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Dog adoption...did I say/do something wrong?!?

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  • Dog adoption...did I say/do something wrong?!?

    So I have decided to adopt a pup from a local rescue.
    I have been known to this rescue for about a year now, in some form or another, but have never filled out an application.
    My bf and I were waiting until we purchased the house before getting a dog (or 3) as he is retired and can be home all day.

    Well about 3 months ago, I was texted from a friend who is one of their foster mama's saying she had Manny, a perfect little gentleman for our family and she felt he really is the right guy for us. I take a look at his profile, and he does sound perfect.
    I talk to bf and he reminds me we were planning on passing until we live together full time. But he knows I want a smaller dog first and its really upto me, he will be there for help/support/potty brakes if I do get him.
    Well I hummed too long and he found a great family Happy tears ensued, but slightly bittersweet.

    About 2 weeks after, same girl shows me pictures of some newborn pups (only a couple hours old) and I melt (who doesn't?!?!)...turns out Manny is a daddy
    When they picked him up from his past situation, they took another little girl he was housed with....guess they were a little closer then expected and she had 5 beautiful pups

    So I email the agency and explain I would be interested in knowing more about them, etc etc...the response I get back is to please wait until their adoptable profile is up and then fill out an application once they are of 8weeks.

    So I wait, and wait...finally on thursday I seen their profile pop up!!! Woohoo!! I fill out an adoption form, explain I was interested in one of the little boys. 30mins later, they update the profile stating that 4 out of the 5 pups have pending adoptions on them already....wait, what?!? I was told to wait, and I don't think they can get that many forms and interviews and house calls done in that short of a time, so they obviously had folks waiting.
    However, the form was a little miss leading, it asked how many adults live at the house hold, I state 1 (cause technically he hasn't moved in) and I work fulltime.
    Then it ask if our backyard is fenced (no) and if not how will the dog be left outside (options given are dog pen/leash/long line/tied up/not at all) I click not at all, since we won't be leaving the dog outside alone, one of us will always be with him and he will be leashed until properly trained.
    I also explain we will be moving within a year to a larger home

    They also have a section asking if there is a specific dog we are interested in, I state one of the pups from that litter, prefer a boy.

    So I wait 24hrs, didn't hear anything, so I email my contact to just ensure they rec'v my form and state the the pup called Junebug is our first choice (she was the one bf said he would prefer)

    They come back and say that our form stated a boy, Junebugs a girl and she has a potential adopter already but will let us know if it doesn't pan out.

    I email back and say thank you, and even though we said boy, Junebug is our first choice, if her personality was good.

    I haven't heard anything since.

    I did see yesterday that 4 out of the 5 pups have been adopted according to their site. What?!?

    So I send another email, explaining our situation a little more...how bf doesn't live with us YET, he is retired so the pup will be home with someone most days (he is at my place 5 days a week) and the whole outside alone thing, and even though I know Junebug is adopted, we would still be interested in the last little boy, again if his temperment is right for us.

    Nada, haven't heard anything since.

    So did I say the wrong things?Did I pester them too much? Do rescue often already have homes lined up long before the ad goes out? If thats the case, fine, but please let me know when I contacted you 8 WEEKS ago and I would have filled out a form then.

    Just a little upset with the situation, as I don't feel like we want just any dog...we really did want one of these guys.
    if you havent fallen off a horse….then you havent been ridin long enough

  • #2
    Many adoption agencies are very strict. Some even say they won't approve a home where there is not an adult present all the time. If you work, or the dog goes outside in the yard without supervision, they don't like it. I'd wait until BF moves in with you. Then try again.


    • #3
      I'm sorry. I can't understand why they told you to wait, but apparently let some others as apply.
      A couple of things come to mind in your situation. Small dogs are rare in rescue in many places. Small puppies are even more rare. It is likely that a number of people want these little guys. Rescues are primarily staffed by volunteers who may have other jobs, but this one sounds like a bit of a hassle as far as having an actual, non electronic communication with someone. A lot gets lost in translation.
      Be aware that some rescues will immediately eliminate you for not having a fenced yard. Be sure to communicate that the dog will not be running free in the neighborhood and what your plans are to exercise the puppy.
      Can the foster person you know help? Trust me, you can find a dog and find one you really like, even if it isn't one of these puppies. Consider calling area vets, groomers, and boarding facilities and letting them know what you are looking for. Consider other rescue groups. If the rescue has adoption events, try going and talking to someone in person rather than through e-mail.


      • #4
        Some rescues are screwed up and it depends on who you talk to. One might tell you to wait, another might tell you just to get your application in. Unfortunately, a lot of people who work for and run rescues don't understand that they need to run it like a business and not a social club. There are really great rescues out there though...so keep trying.

        If you're friends with the foster, I would be talking to her, maybe she can grease the wheels for you.


        • #5
          They may have already had those people on a list. Puppies go like the proverbial hotcakes and those folks could have been waiting a long time. Also, most reputable rescues would not like the situation for a puppy's housetraining on first blush read through your application you did not have a fenced yard and no one was home. They have a lot of choices because many people want a puppy and they can be picky as a result. Just wait until you get into the home, it will work out.
          "We, too, will be remembered not for victories or defeats in battle or in politics, but for our contribution to the human spirit." JFK


          • #6
            Originally posted by Calamber View Post
            They may have already had those people on a list. Puppies go like the proverbial hotcakes and those folks could have been waiting a long time. Also, most reputable rescues would not like the situation for a puppy's housetraining on first blush read through your application you did not have a fenced yard and no one was home. They have a lot of choices because many people want a puppy and they can be picky as a result. Just wait until you get into the home, it will work out.
            All true too. OP, did the rescue call you to go over your application?


            • #7
              Originally posted by Casey09 View Post
              A couple of things come to mind in your situation. Small dogs are rare in rescue in many places. Small puppies are even more rare
              ^^^This. They probably have a long list of folks who have been waiting for a puppy. Essentially the only puppies in our local shelters are ones brought in from the south and few of those are small mixed breed types


              • Original Poster

                Thanks everyone

                No they have never called or anything about my application, so I assumed thats why I was passed over.
                I know there is a lot of red flags on my application, but I didn't want to lie or misrepresent the situation. Also I know fencing isn't a for sure turn away for them...I know a few of their adoption families and fosters and none of them have fences. I am sure they prefer it though lol

                This rescue has about 4 to 5 litters of pups a year go through, but this is the first one I have seen for a small breed, so that probably has a lot of bearing on the situation.

                I guess I am just bummed, they could have said there was a long wait list etc etc and added me to it for a future chance.
                I have everything sitting at home waiting for the right dog to step in and claim it, bed crate, blankie, bowls, toys, leash, harness etc etc (I love getting a bargain when I happen across one )
                Guess I just have to be patient...if its meant to be it will happen (as the bf tells me).....hmmmm.....wonder if that will work for a horse too
                if you havent fallen off a horse….then you havent been ridin long enough


                • #9
                  Sometimes the most adoptable pets are the first to be snapped up in-house by the volunteers. Purebreds, small dogs, and puppies are often snagged by the insiders. The animals may be listed as required by that group's bylaws though applications will never be considered. Then you have the waiting lists.

                  I wouldn't worry too much about your application being wrong. The demand is so high and the supply is five.
                  Last edited by Bicoastal; Aug. 19, 2014, 08:38 AM.


                  • #10
                    In trying to be honest, you probably don't sound like as good a home as you are to some of these groups.

                    Instead of 'none of the above' for fenced yard etc, you might have said the dog will be walked on a leash X times a day

                    That you are the only one living in the house as present, but that you have arrangements for a dog sitter/friend to be there X times a day


                    When you are really ready, why not take a look at some of the breed rescues. We have a friend who is a Jack Russell lover. She just lost her elderly and most wonderful Anna. She contacted the Russell rescue people and they had several dogs for her to check out. Molly, another sweet and not so young bitch just joined the barn family. They had all sorts... she wanted someone who had a good personality, but wasn't thriving in shelter life.

                    FWIW, the writer of the local animal column was turned down by a shelter or two because she doesn't have a fenced yard and while she works from home there are times she is away. They wanted fences and 24/7 companionship for the dog. Because it is SO MUCH better for the dog to be in a shelter than a loving home where it might be alone when she went to do an interview or the family went out to dinner.


                    • #11
                      Is this a rescue that you can have a sit down with someone who deals with the adoptions?
                      Your situation is the type of situation that is better explained face to face as some of the story gets lost in short answers and follow up emails.

                      On the face of things you have some strikes against you. Once explained most of those strikes are non-issues, but you have to get to the point that they are willing to hear that. That is why I think a sit down is best.

                      In the case of these puppies, I have to agree with the others, small breed and puppy most likely means they had a long list of people who wanted them.


                      • #12
                        All of the rescues I've worked with have the adoption coordinator call to go over the application before making any decision. You can find an awful lot out about an adopter/foster just by letting them talk. I'm surprised they don't follow up.

                        It could also be that your application was lost or misplaced OP. I would talk to your friend again and ask about the best way to apply.


                        • #13
                          Some rescues won't place a dog in a house without a fenced yard. Granted, a fenced yard makes life a lot easier with a dog, but IMO it shouldn't be a reason to not adopt a dog to a particular person. I have neighbors who just build a 6' tall solid privacy fence around their back yard and STILL turn the dog out loose outside of the fence so it potties in everyone else's yard!


                          • Original Poster

                            I confirmed with them my application was rec'v via email...silly me didn't take that email reply and elaborate on the situation. It wasn't until I sent another email (after I noticed most of the pups were now listed as "adopted") that I elaborated. By that point I think it would have been rec'v as a form of "I'll say the right things to get a pup" situation and not the way it was meant.

                            The form for adoption on-line didn't give space to explain your answers. It just had options for drop down, had to pick one. Not the best application process but works for them.

                            We are definitly going to start looking at local shelters and see whats available. It wasn't the breed I was pulled to, it was their daddy Manny and the breed lol
                            They are pugxboston terrier, with some assumed Jack and maybe some bull dog for good measure.......true Heinz 57's lol
                            3 were black brindle colour
                            1 was a blue silver brindle
                            1 was tan and white like bulldog markings

                            all of them were short and chunky, with curled tails, longer muzzles. 2 of the pups had the pug bug eyes hahaha

                            All of them were 110% adorable, naturally
                            if you havent fallen off a horse….then you havent been ridin long enough


                            • #15
                              And this is why I adopt from our County Shelter

                              I know each rescue is different - but the few times in my life that I have found myself in the market for a new pet - I found working with rescues intolerable. The home visits, the demands that every member of the come over for multiple interviews / play sessions.

                              The long lists of requirements (don't dare be away from home to work).

                              Then - I went to my local county run shelter - Yes, they are under staffed, its over crowded, and I have had to spend a little to get my new pet good and healthy - BUT it was simple, easy, and I walked away with a new pet in hours, not weeks or months.

                              My dog Ike is from the local county run "high kill" shelter, he was picked up off the streets of San Jose as a stray. He is a joy who has been with us for 8 years now.

                              My cat Izzy came from an over crowded shelter in East LA - at the first vet visit they offered me a coupon for a "new" cat, as Izzy had an eye and lung infection. $100 worth of meds, and 10 days of treatment - she has been healthy and happy for 10 years now.

                              My cat "Fatty" came from the County shelter - she had been living in the garage of a hoarder with a bazillion other cats. She had a one in a life time personality, and spent 19 years with me!

                              Are there municipal shelters where you live? That would be my first choice over a rescue group - much less emotional / political.
                              APPSOLUTE CHOCKLATE - Photo by Kathy Colman


                              • #16
                                It is so hard to say what the thought process might have been for the rescue. But it sounds like a miscommunication to me.

                                Many rescues will wait to answer questions about particular animals until they are officially available for adoption. It cuts down on answering the same question a thousand times before an animal is even available for adoption.

                                Many rescues prefer that a potential adopter have an approved application on hand prior to entering discussions about any particular animal.

                                It sounds to me like the rescue told OP to wait until the puppies were officially posted as available, perhaps mistakenly believing she had an approved application on file already. Or perhaps they failed to mention for whatever reason that the puppies would go very quickly, and that the OP would probably miss out on a puppy from this litter because they would have so many folks already approved waiting to snatch them up.

                                They could also be waiting to respond to the OP until they know for sure that all the puppies have been adopted before replying that they are all gone? Or it could be that they are just slammed and haven't gotten around to responding. Or it could be that they are one of those rescues that won't respond at all because they don't have anything to say (you know, puppies are all gone, so why even bother telling the OP anything? Some rescues can be rude like that).

                                I generally tell people who want to go through a rescue to find one they like, one whose policies and procedures are in-line with how they want to work it, and then to submit the application for approval before any particular animal catches their eye. That way, you can be one of those pre-approved homes waiting to snatch up the puppy the very minute it becomes available.

                                Often, if you wait until you're already interested in a particular animal before submitting an application? You end up a day late and a dollar short.


                                • #17
                                  If this is what you want, have you considered going to a reputable breeder of pugs oe Boston Terriers?

                                  You could get one who has been screened for various genetic problems, has been properly raised and socialized, etc.....


                                  • #18
                                    I volunteer with a local rescue and have fostered before. We are pretty liberal with adopters, no home visits and the pet can go home with you immediately. One of our favorite fosters was adopted to what we thought was a great home. They didn't have a fenced yard but walked their dog multiple times a day. Middle aged couple, stable, etc. etc. 7 months later they want to return the dog. Why? Because she had accidents 2-3 times a week even though they said they walked her 5-6 times a day. They didn't try anything, confinement, more walks, puppy pads... Our rescue always takes our pets back and we were prepared to foster again. After multiple postponements, we're still waiting for them to surrender the dog. It will be a cold day before I adopt to someone without a fenced yard.
                                    Last edited by JBD; Aug. 19, 2014, 12:11 AM. Reason: Dog was house trained with us


                                    • #19
                                      When my family got our current dog, we first tried some rescues that had dogs we liked listed on Petfinder.

                                      Some rescues never answered messages at all.

                                      Some instantly discount you if you don't meet their insanely stringent criteria. We don't have a fenced yard. When our dog goes outside, it is on a leash with one of us. There's usually someone home (at that time there were 4 adults working different shifts, now just my 2 parents but they still work different shifts). But of course everyone sometimes goes away for several hours all at the same time. Or even on day trips (the neighbor comes to let the dog out).

                                      We were writing back and forth with one rescue and all seemed to be going well until my father asked them how large the dog was (just out of curiosity, as it was an unusual breed, we would have adopted him no matter what his size) and for some reason the rescue found that question odd enough to determine we wouldn't be a good home. (Yet we saw the dog listed again later, so whatever 'great' home they found decided to return him. Our dogs are for life.)

                                      Ultimately we ended up going to the local SPCA, found our dog there, and were able to adopt him the very next day. From now on I will stick to the shelters as they seem to generally be much more reasonable.

                                      I think rescues often work against themselves. I understand trying to find good homes. But making so many unrealistic rules that a perfect home is impossible to find just means dogs sitting in rescue longer.


                                      • #20
                                        I think the fact that you expect your circumstances to change soon is potentially going to work against you with some rescues, too. People moving in or moving to a new house can be stressful for everyone and generally adding a relatively new dog to that isn't going to be a great thing. (Particularly because many people will see the dog develop a stress related issue - like maybe some indoor accidents - and dump or return the dog rather than giving it a chance to settle in.)

                                        My family has historically gotten dogs from the local shelter partly for this reason - it is hard enough to find a dog that is the right fit without dealing with a rescue that has all kinds of weird hoops to jump through. (My parents have never had a fenced yard, for example. That knocks them right out with a lot of places even though my dad works from home, walks the dog when he needs a brain break from work - his version of a smoke break I guess, and they take their dogs essentially everywhere it is safe to take them. My dad even takes the current dog to his dog-friendly local bank when he needs to do any banking. He'll do stuff in person instead of online just to take her, because she gets such a kick out of waiting in line and then 'withdrawing' a dog treat that the bank has a stash of. It is hardly a bad home for a dog, even without a fenced yard.) (Their yard is the size of a postage stamp anyway, so part of why they never bothered fencing it is it is too small to leave a dog out in to exercise or play. If they let the dog out to pee, someone just stands by the door while the dog does the necessary and then the dog comes back in.)