Archives for June 2009

BOGO Pets?

One of my readers wrote to tell me that in her area the local shelters offer a BOGO (Buy One Get One Free) offer for anyone adopting an animal.

This means that when you adopt a pet from the shelter that you can get another one without any additional fees.

Now you might feel that this is a good deal–which it is considering some of the adoption fees these days.

But, what kind of picture is being set up about the animals and our relationship with them?

Yes, animals are considered pets or family members by most of the people I know.

However, in some circles they are commodities –and the BOGO mindset reminds me simply of stores trying to move inventory–which is probably also true of shelters.

But the subliminal message?

Not that animals are valuable but that they are a commodity–and can be picked up during this bargain period.

Does that create value in the mind of the buyer?

I understand the marketing idea behind it but is it a good one?

What do you think about BOGO Pets?

Good Hearted or Just Animal Nazis?

Over the years I’ve listened to people complain about the adoption and rescue practices of various groups and today it is a hot topic.

During the time I worked as an adoption counselor I was mortified at just how difficult the shelter made it to adopt animals.

Suitable households would often be denied an animal because of one minor flaw in a long list of criterion and many, many rules.

This did not prevent animals from being brought back once they were adopted either–which I think was the goal but that doesn’t guarantee anything.

Over the last month two of my close friends have shared experiences with me.

The first works for a cat rescue group. She had three siblings that SHE wanted to go to the same home. In the end, that did not happen and the cats remain in her care.

Not to say that they don’t have it good–they have it better than most animals I know–but her expectations were unrealistic.

From the behavior end, I would never recommend that sibling animals be placed together (in most cases) for a variety of reasons.

And just how many people want to take on three new animals at once?

While many animals sit in cages or abnormal conditions waiting for homes–people are denied adoption rights because someone or some group has to “sanction” the adoption.

Personally, I think some screening is a good idea but would rather see an animal get into a home instead of sitting in a cage for six months as was the case with another pal’s new animal.

This person has been a cat owner for over fifty years. She has spent thousands of dollars on her senior cats–including periodontal work.

However when she went to adopt her newest cat–it was a circus.

First, the cat was in a small cage where he could barely stretch or move around and had been there for over six months.

Her visitations to this cat were no less than four AND she also had a few of her closest friends to go and check him out too.

Once that was done, two adoption agency people came over for home inspections.

But they were amazingly anal and stupid when it came to handling their new human client. I certainly would not want to recommend anyone adopt from that agency based on the behavior of the volunteers and staff–and what was said to my friend.

Ultimately, that cat is happily living in a home where he is loved and is adjusting to life outside of the cage.

He is happy and my friend is thrilled–but is it really necessary to make animal adoptions so difficult?

So, my questions to you are: how extreme do you think agencies and people adopting out animals should get? Do you see a need for change or are you happy with such adoption practics as they stand today?

Finally, I’d love to hear your experiences.