Although the writer below had the story published, we couldn’t stand it 100% so made a few minor changes with notations………. After all, it was written by a person who was and likely still is an AR, but just slightly less AR than before, as one can see at the end of the story, the writer feels guilty that she does not really want to take care of another sick animal again– because she had to make an EXCUSE for BUYING a somewhat normal dog and called it “rehomed.”
HEY– grow some balls— there is no excuse NEEDED!!! Los Angeles or no Los Angeles!!! …AND BIG HINT: anytime you find a pug, yorkie or other highly desired smaller breed in a SHELTER—– it is there for a REASON. If it is at a rescue, it could be the same, but slightly less chance of doom. Duh.
And if you’re going to pay $300-$900 for damaged goods, why even buy it? In fact, they should PAY people to TAKE them! Foster kids (humans, not animals) that never get homes– the foster parents are PAID to take them. They don’t take them for free.
“Why buy while those in shelters die?”
It’s a pretty common mantra for pet rescue groups, one I’d taken to heart. Even as a kid, my family only adopted from shelters. As an adult, I got my dogs from rescue organizations, secretly judging friends who bought theirs from breeders. [PD note: “Secretly” judging friends indicates immediately–that one has fallen prey to AR propaganda! Many shelter dogs are not ill. Purposely selecting a dog or cat,etc. that one knows is ill, is a personal choice but we usually do not recommend it. There are so many dogs that are not ill which can be bought. ]
For a long time, it was a point of pride for me. When I brought home Mookie in 2000, everyone told me how lucky I was to find such a sweet animal. The 18-pound Boston terrier mix adored every person he met. He chased frogs in my condo complex and loved to play with stuffed animals. He was more loyal and loving — not to mention happier to see me — than any of my dates.
When my job kept me in the office for long hours, I decided to get Mookie a buddy, Yogi. I loved him deeply. But just six months after adoption, Yogi was diagnosed with cancer. I didn’t balk at the expense and time it took to drag him to oncology appointments to treat his lymphoma. The chemo was supposed to buy me an extra year with him. Considering a dog’s average lifespan, that could mean 10 percent of his life.
And Yogi defied the odds. He hung on for nearly three years before passing away.
I didn’t handle his death well. Just three weeks later, I replaced him with a pug named Clarence.
Poor, simple-minded Clarence. He frequently planted himself halfway through the doggie door, unable to decide between sunbathing on the patio and sleeping under the air conditioning vent. Every time I came home, he cried as if I were a soldier returning from war.
Clarence looked like Yogi, but the only thing they had in common was a penchant for serious health issues. I kept telling myself that at least Clarence didn’t have cancer. But his problems were almost worse. His epilepsy was difficult to control, and the phenobarbital he took to subdue his seizures caused weight gain, liver deterioration and anxiety. I got tired of veterinary specialists focusing on the fact that he was fat rather than helping me figure out how to get the dog to sleep at night.
Five years later, his seizures and pancreatitis got the best of him. Euthanizing him was a relief.
Only Mookie remained. He had been reliably healthy for more than a decade. But I spent his last two years frequently rushing him to the veterinarian, each episode of senility and related problems slowly built up to the big goodbye. Last November, he suffered six seizures in one hour, prompting me to scour the Internet until I found a doctor who provided in-home euthanasia.
After my dogs died, updates from Southern California canine rescue groups continued to filter through my Facebook feed, full of sad stories of physically and emotionally affected animals.
I missed my dogs, and I wanted another one, with similarly clownish looks who attracted lots of attention when I walked him in my neighborhood. But every time I considered it, memories of Mookie convulsing, his clouded eyes staring listlessly at nothing, jerked me back to my senses.
Rescue and shelter dogs are a crapshoot. Although it’s hard to track down reliable statistics, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals estimates that about 3.9 million dogs go to shelters each year and 1.2 million are euthanized. Generally, these groups know only how an animal came into their possession. Behavior issues, illnesses or a high maintenance cost usually only rear their heads after adoption. [PD: Never believe stats from ASPCA and HSUS or any other “rescue” which wants donations up the yang, and sells sick, disabled, missing limbs, missing parts, has deadly diseases; these groups are all AR groups focused on getting the worse animals and peddling them like they (the “rescues”) are saviors from England, kinda like Ingrid, but they peddle them as wares, used goods mind you — instead of snuffing them out. And THEN they blame everyone who wants a normal pet and eliminate commercial kennel sales, and commercial sale pet stores?! That is exactly what they do. Exactly.]
That’s why rescuers put potential pet
parents adopters [PD yeah we changed it because it’s asinine to call people parents of animals]…. through such a detailed application process. They really want to match the animal with someone who is committed to sticking with them, no matter what. Still, according to the National Council on Pet Population Study and Policy, “more than 20 percent of people who leave dogs in shelters adopted them from a shelter.” [PD: We believe it is much higher than 20 or even 30%; recent study shows that potentially over 50% of shelter animals are returned within 6 months…]
As a lifelong dog lover, I know how to care for sick and struggling animals better than most. I accepted my dogs as they were, enjoying their sweetness and suffering through their problems. But just because I was willing to do that doesn’t mean it’s my life’s work to heal every sick, helpless animal.
So six months after Mookie died, I started researching, sending e-mails and making calls to breeders. Breeders seemed safer — they’ve had the animal since birth and know his or her temperament and medical history. They also know an animal’s bloodlines and family history. There’s no such thing as a crystal ball, but a reputable breeders can provide a lot more information.
Through my search, I found a 2-year-old French bulldog that needed to be re-homed because she didn’t have the right colors for the show ring. Since my mother owned and bred racehorses, I took it as a good sign that the canine in question was named Pony.
When I went to the breeder’s house to meet her, she was as irresistible as her pictures promised. I knew everything about her life so far, from when and where she was whelped to her paw-licking habit. She loves to sit on my patio and bark at squirrels. As I walked her through my complex the other day, neighbors stopped to pet her.”Is she a rescue?” one asked. My cheeks reddened.
In this day and age, admitting you adopted (or, more correctly, purchased) a pedigree dog with a known history, rather than a shelter dog in need, is akin to denying climate change, smoking or publicly declaring that you miss having plastic grocery bags in Los Angeles.
[PD: Very c-l-e-a-r-l-y………this gal needs to LEARN how to think clearly and quit being a patsy for what all the idiots “think” about her– who the hell CARES what they think?! All we can say is– weak, weak, weak, a 1,000 times………very sad. No brains. ]
I looked at my neighbor and said, “Well, actually, it’s more a re-homing situation.” My neighbor looked at me quizzically.
I know now that I don’t have to defend this choice to her, or anyone else. Adopting a shelter dog is a lot of work, and it’s a gamble, especially for those who aren’t responsible enough or don’t have the time and resources (emotional and financial) to devote to the animal. Rather than take that risk, I took on a dog I know I can give a good home to. And for me (and Pony), that’s good deed enough.
PD: HEY lady– we got news for you. STOP living in your Los Angeles bubble life and get with the program–realize you have been 100% bamboozled into the crap the ARs have spun for years, you have been a victim of propaganda, and you are very very weak mentally………..but at least you had the guts to admit you were weak, and finally got the guts to buy a decent dog. So one point for you.
Auerbach is a writer living in Los Angeles. She has written for Salon, the Los Angeles Times, and the Los Angeles Daily News.
People are made to feel guilty to want to BUY any animal at all. People are castigated if they want to breed pets. People are demeaned and criticized if they want to SELL animals. This is akin to saying that if you want to have kids, you are a self righteous asshole because you NEED to go and adopt a 3rd world waif who has problems, not have your own kid. If ARs want to put animals up higher than people, then they can go and sterilize all of themselves so that they don’t have any kids to brainwash. Leave the rest of us alone because we don’t need AR brainwashing. Our brains are just fine. AR brains are afflicted with the very same crappola that they pander to the masses that buy into their cult brainwashing.