Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Pets as Gifts ... After the Dust Settles

You will find time and time again that rescues and SPCA's are always publishing the same message about not giving pets out as gifts. Sometimes you even find blog entries like this one about it (or this one, or this one). This message is published time and time again but the unfortunate reality is that the people who give pets as presents aren't necessarily the ones reading it. I have heard of shelters and rescues that make people wait until after Christmas to bring their new pet home however this sometimes deters potential adopters.

The time has come for the Christmas puppies/kittens to start hitting the notice boards, Craigslist, Kijiji, shelter listings and advertisements. Good examples are here, and here, and here. All 9 week old puppies that were given for Christmas to people who can't keep them. If you take a wander into your local shelter you will see all the new arrivals; a fair number will be unwanted Christmas puppies (and kittens). There will also be a number of adoption returns; those people who thought it a good idea to adopt from the shelter to give a pet as a present, only to find out the recipient couldn't (or wouldn't) keep it.

This is a rough time of year for people actively involved in rescue because of the high amount of surrenders coming in that are so very young. It takes a toll.

For those of you involved with your local rescue / shelter ... keep your chin up. Keep fighting the good fight. It's hard but it's worth it.

For those of you not involved with your local rescue / shelter, I encourage you to consider spending a few hours volunteering. Even 2 hours per month is an enormous help.

For those of you looking for a new pet, go check out your local shelter / rescue! In the next 6 weeks they will be receiving puppies and kittens at an alarming rate.


SANDY said...

This is great information for people I've never understood why anyone would give a pet as a gift. Any time of the year. It's very presumptive of the person giving the gift that the person at the other end has the financial, and physical abilities to care for the pet. It's really foolish. I would not be happy if someone gifted me an animal and I would give the animal right back to them. It's a shame more people don't do that. After all folks, if you think about it; people who want a pet have them. People who don't have a pet, usually don't for a reason. Maybe the reason is physical...they can't take a dog for a walk, they're allergic, they don't have the extra money for food, shots etc. Maybe it's not allowed where the live. Many reasons can be a factor. It's not kind to the animal or the person to give a pet as a gift.

Nice post, good information. Keep up the good work.

Catherine said...

Keep up the good work and informing the people. Your good work is not going unnoticed. Blessings to you, Catherine

Unknown said...

Silverwalk participated in Iams and Petfinder's "Foster a Lonely Dog for the Holidays" campaign. I had two inquiries - both excellent; the first never got her dog as she was adopted! and the second is adopting her dog - a shy Beagle named Little Lenny who is missing an eye but is cute and a very good dog. He is the same small size as her other rescue Beagle :). However, I firmly agree in not adopting for a present; I would use a gift certificate....I had my temp fosters complete a regular adoption app and followed up on their references, etc.

Kasha said...

Could I stomach volunteering though? Someone has to do it. I would end up bringing some home.
kasha and africa

Jen said...

It's really a shame that people so rarely think these things through. I know it's always a problem when Hollywood releases a new movie featuring a specific breed of dog, there is always a surge in purchases and adoptions of that breed (followed by the inevitable dumping at area shelters). And how about those cute little pot-bellied pigs? Any pet is an extremely personalized choice and should never be given without an in-depth discussion with the potential owner. Excellent topic!

Marg said...

This can never be talked about too much. Good for you for bringing it up. It is a terrible idea to give a pet as a present.