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  1. #1

    Why do you do it?

    I'm curious, if anyone wants to share, why you rescue animals? What made you want to do it? What are some of the hardest things you've encountered while doing it?

    I guess for me I kinda did it by accident. Or it was more like take in one stray, then another, then another and now here I am busting my butt to save them all.

    Hazel (my Mal) was the first dog we got from a shelter. We hadn't even planned on getting her. We already had two dogs (a Corgi and a Collie mix) and just didn't have room for another one. But I was working for a radio station at the time and I did PSA's for a local rescue group. The supervisor came in one afternoon for her commercial and told me about their new website for viewing animals. So I went online after she left and saw this little 1 inch by 1 inch thumbnail photo of most of a dog's head and something told me I just HAD to go look at this dog. My husband told me, all the way to the shelter, that we were NOT taking it home. I could look at it and I could look at the rest but we were NOT taking it home. Period. End of discussion, we were NOT adopting this dog.

    We looked at her for about 5 seconds when he said, "you can have her if you want her". Heck yeah I wanted her. And I brought her home.

    God she was so scared. So afraid. Everything freaked her out. She didn't know what toys were, wouldn't eat her food, had obviously never been on a leash. Lord lets not even get into what trying to take her for a ride in the car was like!!! She HATED cats, did NOT get along with other dogs. Had a major problem with chains and fences (we chased her around the neighborhood for awhile those first couple months). I remember the first couple weeks at home my husband would have to basically tip-toe in the house when he got home from work. He'd have to shut the door really quiet and quietly walk to his chair to take his boots off. We'd whisper hello's to eachother. Man even the slightest bit of noise from a male's voice would send her haywire, just absolutely scared to death. Once me and Hazel were in the bedroom and hubby was one room, a hallway, another room and in the joining kitchen away when he loudly asked if I knew where something was. Hazel flew into the corner and peed on herself. She was so afraid. Had we not been at the shelter the day we were, she would have been destroyed that night. And even the hour we played with her at the shelter that day they still tried to convince us to destroy her and just "pick a different dog".

    It's amazing how far she's come in the not quite 3 years that we've had her. They are best friends and he can not only talk being so far away but he can actually touch her and she won't get afraid (she's still a little submissive but it's mostly to strangers). She can be on the back porch and hear the front door open and she'll come running to greet him at the door, tail wagging so fast she about knocks herself over from her butt swinging. They wrestle together, have "conversations". I can throw the ball and she'll go get it.......and take it to him.

    Some people would just call the new her a "spoiled" dog. But, for me, it's proof of a rescued dog. It may not have been the shelter that hurt her like she was. But someone did. Someone scared the life out of the poor puppy (vet guessed her to be about 4 months old when we adopted her). She is leashed trained now. Crate trained. Housebroke. Plays incredible with the other dogs. She's saved my baby's life--and ultimately mine too. She and the cats lay together. She plays fetch. She knows come, heal. I've even taught her "left", "right" and "cross" for when we're walking. If you say, "load up" she'll jump in the truck. If you say "go home" she'll take off to the house and run up the front stairs onto the porch. If she's howling and you say "acknowledge" she'll stop howling and come lay at my feet.

    Now if I could just teach her to take off my boots or get a can of soda out of the fridge, life would be great.

    LMAO I'm kidding (though it would be kinda cool if she really could do this).

    Anyway. So she's why I want to try and save them all. Nothing about her turned out what we expected. The shelter said she was a full grown adult but the vet said she was just a baby. And comparing pics now to then, it's obvious how much of a baby she was. But after 3 years her then almost 30 lbs has exceeded 110 and we've excepted it. I've taken "crash" courses in raising malamutes and hybrids. I'm not a genious and she still catches me by surprise regularly but we have peace and comfort in the house and those are important for making memories. I know most of what goes wrong is my fault and gives me another wake up call for a second (third, fourth, fifth) refresher course. Some people may think after all we've been through with her, when she dies it will be some kind of relief. But I tell you, it'll break my heart.

    Hazel needed someone and I honestly believe there was a reason our paths crossed. For years before I had "passed up" hundreds of adorable little puppies here and there. She came along and no matter how much I knew I couldn't take her, I knew I had to have her.

    As for the decision to rescue, it was the shelter supervisor who opened my eyes to Hazel and both of them who opened my eyes to these "situations". I knew from the day I brought Hazel home that I had to join the fight to open other people's eye's. I know I can't save them all, I've learned that the hard way. But had I not dragged my hubby to the shelter so I could JUST LOOK AT a dog I had seen a thumbnail photo of, my now best friend would be bone in a landfill somewhere.

    So in the last 3 years no other dog has had this kind of effect on me. But it's that effect and what she does to me now that makes me want to believe that every dog I place is done so because they had the same effect on the adopter.

    Anyway........that's why I've chosen the path I have and why I try very hard to rescue them all.

  2. #2
    I wouldn't say I do rescue because honestly my financial status does not allow me to. But if I come across an animal in need I won't turn them away either. I do what I can and leave the rest up to the creator..

    Such as the case recently with Harvey the kitten. My mother found her but we both had no finances to really help her. She would have died if left in our care because of lack of finances. The vet here will not help anyone unless you pay upfront so they won't even allow payments.

    In her case I was able to use my internet skills to help her. I hopped on here and then a few other forums and groups. And finally found someone willing to help out financially. They are even going to keep her because she reminds them of their old kitten that died a while back of old age. So everything turned out ok because of 1. my mothers willingness to help even when all seems lost.. and 2.. my internet savvy skills of surfing.. :D
    Blessed Be

    Salem Witch Child

  3. #3
    I can't do it.
    I admire those of you that can, but I just can't do rescue.
    I'll ADOPT rescues, even problem cases, in a heartbeat but I can't work in one. I tried. It was too hard to steel my heart and try to be cold to all those eyes and beseeching looks. I was practically sick every day over it. parts of it I thoroughly loved, - seeing them go home and loving their new families...but the rest, the people DUMPING them, or the scared and abandoned ones coming in...

    I spent a lot of time crying.

    I also couldn't stand to see them in crates most of the day, or in cages, or even in runs alone where they could not interact with other dogs. I think solitary dogs are so sad looking. Everyone deserves a companion, someone to lick ears and eyes and cuddel with at night. I even think people with only one dog that work all day should get another one. I know, I know, not practical, but still...

    The whole thing was such a painful experince.
    I mourned so many of the dogs that were so GREAT but spending so many months and years in the shelter. I couldn't understand people dumping and rejecting these truly great dogs. And then I would see so many every day that I felt I NEEDED to have, that were "speaking" to me in some way. My husband was more practical (we already HAD four dogs)...but still, it was hard to leave them and then I tried to get "harder" and block my "emotions". Then I satrted to not like who I was...when I could dispassionately look at them. The whole time was very difficult for me.

    I don't know how people do it, day after day.

    I started hating the human race and what they put on these poor sweet creatures....for no reason in most cases, or stupid reasons in other cases.

    So it maybe is interesting to hear WHY rescue people do it, but really I think the more interesting question is HOW. HOW do you do it. The why seems easy. You love animals and want to help them, you get great satisfaction out of seeing them rehomed and it gives you self worth, motivation and a sense of accomplishment as well as the joy of loving and helping a creature in need.

    But HOW.
    HOW the heck do you guys manage it?
    And especially those of you that volunteer at kill shelters, KNOWING that Dog A or Dog B is going to be put to sleep the next day.

    That would truly have driven me deeply insane.

  4. #4
    I don't work for any shelter, probably won't, but I try to rescue outside on my own time. I've taken in a kitten to the Humane Society before, that was my first time being bold about it. If you saw her, you wouldn't have wanted to leave her outside, either. She was too small and far too light to be anywhere near an adult or normal kitten. She looked like she was only weeks old. Everyone told me to leave her there, "nature will take it's course". But she was motherless, nature wasn't doing what it meant to. Nature needed help. They also told me "coyotes come every so often." The police told me that. Comforting thought, eh? She was small and ratty, and seemed to have a fly embedded in her throat. I fed her a little, and she sat by me, looked up and me, and I simply told myself I'd never forgive myself if I left her alone.

    So, I went against what people said. Few months later I saw her on the adoption list. I have high hopes she got adopted. People tend to want kittens over cats.

    My second was my current cat, KC. I was at a rally for the new judge of the city, and KC was just walking around, unafraid of the people. A little boy had been holding him. I spent more time with him than anyone or anything else at that rally, particularly when I learned he belonged to no one. He sat in my lap, sleeping and nuzzling in my arms to try and drown out the loud music. This was another concious thing, because I wanted to take him home. No one wanted me to. They said he'd be fine, they said he's dirty, they don't like cats, etc. Again, in one ear and out the other for me, I took him anyway. He's a healthy kitty now.

    I guess the reason I do take time to take them off the streets is because I would never forgive myself if I ignored it. When I know something's wrong, I have to stand against it. I can't back down.

  5. #5
    i adopted my first dalmatian - the one in my piccy - and just sort of stayed with dalmatian rescue and never went away again :lol:

    both the rescues i work for dont use kennels at all as we feel it just adds to the stress rehoming puts on a dog. we use home to home methods and foster carers so we can properly assess a dog before he goes back out again which helps to match up the dog with an owner :)

    right now though i'm looking for a rehoming kennels near to me so i can go in to help the dogs that get over looked as a little bit of training goes a long way :) a dog that can give a paw or wave and walk to heel is more rehomable that a dog that pulls and twists and turns like a dog possessed (my little dal)

    i love what i do and when a rehome goes really well it makes it all worth it just the same as when i have a raw untrained hooligan come in to me and i send them out again a smart gentleman/lady. yes the abuse cases break your heart and i tend to flame so i'm kept away by and large as i threatened to unscrew a womens head for her!! :evil: it was an puppy farm and as the dogs had nothing for mental stimulation they had groung their teeth down by chewing on the concrete in their pens and that wasnt the worst of it but again when we get these dogs out and see them into their homes its all worth the efforts we make :)

    i love what i do but all the rescues are swamped and struggling to keep up - something has to be done but shutting down and exposing as many puppy farms as we can is a good start :)

    its frustrating at times though i've been working for some years now on getting one puppy farm shut down and the cogs have only just started to turn as the puppy farmer was protected by our laws and red tape.
    www.irishretrieverrescue.com
    all dalmatian rescue 01255 220 649 (uk)

  6. #6
    I rescue animals that I find on the street by giving them food and water and then I take them to the shelter.
    the hardest part is to leave them in the shelter.
    I rescued a kitten in our backyard, we fed her for three days and then she left. she found her mother.
    i recued a fledgling that was going to be eaten by a cat.
    I rescued a bird that had broken it`s wing.
    Animals always become best friends.

  7. #7
    i cant really tell any rescue storys because i havent really done any as of yet coz im only 19, but i just have to say that if i ever see an animal hurt or anything like that it breaks my heart because its not there fault. i love animals and always will no matter what. i mean i was working with my boyfriend one night and i saw a hedgehog on the road and because i didnt want it to get run over we took it to my house give it some milk and then set it free in a wood near me so that i know it would be safer than on the roads.
    i just dont know why people hurt animals they are the best things ever on this earth, and they are not out to hurt people they are out to be loved and to love people but there are a lot of people that just get them because they look cute and then because they dont want them after about say a few weeks just throw them out on the streets and i think that is horrible.
    anyway keep the stories coming because they all inspire me very much and some of them nearly make me cry to.

  8. #8

    Rescued dogs

    We had three dogs over our marriage. We had a SHiba Inu for 17 years while our son was growing up and she was the joy of our family. Everything centered around her: family walks, family stories, even my son's cartoon series about her. She went camping and on vacations with us. Ous son learned empathy and to put her needs first, escpecially as she declined in health. We all missed her very much.

    After 3 years we were ready for canine compaionship again. We decided to adopt a rescue Shiba Inu as a way of giving back to the breed who brought us such joy. Our Suki was a puppy mill breeder, shy and spooky, but gentle and clean and sweet. Her foster family helped her come a long way. She now loves walks and is learning not to be afraid of men. She adores attention, as long as she is in a 'safe spot'. She learns quickly and likes to sit up for treats. She still has PSTD responses to scarry changes.

    We fostered another Shiba Inu, a friendly dog who we hoped would help Suki learn to socialize. Kara was an Amish puppy mill breeder stud who has a hard life outdoors with 300 dogs. He had untreated broken bones, slipped disk, frost bite; his teeth were worn to nubs and he had callouses and scars.

    He has been treated for infections and anemia. He has put on 5 pounds, learned to keep his bedding dry, learned to go to the door, sit, and come when called. He is loving and is so happy to see us he shakes all over in joy. We can forgive him all the trouble of housebreaking him when we see how bonded he is to us.

    Kara immediately loved Suki and is teaching her to snuggle. She gets jealous when she sees us with him and comes for attention too. Kara is trying to teach Suki to play with him.

    Kara still has undiagnoised medical problems and has good and bad days.

    I do not think we will adopt or foster any more rescue dogs after these two. But we do love our doggies and it is wonderful to see these 'broken doggies' blossom under our care. We trust that Suki will continue to heal emotionally and become a sweet companion. We expect to adopt Kara, too. We can't imagine life without him.
    Nancy

  9. #9
    I mourned so many of the dogs that were so GREAT but spending so many months and years in the shelter. I couldn't understand people dumping and rejecting these truly great dogs. And then I would see so many every day that I felt I NEEDED to have, that were "speaking" to me in some way. My husband was more practical (we already HAD four dogs)...but still, it was hard to leave them and then I tried to get "harder" and block my "emotions". Then I satrted to not like who I was...when I could dispassionately look at them. The whole time was very difficult for me.

  10. #10
    ccarltonn45
    Guest
    I can't really tell any rescue story's because i haven't really done any as of yet coz i am only 19, but i just have to say that if i ever see an animal hurt or anything like that it breaks my heart because its not there fault. i love animals and always will no matter what. i mean i was working with my boyfriend one night and i saw a hedgehog on the road and because i didn't want it to get run over we took it to my house give it some milk and then set it free in a wood near me so that i know it would be safer than on the roads.
    i just don't know why people hurt animals they are the best things ever on this earth, and they are not out to hurt people they are out to be loved and to love people but there are a lot of people that just get them because they look cute and then because they don't want them after about say a few weeks just throw them out on the streets and i think that is horrible.

 

 

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