Askholes.

Lately I’ve had multiple friends approach me about helping them adopt dogs.  Hallelujah!  When this happens it feels better than if my birthday landed on Christmas and I won the lottery (okay, maybe not that part) all at the same time.  I’m making a difference.  People are listening.  I am on cloud nine!

Daisie

“That must be one of those large, slobbery, slow creatures that I hear. Fools.”

And then I see friends that to buy.  I did a little Facebook ranting about those people this morning, and considering I hadn’t even had my coffee yet, I think I did a decent job since it launched a huge discussion and led to TWO friends messaging me to learn more about adopting:  It’s such a sad and defeating feeling to see friends wanting to “buy” puppies. If I can’t even change my own friends’ minds, how will I ever change anyones? There are rescues for literally every.single.breed.imaginable! Pure economics tells us that purchasing from a breeder is a poor decision. By spending your money with a breeder you spending a good 5-10 times what you would spend to adopt the puppy (seriously, that much), and worse, creating “demand” which therefore encourages the breeder to continue creating a supply (breeding the dog.) What those that “buy” don’t consider is the fact that the puppies that aren’t sold, are then dumped at a shelter or handed over to a rescue (the breeder certainly doesn’t want to continue to spend money on the dog as an unsold puppy becomes useless to them after it hits about 10 weeks old.) Now, a shelter must spend tax dollars to care for the dog. Tax dollars that could instead be spent on things like education, new roads, etc. And don’t even get me started on the conditions that most of these dogs live in. It’s really easy to take a cute picture where mom and babies look adorable and well cared for, and sometimes that really is the case, but that is an exception, not the rule. I beg everyone, especially with Christmas right around the corner, PLEASE consider ADOPTING a puppy rather than supporting this practice. Google search “(breed of interest) + rescue + (city you live in)”. There may not be a rescue in the exact city you are in, but I promise you, they can arrange transport to get the dog to you. Now you all don’t have the excuse that “you didn’t know” and if you buy, you’re really just an ass 🙂

Daisie

Sneaking out to investigate the house.

But almost worse than the friends that want to buy, are my “askhole” friends.  These are the friends that tell me they want to adopt, get me all excited, I spend hours looking for the perfect dog for them and answering all of their questions, and after all that, they end up buying anyways.  They “ask” but don’t really listen.  They are askholes.  It’s happened a couple of times now, and it’s confusing.  Why do they ask for help if they don’t intend to actually follow through with it?  Is it to make themselves feel “like they tried”?  Or did I say something wrong?  Whatever the reason, it’s frustrating.  I definitely make every effort to be kind and not pushy when talking about all the great points of adopting (I totally believe in the old adage that you catch more bees with honey than vinegar) but yet I have failed.

Daisie

On the other side of the gate!

Do any of you have experience with askholes?  Do you take it personally when people ask for your opinion or help then do the opposite?  Aside from killin’ ’em with kindness, how else to you try to make sure people listen to you about a topic you are passionate about?  (And if you’re one of those people that I’ve been talking to lately about adopting, this is not directed at you, I’m loving helping you!  This is about those that have already purchased a dog.)

Daisie

Now she’s really getting brave!

Remember, adorable Daisie, featured throughout this post, is available for adoption!  Email me at morganrivera518(at)gmail(dot)com for more information about her.

You Don’t Know Until You Try!

Which is exactly what I told myself when I decided to try out fostering a kitten.  You see, Buddy lurves him some kittens.  Tag might give a little playful chase if one runs past her but she’s lived peacefully with them in the past.  And then there’s Maggie.  Who knows how she will react?

Growing up we always had a cat or two around and I’ve been missing that lately.  And even more so, I’ve been missing fostering.  So my solution to the two problems was to try out fostering a cat!  If it goes horribly awry I have the rescue to fall back on, and if it goes as well as I think it will, then I can become a regular foster again (albeit with a different species, but still, a life is a life people!)

Buddy 3

Buddy, with one of “his” cats. Photos of Daisie soon to come!

I found a little local cat rescue that I felt really good about and got in touch with them.  With the recent intake of multiple cats from a hoarding situation, they were quite thankful for my timing.  On Saturday morning my first little foster kitty, Daisie, arrived.  We stuck the dogs in our bedroom, which is on the opposite side of the house as the other rooms, and took her to “her” room which I had all set up.  We opened the crate and Daisie wouldn’t budge.  The poor girl was terrified!  It’s hard to blame her, she’s been through an awful lot: stray, to hoarding situation, to the rescue where she had to live in a crate in a garage until the could secure a foster, to my house…with loud dogs (even all the way on the other side of the house.)

For the most part on Saturday I left Daisie alone to settle in.  I did go in there and read aloud a couple of times (Game of Thrones in case you care) to help her get used to my presence.  Yesterday she was still very shy so I decided to sleep in “her” room in hopes that asleep I would be less of a threat and she might warm up more.  Boy was I right!  Around 2:00 a.m. she decided to have a dance party.  Okay, that’s not completely true, but Daisie was all sorts of frisky and playful and it was so sweet, even if it was in the middle of the night.  By morning she had decided she was scared of me again though, so it looks like I’ll be sleeping in there again.  Things we do for our fosters, right?

{Take Action Tuesday} Your Community

Last week’s post was more, how do I put this, controversial than I anticipated it would be.  I really can’t imagine anyone will find fault in today’s topic though!  I read through countless articles and petitions over the past week trying to decide what I wanted this week’s post to be about, but after Sunday afternoon, I knew what I wanted to focus on: reaching out to your community.  It’s all about how you can get involved in your community.

Spunky Harley is the Queen of the kennel and she knows it!

Spunky Harley is the Queen of the kennel and she knows it!

It is incredibly easy for one person to make a difference.  My “Take Action” challenge this week is to find one simple way to do something for homeless or needy animals in your community.  Perhaps the simplest way would be to donate money.  I highly, highly recommend looking for a local rescue.  If you don’t know of one, try googling “(name of your city) dog rescue”.  Have a favorite breed?  Search for “(favorite breed) rescue”.  You want to make sure that it is a 501(c)3 because that means they are non-profit, and operate off of donations, with no money going to fund political ventures like lobbying.  Take a few minutes and look over their site.  Often times they will even have a “wish list” of some sort with items that they are in need of.  Who knows, they might just be desperate for blankets and you happen to have quite a few extras that are crowding your hall closet.  You could clean out your closet, make a needed donation, and not even spend a penny!

Daddy

Daddy is quite possibly one of the most eager-to-please dogs I have ever met!

Speaking of blankets, did you know that most Animal Controls are operated on extremely limited funds?  Some only have enough money in the budget for the salaries of officers, utilities, and euthanasia.  You know what’s missing from that list?  Food, toys, veterinary care, and even blankets for cold winter nights.  No, not all are that bad, but some are and they might just be in your back yard (this was true for me, and let me tell you, it was quite a shock when I learned it.)  Try googling “(name of your city) animal control”.  Look for the budget, it’s public record, and you might just be surprised at what you find.  They will appreciate your old blankets.  Or maybe you plan to get your dog a new bed for Christmas?  Give them your old one!  Notice a sale on dog food at your grocery store?  Pick up a bag or two.

Elliot is truly the complete package: smart, handsome, eager to please!

Elliot is truly the complete package: smart, handsome, eager to please!

Another great way to help at Animal Control’s is to volunteer your time, just to do something as simple as walk the dogs.  Did you know that often times the only way the dogs get out of their kennel is if volunteers come and let them out?  It’s a sad reality, but most of the time these places have employees that are overworked.  Simply walking the dogs is sometimes a luxury that they don’t have time to for.  And it’s the dogs that really suffer in these situations.  Imagine the pent up energy and stress that many dogs could be relieved of simply by getting them out into the fresh air and a little exercise.  While you are walking them, maybe practice a few basic commands like “sit”.  Knowing a few tricks, not to mention being calmer and less stressed, is PROVEN to make dogs SIGNIFICANTLY more adoptable!

Joffy

Joffy is something else. SO athletic and smart. If I could take one home, it would’ve been this stud.

Planning to stay home for the holidays?  Been considering the idea of fostering but just not sure if you’re ready for that commitment?  Reach out to the local rescue that you just found and offer to temporary foster for them.  What does that mean?  Often times foster families travel for the holidays and the rescue needs a family to take the dog from anywhere from a couple of days to a couple of weeks while the normal foster is traveling.  The beauty of this is that while fostering is temporary in the sense that the dog will only be with you until it is adopted, there really is no way to know exactly how long that will take.  By “temp” fostering, you will actually know exactly how long you will have the dog!  Plus, it’s is a great way to see if you are actually up for fostering or not.  If you don’t enjoy it, it’s just a few days out of your life, but who knows?  It might inspire you to become a regular foster and save countless lives!

Radar

Little Mr. Radar is 100% goofiness!

       Heard of a friend, coworker, or member of your church that might be down on their luck?  Maybe it’s your cousin’s-hairdresser’s-mailman’s-sister.  Instead of just gossiping over the water cooler, figure out how to get in touch with this person and offer to help.  It might take nothing more than a couple of bags of dog food, some flea preventative, and help finding a veterinary clinic to keep a family intact and a dog out of a shelter.  Can’t afford to buy these things yourself but still want to help this person?  Reach out to that rescue that you found and see if they would be willing to help you help that person.  Seriously.  It is SO much easier to help a family that already loves their dog keep it safely in their home rather than hope to find that dog a new home after the family has turned the dog over to a shelter where it can suffer emotional trauma.

Atlas

Atlas is mellow and easy to please. Just needs a little love and he’s happy!

None of those sounding up your alley?  What about contacting that rescue and asking for a printable version of their foster brochure to pass out at work or leave on the counter at your local coffee shop?  Maybe they have printable flyers you could hang at your favorite pet store.  What about asking for a magnet to put on your cars thus rendering yourself a mobile advertisement?

Joffy

I dare you to look into Joffy’s eyes and not fall in love.

Still nothing jumping out at you?  How about the all-time easiest way ever to help out: hit the share button!  If you live in the northern part of Florida, you could share this post which is full of adoptable dogs.  Share a picture from the Facebook page of the local rescue you found.  But please, keep try to keep it local.  Everyone wants to share that picture of a terribly sad dog located on the opposite side of the United States, but think about it, if you are seeing it, how many other people have already seen it as well?  This is called “going viral”.  Sure, it’s fantastic for that dog but lots of times by the time you have seen that picture, the dog has already been adopted!  I’m not saying never to do it, just keep in mind that there are so many dogs in need that never make it to the lime light because their story just doesn’t have the drama to “go viral”.  This certainly doesn’t make them any less deserving though, does it?  Remember, sharing is caring (not to mention quick, easy, and free!)  Take action!

If any of these gorgeous dogs caught your eye, please email me at morganrivera518(at)gmail(dot)com.  They would like nothing more than a home of their very own for the holidays! 

Good Deeds

Hey Friends! My BBF (best blogging friend!) had an awesome rescue over the weekend. Check it out above and if you are able, please, please, pleeeease donate to his very necessary surgery (I know I will be!) I love starting my Monday off with a heartwarming story like this. Hope you enjoy it as well!

And Foster Makes Five

Some of you may have been following our eventful weekend via social media, but for those of you who did not, I will try to start from the beginning.

Friday afternoon I received a facebook message from an acquaintance from high school. She told me that she had a pit bull that had been given to her because the owner was going to kill it for having pulled down the curtains. She said that it had been badly abused, and believed that it was suffering from a broken leg. She wanted to help him, but did not have the means to do so. She saw me posting about dogs all of the time, and wondered if I might be able to help. She said that he was less than one year old and endlessly sweet. I felt so much compassion of course for the dog, but also for someone who…

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