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Unbelievable SPCA

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Last weekend I participated in a “DogJog†to raise money for the SPCA I got Bonnie at (About a 2 hour drive from home). I brought my friend who loves animals so we could spend a little girl time walking in the woods with lots of other dogs and animal lovers. As soon as we got there she fell in love with this little Chow, Lab mix immediately. All day she talked about how that was her perfect dog, how beautiful he was. Finally we caught up with the girl walking this dog and found out this dog was actually up for adoption! My friend was enthused!

Fast forward to today, she finally convinced her husband to get this dog. The problem is that they have 5 cats and want to keep them safe. They called this SPCA and asked if they could show this dog (Dakoda) a cat and see how he reacts. They refused. She said that she didn’t want to drive 2 hours, pick up the dog, drive another 2 hours back and may have to do the same drive the next day if it doesn’t work out. They still refused with no explanation.

It seems unfair, for what would take them 3 min to achieve it would take my friend 8 hours total. Why would they refuse? They have a chance to adopt a dog out and they don’t do it because they don’t want to take 3 min to show a dog a cat? Seems very unfair to me.
post #2 of 11
Sometimes there is a reason - they may not want to stress out the cats more, they may not have a known dog friendly cat, the cats may have been exposed to something that could potentially infect the dog (like ringworm). I'm not saying that your friend is wrong - but there are other things to be considered - I've had to refuse to let a dog see cats before, but just because he had an alarming reaction to me prior to that to a cat - and I told the people I was concerned about his kitty reaction. If I have a reason to not want that adoptable dog to see a cat - I tell people.
post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
I would understand if there was a concern, but if there was that big of a concern they should tell her to not even come. All my friend wanted was to let a 30 pound dog look at a cat, she didn’t even want them in the same room running free, or even have the cat on the floor, she just wanted to see what would happen if the dog saw a cat. To me, if a rescue had someone who was extremely interested and 100% would get the dog IF he doesn’t freak out cats and the SPCA refuses… that really sucks.

I can understand if the dog was 120 lb and all of the cats were dying of some contagious problem… but come on, a 30 lb dog… what could possibly happen. It pisses me off, not because she’s a friend, but because there’s an animal that could find a really good home, and the people who are supposed to care and the only protectors these animals have are taking that away from him.

Also to stress out a cat seems like no problem for me, for a dog to be rescued it’s a small sacrifice, they will get over it. My cats get stressed all the time, the vacuum, can’t get a bug outside the window, have to go to the vet, car rides, but I would put them through stress if it meant saving a life (this is not a no kill rescue, and its VERY small)
post #4 of 11
A lot can happen, no matter the size of the dog. They may have a reason to suspect this dog isn't cat friendly, too - in which case, they need to just come out & say it! I don't understand why some groups do some things - and I know there are people out there who are mad at the humane society where I volunteer or don't understand why we did something.

Have you tried calling back to ask why they won't try the dog with a kitty, if they have a reason to suspect she is not cat friendly? Was she an owner surrender? We have owners fill out surrender forms to ask how the dog is with cats/dogs/strangers/kids/etc.
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
The thing is that they don’t know anything about this dog. That’s what pisses me off. They just don’t care. I would think an SPCA would do anything to let an animal go to a good home.

When my friend called they didn’t know his name, breed, or who this dog was. My friend had to say the little happy black dog. They did the same for her husband, different people also answered the phone. This dog was surrendered by a 60 year old woman who said he was too big to walk (we were told this at the DogJog). They just don’t seem to want to give any information or reason for why they are doing things.

This dog has been there for about 5 months. My friend has a huge heart and just can not bear to think about bringing this dog home, falling in love, only for it to have to attack her cats. She would be devastated… so devastated that even her mentioning this to me had her in tears. So if they keep refusing she will not adopt this dog, this poor dog had a chance to be a spoiled little prince, but because of unknown reason he may be put down or kept in the SPCA for much longer. I cant think of anything that could happen bad enough to let that happen… so sad IMO.
post #6 of 11
IMO, if your friend wants this dog so much, pack up the hubby and one of her own cats and make an appointment to see the dog on his home territory - surely the drive isn't that much of an obstacle for true love. Doesn't the husband want to see the dog anyway? And if the commute time is such a deal-breaker, maybe that's the reason the SPCA isn't seeing her as a serious adoptor.

Besides, even if doggy is friendly toward cats in the shelter, certainly does not mean the intro in the new home will necessarily go well.
post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 
My friend has issues with animals. If she sees any animal in distress she will cry for days even weeks, depending. This is a tough woman who is head of her department, if you mess with her you better run, speaks her mind no matter what, she wears the pants at home and at work, I was shocked to learn she was so sensitive (it’s how we became such good friends). She absolutely can not handle driving there, taking the dog home, and it not working out… honestly it would kill her. It’s not the drive there… it’s the drive back with the dog. Like I said, her just explaining this to me had her in tears.

Showing this dog a cat won’t prove he won’t hurt the cat BUT it will show if he goes crazy for the cat. If they show him a cat and he starts growling, lunging, and frothing… probably not a good idea to get this dog. BUT if they show the dog a cat and hes interested but not aggressive then he might be workable or perfect with cats.

The SPCA I volunteered at always insisted on doing the cat test with every dog that came into the shelter. It was part of the temperament test every dog was given before they could even be looked at for adoption. I took part in these when I was there and nothing bad ever happened and nothing bad ever happened in the 30 years it’s been doing this. From cats who didn’t like dogs, and dogs who wanted to rip the cats apart it was always very controlled…. This is why I see no problem with this…. Taking 3 min to show a dog a cat, not throw the cat at him, not put them in a cage together, just SHOW him a cat, its not hard.

I know some of you don’t agree, but I find it horrible when the only people who protect these animals wont do one little thing to help them find a forever home. I dont care what the reason… it just cant be that bad.
post #8 of 11
I want to apologize - I was too strong in my comments about her just driving, but, on the other hand, I can imagine a lot of shelters having been disappointed by potential adoptors in the past, and being really, really strict and seemingly over-demanding. A friend just adopted two Goldens from a breed rescue group, and it was quite the ordeal as it was progressing; but now, he says he totally understands why the group was so strict about the need for home visits and even calling the vet for a recommendation.

I hope things work out for your friend and the dog
post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 
Oh, no need to apologize, you were being honest, but thank you. I am getting hot headed about this and I too wanted to make sure I wasn’t offending everyone. I know everyone does things differently, and my major complaint in this whole thing is why aren’t they giving any information on why they can’t do this.

My friend understands strict. All of her cats are rescues she found on the streets. I explained to her the house visits, references, interviews, she’s totally fine with it. She would never want to hear of a shelter not being strict. In fact, today she was horrified when I told her I just took Bonnie home, no paperwork, references, nothing.

Even if she could make the drive and see how this dog is with other cats herself that would be ok. They refuse that too, with no explanation, just beating around the bush and insist they take him home, and if it doesn’t work out she brings him back and they will ‘consider’ not asking for a fee lol.

I just cant for the life of me understand why they cant just show a cat to this dog. They have tons of them, its not like they are separated either. All the cats and dogs share a room (not together. Male dogs together, female dogs together, same with cats).
post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 
I posted this awhile ago so I thought I would update this. After the SPCA was a royal pain in the butt, refusing to even consider showing this dog a cat my friend decided to make the drive and see if she can figure things out at the actual shelter.

After her calling the SPCA at least three times, trying to get different people on the phone, trying to reason with them, pleading with them to just show a cat to this dog. All the people she talked to were all rude, and snooty, all saying it was an impossible task that they refused to do without an explanation. My friend walked into the SPCA to talk about this dog (Its Coda, not Dakota) and what did she see? LOL, Coda was sitting in a tiny room surrounded by 8 cats running all over the place… unbelievable. Why put her through so much if they had the dog in a free run cat room anyway?

Anyway, she ended up adopting this dog, it was obvious this dog got along with cats. she didn’t have to give references, all she had to do was give her name and phone number and she was the proud owner of a dog.

It’s funny when I think about it. It’s also scary that they are such a weird SPCA. The whole situation just seems odd to me. But my friend has a dog now LOL I am excited about puppy play dates!!
post #11 of 11
I'm glad to hear your friend got the dog and everyone is happy. I just wanted to say that as a former Maritimer from NB, I wouldn't be too hard on the shelter. I can appreciate the types of people wanting to adopt a dog or cat but not so much as a pet but more for catching mice in the barn for cats or guard dog for dogs.

They have probably seen and heard more than you would want to believe and may have become "hardened" or more wary. By your friend going there in person after her phone calls indicates to them that she was very serious about getting this dog and showed she really cared.
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