I just saw a pic on facebook of a shelter asking for someone to adopt two sister dogs who had been at their shelter for 14 years. One now has cancer. My heart melted. But seriously, the dog was super adorable. I question how she hasn't been adopted in 14 years. So sad. https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?...type=3&theater
"People ask me 'will I remember them if I make it'. I ask them 'will you remember me if I don't?'"
Sad, but not so uncommon. We adopted our most recent cat "Fat Olivia" from PetSmart this past Spring. Turns out she'd been a crate resident of the local shelter for a full YEAR. Poor thing. She went into the shelter weighing 10 pounds; came out weighing just shy of 20.
This is why I hate no kills. They should have been euth'ed a long time ago. Obviously they should have been adopted out into loving forever homes but if the shelter lacked the resources to find those homes or to transfer them, then it is impossibly inhumane to keep them locked up for life because it is less "mean" than euthanizing. Animals live in the moment. Hopefully through this facebook movement they will find forever homes but those poor animals deserved homes years ago.
It is a tough one. These no-kill facilities vary greatly, from strictly custodial care of the animals, to a relatively enriched environment with lots of attention, walks, training, etc.
I marvel that people would choose to acquire animals from some of these facilities, unless they got to know them personally and could not resist. I know, once you've looked into those eyes and those faces, it can be very tough to walk away!
But, if people are thinking objectively about their choices, and have the opportunity to acquire a puppy from a responsible breeder from a breed they have researched or have had before and know fits into what they want, it seems unlikely they would adopt an animal who had been warehoused in a very restricted environment, no matter how sorry you felt for it......you can't save them all.
But on the other hand, I truly know it can be tough to resist certain ones.
Sometimes they don't try or they just want to keep the animals around. When I was working with local rescues, they were constantly doing a bit of both and many of the people in the organizations had hoarder mentalities that they justified by attaching themselves to the rescue group.
Sad story, but WTF? If you've owned the dog for YEARS, it is now officially your dog, not your "foster" or "adoptable pet." Even if "you" is an organization rather than an invidual. I find it hard to fault being unable to euthanize healthy dogs who just didn't have the luck to find the right circumstances in under a year - but I can't swallow the idea that this misfortune should be passed along to an adopter willing to shoulder the responsibility for an aged, semi-institutionalized dog. It's a tough issue and I feel bad for the shelter employees, but it's wrong when they attempt to pass the buck to the adopters who never materialized, a la "this dog deserves a good home" and "nobody has opened their heart to Bella."