Adoption policies of rescue groups typically fall into one of two camps:
The rescue does everything in its power to make sure each animal goes to the perfect family, even if that means a lengthy delay in getting a dog into a forever home.
The rescue believes that perfection is not necessary for a home to be loving. The faster an animal gets adopted, the better. Called “open” or “conversation-based” adoptions, a pet goes home with a family after consultation with an adoption counselor.
I am a strong supporter of open adoptions. In a previous article on the topic, my opinions sparked much debate. Feedback from foster families and my own personal experiences this year have made me more sympathetic to those who require perfection, but my mind hasn’t changed — I still think that open adoption is the best and most effective way to become a no-kill nation.
I know many wonderful and loving pet parents who have taken other routes to get a companion animal, simply because adoption from a rescue group became too hard and/or hurtful of a process.
When you are told you aren’t fit to adopt a dog, it is heartbreaking. I know from experience — 11 years ago, I was told by more than one rescue that it would not consider letting me adopt a puppy. Reasons ran the gamut from me not being home 24/7 to not being married to my live-in boyfriend. It seemed impossible to find a group that would deem me a suitable dog mom. For those who know me and how I treat my baby boy, Riggins, this doesn’t just seem illogical, it seems wrong.
In the past few years, I’ve had more friends turned down for adoptions by well-meaning rescue groups.
One of my girlfriends is a lovely and talented businesswoman, a single woman with disposable income that she is happy and willing to spend on her dogs. She owns a home with a backyard. With one of her fur babies facing a terminal illness, she made the decision to adopt another family member.
After much research, she found an adorable Lab she wanted to adopt through a rescue group. It all seemed to be going well, until the foster family found out my friend does not have a pool. Apparently, the pup enjoyed the foster family’s pool and they felt he should go to a home where he could continue his daily swimming routine.
This was a new one for me. Being refused a pup simply because you don’t have a pool?! Let’s be honest, I would like a pool, too. Nothing would make me happier than swimming laps in my own backyard instead of having to schlep down to the local recreation center, but that’s life. A POOL?! Come on!
My friend turned to a breeder. She now has an adorable Lab puppy who is learning to make the most of his cushy life with a new mom and doggie brother.
Another girlfriend also was recently looking for a dog to add to her family. Her husband and two sons had a dog who had died a few years earlier from old age. Although her husband has a full-time job, my friend is a substitute teacher and home early each day, and all day when she isn’t working. Her older son is such a dog lover that he spent the summer volunteering for a local rescue group, taking the dogs out for walks and breaks from their kennels.
There was NO REASON not to see this family as perfect for a pup. Alas, that was not the case. They fell in love with a dog and went through a home check with the rescue group. The person who visited them said there would be no issues with the adoption moving forward. Imagine her surprise when she learned the foster mother had said “no” to her family. The reason? My friend worked sometimes and therefore wouldn’t be home all of the time.
I hear this over and over from people who have been refused adoption from an animal rescue group. WHO IS HOME ALL DAY? THE OWNER HAS TO WORK TO FEED THE DOG, DOESN’T HE/SHE? GRRR!
To be fair to foster families, they want the best for the dog they have come to love. That is totally understandable. Recently, I had to watch a dog who I had come to love and had taken care of go to a new family, one I didn’t feel was the best fit. I had an expectation in my mind, and his new family fell short. I wasn’t in a situation where I could veto the move, and if I had been, I have to be honest with myself and admit I would have denied the adoption. Does that make my a hypocrite? Perhaps it does.
It really is an emotional and polarizing topic. In the past few years, open adoption and even “free” adoption policies have become more accepted by the rescue community. Part of the reason: Research has shown that a high enough percentage of animals placed by conversation-based adoption policies stay safely and happily with their adopted families (Maddies Fund at 93 percent and ASPCA at 96 percent are two such studies). If these numbers continue to remain high, open adoption is the right path toward becoming a no-kill nation, and isn’t that what we all want?
Let’s hear from you, readers. Share your thoughts on “open” adoptions in the comments.
The post Why I Believe In an Open Adoption — Not the Perfection Some Dog Rescue Groups Require appeared first on Dogster.
California has now made it legal for people to break car windows in order to break a dog out of a hot car.
“As of August 2016, Vermont joined forces with Tennessee, Florida, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Ohio in passing laws to protect good Samaritans who assist dogs locked in hot cars.”
Palm Springs has made it illegal for people to leave their dogs in their cars.
Many people applaud these measures. Don’t get me wrong, dogs shouldn’t die in hot cars AND there are other issues about this to consider and SOLVE which these laws do NOT DO.
For instance, people like me who take their dogs on trips, who are single and alone and cannot leave their pooches in the motel, and must take their dogs with them wherever they go, sure, these laws are meant to save dog’s lives… but in Palm Springs it is illegal to keep your dog in a car, even if it is COOL weather or night, this goes TOO FAR. if dogs are not allowed in stores, there is NO PLACE FOR THEM TO BE. Where am I supposed to put CICI, tie her up outside a store ????
A woman called the police while I was shopping at Trader Joe’s one cool morning. I usually take Cici inside with me and did not know about the law. She was fine with the windows wide open. As I was at the cashier and leaving, the manager asked if that was my car and told me about the woman and the law.
There are laws that DESERVE TO BE BROKEN or should never have been made to begin with in my humble opinion. What do you think ?
Speaking of which, MONTREAL’s wrong minded response to an incident and just passed a really horrible BSL law that will put too many dogs lives at stake. Rescues are trying to get dogs out of Montreal ASAP as we speak but families are being torn apart and heartbroken for what ????? outlawing dogs for the WAY THEY LOOK IS JUST PLAIN INSANE and goes against EVERYTHING dog experts agree upon on how to COMBAT effectively dog bites and dog aggression. Breed Specific Legislation does NOTHING but waste taxpayer dollars and has proven to be completely ineffective at curbing dog bites. In fact, in some places, dog bites went up because BREED and dog’s looks have NOTHING TO DO WITH whether a dog will bite or be aggressive or not.
There are 5 or red flags that are PROVEN that can lead to a dog attacking or biting.
A dog who is or has been abused, a dog who is left alone in a yard, all day and night and is not socialized nor trained, a dog who is left to roam the streets, a mama with puppies, a dog who is sick and NEVER LEAVE A CHILD OF ANY AGE ALONE WITH A DOG, NO DOG, NONE. These are the RED FLAGS … AND APPLY TO ALL BREEDS of DOGS!!!!!!
“legislators voted in 37 to 23 favor of breed-specific legislation, effectively outlawing any dog that resembles a pit bull — unless owners meet a strict set of conditions.
“Under the ban — which loosely covers American pit bull terriers, American Staffordshire terriers and Staffordshire bull terriers — no dog considered a pit bull can be adopted from Montreal shelters.
“For dogs that don’t have an ‘owner’ on the day of the passing of the legislation, the way the legislation is drafted, the dogs have to be euthanized,” Alanna Devine, of the Montreal SPCA, told The Dodo last week.
“…The legislation was proposed after a spate of dog attacks in the city. Among them, the most notorious resulted in a woman being killed by a dog in her yard last June. But, even in that case, there’s doubt whether the dog that attacked her was even a pit bull.
“Under the law, people who own dogs deemed pit bulls have until March to undergo a criminal background check and pay $150 for a special permit. Their dog will have to be sterilized, vaccinated and microchipped —as well as muzzled and on a 4-foot leash at all times in public.”
What you can do:
Sign the petition, write to the officials, speak out against BSL and adopt a dog from MONTREAL asap.
500 women over the age of 50 on the monterey bay peninsula are experiencing what I have as well as people across the country have been writing to me telling me their stories. Cici and I are overwhelmed with gratitude for the people who have sent me kind words, donations and offers to help us. A special thank you to Melody and Diane, two inspiring women who gave us hope and friendship on the road.
Thank you to Eleanor at Vox and Karen Turner for their kindness and assistance with this article.
We have been featured on some pretty high profile pages, see below.
We also love what our friend Wanda Sue wrote about us in this week’s Cedar Street Times:
Monterey Workshop addresses Affordable Housing Solutions
Ask yourself: Now what was that all about?
Reducing a speech, lecture, or event into a one-line summary isn’t easy, but you’ll be surprised what you discover by condensing a major phenomenon into ten words or less.
If interested, try this: Focus on one specific event, such as the first Presidential Debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump last Monday. Then ask: What was that all about?
When I did the exercise, fifteen hours of contemplation resulted in extracting a comment Hillary made at the opening of the debate. Paraphrased, the most-important message I culled from event was:
One out of two Americans lives paycheck to paycheck
Never mind the fact neither candidate mentioned the H word. Hillary’s statement implied poverty is already a national epidemic. Mass homelessness proportional to disenfranchised Americans of the Great Depression years seems imminent, even in a paradise like Monterey..
That not-too-distant future is now for CeliaSue Hecht, about whom you’ve read in this newspaper.
The former journalist who’s now homeless lives a nomadic life which is currently reminiscent of Biblical times.
Monterey’s rider on a horse with no name
CeliaSue is a stalwart symbol of bright, sober and mature homeless women with both courage and talent. She is a well-bred middle-class, college-educated former New Yorker, age 66, whom homelessness turned into a living example of the legendary person crossing the desert on a horse with no name. The steed in her case is a dusty white van shared with her dog Cici. It serves as the office from which she freelances as a writer and blogger.
During the six-months in which the City of Monterey was researching the feasibility of adopting five amendments to its Housing Element, each of which might hopefully ameliorate the affordable housing crisis in the city, CeliaSue Hecht went south to avoid becoming a starfish on another cold winter beach in Monterey.
Hoping to find a cozy room at an inn, she found instead, what I would succinctly define as a temporary oasis in The Promised Land for the Homeless, otherwise known as the desert near Giant Rock Airport.
The Promised Land for the Homeless?
CeliaSue has been sleeping in a trailer on a campsite where she helps tend a herd of thirty-plus goats. There is no running water or electricity, but a perk in this region noted for flying saucer sightings is an occasional anomaly above the yucca trees that could be a fortuitous sign or even revelation of future things to come.
Look at the photo and ask yourself: What is this streak all about? Then try to define it in ten words or less.
As a help, you might remember the most-beloved Bible story of them all, in which a bright star appears over the manger in which an infant sleeps while shepherds tend their flocks by night.
When I asked myself what this is all about, the answer was: History repeats itself.
If this goat could talk, it might reveal where the homeless go from here by baa-baa-baa-ing, “There’s lots of land in the Great American Southwest!
if you live on the Central Coast of California or know someone who does and have an RV, camper, mobile home or trailer that is gently used and would like to provide a home for a senior or veteran, please call CeliaSue at 702-225-8206…have a list of those in need of housing. You can also contribute here:
November has been a total blast with lots of outdoor fun as we got into the swing of my favorite time of year, fall! It’s the perfect time for hikes and adventures.
Before we get to my adventures though, let me give a shoutout to my special sponsors & affiliates! Thanks to them I’m able to bring you exciting posts, so make sure you give them some love and check out what great products they carry!
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Our friends over at PugGear have launched a neat kickstarter campaign for The Dogpack™ which is a beautiful, intelligent and adaptable dog carrier bag designed around the complex everyday/everywhere life travelers, wanders and dog-lovers. It’s more than a dog carrier, it’s your day-to-day essential carry workhorse or workdog bag, and it does things other carriers bags can’t. Find out more about their plans to put this bag in production and help fund the cause. But hurry! There is a time limit to get involved and snag one at a great price.
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Ruffwear carries performance dog gear designed to enhance and inspire outdoor adventures for dogs and their human companions. Totally my kind of company that carries anything from dog hiking packs, harnesses, camping essentials and more! You can check out my reviews of some of their great gearincluding my favorite harness & life vest!
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And now it’s time for my November adventures…
I shared my secret to having lots of adventures with my family.
I shared all the fun I had carving pumpkins with my sister.
I got my sleep on again this month.
I shared how I’m documenting my sister’s growth each month.
I took my sister to one of my favorite stores.
I hit the trail and went off on a hike.
I got myself into some dirty business on the farm.
I set off on an adventure for the Thanksgiving Holiday.
I shared my cool new leash from HUND Denmark, and my giveaway with them is still going on!
Baby P and I shared what we are hoping ends up in Santa’s sleigh!
And that brings us to December! Time for warm blankets and snuggling up on the couch with mom and dad!
What was your favorite adventure of mine this month?
If you’re like me, then you struggle as what to get your human(s) that you love so dearly. So I decided to help you out some with my holiday gift guide for dog lovers! (you can thank me later).
*some of the products below contain affiliate links
1. Belly Scratch T-Shirt
2. Dog Bookend
3. Dog Wall Hanging
4. Rescued Wine Candle
5. Texts from Dog 2017 Calendar
6. SnowDog Kit
7. Doodling for Dog People
8. Friendship Collar & Bracelet
9. Dog Mug
10. Custom Pet Ornament
If you have any more great ideas for pet lovers, post them in the comments below!