Why do they say “Adopt, don’t shop” then make it nearly impossible to adopt?

I have an unpopular opinion, which I guess is obvious if you looked at my blog title.

As you know, I am quite a fan of the animals. At one point, I had two dogs and three cats. I’ve also had one dog and four cats. I spend the majority of my cash, time and cleaning efforts on my pets. I also volunteer for two shelters. There was a month, there, that with my shelter kittens, I had 12 cats in my house.

All of my pets have been mutts.

Wait. That’s not true. In 1985, when I was 20, I worked in the mall selling shoes, and on my breaks, I’d wander into the pet store in the mall, not knowing it was allegedly evil. There were Persian kittens in that mall pet store, and sometimes I’d ask if I could hold one. Finally, I couldn’t stand it anymore, and spent 100 times my hourly salary to purchase one of those Persian kittens.

He was one of the best cats I ever had. Mellow, sweet, lovely. I had him for years. Moved him to Seattle when I lived there. He slept on my head every night.

So, OK, other than Confetti, my beloved Persian I bought at the mall in 1985 before I knew it was bad, I’ve had mutts I either got from the shelter or that I found on the side of the road or what have you. And this I guess places me squarely in the “adopt, don’t shop” group. I’ve said it for years. I’ve judged people who “bought” their pets.

As if adopting doesn’t cost a pretty penny.

I touted the line, when people purchased pets, that 10,000 dogs and cats are put to sleep every day. That number isn’t actually true, now that I’ve looked it up. It’s about 4,110 a day, which is still far too many. Shelters are overcrowded and traumatic for the animals. I’ve been in them often enough to know. The last thing I want is any unwanted animals. I seethe when people are “moving, and we can’t take [cat/dog] with us.” There’s another pet going to the shelter.

So, for a long, long time, I’ve said, “adopt, don’t shop.” It’s been my mantra.

But it’s starting to piss me off.

Have you tried adopting a pet lately? Because good luck.

As soon as an animal is listed at the shelter, it’s almost immediately got an “adoption pending” notification. And shelters charge up to $250 to adopt. I know from my volunteer work that shelters are absolutely doing their best, but often you bring home a shelter pet with fleas or an upper respiratory infection. You just can’t avoid those when so many animals are in close quarters.

If you go to other pet “rescue” sites (that phrase drives me berserk. You aren’t pulling the animal out of a burning building), there’s sometimes a fee just to apply. And I promise you, it’s no guarantee you’ll get the animal. The fee can be $30, sometimes $50. Just to apply. Sometimes it takes weeks to hear back. Sometimes you hear nothing.

By the way, the average college application fee is $50.

Then, you have to fill out a multiple-page form, listing your vet’s name and number, whether you have a fence, if you believe in declawing or letting your cat out in your yard. Sometimes you have to provide references. References. Like you’re applying for a job. And they will call these references.

Then? If they don’t agree with your stance on any of the above? If your last pet died years ago so you don’t have a vet right now, if you live miles from anyone and let your cat out, if you don’t have a fence but are retired and have no issue letting your dog out 10 times day. If they don’t like any of that? You’re rejected.

Then you have to pay another fee, exhaust your “references” with yet another call, and start all over again.

I’ve had “rescues” tell me they won’t let me adopt because I live too far away for them to make home visits.

I’ve had them tell me I can’t adopt a cat unless I take its friend.

I’ve been given mileage restrictions, as in, “We only let people who live 30 miles from us adopt a pet.”

I’ve been told, “You can only adopt this pet if it’s an only pet.”

In sum, it’s gotten absurd.

If you really want us to adopt and not shop, then make it possible for people to adopt.

I can honestly say my cats are happy and well-adjusted. They get all their shots, monthly flea and heartworm treatment, and at the moment, high-dollar prescription food that was originally meant for one cat with IBD, but they all loved it, the vet gave the OK, so they all get it. Feeding these cats costs me hundreds of dollars a month.

And yet? I would be turned down by these adopt don’t shop organizations because I let them into my fenced yard. I have no neighbors behind me, and I live on a dead-end street. My cats chase each other through the grass, sleep under the camellia bush, and climb the small pear tree. My cats are happy. Any cat would be lucky to live here. But they can’t unless I lie on the application. Or? If I just shop.

If people keep hitting these dead ends when they try to do the “right” thing and adopt, they will inevitably buy a cat on Craigslist, or go to the vilified breeder. If you leave them no choice, if you make it nearly impossible to adopt, then they’ll say screw it and shop.

And that’s my unpopular opinion for today.

68 thoughts on “Why do they say “Adopt, don’t shop” then make it nearly impossible to adopt?

  1. You just ripped the words right out of my mouth. I’m sorry, but I’m not ashamed to shop if I can’t find a reasonable shelter. You see their posts with “such and such has been here 99 months because no one loves him” and you’re like “I’ll take him!” And they say “well. Only if you’re a single pet, no kids, fenced yard, blood type A positive home owner with immaculate credit and can provide DNA and 70 million references before we move into your home for a week to observe you.”

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  2. I applied for a rescue dog but had just recently moved. I lived in an all utilities included rental. It was a lively house on a fenced acre a land. The dog I applied for was a house dog who would be accompanying me to work. I was turned down because 8 could not supply a utility bill and because my yard was too big.
    I was so disappointed as this little dog was so sweet. About a week after I was turned down a little poodle mix turned up on my porch. She was in bad shape but once cleaned up and some meds she became a great companion. About six months after Sabrina showed up, the rescue that had turned me down called and asked if I would be interested in fostering a dog.

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  3. I was more stringently vetted to adopt all of my dogs than to give birth to my children. Neither the OB/GYN or pediatrician inquired about my ability to financially provide for my children, whether I would be at home all day with them, or if the home had a fenced yard in which for them to play under 100% supervision at all times after eating their organic, freshly prepared food. The rescue organizations needs to calm down a bit and realize that there is no such thing as a “perfect” pet parent.

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  4. This whole topic bloody RILES me. Especially pets facing termination – a “suboptimal” home is better than being put to sleep when healthy. Especially with cats – they’d so prefer to be alone in a house with owners who work than stuck in a cattery.

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  5. I think what I’m about to post isn’t going to be very popular either. While I completely agree that some rescues have gotten way outta hand there is also another side of the story. We have fostered and adopted dogs for the last 21 years. (Jesus I’m getting old) Rescue’s unfortunately see the worst of the worst. We get in dogs that have been abused, over breed, negected, etc. It is super hard not to become jaded and think all people suck. (I think all people suck but for other additional reasons) Quite frankly I’m surprised that the shelters you all have mentioned are that difficult and so incredibly restricted. There is a horrible over crowding and over population of animals that need good loving homes, it makes no sense why they are turning people away and then euthanizing the animal later becuase of over crowding. The rescues we work with do conduct home visits and reference checks all because there are some horrible crazy ass people out there who will lie to get a dog and then do horrible things to it. I am NOT saying that anyone in this group would ever do anything like that. We allow adoptions from all over the country. We find someone in the area who we trust to conduct the home visits. It usually ends up being a friend of a friend. The only stipulation we put on a long distance adoption is that the person(s) come here to get the dog. I will admit that some rescues and even the ones we work with do have some crazy requirements. As a foster parent I am the one that gives all the details about the dogs, like dislikes, needs, etc. Some dogs can’t be alone all day and that makes me sad. We both work 9 hrs a day but we have someone who comes at noon to let the dogs out so in reality we might be eligible to adopt a dog from some rescue groups. We are crazy excellent dog people. One of my last cockers had her own personal dermatologist and was the reason we didn’t take any nice trips because Lucy’s serum was ridiculously expensive. I know how we treat our dogs. I’d like to be one of our dogs but yet we could still possibly be turned away and that’s just freaking nuts. I say all of this to say, find a rescue you can work with and who will work with you. It’s not always an Adopt Don’t Shop situation just find a reputable breeder who you trust. And my last point is I do say rescue. I know where our dogs come from and it is a true rescue situation. Ours mainly come from puppy mills as a worn out mama dog or stud dog. It’s horrifying to think about what they have gone through. We attend auctions (secretly) to buy the dogs to get them out of the mill. We are saving their lives or at least saving them from a horrible death. Obviously I’m very passionate about this topic. Please know that I hear what you are saying. Things do get out of hand and that’s tragic, for everyone’s sake. Imma gonna be band for this crazy long response.

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  6. I too agree with your opinion and wish every shelter would read it. I was turned down once when wanting to adopt a cat because I worked outside the home 8+ hours a day. I am blessed now to have a pair of siblings that I adopted 4 months before the pandemic hit. I don’t know how sane I would be now if they weren’t in my life.

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  7. Agree completely. So many bad stories about rescue groups. I’ve had rescue cats for years but eventually wanted a dog. Not possible without a dog history and a fenced in yard. Also have bad allergies myself and in my family. I bought a dog from a breeder, not a puppy mill. Have zero regrets as he is the very best pup ever and he is loved beyond belief.

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  8. When I got remarried, I moved myself and two cats across the state line from WV to Virginia. My husband wanted to adopt us a dog from the local animal rescue. He filled out the application with our names, my newly married new name. The director called my cats’ vets but they had no record of cats under my married name. The director posted on her FB rescue account a rant about people from WV not taking care of their cats. We were declined a dog adoption. When we realized her rant was probably about me and my cats, and called very nicely to correct it, we were told it was too much trouble to call back to get the records with my old name. We don’t support the local rescue now.

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  9. Totally agree. We had two cat brothers we got from a rescue as kittens, one of the brothers died in his sleep, the other cat was very sad and needed a friend. We went to get another cat for him. We found the perfect cat at a kill shelter that then refused to let us adopt bc my youngest was under five years old and the cat was 11 months. They had an arbitrary rule about no homes with kids under five having kittens. I remember my husband standing in the shelter saying “you would rather kill the cat than let a family who loves cats adopt him”. Makes no sense!

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  10. Straight up front I’ll say I don’t know from cats. Never had one, never will, so my question is honest: why would a shelter/rescue/WHATEV care one bit of a cat went outside? I mean, people go outside. Animals go outside. Most animals live their entire lives outside, FtLoG.

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      1. Thank you for answering. Those sound like rather flimsy excuses. Given how many cats are just roaming about, it can’t be all that dangerous, or the world would be out of cats! Holy cats! Bahhh!

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    1. You’re so right, my teen daughters volunteer at the shelter, and they fell in love with a mixed breed that has been there for nearly a year. He has anxiety and will not go outside alone or after dark and hates to be in a room alone. We are perfect for him because someone is always home, he would literally never be alone. The fees are $300 and a requirement to take him to the vet immediately, which is way out of my budget. And they ask for a fenced yard for a dog that will never be out alone. Ridiculous

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  11. I know what you mean.
    I had two rescue goldens (yes, using that word) over the span of 20 years, healthy, happy, wonderful lives. That was while I was married, and had some money, so we had an actual house and yard. Fast-forward to now, having lost my last golden in October, now divorced, no house, no yard, none of the golden rescues will let me adopt.

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  12. COME TO NEW MEXICO FOR PET ADOPTION!

    I have heard about these experiences but I have been incredibly lucky here in Albuquerque. I adopted my 2 cats from the same rescue organization and filled out a 1 page form. The whole process was fast and easy (I think it was $125 per cat although that included the spay, shots, microchip).
    Two months ago, I put my dog down and in my attempt to lessen the emotional pain of losing him I started looking on the internet at cats and dogs. I HAD NO INTENTION TO ADOPT, it just seemed to help with grieving. OF COURSE I fell in love with a cat on our city animal shelter website. I WENT TO THE SHELTER ONLY TO SEE HER because she was so cute. Well…I adopted her. I had to show my driver’s license and fill out a half page form and IT WAS FREE (the $25 fee was waived because of COVID).
    Unfortunately, I am having a hard time with her adjustment to my other cats…..lots of growling, hiding and hissing….but she is a doll and we love her (shelter name Olive, changed to Cinnamon).

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  13. We finally bit the bullet and got a dog this past year. I have always loved animals, but my husband’s allergies kept us from adopting. I really thought I was doing the right thing by searching on KSL (kind of our local craigslist) for a dog someone couldn’t handle anymore. We got a dog with some behavior problems, but I love the crap out of her. I tried the shelters but there were only cats available which my husband was an “absolutely not” on. I do feel good that at least we got our dog out of a situation she was stressed out in. It sounds like they had more dogs then they could care for well. But probably not the most righteous thing to do? Who knows.

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  14. I 100% agree with all of this! Of the several organizations we applied for dog adoption, we only heard back from one, and we were declined because our healthy, happy, 50+ lbs dogs are out in our fenced 1/3 acre yard with a dog house and covered patio while we work. And after 5-6 months of declined applications, we did purchase a dog.

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  15. Add me to the list of the unpopular opinion because I completely agree with you. It’s ridiculous the restrictions and hoops that have to be jumped through just to give a pet a home. I could see if the supply/demand ratio were off but come on! There is no shortage of pets that need homes so why the ridiculousness? It makes me crazy.

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  16. Boy, you nailed this. When we were trying to adopt our crnt mutt, we originally were rejected. Why? Because we both worked full time. You know, to pay bills and, I don’t know, buy dog food and supplies? We already had a dog. She was just fine. (Got her from a breeder. Oh, the horror!) So we had to fill out another application explaining that, while we work for a living like any other productive member of society, my father-in-law did not, and he lived the next street over, and could come visit the dog who apparently would be scarred for life and feel abandoned. Finally, we got her. And guess what? She’s just fine. Occasionally my FIL would let the dogs out if we were working late or whatever, but he died just three years later and we still have the dog. And she is still just fine. We added another dog two years ago. (Got her from a breeder. What is WRONG with me?) They are both just fine.

    And there is my poorly formed paragraph of agreement.

    Thanks Joob.

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  17. I agree completely. I had a mama kitty wander into my yard a few years ago, she was heavy with milk. I tried for 2 days to find where she came from and where were the kittens. Then I tried to contact my local cat rescue group because they always have kittens dumped on them that need a mama. They wouldn’t even call me back. My neighborhood is across the road from a large Humane Society and people are constantly dumping animals here because the HS only takes certain animals at certain times on odd numbered days and only if your eyes are blue, etc, etc. So people find these animals and try to do the right thing and get turned away, and they end up just dumping them here to forage and live on their own. Since I moved here I have had a pair of kitty brothers move in, a pit puppy dumped on my yard, rescued a mama and her 2 new born kittens, added another cat that was left here, and now finally rescued my Gladys who was living feral on my street for 2 years before she would allow us to catch her. So I don’t even have to go adopt or shop, they just come to me.

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  18. When my sister wanted to adopt a cat from our local ASPCA shelter, which has a high kill rate oh by the way, the amount of red tape and burning hoops they required people to jump through was ridiculous. And after all that, she was denied. We learned to just lie through your teeth when filling out the adoption application. I do not understand why these shelters and adoption agencies make it damn near impossible to rehome these pets. I think they’d rather euthanize than rehome, the fucking bastards.

    When we adopted our Gracie Lou via PetFinder, after filling out the application and doing a phone interview, they told us that to even just come and see her, my entire family had to be present because the shelter said they had problems with Mom and the kids adopting a dog without telling Dad who made them return the pet. Okay, I get that. I had to keep my kids home from school, my husband had to take a day off from work just so we could make the 2 hour drive to the shelter. After all that, I was damned if I was going to walk away without the dog and that’s how we got our dog. Our other dog came from my son’s girlfriend who found out after the fact that her landlord did not allow pets.

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  19. Yes!!! I’ve been turned down by more than once shelter because my husband is a pilot with an inconsistent schedule so that creates an “unstable environment “ for the pet. I would think living at a shelter would be an unstable environment! That was in Washington state where adoption fee was $250 plus spay and neuter fees. Now in Memphis, it’s only $50. We were turned down for our fence not being high enough. The dog we were adopting was a twelve year old terrier mix with diabetes. I hope he was able to find someone to take him.

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  20. Well, I 100% agree too! I think I have just been lucky. My Aussie – I got from an Aussie “recue site.” But, he was just with a family that had no time for him. Fee was $50. He had no up to date shots, (3 yrs old) had never been to a groomer and lived in a cage all day. He was gorgeous. He had been neutered. The guy looked at me and said, well, maybe I should see where you live to make sure he will be in a good place. This is while me and Marley were rolling on the floor, totally in love at first sight.
    I said, you know what – here is $50 – he will be fine – I will email pictures – he is mine. Thanks and good bye.
    And off we went and now he is 8 and a half and happy as a clam.
    Cat was a feral – rescued from being eaten by dogs in the desert. Got him as a baby – he is almost 12. He is healthy and happy and so loving…

    When I hear of people buying “designer” dogs and very expensive “fancy” cats – I get so irritated – but say nothing. To each his own I suppose.
    But I will never understand why people do that when so many amazing, loving and perfect animals need a loving home. But I get your point. The adoption thing is ridiculous. And since when is a couple not a family, no matter what their age.

    Sigh.

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  21. Sorry, I’m not going to be the shrill one attacking you! My daughter is helping her roommate find a golden retriever. She told me how ridiculous the rescue groups are on their application. Further, as a note of caution, there are a lot of scammers online (Craig’s List, Next Door, etc) who require you to send a deposit to hold the dog (which doesn’t exist). They just pull pics from the internet. So my daughter says you have to FaceTime them while the dog is there so you then hope it is legitimate. Crazy times! I’m wondering if I should start trying now to get my next dog before my sweet dog dies in hopefully more than 8 years.

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  22. I totally agree with you. I checked our local humane society a few days ago, and they have a litter of PART Chihuahua puppies, with an adoption fee of $400! All the other dogs have a fee of $150. I know the shelters need to raise money, but I think that charging breeder fees on select dogs is infuriating and defeats the purpose. It not only turns people off of adopting from this shelter, but it’s discriminatory to lower income folks.

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  23. With you. I’ve fostered ten dogs over the last 12 months and tried to adopt one through a different organization. The organization I foster through would give me any dog I wanted at a reduced rate but the other organizations I’ve signed up with won’t even answer my application email. When it’s my time for my own dog, I’ll foster again and then keep the one I know is mine. I’ll pay a reduced rate of $250 (they usually start at $450 and usually go to the NE states.)

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  24. Totally agree! My adopt/don’t shop story is from a few years ago: we went to a board game night with friends and one guy was utterly pumped about picking up his puppy from the breeder the following day. His first real dog on his own so he was excited except he kept hammering it in: how he was getting a good dog for $1k that wouldn’t have any issues or behaviour problems from how it was treated before. It would be easy to train since it was a higher pedigree than any shelter pet – on and on and on – knowing full well we had 3 “misfit” rescue dogs at home waiting for us. It was building in me until I finally exploded on him and then flounced – yes, indeed, I did! – out. Universe got the last laugh on that though – his perfect thousand dollar puppy? Never quite house broken and occasionally bites for no reason. Hahaha

    Even before the pandemic, we were ready for another after elderly deaths. I went to our shelter, filled out the “application” and was shamed by the intake lady – who wouldn’t even let me look at their current dogs because we’d had two deaths in a year. The dogs who were 13 and 15 years old, with us 90% of their lives and only sick the last few months because of cancer. But she made me feel like I slit their throats, I felt awful walking out of that building with the paper she required me to have notarized at our vet stating that we hadn’t killed them personally. I knew our vet receptionist very well at that point – she came in to say goodbye when we had to euthanize our Rottweiler and cried right along with us. Oh she was mad at that piece of paper. She encouraged us to not adopt from them so I went home defeated. I thought we were ready but maybe we had done something wrong and shouldn’t have another dog? We’d tried to give them good lives but also not keep them alive for our sakes if they were in pain or miserable. Told better half when he came in that night and he convinced me otherwise. The next day, I called animal control to ask if they offered adoptions. The lady said in a matter of fact voice that it was a 7 day period, you come in and look through the cages, can’t hold/touch/etc. the dogs – pick who you want, pay $20 and get out. That weekend, we did just that and she’s snoring under my feet. It felt a little like a grab bag situation because she came with plenty of issues but she’s ours.

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  25. We have had horrible experiences with this, and it absolutely breaks my heart, because I *want* to do the right thing. We tried for over a year (!!!) to adopt a dog. Unfortunately, add to the list of impossibilities at the shelter two more items for us: 1. I am allergic to dogs and have horrible asthma that sends me to the hospital, so we have to have the dreaded hypoallergenic dog, or no dog at all, and 2. My son with muscular dystrophy also happens to be autistic, and although dogs have proven to be amazing for autistic kids, the shelters we went to wouldn’t let us even look at dogs because of his mental state and “he might harm the dog.” My whole family has left many-a-shelter in tears because we were not worthy of one of their dogs. In fact, one day through sobs, my thirteen-year-old said, “they would rather put that dog down than let us care for him.” I’d had enough. So finally, I did what I never said I’d do, and found a local breeder, and the next day (a year ago yesterday in fact), Stella was ours. She has been the absolute best dog I have ever owned. In fact, just last week, I was blowing leaves, and my son got out without my knowledge. Stella came and got me, barking her head off, then literally motioned with her head for me to follow her, and I found my son in the woods by our house. She is amazing. I never tell people how we got Stella because I’m honestly ashamed, but we tried and tried to adopt, but we weren’t found to be worthy.

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  26. Preach it sister! I decided I wanted to adopt a dog last year pre pandemic. Didn’t get around to it and the pandemic hit. Now the shelter has 6 dogs, all from Texas, and all “no idea if they work well with other pets” I check monthly and nothing to adopt. Thinking about a breeder. Mmmm

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  27. I think your unpopular opinion is pretty popular. I finally stopped taking my kids to the shelter with me because they would be so upset when we didn’t get a dog. I’d go back weeks later and the dog would still be there. So they thought it was better off in the shelter than at my house, just because we had a cat and they hadn’t tested the dog with cats (that’s just one example.)

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  28. With my allergies, I was unaware of any of this as I’ve never tried to adopt a pet. It does sound bananas to me.

    My husband and I have been offering to adopt a sibling pair (of kids NOT pets) from foster care for over 3 years. We thought that since we have a loving home and I run an in-home daycare so I am home (summers off since I babysit for teachers) that we’d be matched with a sibling pair fairly quickly. Nope. It has been a journey. Some very challenging days when social workers didn’t do their job and they messed things up. We were willing to adopt two brothers in our state but the worker dropped the ball (long story) and decided to split the brothers up into two adoptive homes just before she switched to a different position, or in another case DCFS refused to answer our questions and tried to rush things and we had to pull the plug. Lots of heartbreak.

    We were matched with 2 boys in January from a neighboring state and we hope that they will be moving in sometime in May. Our 6 biological kids all agree, these two are the ones. We believe they will be a good fit. Not going to be easy as they’ve had a rough life. They are 10.5 and just turned 9. My youngest biological son is 15 and these two are OBSESSED with him. It’s been amazing to see him (and our other kids) grow through this process – not that we are silly enough to think there won’t be days when they are irritated by this new adventure.

    Despite my allergies, I think about how great it would be for them to have a dog – maybe therapeutic for them. I’d have to be sure the pup was hypoallergenic.

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  29. I’ve been trying to adopt a dog for over a year. I look through pet finder from time to time and see the same dogs on there that were posted a year ago, but every time I inquire about one they tell me he’s been adopted. I live alone and work from home, have no other animals, get good references from my vet and my yard is fenced. But I’m still having trouble finding a dog. Thanks to all of you, I’m going to try the humane society and look at Craigslist.

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  30. We’ve lied on every pet adoption application. Sure, we have someone designated to take our pet if WE ALL DIE. Of course, someone will always be home with the cat who DOESN’T CARE. The ridiculousness.

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  31. I agree with you. My husband and I have always gotten older shelter or rescue dogs. When we lost our last senior, we decided that since we were retired, we would get one or two puppies. We thought since we were active retirees with time and resources to train and care for animals, we would be attractive potential clients. We were declined time and time again. Once, we were told that a vet we used in the distant past said we didn’t provide flea/tick/heart worm meds. That was a a time when online meds were much cheaper than vet office meds and we bought and used mail order meds every month and the vet KNEW that. Never mind our current vet gave us a good reference. I tried to explain to the high and mighty rescue Barney Fife but no dice. Another time we were turned down for brother puppies we had already fallen in love with because they decided to place them with a “family.” I said we are a family and she said, “You know what I mean.” I finally decided we were being discriminated against because of our age since our references were very good (other than that one vet). So, we adopted a good boy from Craigslist! We are lucky to have him and he is lucky to have us.

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  32. 100% agree. There’s a “rescue” organization here that is constanly bringing loads of dogs from other states. Do we not have enough dogs here in the midwest? We need to go to Texas or Tennessee and bring more? I’ve often suspected this was just a money machine for these people. And same story – fee to apply, fee to get a home visit, fee to run your references. And they have constant comments on their facebook page from people saying they reject everyone – which then get deleted. It’s a big ole scam. And I hate that they call every dog a “rescue” – they could be Cruella Deville stealing those dogs down south for all I know.

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  33. NOW, how do we get all the shelters to heed this advice? Or even SEE it?
    The high and the mightys at these places mean well (I think).
    But all people who think they are right aren’t always right.

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    1. I prefer shelters to rescue groups, which seem to be lots of overzealous types who perhaps just want to hoard pets. I mean, they’re the ones with impossible standards, although the shelter that only lets people within 30 miles also sucks.

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      1. I live in Germany and they import strays from OTHER COUNTRIES!! I’ve known many people, the kind who in the US would make sure you know their dog is a “rescue,” who are very smug about the dog or cat they adopted from Romania or Russia. So so so many things wrong with that.
        (I won’t even get into trying to adopt here. I don’t know what circus I’d have to train with to jump through all of the hoops, but fortunately the pet trade on Ebay seems to be doing well.)

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  34. It is extremely annoying. I fostered kittens who I barely was able to adopt. I had to sign papers stating I would never let them outside. Are you kidding me. I am currently breaking the law as I type this.

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  35. Let me chime in with another agreement! I contacted several rescues through Petfinder and had maybe one in ten reply.

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  36. I agree with you 100%, June. Out here in CA , “rescue” groups swoop in and take all the popular breeds . I finally found a humane society branch that makes those groups wait for a week or to so that the general public has a chance. Also, just the other day, I tried to inquire about adopting a blind dog that had been roaming the streets. The fee to adopt? $850.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was going to suggest the local humane society – they are much more realistic with their expectations and generally only ask that you pay the cost of having the dog spayed or neutered.

      Liked by 1 person

  37. My neighbor had a horrible time trying to adopt from a breed specific rescue group. They let her adopt a dog with severe behavior/emotional issues and she had to send him back because he was attacking people and her other dog. The rescue promised to get him help, and she saw him back on the adoption list the next week. She did more digging and suspects now that the”rescue” is actually a front for shady breeders. Stupid humans.

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  38. I bought my dog and that’s why. I was living in an apartment and every “rescue” turned me down. I didn’t have a yard. I finally said fuck it and found what I felt like was a respectable breeder. Meaning, they were just casual breeders doing it as a hobby, had a nice home, etc. and bought my dog. I will say though, when I decided to get a cat, I found that most rural shelters don’t give a shit about any of that stuff and will let anyone adopt. No one checked references or anything. They just let me come in and pick out a car and go home. So maybe try that next time.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Same experiences here. Getting a dog from a shelter or rescue was basically impossible — I was a renter at a complex with breed restrictions, so the local humane society only had breeds I couldn’t have and the rescues all said no dice because I was a renter with a full time job (the horror!). Bought a puppy. He’s all grown up and curled up in my lap right now and I’d do it again in a heartbeat. My cat, on the other hand, was a breeze to adopt from a city shelter. They basically took me on a tour of the literal hundreds of cats available and I picked one and that was it.

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  39. Totally with you on this one. I won’t be able to adopt most dogs because we don’t have a fenced yard. My neighborhood has restrictions against chain link fences. My yard is HUGE and it would look funny if I fenced in a smaller area of it. But I don’t mind taking my 3 dogs out on leashes a gazillion times a day, because noone has to potty at the same time, so why do the rescues care so much? They should be happy I’m willing to adopt a senior dog!!

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  40. I agree. I adopted a cat in the 1980s and it was relative easy and fast. Only regret I didn’t adopt her brother. The past 45 years I’ve had eight cats, only one I adopted, the other seven found and adopted us. I think there’s a cat posted sign at the end of the driveway that reads, “two suckers live here.”
    Tee

    Liked by 1 person

  41. We adopted our sweet boy from a shelter four years ago. They said he was a Black Mouth Cur. When I repeated that to our vet he started laughing. ‘Look at his jaw’ he said. He’s a pit-terrier mix. And once I looked, I could see it. The vet said the shelters don’t like to say ‘pit’ because people back away. Our pup is afraid of thunder, likes to dig holes in the yard and thinks going to the dog park is the best day ever. We are so glad we adopted our little pittie puppy.

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  42. I could not agree with this more! A friend of mine bought a dog b/c she couldn’t get one from a rescue b/c they all had different demands. With one dog, she was refused b/c she doesn’t have a fence. Given how often I’ve seen neighbors ONLY let their dogs out and never give them a walk, I’d much prefer to know someone is going to HAVE TO WALK THE DOG EVERY DAY than just open their back door. When I was trying to adopt a breed specific dog, I couldn’t tell what was going on. Suddenly, there weren’t ANY dogs available from the two rescues that covered our area. Say what? Finally my daughter found one listed on PetFinder. It was from a rescue a state away and it said they would consider neighboring states. They ended up deciding to allow us to see this dog (they’d also contacted the breed specific rescue in our area to see if they knew anything about us, as well as the vets we used with our previous dog). I honestly think the only reason I got the dog is b/c they knew he was legit insane and they wouldn’t have anyone local dumb enough to take him. Look, we love our dog. But he will have to be medicated by a vet behavioralist his entire life. I’m definitely going to be more cautious of adopting in the future. ha, ha!!

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  43. You are 100% correct.

    I am convinced it is almost easier to adopt a human being than a pet in some instances.

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  44. I totally agree! A friend was trying to rescue a pug. She was turned down Why? Because she works. My friend pointed out that having a job meant she would have money to care for said dog. Still no go. They wanted someone home all day with the pup. Another friend rescued a puppy. They were told it was a lab mix. My friend decided to do DNA. There is no lab in that dog. She’s 39% pit. The dog is lovely, but why lie about it?

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