Why Rescue Centres Don’t Always Help You Choose The Right Dog

This picks up a point in one of my earlier blogs about when rescue centres get it wrong.

This dates from a couple of years ago, but is still relevant.  This story is about a lady who initially adopted 2 ex-racing greyhounds.

The first time around

I met Clara (name changed) just after she had brought her two dogs home from the rescue centre.  She had a beautiful medium sized black and white bitch called Lady and a big black male whose name I never caught.  (That’s because he wasn’t around for long – read on).

Lady was a delight.  Sweet, affectionate, easy.  A great choice for a novice or an experienced dog owner alike.

The black male was a major handful.  Strong, wilful, and dominant with a very high prey drive.  This meant he was on the lookout for anything small and furry including small dogs.  Needed a highly experienced greyhound owner.

Now I could have handled the male.  I’ve had greyhounds for many years.  I’m also strong in body and mind, and have a very loud voice.  My dogs know who is boss. 

But for a greyhound rescue to place this dog with Clara, a softly spoken, unassuming lady who’d never had a greyhound before was ALL wrong!  There was no way she could ever have managed him.  As a first time greyhound owner neither would I.  You need to work up to something as challenging as that over a few years.

Sadly, the black male was returned.  Lady stayed, and remained a delight.

The second time around

But then the same rescue gave this lady a greyhound puppy.  Blue was a total sweetheart, but a typical puppy.  All flying legs and enthusiasm.  So Lady wasn’t very keen on him because he was too bouncy.

Also Clara didn’t really have the time for housetraining and other training  in between her part-time job and the children.  Plus the children didn’t help her with the dogs. So things didn’t go well.

Eventually she put Blue up for sale in the local paper.  When I asked her if the rescue wouldn’t take him back she said no, she got the impression they were overrun and just needed to find homes as quickly as possible.  I had enough dogs then or I’d have had Blue in a heartbeat!

The point

This rescue were so concerned with getting the dogs ‘off their books’ that they weren’t doing their job right.  They were simply offloading their problem and hoping it wouldn’t be someone else’s.

ANY rescue operating this kind of policy should be avoided.  Taking a dog from rescue needs the same kind of lifestyle checks as buying a puppy from a breeder.

Rescue centres which don’t do those checks are heading for problems.  They get a high rate of returns.  Or worse still, people simply abandon the problem (dog) or take it to be put down.

Rescue works brilliantly when it’s done right.  So choose your rescue centre well.  Things to consider:

  • Do they ask you lots of questions about you and your lifestyle?
  • Do they have a homing form and make extensive notes?
  • Do they do home checks?
  • Do they have a high or low rate of returns (high is over 10%)?  Do they even KNOW?
  • Do they advise what types of dogs will make a good choice?
  • Do you feel they are firm, fair and honest?

Top Tip – Choose a rescue centre which takes time with you and pays attention.  If you feel rushed or like they’re not listening, move on.  Good rescues will say ‘we don’t have anything for you now, but we’ll let you know if we do’ even if they’re already bursting at the seams.

Choosing A Dog The Right Way

It’s a fact that 50% of all people who get a dog have to rehome it in less than 12 months.  It’s also a very sad truth that a huge number of puppies bought are from puppy farms – raised in appalling conditions without adequate care, veterinary treatment, food or socialisation.  Many have health problems and behavioural issues.  And these contribute to the problems you as owners face when you get them home.

Failure HURTS.   The emotional and financial cost of choosing the wrong dog can be hard to recover from.   Learning to choose a dog the right way takes a long time. You have to know all the questions before you know if you have the answers.  Missing even a small piece of the puzzle can cause serious problems.

That’s why this site was set up.  My mission in life is for everyone who is right for a dog to have a dog they love to live with.  To get rid of as many puppy farms as possible, and rescue centres, by making sure you choose right first time.

You can choose to get it right.  The tools on this site give you all the opportunity you need to choose the right dog.  Not everyone has lots of money to splash about so there’s everything from free to a serious investment.  However if you’re spending $800 or more on a pedigree puppy then just a little bit extra invested now could make all the difference later on.

Get Your Free Guides!

Most people make a mess of choosing a dog.  Puppy farms do big business because of it.  Sickness, starvation and suffering are the price the dogs pay. It’s a multi-billion industry you don’t want to fund. Get a lifetime of support from people who care.  Fast track your success with the best tips around.  Get your Free Guides today by clicking this link

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