Puppy Forum and Dog Forums banner

1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
11,842 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
My wife, who frequently complains that we already have two dogs too many, wanted to stop at the animal shelter near here a week ago to look at a 5-year-old miniature schnauzer that reminded her (at least in the fuzzy B&W photo in the paper) of her beloved Zeke.

Zeke, as some of you know, is one of my daughter's dogs. Her other dog, Dante, is undergoing chemo treatments for lymphoma, so Zeke is with us for a bit to blow off some steam with the big dogs. Poor Dante has very little energy to play. (Sarah has gotten a cat for Dante to snuggle with.)

So we stopped at the shelter. It's a nice one. They do a good job of placing the dogs and I have encountered several of them around town with new owners.

But the shelter visits are none-the-less heart-breaking. I read the little signs, listing the reasons for surrender. "Couldn't keep her." "Doesn't get along with new dog." "Barks." It is a litany of human failings and it makes me want to scream. The strays are just as disheartening, since they are, essentially, abandoned and someone couldn't even take the trouble to formally surrender them or look for them at the only shelter in 20 miles.

Lillie the schnauzer was already gone, which is fortunate but they had they usual assortment of Pit Bulls, along with a few husky mixes and one truly startling St Bernard (listed as a mix, but he looked all St Bernard to me.) Some of the dogs had already shut down and were non-responsive. They may have arrived that way or they may have been there too long.

Ironically, the shelter is adjacent to the unfenced dogpark that we frequent with our girls. When one of them does something to #### me off, I'll say, "You know, you could be conveniently traded in." It's a bit of dark humor that I know they appreciate.

We'll continue to prowl the shelter and visit shelters in other communities when we see them. It gives me perspective.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,075 Posts
I agree ... shelters are heartbreaking .. and I must stay clear of them unless I am genuinely wanting to adopt or rescue. Unfortunately I always want to take them all home and give them a chance at a second life ... and we all know that is certainly not feasible.

Shelters unfortunately also make me aware of how much more faith I have lost in the human race and their tendency to be so heartless and purely ignorant and lazy when it comes to these wonderful living beings. All being IMHO ... I just feel this way. :(

I hope you too can find another addition for your home ... as it has been stated by others ... it may not change the world but it sure changes the life of one animal forever.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
11,842 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
We're not actually looking for another dog. We weren't looking when we got Esther and we weren't looking when we got Molly, either. Now that I think of it, I wasn't looking when I got my previous two dogs, either.

I think these dogs just drop out of the sky.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
689 Posts
I'm known in my family as a really resilient person but almost every time I walk into a shelter I get choked up. More often than not I have convinced my mom to adopt something as well so I'm not allowed to frequent them. Lol
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
259 Posts
Shelters just make me want to take something home. It's great to visit and lend a hand, but depressing that so many need help, were given up for absurd reasons, and that you can't help them all if you wanted.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
964 Posts
I agree ... shelters are heartbreaking .. and I must stay clear of them unless I am genuinely wanting to adopt or rescue. Unfortunately I always want to take them all home and give them a chance at a second life ... and we all know that is certainly not feasible.

QUOTE]

Ive adopted several shelter dogs over the years.
I always feel horrible walking out the door with only one dog . I stay clear of the shelter untill Im seriously ready to adopt another dog.
I always have 1 purebred dog and 1 or 2 shelter dogs...and stray cats..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
20,765 Posts
I always feel horrible walking out the door with only one dog .
Agh, me too. When I got Toby, it was horrible. And it was a super-high-kill city shelter so I know most of the animals I saw were going to leave in a blue bucket. I don't know if I can go back into a high-kill shelter. The guilt nearly killed ME.

The Humane Society here doesn't kill any dogs once they make it to the adoption floor. So as long as I steer clear of the stray dog room and the cat room, and I don't see anyone surrendering their pet, I can deal with it. Sort of.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,946 Posts
I've also been known to get choked up when visiting shelters.

All of my future dogs will be from shelters/rescues, but because I do dog sports, I have to be super picky. That means I'll have to visit tons of shelters for months on end and leave empty-handed most of the time. Just the thought of doing that breaks my heart.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
192 Posts
I am in shelters on average a couple times a month.....Been that way for 20 years.......
Anyone that can go in and out of shelters, volunteer, work at, just drive by.... has respect and reverance. (unless it's the guy that does the euthanizations without out any remorse, he's just creepers!) Petfinder is off limits too!

Some of the stories these dogs have is more than I can handle, I don't even have a category for some of the things humans do to dogs; things I wouldn't even do to a mosquito! I'm certainly not one of those people that lets my dog sit on the dining room table, but I'm acutely aware that dogs are living beings that can feel pain.

If I want to do anything for a shelter or rescue, I'll mail it to them. I made some fleece blankies once, I mailed it to the rescue. Bought some extra long leads for a rescue that did training before rehoming, mailed those too. Just. can't. go. in. there. without. a. specific. dog. in. mind!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,837 Posts
My boyfriend gave me the stink eye 8 months ago when I told him I was interviewing to work at a shelter. He figured this was a master plan for me to bring home every dog possible. Since I've started I've "adopted" one dog that is not a permanent member, just a gal I had to legally adopt to save and one day she'll find her forever home, but every day that passes and dogs sit for months (we had an off and on year long resident that was JUST adopted a few weeks ago) I just think about how any of them would be perfect here and don't understand what they're still waiting for.

I'm currently learning how to do intake and the owner surrender forms are depressing. Returned dogs are equally depressing. Someone adopted a puppy months ago and not twelve hours later returned him because he was not playing with their dog.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
179 Posts
Luckily for me, the shelter is quite far and my boyfriend wont let me near there.

I do sometimes however check the website of the shelter I went to for my dogs. When I first went there and adopted Tessa, there was a really nice looking border collie cross for adoption too. I knew there was no way I could handle a border collie (or even a cross) but I was really hoping he'd get adopted soon. A few weeks later, he was gone (adopted). Not long ago, I checked the shelter's website, and the border collie cross was back there. I'm sure it was the same (same name, looked the same). So unfair! Poor pup.

I need to stay away from the shelter's website too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,927 Posts
I have a hard time with shelters, I'm pretty stoic, but its one of the few things that really makes my heart break.
That said, I'm very seriously contemplating looking into volunteering at the local SPCA. The dogs only really get walked by joe blow volunteer that walks in off of the street, the dogs (and volunteers) don't get any training that I know of. I've learned so much, and gotten so much enjoyment out of training and working with Caeda that I would love working and spending time with more dogs. I might learn even more and be able to help out some dogs at the shelter who need some human time and attention.
How do those of you that volunteer at shelters cope!? We rent, so I doubt I could get away with coming home with another dog!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
98 Posts
I volunteer at the humane society, the one here is not so bad, its a fairly new building, clean and bright. All dogs get walked twice a day every day. I go in and walk high energy dogs in between, and train some of the more unruly dogs manners and tricks if they're there long enough. I like to go in and just sit with them, they enjoy it and so do I. The shelters in this area have a 99% save rate on dogs, and the humane society doesn't euthanize dogs, they trade dogs between shelters to try and get them homes. Its a great feeling to see a dog you've worked with go to a home.

Forgot to add I did adopt a dog after starting to volunteer - a 25lb Lhasa mix. I always said no small dogs but being there made me appreciate them more, still no tiny dogs for me, but I see the appeal of them now.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,927 Posts
<Snip> Its a great feeling to see a dog you've worked with go to a home.
THIS is what I'm thinking of. My current job isn't exactly rewarding, and I've found working with Caeda so rewarding that I'd love to do more of it! (this isn't to say that Caeda doesn't need or deserve more work/training or wouldn't get it). I definitely wouldn't have the gall to call myself a trainer by any means, but I do think I've got something to offer to the dogs at the shelter that might just help a tiny bit in getting them new homes (that'll stick hopefully!). Its just a matter of making sure the home they go to isn't MY home. I'm not sure how high the save rate is on the shelter here is.....I'm actually a little scared to ask :( Not the nicest facility.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
8,890 Posts
When I go into shelters, I have either been called in to evaluate a dog. ( A couple of shelters use me from time to time as a second opinion on temperament), am there to eval or pick up an ACD. or am there to eval a pit bull. The only one's I usually see the history of are the ACDs. The rest I don't want to know. If I can help it, I don't even want to know what they are calling the dog for a name. I call the boy dogs buddy and the girl dogs pretty girl.

Really what bothers me more than the shelters is the emails I field for ACD rescue.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,584 Posts
I volunteer at a county required-to-intake-everything shelter that last year had a 52-48 % rate. My personal thing is to NOT ask what happened when I notice a dog is gone. I know I'm deluding myself, but it makes it bearable to go in there and help the dogs and to just believe that when they're no longer on the shelter floor, they've been adopted and not PTS.
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top