The Less Adoptable Dog
If Chérie, our foster pup, had found herself in a shelter making tough decisions about how to use their resources, she would not have made it out alive.
She had a few strikes against her. Chérie
- was in heat, necessitating a more challenging spaying surgery
- feared everyone and everything and was nearly unapproachable
- could not empty her bladder unless she felt safe, which was more often in the house
- had an ugly skin condition
- had suffered a major injury (hit by a car?) that went untreated and permanently altered her legs and gait
Luckily for Chérie, the Tompkins County SPCA is committed to finding a forever home for every pet in their care. Their greatest gift to Chérie, besides getting her out of her earlier bad situation, was time.
The More Adoptable Dog
Time allowed us to see that Chérie is not really a less adoptable dog at all. In fact, she’s probably more adoptable. Why? She
- is less than two years old which gives her forever family many years to enjoy her company.
- is easy to walk with a harness and leash. Her injury doesn’t keep her from having fun but it does mean she won’t pull you off your feet.
- has no bad habits like counter surfing or stress barking.
- loves other dogs and has excellent doggy manners.
- is very cuddly and affectionate.
- has modest exercise needs—a morning walk and some play time during the day keeps her happy.
- is very healthy, no food allergies or sensitivities of any kind.
- makes smart choices when she’s scared. Yes, as much confidence as she has gained, Chérie will always be a shy girl. But she reacts to scary things by sitting in her crate calmly until she feels more brave.
- sleeps in. Yes, you read that right. Chérie sleeps quietly in her crate until you’re ready to get up!
It has taken time to learn all these things about Chérie. And it’s probably true of other “less adoptable” dogs, that are older, have behavioral issues, or health problems.
Maybe all it takes to make a less adoptable dog more adoptable is time, a low-stress temporary home while waiting, and for potential adopters to learn that there is no such thing as a less adoptable pet. There’s only finding the pet who is more adoptable for you.
Support Chérie, Enter to Win an Amazon Gift Card
Support me, Honey, and Chérie in the Tompkins County SPCA March for the Animals and you’ll be entered for a chance to win a $20 Amazon gift card. Support the leaders in no-kill, open admission sheltering and you’ll be supporting a movement whose time has come.
It’s Adopt a Less Adoptable Pet Week, sponsored by Petfinder. Have any or all of your pets been considered less adoptable?