Shelter adoption policies

Erica made an interesting point in her comment, seen at the bottom of my previous post. She pointed out that breed rescue groups often have strict adoption guidelines, they know the characteristics of their dogs, and they control who gets those dogs.

Our little shelter doesn’t do a great job of screening adopters. In fact, sometimes they don’t screen adopters at all, nor do they always check references. And there are so many types of adoptions and so many fee levels, it’s nearly impossible for matchmakers to inform potential adopters as to what they would owe for a dog or cat.

1. If it’s a puppy or kitten, you’re permitted to pay for it and take it immediately without any guarantee it will be neutered.

2. If it’s an adult dog and they know you, you may adopt without any guarantee it will be neutered, though you get a discount certificate for the surgery.

3. If it’s an adult dog and they don’t know you, they sometimes require that the dog go to your vet for surgery, and that you pick them up at your vet’s office and pay all costs.

4. If it’s an adult dog and you live out of state, you may adopt by making any donation to the shelter. No set fee, just a donation.

When I hear these various fee explanations my mind is boggled. And the fact that they do no checking of references ensures that some unknown percentage of shelter dogs probably end up in bad or horrible situations, whether stuck out in ayard (hopefully with a dog house), running loose, or in a puppymill.

I’m not sure if this situation exists because of laziness or poor management or poor policy. Perhaps it’s like the “feed all dogs once a day regardless of their age, and feed all dogs 9 cups of food regardless of their size” policies — old timey.

Here at Country Dream we’re having a private lesson sale. And there’s $65 in our beautification fund already! Certainly not enough for a truckload of gravel but I’m going to get started with my order of evergreens and ground cover plants. Ooooh, so exciting!

Bud’s telling me my 2-Minute Dog Trainer Sport Foundation packet will be on the website any minute. He’s been wrapped up in a project selling comic books, but those go into tomorrow’s mail so hopefully my project is at the top of the list.

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