Trying to Return the Favors
The Heroes for Your Dog
Rescues offer many benefits to the dogs and the people they help. Unfortunately, the lack of good homes means that they can't help them all, so while rescues can do much for the deserving that end up in shelters, very often they are sidetracked and unable to do much to stem the tide of the inflow except work with people who already know the importance of responsible pet ownership and spay/neuter.
Rescues typically receive their dogs from owner-surrenders and more commonly, "kill" shelters. They will often take dogs from shelters that do not screen or offer spay/neuter prior to placement in order to fill those gaps. Especially unscrupulous people are not above "adopting" purebreds from shelters and then producing puppies from them for income. These puppies, while unregisterable (except through fraud), are purebred. Some dogs will be "rescued" at their last moments, when no other options have appeared to prevent them from being euthanized. The last scenario is most common.
Humane Society of the United States estimates show that more 3 to 4 million dogs and cats are euthanized by shelters in the United States every year, simply because nobody wants them. That's about one dog or cat every nine seconds. So you can see that it's not too difficult to be one of those people that can proudly say you saved the life of your dog, to the wonder of everyone who meets your dog.
Typically a rescue places their dogs in foster homes. These homes, in addition to providing basic care for the dog, will facilitate vet care and attempt to rehabilitate as needed. Dogs that are stressed, destructive and fearful will be worked with and given basic skills like housetraining and cratetraining. Additionally the foster home will endeavor to speculate on the best home for the dog and in assessing the dog's temperament and other factors (like how big a puppy might become and what breeds might be its ancestry). This creates a unique profile for the prospective family that no other source of a new companion can. Because of the foster home, you can find out how your dog is with children, cats, other animals, people, new situations and more before you even meet it!
All rescues, to be responsible must accomplish two things, they must screen the home that their fosters are ultimately adopted to and they must, unfailingly, have every dog spayed/neutered. To do otherwise is to compromise the very problem they are trying to address.
Thus, when working with a rescue be prepared for any of a variety of screening methods, homechecks, interviews, vet and personal references, even short visits (like overnight stays), mandated orientations or classes and more. Rescues will guarantee to accept a dog back (at least good ones would!) so they will work diligently to the goal of making every placement successful.
Purebred vary little from rescues that are not breed specific. All will work to help you find the best possible placement for your home and life. Adoption fees can vary greatly as will ongoing support and services. It is advisable to ask about the adoption procedure early in your inquiry so that you are familiar with the process.
Do you have any information that you think should be added? Or something that you feel is inaccurate? Please contact DigitalDog@DigitalDog.com