(Picture left: "Leo," the pitbull who was dropped off with Tommy, the Chow. But, can there be a happy ending for Leo as there was for Tommy? That is in doubt because........)
"Tommy" the Chow Chow rescued three days ago, was adopted yesterday without having to be advertised.
I literally had the home lined up as the woman from the young couple called last week seeking a Chow. The couple came to meet Leo the first day I had him in the boarding facility and were thrilled with him. They officially adopted Tommy yesterday after buying a whole bunch of stuff (bed, fancy leash, collar, toys, brushes and treats) for the scruffy, but endearing Chow.
Tommy was a very sweet, easygoing and kind of cheerful dog. Affectionate (unusual for a Chow as they are typically aloof and reserved around new people), easy to walk, totally housebroken and nice around other dogs.
The bad news is that one day after picking up Tommy up from the shelter, I found out (through an email sent to me) that Tommy had been dropped off at the pound with another dog!
The man giving up the two dogs claimed that both were "strays" although Tommy and "Leo" seemed to onlookers to be a bonded pair.
Unfortunately, "Leo" is a Pitbull that we know almost nothing about.
As noted many times in this blog, many people when dropping animals off at the pound fail to tell the full truth by admitting to ownership.
If one admits ownership of animals, there is a required "Owner Surrender Fee" in addition to questions that are posed to owners.
If one however lies and claims the animals to be "strays" one neither has to answer questions or pay a fee. Giving the man the benefit of the doubt however in this particular case, it is quite possible that he originally and actually found Tommy and Leo as "strays" but then perhaps ran into financial or other difficulties in trying to keep them. It's very unusual for someone to have a Pitbull and Chow together.
We thus, don't know anything about Leo, the Pittie other than he seems to be a nice dog at the shelter and he apparently lived with Tommy, the Chow.
We DO know that unlike Chows, Pitties are almost impossible to find homes for!
When hearing this story, Firouzeh, one of our volunteers feels for Leo, the other dog dropped off with Tommy. She's offered to pay boarding fees if he fails to get adopted at the shelter and winds up on the kill list.
For my part, I hate to rescue one animal from an abandoned pair and leave the other behind even when it would be impossible to place both dogs together.
I had told the couple who adopted Tommy about the companion dog he was dropped off with, but their building doesn't allow Pitbulls.
It would be virtually impossible to place a Chow and a Pitbull together anyway. Usually the people who are into Chows don't share the same affection for Pitbulls and vice versa. The two breeds are almost diametrically opposed in natures.
Leo is still at Animal Control, but it is almost certain he will wind up on the kill list, some time this weekend.
If and when he does, should we pull him?
I don't know.
The prospect of long-term boarding (i.e. "warehousing") for a dog -- even is someone else is willing to pay for it -- does not appeal to me. It's not kind to the dog and it is extremely expensive over the long haul.
We already have two Pitbulls in boarding for months. And although both are truly great dogs, we have yet to get one serious and qualified adoption inquiry (or offer to foster) for either one.
The PROBLEM is almost all shelters, rescues and boarding facilities in New York, New Jersey, Philadelphia and even Connecticut are filled with Pitbulls and this is what is making the prospects for the adoptions of these animals so difficult. We are literally flooded with Pitbulls as are all shelters in large, urban cities across the country.
Why is this happening?
On an episode of "Animal Cops, Philadelphia" a couple of weeks ago, in which the agents confiscated Pitbulls from a dog fighting ring, a supervisor explained that out of every litter of Pitbull puppies bred, "only one or two" are considered suitable for fighting. The rest of the puppies are basically thrown out into the communities. (i.e. sold, given away, or tied up somewhere and abandoned.)
Most of these non-fighting Pits eventually wind up in our shelters either as "strays" or owner surrendered dogs. (Often deemed, "shelter trash.") Young Pitbulls, even when very friendly and socialized, are strong dogs who require a good deal of exercise. As puppies or adolescents, they can be notorious "chewers." Unless properly exercised, trained, crated and provided with chew toys (things that cost a great deal of money), these dogs often prove problematic for their owners (most of whom live in small city apartments without benefit of yards or nearby parks to exercise the dogs).
The sad truth is MOST of the dogs being killed in shelters are young, very loving Pitbulls whose energy and exercise needs have simply surpassed their owners abilities or resources to deal with.
Since the problem has become so big, many communities or buildings have now banned Pitbulls.
But, simply banning a breed in a particular community or building does nothing to stop the breeding, abuse and dumping of Pitbulls.
That requires enforcement of the dog fighting laws and prosecutions and imprisonment of the offenders.
Simply confiscated and killing the victims of dog fighting, while allowing their torturers to go free does NOTHING to stop the actual CRIMES against both, the animals and the TAXPAYERS but merely punishes the VICTIMS (the dogs).
But, less we think that dog fighting only affects those animals thrown into fight rings, think again:
THE TRUTH IS THAT THE AMERCIAN TAX PAYER SUBSTIDIZES DOG FIGHTING BECAUSE IT IS OUR TAX DOLLARS THAT PAY FOR THE SHELTERS THAT HAVE TO ROUND UP, TAKE IN, VACCINATE, HOUSE AND EVENTUALLY KILL THE MILLIONS OF PITBULLS THAT ARE VICTIMS ONE WAY OR THE OTHER, OF THIS VICIOUS "SPORT" THAT HAS NOW PERMEATED THE ENTIRE COUNTRY.
It's time we, as Americans (especially in this downward spiraling economy) said "enough is enough." It's not enough to have a law on the books that forbids dog fighting while virtually never being enforced.
The law has to be ENFORCED and its violators prosecuted and jailed.
Only then will we eventually see an end to the horrific waste of life and taxpayer money currently going to subsidize the violent and vicious world of dog fighting.
Only then might there be real hope for dogs like Leo. -- PCA