Saturday, May 8, 2010

A Ten to Fifteen Year Job -- (Reply)

(Picture Left: "Buddy" -- Delightful, playful and loving Pomeranian who has yet to generate any inquiry or interest despite verbal and other promotion. Poor picture quality and dismal [shelter] background the only seeming explanations.)

Shadowlight Writes: That is so very sad. I'm just wondering, though. Have you asked any of the various "qualified" people interested in specifically Sugarbear about Buddy as well? Maybe the real test for how qualified they are in adopting Sugarbear lies in how they respond to that question. The most qualified would probably respond they would be just as willing to adopt Buddy as Sugarbear...

Reply: You make a very valid point.

I did not ask that question of everyone as I don't want this to appear like some kind of "bait and switch." The ultimate decision for who eventually adopts Sugarbear is left to his rescuer and fosterer, Barbie. I am merely referring those who meet the basic criteria to her. -- Doing preliminary screening, in other words.

But, it is very disconcerting in terms of those I actually did pose the question or suggestion to that not one showed any interest in Buddy even though he is almost identical to Sugarbear in breed, age, health and temperament. (The only differences, as previous noted, being that of color and slight difference in size.)

Yesterday, one woman became irate when told that Sugarbear is likely being adopted by people who called before her. This, despite my telling her about Buddy.

"I don't understand why it is so HARD to adopt!" she screamed.

"Ma'am, it doesn't help to yell," I replied, trying to calm the woman down. "That's not a good way to promote yourself as a potential adopter."

"I don't need to SELL MYSELF!" she admonished and hung up the phone.

Bear in mind, this is a lady who initially provided a wrong phone number (typo which she didn't admit to) when first emailing about Sugarbear.

Perhaps it really is me. I am losing patience with the attitudes, rudeness and sense of "entitlement" that too many people display when inquiring about adoptions.

And even if not being rude or obnoxious, (as said the other day) many people have not given thought to their situations and/or the practicality or timing of having and caring for a pet.

I think this helps explain why our shelters are constantly filled with animals, most of the pets given up from so-called, "loving homes."

If every home was so "loving" why would we be killing millions of dogs and cats in shelters each year? Why would Animal Cops shows never run out of stories to tell?

Obviously, some rescue groups and shelters are not screening well enough although in most cases, the animals dumped in pounds were either purchased from pet stores or breeders or given to the people who later abandoned them.

Many shelter animals have in fact, been passed through multiple homes before finally ending up in a shelter or on the streets.

To me, the major problems have to do attitudes towards animals and the sense of "entitlement." -- That anyone should be able to have a cat or dog regardless of knowledge about animals, sense of responsibility, previous history with pets or willingness to commit.

I don't agree.

To me, inquiring to bring home a cat or dog is a little like applying for a job.

In the case of animals, the "job" is one likely to entail up to ten or even more years of commitment (and expense!), depending on the age of the pet.

Why then are we wrong to ask questions or seek certain criteria just as any employer would ask of a potential employee?

Should not the life and care of an animal be as important as the care, skills, knowledge and trustworthiness someone would need in order to do a job correctly?

Like a job, caring for an animal, is most of all, a responsibility. -- PCA


1 comment:

Shadowlight said...

Thanks for the reply. I'm sorry, I wasn't implying that you should do a bait and switch. It's just something I've noticed, which is that even if seemingly "perfect" dogs like Sugarbear receive the overwhelming number of inquiries, when you think about it, many of those are pretty superficial. Their interest is due mainly to the fact that Sugarbear looks "cute." So at the end of the day, the number of really good adopters for dogs like Sugarbear are probably as low, or at least almost as low as that for Buddy (or the regular wonderful mutt, for that matter! I can't get over the fact there's such a contrast between Sugarbear and Buddy, if you were talking about Sugarbear and say a pitbull mix, maybe I could understand the contrast...). Because while there may be fewer people inquiring for Buddy and the "typical" mutt, the absolute worst dregs of adopters are also less likely to evince any interest in those "non-cover model" types. So, those few who do call for dogs like Buddy probably represent a better overall quality of adopter than those who call for the likes of Sugarbear.