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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-18-2014, 11:59 AM Thread Starter
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A Perspective

As a rescuer you evolve in your ideas and how you handle adoptions.

I was surfing the web over Christmas when I was in North Carolina to see what was going on in the city. I started to read thru the reviews of shelters.

I started seeing reviews with a shelter that the people were angry and complaining not to adopt there because when they had to return a dog or cat because of unfortunate circumstances, the people at the shelter berated them for bringing the dog / cat back.

When I first started TNR and rescue I was dumb founded when someone would return a cat to us. How could they find it in their heart to give up their buddy?

Now after over 7 years of TNR and finding half the cats we trap are someones former companion animal, in very bad shape, because they are not equipped to survive outside on their own, Ive gotten a new perspective.

I just had two of the most mellow, affectionate lap kitties returned after 6 years of being with this family. They were their first cats and she was moving out of state. She now had 6 cats and said there was a limit where they had to rent and were returning my two former fosters.

I was a bit surprised she could do it. But I realize in this economy there are lots of circumstance many familys' are having to face that people cant fathom.

I now respect her for having the courage to return them and not throw them outside to meet a certain death. I was grateful to have them back and to have the opportunity to find them another good home.

They were healthy and happy and affectionate just like before they left my house. No health issues. All we had to do was get them up to date on shots and get noticed for a new forever home.

We do not charge to release a former cat of ours back to us as other shelters do. When I adopt out a cat now, I emphatically emphasize if this is not a good fit or their circumstances change, PLEASE return this cat to us and not dump them off at a kill shelter or outside. That our fosters have a piece of our hearts and we will gladly take them back. No condemnation.

We pay big vet bills to get companion cats back to health and sometimes it takes months of rehab to get them a clean bill of health so they can go to their new homes. This money cant be used for TNR so it drains our efforts to effectively TNR all ferals in the area.

Thank you to everyone who returns their cat to a NO KILL rescue or shelter when you have to make the decision to relinquish their companion.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-18-2014, 12:56 PM
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I agree, Merry.

While I am often absolutely appalled at the excuses why people want to return their cats, I am so happy that they follow the wording of the contract and bring them back to us. The alternatives of the kill-shelter, dumping/abandoning, even giving away are scary. I know when they come back they will be safe, fed, medically treated, and loved even if it's not in their own personal home.


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Simon and Penny, waiting patiently at the Bridge
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-18-2014, 01:33 PM
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People have to return animals for many reasons, and I always say I would NEVER do that, but it's hard to say what would happen under some circumstances. Recently, there was an elderly man (nearly 80 I believe) who had to give up his two 12 year old dogs that he'd adopted when they were 10 weeks old. He had a stroke and couldn't care for them anymore, and dogs were not allowed in the state-run nursing home he was admitted to. He had no family who could take them, and was heartbroken over it, but really had no choice but to turn them over to the shelter. His story got a lot of publicity on FB, and the family who adopted his 2 girls (together ) promised they would come visit him at the nursing home at least once a month. There are a lot of crappy people who return their puppies because they were too loud or got too big, or return their cats because they peed outside of the litter box and scratched their sofa, etc., but there are those who really have no choice. I'd be devastated if I were in the same situation. I'm just happy there are decent people out there who go to that much effort to keep families together.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-18-2014, 07:29 PM
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Emily, I'm so glad your story had a Happy Ending!
Fantastic, that the people took both dogs together. ..!

"A Cat must have three different names:
An everyday family name; A particular name;
And the name but the Cat Himself Knows, and will never confess." T.S. Eliot

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