Giving Up Your Pet...
Are you having problems with your pet? Litterbox? Food aggression? Territorial behavior? Spraying/Marking the house? Having a tough time integrating your pet into the house? Don't give up! Email your questions, problems or issues to this email address which goes directly to the Staff here at the shelter!
We will do some research, find a solution and email you back with suggestions on how to correct the problem/s. (Most questions can be answered within 24 hours unless staff is out on a rescue, sick or otherwise unable to check email.)
If your pet is showing aggressive behavior you should IMMEDIATELY contact a behaviorist and/or professional dog trainer. This service is a reference tool and the information and suggestions are coming from a variety of sources, trainers, behaviorists and professional animal organizations dedicated to helping you and your pet.
Don't give up your pet if he/she has
behavior problems! Click on this link for help in solving any of your problems.
PLEASE remember, if your giving up YOUR pet because of these behavior
problems...no one else is going to want to deal with them either. You made
a commitment for better or worse, please honor that commitment! Also remember
that only 1 dog in 10 has a home for life and 1 cat in 8. Guess what happens to
the rest of them???
The Animal Shelter Inc. is a private no-kill shelter which does NOT have a time limit on how long an animal can stay and DOES NOT have an age or breed restriction. The shelter will continue to house and care for such animals as long as they are NOT AGGRESSIVE, TERMINALLY ILL OR DESTRUCTIVE IN THE KENNEL.
Please consider that if you have a vicious, fear biting, territorial, aggressive animal that's not good with children, we will not be able to place this pet, as it is a liability. If you are planning to surrender your animal due to aggression problems remember YOU are ultimately liable if that pet bites or hurts anyone. Please do not expect ANY shelter or rescue organization to place a pet that is aggressive or has serious behavorial issues. Be honest with whomever you are trying to get to place your pet. Massachusetts has a VICIOUS DOG LAW stating that if YOUR dog has bitten and broke skin and YOU knowingly adopt, give away, place, surrender or transfer ownership of that dog...YOU are ultimately LIABLE for any damage that dog does to another person. This means you may be sued!!!
You must also understand - you will pay to bring your animal to our shelter. Many people seem to be under the misconception that things related to an animal shelter are free. The cost to maintain an animal shelter is incredible. The shelter must pay for food, vet bills, rent, insurance, medication, heat, electric, phone, website, advertising, staff, and hundreds of other things that all businesses have to pay for. (Our average monthly cost to run the shelter is $20,000.)
You should also realize that the charge to surrender an animal is trivial compared to the well being of your pet.
You should also consider spending the money it would cost you to surrender your pet, into obedience and training and then you might not have to give up your pet!
If you still need to surrender your pet, please call the shelter and we will quote you a surrender fee. After you bring the animal to the shelter we will evaluate it to determine the final price. Our evaluation depends greatly on your animals appearance and temperament (does it need to be groomed, do you have medical records showing updated shots, is the animal friendly and healthy?)
If the shelter deems your pet un-adoptable, you have the final option of returning for your pet and being reimbursed your surrender fee MINUS $75 for administrative fees and $15 a day for boarding. The shelter reserves the right to euthanize any animal that is aggressive, destructive, or unhealthy.
ALTERNATIVES TO GIVING UP YOUR PET
Moving? - Don't give up your pet...Far too many pet caregivers have felt forced to give up their pets because they thought pet-friendly housing wasn't available. It IS and here's how to find it!
Can we help you keep your pet? - Please visit this website o see the alternatives to surrendering your pet.
There are circumstances when a dog must leave its life-long home: when an owner becomes physically unable to care for a dog or the owner is terminally ill; when a dog has shown unprovoked aggression. These are "GOOD" reasons. Although the aggression factor may indicate the dog is UN-Adoptable.
"BAD" reasons are: the dog won't listen; we can't housetrain the dog; the dog chews; we're moving and can't have a dog anymore; no one takes care of the dog but me; the dog is alone too much; the dog growled/snapped at my child/me.
THE DOG WON'T LISTEN
WE CAN'T HOUSETRAIN THE DOG
Our shelter NOW sells dog crates. Plus we have all the literature and details on how to properly housebreak your canine!
THE DOG CHEWS ON EVERYTHING
shelter NOW sells crate. Plus we have all the literature and details on
how to properly keep your canine from chewing up your house! WE'RE MOVING AND CAN'T HAVE A
DOG NO ONE TAKES CARE OF THE DOG
AND HE ISN'T GETTING ENOUGH EXERCISE
THE DOG IS ALONE TOO MUCH THE DOG GROWLED/SNAPPED/BIT
THE DOG CHEWS ON EVERYTHING
shelter NOW sells crate. Plus we have all the literature and details on
how to properly keep your canine from chewing up your house!
WE'RE MOVING AND CAN'T HAVE A
NO ONE TAKES CARE OF THE DOG AND HE ISN'T GETTING ENOUGH EXERCISE
THE DOG IS ALONE TOO MUCH
THE DOG GROWLED/SNAPPED/BIT
This is a time to do some cold, honest and candid soul-searching, not a time to be optimistic or to "look on the bright side"; there likely isn't one. Don't wind up in the dog house - Give your dog the chance it deserved before you chose to take him home.
Jim Willis 2001
When I was a puppy, I entertained you with my antics and
made you laugh. You called me your child, and despite a number of chewed shoes
and a couple of murdered throw pillows, I became your best friend. Whenever I
was “bad,” you’d shake your finger at me and ask “How could you?” –
but then you’d relent, and roll me over for a bellyrub.
My housebreaking took a little longer than expected,
because you were terribly busy, but we worked on that together. I remember those
nights of nuzzling you in bed and listening to your confidences and secret
dreams, and I believed that life could not be any more perfect. We went for long
walks and runs in the park, car rides, stops for ice cream (I only got the cone
because “ice cream is bad for dogs,” you said), and I took long naps in the
sun waiting for you to come home at the end of the day.
Gradually, you began spending more time at work and on
your career, and more time searching for a human mate. I waited for you
patiently, comforted you through heartbreaks and disappointments, never chided
you about bad decisions, and romped with glee at your homecomings, and when you
fell in love.
She, now your wife, is not a “dog person” – still
I welcomed her into our home, tried to show her affection, and obeyed her. I was
happy because you were happy. Then the human babies came along and I shared your
excitement. I was fascinated by their pinkness, how they smelled, and I wanted
to mother them, too. Only she and you worried that I might hurt them, and I
spent most of my time banished to another room, or to a dog crate. Oh, how I
wanted to love them, but I became a “prisoner of love.”
As they began to grow, I became their friend. They clung
to my fur and pulled themselves up on wobbly legs, poked fingers in my eyes,
investigated my ears, and gave me kisses on my nose. I loved everything about
them and their touch – because your touch was now so infrequent – and I
would have defended them with my life if need be.
I would sneak into their beds and listen to their
worries and secret dreams, and together we waited for the sound of your car in
the driveway. There had been a time, when others asked you if you had a dog,
that you produced a photo of me from your wallet and told them stories about me.
These past few years, you just answered “yes” and changed the subject. I had
gone from being “your dog” to “just a dog,” and you resented every
expenditure on my behalf.
Now, you have a new career opportunity in another city, and you and they will be moving to an apartment that does not allow pets. You’ve made the right decision for your “family,” but there was a time when I was your only family.
I was excited about the car ride until we arrived at the
animal shelter. It smelled of dogs and cats, of fear, of hopelessness. You
filled out the paperwork and said “I know you will find a good home for
her.” They shrugged and gave you a pained look. They understand the realities
facing a middle-aged dog, even one with “papers.” You had to pry your
son’s fingers loose from my collar as he screamed “No, Daddy! Please
don’t let them take my dog!” And I worried for him, and what lessons you had
just taught him about friendship and loyalty, about love and responsibility, and
about respect for all life. You gave me a goodbye pat on the head, avoided my
eyes, and politely refused to take my collar and leash with you. You had a
deadline to meet and now I have one, too.
After you left, the two nice ladies said you probably
knew about your upcoming move months ago and made no attempt to find me another
good home. They shook their heads and asked “How could you?”
They are as attentive to us here in the shelter as their
busy schedules allow. They feed us, of course, but I lost my appetite days ago.
At first, whenever anyone passed my pen, I rushed to the front, hoping it was
you – that you had changed your mind – that this was all a bad dream...or I
hoped it would at least be someone who cared, anyone who might save me. When I
realized I could not compete with the frolicking for attention of happy puppies,
oblivious to their own fate, I retreated to a far corner and waited.
I heard her footsteps as she came for me at the end of
the day, and I padded along the aisle after her to a separate room. A blissfully
quiet room. She placed me on the table and rubbed my ears, and told me not to
worry. My heart pounded in anticipation of what was to come, but there was also
a sense of relief. The prisoner of love had run out of days. As is my nature, I
was more concerned about her. The burden which she bears weighs heavily on her,
and I know that, the same way I knew your every mood.
She gently placed a tourniquet around my foreleg as a
tear ran down her cheek. I licked her hand in the same way I used to comfort you
so many years ago. She expertly slid the hypodermic needle into my vein. As I
felt the sting and the cool liquid coursing through my body, I lay down
sleepily, looked into her kind eyes and murmured “How could you?”
Perhaps because she understood my dogspeak, she said
“I’m so sorry.” She hugged me, and hurriedly explained it was her
job to make sure I went to a better place, where I wouldn’t be ignored or
abused or abandoned, or have to fend for myself – a place of love and light so
very different from this earthly place. And with my last bit of energy, I tried
to convey to her with a thump of my tail that my “How could you?” was
not directed at her. It was you, My Beloved Master, I was thinking of. I will
think of you and wait for you forever.
May everyone in your life continue to show you so much
Animal Shelter Inc.
17 Laurelwood Road
Sterling, MA 01564
Copyright © 1998-2013 Animal Shelter, Inc.