Earlier today, I looked at posts on a neighborhood group I belong to and one of them caught my eye. One of the members found themselves with a change of circumstance that would require them to be away from home for days at a time. Because of that, the OP decided the best thing to do was try to rehome their beloved dog. You could tell from what the OP posted that this was not an easy decision nor was it one made in haste. In fact, the only reason they came to the mailing group was because the new home that had been found for the dog had fallen through.
Imagine if you will how difficult it must have been then for the OP to suddenly be barraged with a series of messages telling them what a horrible person they were for “getting rid of” their dog. The OP was condemned for not treating the dog as one would a child in the same situation. It isn’t as if the OP was turning the dog into the local shelter or pound. Instead, the OP was trying to find a loving home for the dog.
But that wasn’t good enough for these rabid folks who wouldn’t hear any of his very reasonable explanations. They mocked him when he tried discussing how difficult the decision had been to make and how he made it only with the best interest of the dog in mind. These people who didn’t know him or his circumstance decided it was their place to condemn him for doing what I hope most of us would do — consider what was best for the dog.
This wasn’t a case where he grew tired of the animal or the responsibilities of being a dog owner. He knew he wouldn’t be there to care for the dog, to give it the love he needed. He is a supporter of different animal charities. He worried about where this dog he had cared for for so long would go and if his new owners would love him as he had.
He wasn’t going to turn him into a kill shelter.
Now, I’m an animal lover. I grew up with animals and have always had at least one animal and usually more than that at any time. Right now, I have a dog and two cats and, when my old lady cat dies, I will get another animal, if not two more. But I also hope that I have the integrity this gentleman had to look at what is best for the animals and not what will make me feel best should there come a time when I have a change in circumstances.
What I wanted to do was ask these idiots who attacked the dog owner what they thought about how I came into possession of my dog. He, along with one other dog, had been in a retiree’s home. Their owner could no longer live on his own and had to give up both dogs when he moved to a care facility. The dogs finally found their way to a rescue group that brought them to the Metroplex from Oklahoma. I would have adopted both of them but one was adopted not five minutes before I arrived at the adoption fair. But they were given up and it quickly became clear the dogs were companion dogs. Even now, more than a year after we adopted Bentley, he has to be with one of us whenever he is awake. He is happiest when he is touching someone.
His owner could have just turned him in to a kill shelter instead of placing him with a group that would get them with another rescue group that would not only foster the dogs but keep them until a new home could be found. Still, under the approach of the rabid idiots on the mailing list, Bentley’s original owner shouldn’t have taken action to move to a care facility that wouldn’t let him keep the dogs. No reason was good enough in their eyes to justify giving up a pet.
Sorry, but if your circumstances change where you can’t care for an animal the way you should, the only responsible thing to do is find them a new, loving home. I applaud the fellow who made the very difficult decision not to let his dag stay home alone for days on end, or to be boarded for days on end. I feel for him and am glad he has found a new home for his dog.
As for those who attacked him, I hope they never find themselves having to make similar decisions. Or, if they do, I hope they remember every word of condemnation they threw out so easily and seek out this gentleman and offer him their abject apologies. Not that they will. Those who are so sure of themselves rarely admit they might have been in error.
Now I think I’ll play with Bentley Dog and make sure to give the cats, Thena and BratCat, a scritch or three.