by Elisa Black-Taylor
R.I.P-Too Late (Photo by Mia Anelli)
In case a few of my readers haven't noticed, I've become involved with a lot of new projects concerning pets. I'd like to explain my goals regarding animal shelters, rescue groups and crossposters. Times are changing and everyone is now working together to save the animals.
My goal is to educate. I salute all three of these groups because they are using the internet to save cats and dogs. I love to see the internet being used for a good cause and this is one of the best I've found.
First of all let me say I use a lot of Furby's mama's photos on my articles. She has the look I need to illustrate my stories. I was looking thru a new batch the other night and came across this new photographer Furby has on his site. Please check this page out
- link broken.
THIS is the new look of the animal shelter pet. I commend Mia for portraying them as beautiful animals instead of some poor soul being stuck in a cell like a prison inmate. Sadly, most of the animals in these shelters are wonderful pets, well behaved and extremely friendly.
A lot of pet owners have just hit upon hard times. The economy affects our pets in ways we may not realize it. Take the BP oil spill. Many animals whose owners are in the tourism business have had to turn in their pets because they no longer have a way to support them. This is a story that hasn't been discussed much in the news. As usual, pets are put on the back burner and ignored. I assure you this is true.
My goal is to portray the many shelter pets as they are: confused, lonely and reluctantly abandoned because people don't know any other way to care for them. Or lost forever because no one bothered to spend the $25 to microchip them.
So now along with the irresponsible pet owner who allows out of control breeding, we have the economically challenged animals in the shelters. This has got to change. A lot of people can't afford the spay/neuter, but a lot of people can and don't.
This has to change with this generation. People (children included because they ARE the next generation) need to understand they cannot simply turn in a pet when they tire of it. Most animals are NOT adopted and animals surrendered are eligible for immediate euthanasia. Your pets "pretty face" is not enough to save its life. It's likely there are 100 more beautiful pets just like it at the facility.
The unemployment numbers in the U.S. are a lie. They only show the number of people receiving benefits. The long term unemployed who have exhausted benefits aren't included. People are losing their homes, their way of life and their pets. To those I would suggest running a freebie ad with vet references required and checked. Do everything possible to keep the pets out of shelters.
I've come across a site on Facebook that offers ways to help with vet bills. This page offers a lot of good options. Please check this page out.
Now on to the crossposters. Up until a few weeks ago I'd never heard of crossposters. Facebook has several of them. It's like a giant gossip column and the subject is pets on death row.
Cross posters are individuals who share their page space on social websites with photos, history and kill notices for some of the most beautiful animals you've ever seen. These animals are only days (sometimes hours) away from euthanasia. The crossposters list where the animal is sheltered and provide a photo. Then the search begins for someone to save the pet from execution. Many shelter workers are involved in the crossposting and I can tell you it kills them when they have to destroy a beautiful loving animal who would have made someone a devoted companion. I've watched the conversation responses going back and forth. Sometimes a home is found or a rescue group will step in. Many times there is no one. There is no "governor's call" at the last minute.
Rescue groups help as many of these animals as they can. There are rescue groups for particular breeds and there are groups that cover a certain geographical area. One of the most difficult breeds for the rescuers is the pit bull. These dogs have developed such a bad reputation they've been banned from private adoption in many parts of the U.S. Much of this is because of how they are "fought" for entertainment. I hope hell has a special place for the people involved in dog fighting. Perhaps in the same part of hell with the animal abusers.
People need to understand it's not the breed of dog that is bad. It's the owner and how the dogs are trained. Dogs seized from these fighting situations stand very little chance of a normal life unless a rescue group or someone trained to deal with rehabilitating fighting dogs steps in. A lot of these dogs must live in a dog sanctuary for life but that's better than living at the end of a six foot chain.
Rescue groups also help shelter cats and dogs find foster homes and forever homes. They take in abandoned, abused, stray and unwanted animals. Many rescue groups are run entirely by volunteers who take the animals into their own homes until a good home is found. Please help these groups as much as possible. I'm sure money, food and cleaning supplies are always needed.
I'd like to close this article with an apology. I'm sorry if I've made you cry. This story needed to be told. If you want to help, do like I did and allow the crossposters to use your site to spread the word. Email this article to everyone you know who loves dogs and cats. Support your local shelters and fight for no kill shelters.
And most important-SPAY OR NEUTER YOUR PET!!
P.S. Mia pulled Ruby from the shelter. She lives in the Los Angeles, California area and needs a permanent home for Ruby.