesn’t like cats, my mother died & I already have 2 dogs, we’re moving, it’s a stray that keeps having kittens, it’s old & I can’t afford the vet bills, I’ve lost my home, I’m pregnant, I can’t get her potty trained, he barks all the time, she’s just a puppy but too rough with my kids, we changed our mind, we found him in the park, our homeowners insurance doesn’t cover these kinds of dogs, we just can’t afford a pet anymore, we have too many animals now, it scratches the furniture, it got too big, I don’t know who it belongs to.”
Depressing, isn’t it?
We get that owners often feel a need to justify the surrender an animal. The guilt and shame is often overpowering. Tears are shed. Sometimes it seems easier to drop a box of kittens at the door under the dark of night & leave unseen. Please don’t ever do that. #1 - it’s illegal. #2 - great harm can come to a boxed animal, not to mention it could suffocate or be attacked by a raccoon, hawk or coyote. Consider a pet training course, a different brand of kitty litter or a trip to vet - your pet could have a medical condition. Got a stuffy or runny nose? Isn’t your pet worth a little Benadryl? (but always talk to your doctor first.) Start putting away $1 a day or open a pet savings account.
Realistically, you might need to call 25 rescues before finding a space or foster home for your animal. 99% of these people are volunteers with full time jobs, so don’t expect an answer right away. It can be a complicated process but they really do care and want to help you. It’s true some organizations may not call you for a week and some never call you back at all. They don’t always have an answer plus rescuers frequently suffer from “compassion fatigue”. It’s downright overwhelming at times, especially now with the failing economy and massive number of foreclosures. Once beloved pet’s are becoming as disposable as a broken toaster.
Talk about not enough homes for them all...
If you have tried all avenues, you’ve asked for and exhausted all resources, including food assistance, made dozens of calls, begged your friends and coworkers and are facing homelessness, rather than leave your pet behind or accidentally on purpose left the back door open... take Fluffy or Fido to the shelter. More and more people are opting to adopt and the shelter is their first stop. Many pets do find wonderful lifelong homes. Plus, many rescues get their adoptive animals from the shelter! There are tens of thousands of volunteers across this country who network & transport animals, especially those “whose time is up”. Even the harshest of shelters like South Central LA have dedicated volunteers working daily to save these precious and valuable lives. And if the worse possible scenario should occur, and we don’t advocate it but we are realists, a peaceful sleep is better than starving on the streets, alone and scared.
And if you do find placement, PLEASE offer a heartfelt donation, no matter how small.