Many people looking to add a pet to the family are open to the idea of getting one from a rescue group. It’s got a built-in feel good that people enjoy. And a satisfied customer is likely to refer friends and family in future. In these ways, rescue groups have got a good thing going. In fact, they would have to work hard in order to negate the positivity inherent in their work and turn it into disdain.
Unfortunately, there are too many rescue groups doing exactly that. They discourage people from adopting by employing restrictive screening protocols, shut poor people out of the opportunity to rescue by selling pets for large amounts of money and/or sell lost pets whose owners want them back because the rescue deems the owners unworthy. That’s a lot of effort to shoot oneself in the foot. And it’s widely accepted that unsatisfied customers tell many more people about their bad experiences than satisfied customers. Homeless pets continue to be homeless and so-called shelters continue to kill, citing the long debunked “not enough homes” reason for the killing.
When a PA family’s beagle accidentally escaped his home last week, the owners immediately began searching for him. The Kreksteins left their contact information with both the police and the local SPCA. Their dog Flash was microchipped and they were reassured that if any animal group scanned that chip, they would receive a phone call. And they did – from Main Line Animal Rescue, the place where they’d adopted Flash two years ago. But it wasn’t about getting their dog back:
The Kreksteins say the organization’s executive director, Bill Smith, then sent them an email letting them know that Flash would not be returned to their care because the family violated the adoption agreement. The message said the family failed to call the animal rescue and notify them the dog was missing and said they were not properly caring for him.
The Kreksteins are understandably outraged. They love Flash and consider him a member of the family. And they want their family member back home with them. Main Line Animal Rescue is refusing to reunite Flash with his family because the owners have been deemed unworthy due to the failure to contact Main Line to advise Flash was lost.
Rob Krekstein says the family technically broke the adoption contract, but that he doesn’t consider his dog “a contract.”
“I didn’t rent the dog. The dog lives in my home. It’s a member of my family,” Rob Krekstein said.
Smith said The Kreksteins know what they agreed to when they signed the contract.
Apparently what they agreed to was to make a homeless pet a part of their family, to love and cherish him, and to allow Main Line Animal Rescue to abruptly tear their family apart if the group ever determined the contract hadn’t been followed to the letter, regardless of circumstances. Now everyone knows. If you adopt from Main Line Animal Rescue, don’t get too attached, don’t fall in love with the pet and definitely don’t consider him a member of your family because one mistake and Main Line will smash that bond to bits. Tell all your friends.
(Thanks Clarice for the link.)