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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here is a letter my cousin wrote to the local paper in my hometown of Oak Ridge, TN. She believes her cat , Mr. Man, has been killed by coyotes but she still keeps checking all the animal shelters in hopes he will show up. This really makes me sad but I hope they put it in the paper. I just wanted to share it with everyone.

Letter
Author(s): The Oak Ridger Date: November 5, 2007 Section: Opinion
Putting older animals
in shelter ‘disgusting’

To The Editor:
Recently my cat of five years vanished during the day while I was at work. My search for him has been a long and desperate one. I have made many trips to the Oak Ridge Animal Shelter, in hopes that he would be turned in by someone. With each trip, I left the shelter with a heavy heart. This was not only because my cat had not been turned in, but because there are so m any other animals that have been turned in.

During my visits to the shelter I have seen animals that were once family pets. You can tell this because they have been turned in with their collars and blankets, and they have a look of hope in their eyes that you are their owner. Some of the dogs turned in are large in size. Some of the dogs are very late in age. Looking at them one knows they do not understand what has happened to them. They do not understand why their owner turned in "man's best friend."

Upon my most recent visit I encountered a man turning in his large dog. The dog was a year and a half in age. The man stated he could not handle the dog any longer. Due to his age he was not able to give this animal the attention it needed. This was a beautiful dog. I watched as it was placed into its cage. The dog was shaking with fear. The dog stood looking after his owner, who so cruelly left him witho ut a care in the world. The man then stated to me that he hated dropping this dog off, but he didn't know what else to do.

As I am an animal lover, I had to question this man. I asked what he had done to try and find this dog a home. I asked if newspaper ads were placed. I asked if he had asked friends and family. The reply was a simple no. The man stated that newspaper ads were far too expensive and that the dog had come to him for free. As well, the man stated that no one he knew wanted a dog of that size. I was forced to look this man in the eye and say, "Shame on you."

There is such an onslaught of people who get an animal and decide after a period of time that they are too expensive to feed. They are too hard to handle. They need too much attention. They have children and don't want a dog around the baby. They move some place that doesn't allow pets. This leaves me asking WHY? Why did you get the a nimal in the first place?
I realize this puppy was cute and cuddly. Did you not understand it was going to grow? Did you not realize it was going to eat? Did you not know you would have to give this animal attention?

It disgusts me to know in an area like Oak Ridge that people are not better educated about pets. It disgusts me that there is so little regard for the life of one of God's creatures. I am a rescuer of all animals. Over the years, I have had numerous animals come into my care. Each one of these animals has been fixed, given shots, and any training they would need to go to a new home. Some of them I have had for long periods of time. Never once have I turned an animal into the shelter because it was too hard. I kept trying. Eventually I found the home that was perfect for both the animal and the new owner.

I want each and everyone of the people who have turned in an older animal to the shelter to read this letter. I want you to know that you are cruel. I want you to know that your older or large animal has a slimmer chance of being adopted. Most of all, I want you to remember next time you hold that sweet little puppy, that you possibly sentenced to death your former one. I want you to know that you do not deserve to be a pet owner. And most of all remember, "You" were not dog’s best friend.

K. Dypolt
 

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It's a very powerful and sad letter. Thank you for sharing it with us
 

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This letter made me cry.

As someone who has been an animal lover from day one and grew up with a dog I cannot understand how someone could just give up a family pet like that. I understand if an animal belonged to someone who was elderly and could not take care of themselves or had to move to a home, but to just give up a member of your family like that makes so sense to me.

If i were to have a pet dog, I would only look for apartments and/or housing that would allow my dog. In fact that would be one of my search criteria.

People really need to put thought into getting a pet and realize that they need care and love just like a child. I have known many people who have dogs and then have children and the relationship between the dog and the child turns out to be great!

I have a pet bird at the moment who is living with my parents in Canada until I get a place of my own here in Dallas. I was not able to bring him with me originally because I am living with family and they have a Jack Russell would would probably eat him. But there was no way I was going to give up my bird. My parents love him and agreed to take care of him until I can find my own place, get his papers and then the next time I visit them I will bring him back with me.
 

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OMG, what a sad but powerful letter. She needs to send that to EVERY newspaper in the country!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I have a former feral cat (found her when she very small) that I don't even really like and I would never dream of taking her to the pound. She still gets good food, gets to see the vet and gets what affection she will allow me to give her. She is really mean most of the time but I would NEVER take her to the pound because I am responsible for her and I love her even if I don't like her all that much.
 

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Good for her! Great letter! I worked at a shelter and it's disgusting to see a dozen or more people come in every day (sometimes they even bring the kids!) who have no shame whatsoever about ditching their "baby". The two types that irritated me the most were
1) Cryers - If you care that much, don't do it! One day a lady brought in a purebred basset and absolutely bawled when I took him to the back. She left him because she was "moving". Later that day he was picked up by a local basset rescue group. Why the hell didn't she just call the rescue herself? She probably could have even found him a home if she had even tried!
2) People who drop off 8-12 month old dogs - Puppies get adopted fast, usually within just a few days, but for some reason as soon as they hit 6-7 months old they become not so desirable. These selfish dickwads keep the litter while they are all cute and cuddly (in the backyard of course, no housebreaking at all!) and then dump them off once they get just a little big. If they had brought them in just a few weeks earlier they would have had a home in no time!
I could go on and on about the jackasses I saw come in that place. As far as I'm concerned people who leave their pets at a kill shelter are the scum of the earth.
 

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I really do think that people should have to be approved before they are allowed to own a dog. It makes me sick that people will just give up their dog to the pound simply because they "changed their mind" or the dog "doesn't suit their living situation" anymore. I've had to keep my dog with me throughout university and graduate school, as my parents couldn't/wouldn't take care of him. It hasn't been the easiest thing in the world, as I live by myself and work long hours and often have to make trips home just to take him out; and also, I have lost out on living in a lot of really cool apartments, because pets weren't allowed, and have lived in some pretty crappy places, simply because pets were allowed. A dog's owner means the word to it, and no person has the right to ruin a dogs life for their own selfish reasons.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Good for her! Great letter! I worked at a shelter and it's disgusting to see a dozen or more people come in every day (sometimes they even bring the kids!) who have no shame whatsoever about ditching their "baby". The two types that irritated me the most were
1) Cryers - If you care that much, don't do it! One day a lady brought in a purebred basset and absolutely bawled when I took him to the back. She left him because she was "moving". Later that day he was picked up by a local basset rescue group. Why the hell didn't she just call the rescue herself? She probably could have even found him a home if she had even tried!
2) People who drop off 8-12 month old dogs - Puppies get adopted fast, usually within just a few days, but for some reason as soon as they hit 6-7 months old they become not so desirable. These selfish dickwads keep the litter while they are all cute and cuddly (in the backyard of course, no housebreaking at all!) and then dump them off once they get just a little big. If they had brought them in just a few weeks earlier they would have had a home in no time!
I could go on and on about the jackasses I saw come in that place. As far as I'm concerned people who leave their pets at a kill shelter are the scum of the earth.
You are a wonderful person for working in a shelter. I really mean that. I couldn't do it because I would cry every single day. I am not that strong when it comes to animals. I am also very vindictive as well so I would probably get peoples addresses and do all kinds of shit to fuck with them.

Here is a new book that just came out yesterday. Its about a rescue dog that totally changed someone’s life and how devastated he was when the dog had to be put to sleep. A large chunk of money made from this book will go to animal shelters.

Amazon.com: Rescuing Sprite: A Dog Lover's Story of Joy and Anguish: Books: Mark R. Levin
 

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what a sad letter :( I agree with everything written though.

3 of my cats are from the humane society and the fourth one was found at a friends house and she did have a previous home (was chipped) and clearly her former family didnt care enough to check around for her.

Every so often someone will tell me " Oh, I have to take muffins to the pound cuz we just had a baby" or "Muffins got too big" "muffins peed on the floor"
People are such idiots. Everybody is so now now now me me me, nobody takes the time to care for anything.
 

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That is the most profound thing that I have read in a very long time. Kudos to the author!! I know, because my husband is in the military, that the pet-dumping phenomenon is especially prevalent in the military communities. This saddens and shames me greatly. Yesterday I saw a quote that I'd like to share. It sums up my feelings on pets:

"Dogs are not our whole word, but they make our world whole"

I cannot image undertaking this journey called life without the blessing of my canine companions. May those shameless pet-dumpers rot in hell.
 

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^ please share!! We'll lynch!
 

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:cry
I want a dog so much but I know that my life right now could not accommodate a dog. I hate hate hate ppl who live in apartments who have no pets rule who disregard this and go out and get the cute little dog to fit into their bags only to be found out by the landlord who give them the ultimatum of move out or get rid of the dog and so many times they just get rid of the dog. I HATE HATE HATE that animals are treated like an accessory or a thing and not a life!
 

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This makes me so sad :( What a great letter. I wanna go get some new kitties right now, but i don't know if my kitty will tolerate anyone new. I really want to get some older cats who otherwise don't get a fair chance :(
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
:cry
I want a dog so much but I know that my life right now could not accommodate a dog. I hate hate hate ppl who live in apartments who have no pets rule who disregard this and go out and get the cute little dog to fit into their bags only to be found out by the landlord who give them the ultimatum of move out or get rid of the dog and so many times they just get rid of the dog. I HATE HATE HATE that animals are treated like an accessory or a thing and not a life!
We can thank Paris Hilton for that.:shake
 

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Pam, know what? I thought the exact same thing ! I had 3 cats and then found the girl kitty and was so scared they would hate her. Turns out they LOVED her and she was the one batting them away!
You could possibly do some fostering and then youll see how your kitties interact with a new cat, best of all if they react well you can keep the foster:)
 
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