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New Orleans dogs displacing local dogs



 
 
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  #1  
Old October 4th 05, 04:17 PM
Kyler Laird
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Default New Orleans dogs displacing local dogs

At the risk of sounding rhetorical...

Does anyone else find it counterproductive to spend *amazing* resources
to treat and transport injured unclaimed dogs from the New Orleans (NO)
area? I'm especially struck by our local situation. I recently spent
some time at an "adoptathon" (with our foster Husky) which was attended
by some NO dogs. (The NO dogs were featured on TV that night. I don't
begrudge them; it *is* news.) Then last week I hosted two dogs from
the shelter overnight because the shelter had a large intake (12) that
day and were going to start euthanizing while many of their normal
foster families were at work and couldn't be contacted.

Then this week I was contacted about flying an unclaimed Rottweiler in
an oxygen tent from LSU to MSU.

I'm trying to look at unclaimed dogs as a commodity - the dogs coming
from the NO area are no "better" than those being euthanized in our
shelter. On the whole, they're probably even "worse" because they
often require significant medical care.

If we say that the NO dogs are equivalent to the dogs being euthanized
here, it's like we're spending thousands of dollars to bring dogs here
to euthanize them. I would much rather see that money go toward spay/
neuter, education, etc. programs.

So...I suspect that I'm too far into this line of thinking to clearly
see the other side of it on my own. I tried gently asking for some
help understanding it from someone involved in care of a NO animal but
that only brought a naive response about dogs "deserving care." (I'll
be more sympathetic when we stop euthanizing good healthy dogs.)

Surely there's someone here who can articulate what I'm missing. Why
is it that we value the lives of dogs caught in a hurricane so much
more than the lives of other dogs who end up at shelters?

(Note that I'm trying to be clear that I'm talking about unclaimed
pets who are *not* destined for reunification with their families. I
view family members in a vastly different light.)

Or is this just a typical "puppy in a well" story? (You know - stray
puppy gets caught in a hole, entire town shows up to spend amazing
resources to extricate it, 20 people line up to adopt it, and the
local shelter puts down a whole litter of healthy puppies because it
lacks the resources to care for them and no one wants to adopt them.)

Thank you.

--kyler
  #2  
Old October 4th 05, 04:49 PM
Victoria Neff
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Default

In article ,
Kyler Laird wrote:
At the risk of sounding rhetorical...

Surely there's someone here who can articulate what I'm missing. Why
is it that we value the lives of dogs caught in a hurricane so much
more than the lives of other dogs who end up at shelters?

Or is this just a typical "puppy in a well" story? (You know - stray
puppy gets caught in a hole, entire town shows up to spend amazing
resources to extricate it, 20 people line up to adopt it, and the
local shelter puts down a whole litter of healthy puppies because it
lacks the resources to care for them and no one wants to adopt them.)

Thank you.

--kyler


I think it's the puppy-in-a-well thing.

I mean -- the same thing is happening with the displaced people. I read
a story in the paper (so I don't know if it's true) that some construction
outfit locally (southeast Michigan) offered jobs to displaced New Orleans
people. Whichever agency they called (locally, again) told them that they
didn't have any NO construction workers, but had *local* out-of-work
construction workers, and the construction company said "no"...............

While I think it is excellent that people are being given housing, jobs,
etc, -- but -- what about the people in non-affected parts of the country, who
are in the same housing-/work-challenged state, but who are being passed over
as help is offered to those from other places...................

I've been involved in rescue for a long time now (not hands-on, but in more
a facilitator role), and it is very clear to me that a critical factor is
a dog (say) touching a particular person's heartstrings. It can be a story,
it can be a pic, but if a person's heart is touched, that person may do
amazing things to help that dog (drive from Boston to Houston to adopt it,
say.....). Even though thousands of wonderful dogs lived closer to that
Boston person's home than the dog they just HAD to bring into their own life.

(side note -- I am VERY clear that the web has saved thousands and thousands
of animals, by making it easier for the right person to see the right animal
and ACT. And I think that the heartstrings thing DOES cause people to take
animals when they weren't actively looking. I have one more dog than I mean
to have, and it's because of the web............... :-) )

-- Vicki Neff, chair, CorgiAid grants review committee

http://corgiaid.org Financial support for rescue of Corgi and Corgi mix dogs.

  #3  
Old October 4th 05, 09:59 PM
Michael A. Ball
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Default

On Tue, 04 Oct 2005 15:17:02 GMT, Kyler Laird wrote:

At the risk of sounding rhetorical...

Does anyone else find it counterproductive to spend *amazing* resources
to treat and transport injured unclaimed dogs from the New Orleans (NO)
area?..


Katrina and Rita have presented us all with a vast number of difficult situations and
questions; IMO, much like 9-11. I've tried to put myself, and my dogs, in the place of
those in the storm damaged gulf. So far, the only thing I'm sure of is that I would not
leave my dogs alive to survive or die on their own.

If the rescued dogs are representative of what I see here, very few will have a microchip,
tattoo or tag. Many will not have any sort of collar; so, virtually no way to reunite them
with their owners. The fact that dogs and owners might have gone in opposite directions
certain complicates things even more.

The local shelter stays so full, that any dog that was quartered here would spell death
for other, local dogs--some of which might stand a chance of adoption otherwise.

Some objective and qualified person should euthanize all unadoptable dogs[ and probably
all unidentified dogs], in lieu of rescue. An attempt should be made to reunite owners
with dogs bearing identification. Sadly, many of those folks won't be in position to
accept the responsibility of a dog--not even their own dog. I can imagine all of the
hearts being broken again, just when the healing process might have begun.

Beyond that, I think all rescued dogs should just become a part of the mix and handled
accordingly. This is definitely a case where I'd welcome a better solution.

On TV, I saw an evacuee put a small, white poodle (or some fluffy dog) down on the ground,
just before stepping onto an escape bus. I can only imagine how they both felt.


Experience is something you don't get--until just after you need it.
  #4  
Old October 5th 05, 02:57 AM
sighthounds & siberians
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Posts: n/a
Default

On Tue, 04 Oct 2005 15:17:02 GMT, Kyler Laird
wrote:

At the risk of sounding rhetorical...

Does anyone else find it counterproductive to spend *amazing* resources
to treat and transport injured unclaimed dogs from the New Orleans (NO)
area? I'm especially struck by our local situation. I recently spent
some time at an "adoptathon" (with our foster Husky) which was attended
by some NO dogs. (The NO dogs were featured on TV that night. I don't
begrudge them; it *is* news.) Then last week I hosted two dogs from
the shelter overnight because the shelter had a large intake (12) that
day and were going to start euthanizing while many of their normal
foster families were at work and couldn't be contacted.

Then this week I was contacted about flying an unclaimed Rottweiler in
an oxygen tent from LSU to MSU.

I'm trying to look at unclaimed dogs as a commodity - the dogs coming
from the NO area are no "better" than those being euthanized in our
shelter. On the whole, they're probably even "worse" because they
often require significant medical care.

If we say that the NO dogs are equivalent to the dogs being euthanized
here, it's like we're spending thousands of dollars to bring dogs here
to euthanize them. I would much rather see that money go toward spay/
neuter, education, etc. programs.

So...I suspect that I'm too far into this line of thinking to clearly
see the other side of it on my own. I tried gently asking for some
help understanding it from someone involved in care of a NO animal but
that only brought a naive response about dogs "deserving care." (I'll
be more sympathetic when we stop euthanizing good healthy dogs.)

Surely there's someone here who can articulate what I'm missing. Why
is it that we value the lives of dogs caught in a hurricane so much
more than the lives of other dogs who end up at shelters?

(Note that I'm trying to be clear that I'm talking about unclaimed
pets who are *not* destined for reunification with their families. I
view family members in a vastly different light.)

Or is this just a typical "puppy in a well" story? (You know - stray
puppy gets caught in a hole, entire town shows up to spend amazing
resources to extricate it, 20 people line up to adopt it, and the
local shelter puts down a whole litter of healthy puppies because it
lacks the resources to care for them and no one wants to adopt them.)

Thank you.

--kyler


It's a combination of pity and sensationalism, I think. I'm sure
you've encountered it before - - the worse off the animal is, and the
more sad the story of what happened to it, the more people there are
lined up wanting to adopt it. I've heard that some shelters are
mixing New Orleans dogs in with others to avoid this sort of thing.
Perhaps the solution for your shelter is to make up a really sad story
of abuse, neglect, or natural disaster for each of your adoptables.

Mustang Sally

  #5  
Old October 7th 05, 01:04 AM
Suja
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Posts: n/a
Default

Kyler Laird wrote:

Surely there's someone here who can articulate what I'm missing. Why
is it that we value the lives of dogs caught in a hurricane so much
more than the lives of other dogs who end up at shelters?


Part of it is that the NO dogs are a "Story". A rescue is more likely
to receive publicity, donations, volunteers etc. if they are shown to be
going above and beyond the call of duty to save the dogs.

Or is this just a typical "puppy in a well" story?


There is definitely that. Some people want the dog who made it on TV or
is part of the news. Not that long ago, some idiotic woman dragged a
dog along by car (a JRT). People were lining out the door to adopt the
dog, and the shelter received lots of donations to help the poor puppy
out. The rest of the dogs - that just happens every day, no one wrote
any stories about it, so no interest.

On another board I visit, someone had asked for information on how to go
about adopting Katrina dogs. This person was willing to spend whatever
it took to fly the dog over. I suggested that they adopt some poor dog
who is local, and send the money they saved on the flight to some of the
organizations involved in the rescue effort along the Gulf coast. I
don't think that the suggestion went down too well.

Suja
 




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