Meet Temp. This sweet pea is a (guesstimated) 6 month to a year old boxer/pitbull mix who is all cuddles and kisses not to mention, a stunner. Who wouldn’t want to snuggle with this guy?
Well, since he was found abandoned and tied to a fence post in Park Slope, Brooklyn, I am guessing someone.
Temp was abandoned by a professional dog walker who found him in early November running around Prospect Park. She took him to a shelter and they told her they were too full to take him in. She then, thankfully, had him neutered and vaccinated to help him be placed, but the shelter said that they were still too full. Apparently feeling that she was out of options, she tied him to a fence post and hoped for the best. Three hours later, a woman found him and took him to the same shelter which told her the same thing, they were too full.
Obviously, the story of Temp is upsetting to me as I am sad someone abandoned him in the first place and then even more saddened that the person attempting to help him felt so out of options that he was left tied to a fence post. So, the real question is, what does a person do when a shelter is too full and cannot take on another animal?
Realistically, this happens. Unfortunately, the rate at which animals are adopted or picked up doesn’t keep pace with the rate that they are abandoned or the rate at which they reproduce (such as the case with feral cats). So, shelters quickly become too full to responsibly care for more animals. Before you immediately give up and tie the pet to a fence post, which should never, ever be an option, there are other avenues you can try.
- Use your personal family and social network to see if anyone can accept the pet. Not only is your extended family a great resource, but remember they also know people, so sending out an email asking for help could easily trigger someone to remember that someone in their lives mentioned to them that they were thinking about taking in a new pet. In addition, with social networking systems like Facebook and Twitter, sharing information with mass amounts of people is even easier. In addition, you can help ensure that your stray ends up with good people as opposed to hoping that it does.
- Don’t stop at just one shelter. With websites like Adopt a Pet, PetFinder, and the ASPCA it’s easier than ever to find groups and shelters that make for a suitable foster situation until the animal can be found a more permanent home. There are often way more shelters and rescue groups in your area than we often realize. Please take the time to look.
- Talk to your local pet store. Your local pet store is like a sewing circle for people who have animals. The more you go, the more you end up talking to the people that work there and the more they get to know you and your pets. So, if they know you well, it’s safe to assume that they know other customers well too. There is always the chance that they may have heard of someone looking to adopt or a family looking to foster. Don’t be afraid to ask. Plus, my local pet store is always littered with flyers announcing a million and one pet-related items. If you take just a moment to read them, perhaps you’ll find something or someone that can help you in this situation. You can also post your own fliers announcing that you’re looking for a home for your new stray.
- Talk to your neighborhood vet. It’s a vet’s job to be in the know of the pet scene. Plus, they genuinely have the animal’s best interest at heart and will help you figure out a better course of action than just leaving the animal to fend for itself. They also are usually equipped with microchip wands that they can use to see if the animal has a microchip. In some cases stray animals are simply lost, and you could be part of an awesome reunion!
- Adopt the pet yourself. Okay, so you have one thousand reasons why you can’t adopt a pet right now, but you are the one that found it, so perhaps the universe thought otherwise. Take a moment to consider all that an animal can add to your life instead of immediately thinking about all the things you think it will subtract from. Trust this, even if they can’t say it, pets are grateful for your love and warmth. Bringing one in from the outside to give it a meal and a warm home can be a bigger payout than you could possibly imagine.
So, with all of this information in mind, I take to my first bullet point. If anyone is interested in adopting Temp or can help him find a great home, please email temp [at] pawesome.net and we will be in touch.
Temp is described by the person who currently has him with her family as really sweet, loves to snuggle, and was very gentle and reserved around the two kids (ages 2 and 4), including when the 2-year-old grabbed his tail and pulled it and shoved a toothbrush in his face. He is energetic and playful and needs a home where he can get a lot of daily exercise and play. He is housebroken but needs to go out, at least for a quick pee, every few hours since he is still a puppy. His demeanor is very much that of a puppy, very playful and energetic, loves to look for attention and belly rubs. He is fast and strong but learns commands quickly, he just needs someone to show him some discipline and be the alpha so he doesn’t try to take over!