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PETA, HSUS, and SPCA promote shelter adoptions while damning breeders but they DO NOT support shelters. You do, with your donations and/or tax dollars.  Go to your local shelter, check out their fees, policies, and staff.  If reassured, please give generously!





by Delilah Penn - December 2009


Do dogs know the "shelter" will NOT protect them from death?  It can literally be an eternity for a lost pet that finds himself "rescued" and taken to an animal shelter.


Family and friends are in and out of the house and stressed pets can dart through an open door faster than Santa’s elves can deliver gifts. If your dog or cat is suddenly “not there” and a search of the house, including basement, garage, and the neighborhood doesn't locate the pet, drop everything and get to the local animal shelter! 


Don't waste valuable time search the neighborhood before going to the shelter.  And don't just call because whoever you talk to may not time time to look and if they do, they still may not recognize the dog by your emotional description.


There are worse things than being lost!

Fox News reported that one family’s relief when their dog turned up at an animal shelter turned into a nightmare when he was mistakenly euthanized. The dog did not have any tags or identification. When they went to pick him up, the shelter told them they had to come back with documentation and photographs to prove the dog was theirs.

When they returned the following day, it was too late. The dog had already been euthanized. Fox News said the shelter apologized, saying a staff member should have placed a special hold on the dog as soon as someone came to claim him. The shelter is going over procedures to ensure such a situation doesn’t happen again.

If your pet is lost, don’t delay calling the dog pound or animal shelter

Be sure you communicate well with the staff. Above all, do not take for granted that your phone description will be correctly interpreted by workers. The person answering the phone has probably never seen a Brittany Spaniel. He or she may visualize a Cocker Spaniel and, knowing they don’t have a dog like that, tell you your pet is not there. Your red and white, taller, leaner, shorter coated pet could be curled in the corner, desperately missing you but overlooked as a mutt. Your oversize, long coated black and white Chihuahua, papers or not, may be seen by a shelter employee as a mixed-breed. You will be told there’s been no impounded Chihuahua. Ask if they have taken in any dog, any size, color etc in the last hour or two?  Ask when the dog-catcher is due in with recently "rescued" dogs.  Then be there!

Mandatory Spay and Neuter may be required before release!

The surgery may be done before you can claim your pet, regardless of its age and irrespective of your wishes. Neutering a puppy too much in advance of sexual maturity can impede full development of both physical and immune system function. The debate over whether spay and neuter actually reduces the claimed “overpopulation problem” is ongoing but preventing a pet from straying is not open to debate.

Microchipping May Aid In Rescue

Side effects and expense is minimal in comparison to the risk of your pet not being identified and returned to you if he gets lost again. There is science on microchipping which can give owners pause for thought. A cancerous lesion may develop at the inject site and there’s a risk of chip migration, so only you can decide which risk is more likely but then no one ever expects their pet to stray or get lost.  Better to be fenced and safe.

Prevention is best. If your dog or cat is fearful of strangers, children, or loud noises, put your pet in crate in the bedroom and check on him frequently. A little forethought and common sense will keep your pets safe for the Holidays.


Reprint Courtesy of National Pet Press V1-5



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