Friday, October 15, 2010

Featured Rescue - Fofee the Australian Shepherd mix

I went looking around to find a Red Merle Aussie to feature as today's rescue (spurred by Sweep's story) but when I ran across Fofee, I decided to feature him instead and turn this into a discussion ... I want your opinion.



I'm sure you're saying to yourself "Why would she post an 8 week old puppy? It's easy for them to get adopted" and you're right. However, I wanted to use this as an opportunity to look at different adoption processes and fees.



Fofee is in the care of the Mississauga Humane Society. Their adoption fee for an 8 week old puppy is a whopping $450! Some people might see that and turn and walk away. HOWEVER ... what we have to look at is what is included in this fee? The ad says: which covers 3 boosters, deworming, microchipping and neuter/spay when the puppy is five months old. If you went to an average priced veterinarian, the costs would easily be $600. Keeping that in mind, $450 for an adoption fee doesn't sound too far fetched.



I scrolled through the web page and found that almost each and every dog had a different adoption fee. Some were as low as $128; some $158; some $198; some $200; some $250; some $300; some $350; some $480!! Holy jumpin'! Talk about all over the board. The only one that seems to include future vet bills is the Aussie puppy. I thought it might have something to do with the age / breed of the animal but after scrolling through, it doesn't seem to be the case. Perhaps it has something to do with the amount of money / time they have put into the dog?? It's hard to say because most of these dogs are in foster homes.



What do you think? Do you think it's right for a shelter to change the adoption fees for each dog?? If not, why? If so, what would the criteria be??

9 comments:

GoLightly said...

dear dog, look at them all:(

Good luck to them all.

No opinions about the differing fees, they MIGHT have something to do with how much care the animal needed, when it was surrendered, but that's just a guess..

Roberta @ Silverwalk said...

I keep fees about the same in my sanctuary as does my partner sanctuary. However, another colleague changes her fees to cover vetting and demand; she was aghast at our not asking a higher fee for a Pomeranian. I have, in the past, tried a range of fees based on age, vet cost and other costs (transport, illness, HW tx, etc.). This did not seem to put off any adopters as I made the fee clear in the listing. I had trouble remembering them, though. It is still a quiet debate with us as the fees we ask in no way come close to what we spend; and my sanctuary is funded by my salary....

Pup Fan said...

Hmmm... I'd never considered this before. Definitely interested to hear what people think!

DogsDeserveFreedom said...

It makes sense if they are higher for costs sake, but doesn't it come out in the wash?

If you were going into a shelter to adopt a dog and found out that certain dogs were more expensive ... would that put you off?

GoLightly said...

Does it have to do with the breed's popularity, do you think?
More expensive to buy, therefore more to adopt?

It would put me off, that's now how it was done when I was looking for red dog, and black dogs, for that matter.
The trouble with the "wash" is, it can skew really quick, with one (or several)super sick critters...

NooksnCorners said...

Even if the adoption company has deep pockets, and is run as a charity, somehow funding is still required, which in this case should be the one who send the animal for adoption. Of course the company can consider the new owner to cover part of the fees for the ex-owner.

DogsDeserveFreedom said...

You might be right ... it could be popularity ... or what about adoptability?

Yes, it can skew quickly if you get a bunch of sickies ... but it can skew either way ... if you have a bunch of already vetted surrenders or perfectly healthy puppies/kittens, the "wash" may come in higher than the expenses for that month.

DogsDeserveFreedom said...

Also, if the numbers change based on breed or adoptability ... what makes that organization any better than pet stores or breeders? (just asking to be the d's advocate!)

mytwh said...

The rescue group I'm involved in has what I consider to be high adoption fees (in some cases). It's not a shelter, it's a breed specific rescue who primarily gets it's dogs from Texas or Missouri (from local people/groups who save from high kill shelters) and then transport them to the Northeast US, where the animals have a better chance of being adopted. All our dogs are in foster homes, which I think is an advantage to a potential adopter for a variety of reasons (but that's another topic all together).

The rescue charges A LOT for puppies (I've seen up to $700 adoption fee for a pure bred Boston Terrier puppy)BUT, the puppy does have all shots, spayed/nuetered, wormed, heartworm, flea/tick prevention, etc, so in theory said puppy (or any dog adopted from the group for that matter) shouldn't have to go to the vets for at least a year (there are of course always exceptions, but they shouldn't have to go for routine medical care for at least a year-we would never discourage someone from a new dog wellness check though). The adoption fee also covers the transport fee to the Northeast - usually $150 or so. The fees are then on a sliding scale based on age and breed. 1-3 year old are about $500, 3-4, $400, etc.

Anyway, the reason behind the higher adoption fees is that we don't turn any dog away, no matter what (cancer, car crash injuries, heartworm-which most of them have btw, etc) and the higher fees of younger healthy dogs go to make up for the dogs that need a lot of medical care and will only bring a $100 or $50 adoption fee due to age and health reasons.

I personally fostered a dog who needed about $1500 in medical care before he could be adopted, and we only adopted him out for $400-the difference needs to come from somewhere...

BTW-these aren't necessarily the beliefs I suscribe to, just what this particular group does. Sorry for the long post.