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Not All That Seek to Rehome a Pet... are Willing to Lift a Finger

 

Funny title huh?

Funny life sometimes, funny people sometimes... 


    On the same day this week, I had 2 different cat owners reach out to me for assistance with rehoming their respective cats. 


    The first, a young lady had sent a brief email on Sunday that went like this (literally copied and pasted here):


 Help to re-home my mom cat
Your message: Hello my name is Summer and my mom has cancer and no longer can take care of her cat


As you may notice, there's no info about the cat, no picture, and no contact number. -So I emailed her back, requesting a pic of the cat, and her phone number. -She sent me the info., and followed up later on Sunday evening, asking when I'd call her. ~So there was an implied sense of urgency to the situation. I nicely responded that I'd call her on Monday morning (I try very hard to not do too much rescue stuff on Sundays) to explain how we could help out in this particular situation.


Here's the sweet little kitty



On Monday morning before 9:00 a.m., I received an email from this young lady, asking about when I'd call, I responded that I'd call her within the hour, and I did.

So I called her, and explained how we prefer to do things in such cases:

-have the pet stay put with the owner while we find the perfect adopter
-reasons being: this is less-traumatic on the pet since it's not moved around so much (especially cats HATE to be moved), it keeps us from having to find a foster (it can be hard to find fosters), especially for cats, and we have our own 2 cats here, so I don't typically (personally) foster cats

-then I reassured her that, with this particular cat, a female orange tabby (which is unique believe it or not), should be adopted into a loving home within about 10 days.

-I'd be able to go there within 24 hours of our chat to take video and pics of the cat, to list her on Petfinder.com, and I'd email SNIP that same day to get the cat scheduled for spayed


  That's what I had to offer. -I could help out. I would get the cat spayed, vaccinated and handle everything... going to get the cat to take her to her eventual meet and greet, and adoption, or having the adopter go there to meet and adopt if they'd be ok with that. Click. The call dropped. Or did it? I didn't know. I texted her, and said the call must've dropped.


She wrote back a few minutes later that her phone had died, and that it was charging, saying she'd get back to me later. -O.K.


I heard nothing else of this young lady, until Tuesday, at which point she submitted another request for help with her mother's cat via the website, presumably not realizing that I was the same person she'd spoken with the day before. I responded to that email:


Hello There, I believe we've already spoken. -I'm the one that told you how it'd all work yesterday, and your phone went dead, etc.

    

    Then, nothing again.  -No response, no nothing.  So, she needs help, wants help, I was, and am, willing to help... but just not in the way she wants help, I'm guessing.  She's looking for someone to say, 'yes, where do you live? I can go get the cat right now.'  And I cannot do that.  If I did that for 1/2 the people that reached out to this rescue, I'd have a house-full of pets, and be bordering on hoarder status.    



    Cat-Person #2 literally called within a minute of the dropped call from cat-person #1 of this week. 


    "Yes, I'm getting ready to go out of the country for several months and can't keep my cat. Can you guys take him in?" the young lady asked. 

     "Hmm, I was literally just on a phone call with another young lady that can't keep her cat," I said. 

     And proceeded to offer her a summary of how we typically handle rehoming cases.  She said, "I can't do that.  I need him gone by Wednesday.  -It was Monday." 

    "Sorry then, we can't help, we're at capacity right now," and we said goodbye. 

    A couple of minutes later, I felt guilty.  Maybe we could help... I could at least try to find a cat foster, I did after all have one person come to mind. 

    So I texted her, requesting a pic of the cat, and told her I'd try to get a foster for him since she was leaving the country in a couple of days.  She sent me a pic of the cat, and a bit about him. 

Cat #2


    Good news, I told her.  I had successfully located a foster for her cat!  We could pick him up before Wednesday, take him to his foster... way out in the East End (at least 20 miles from my home).  And I told her that some modest donation for time and energy invested on getting the cat to where he's going, finding him an adopter, etc., would be appropriate.

    -Nothing. Crickets. 

    After a few minutes (I had my foster involved that had said yes in waiting here too), I wrote again to say, 'So, do you want us to take the cat?'

   "No thank you. I will find someone else to take him." she replied.

    Wow.  Just wow.  If you 'have someone else to take him,' then why did you call me?  


    After back to back situations like these guys, it can feel like I'm treading tires in mud.  It's a mix of guilt for wondering if I didn't seem helpful 'enough,' for neglecting my 9 year old son to his video game vice while I'm talking with these people, and of course with frustration mixed in too. 

    Why I decided to blog on this, I really don't know.  I guess it's because on our social media and what not, I share most of our adoptions and positive outcomes.  But it's also important to show what goes on behind the scenes for a small, foster-based rescue on the day-to-day... then you'll likely realize why not many people do it, why the burnout rate is so high, and why I'm constantly working to set healthy boundaries and limitations to prevent burnout for myself and this rescue.  I've experienced burnout due to compassion fatigue when I worked at Louisville Metro Animal Services and Miami Dade Animal Services, and it is not pretty. Trust me.  -Just ask my husband, or my dad, or anyone that was close to me during that time.  

    So, that's not an option now for this rescue.  -I'm in this for the long haul, and our primary mission remains to: offer a safe, reliable option for pets in planning.  We want you to make a will and include your pets, and name us as your pet's primary caregiver, or backup caregiver, with an associated provision. 


 
    However, along the way it's unfathomable to not try to help as many pets as possible... of people in crisis, people that don't want their pets or shouldn't have them, or of course, our favorite category to help out... shelter pets (after the pet plan pets of course- pets in wills and trusts). 




    Want to help us #keepcalmandrescueon? Feel free to submit a secure, tax-deductible donation via this PayPal customized link: https://www.paypal.com/donate/?hosted_button_id=ZAGMMWSRW2K7C 
and I promise to send you a donation receipt for your tax records. 


Best,


Jessica
Owner and Primary Pet Caregiver 

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