'It has David Bowie eyes': Dumb reasons people give up pets
DH Vancouver StaffJan 14, 2015 8:55 am
As comedian and actor Ricky Gervais recently said: “How can anyone abandon a beautifully loyal dog? It’s not an accessory, it’s your f—ing best friend.”
Sadly, he’s right. Each year, thousands of dogs and cats each year are turned into the BC SPCA and shelters throughout the province. Through no fault of their own, these loving animals who have provided love and companionship to their human families, often for years, are unceremoniously dumped. Instead of living out their senior years in a warm home, they’re confined to kennels, often stressed and depressed. And the longer they’re in a shelter the worse odds they’ll ever get out.
Now a resident at SAINTS, Mika, who has cancer, spent most of her life chained up.
This column isn’t about judging pet owners. There are lots of understandable reasons and unforeseen circumstances that force people to give up their animal: The BC SPCA says people being unable to find pet-friendly accommodation is the number one reason it has owner surrenders, followed by allergy problems.
This article is specifically about the nonsensical, almost insane-seeming reasons that great pets become homeless. They’re not dangerous, vicious or un-trainable. On the contrary, there are purebreds and puppies and kittens and really awesome, loving animals that just got the short end of the stick, life and luck-wise. And if there’s any bright side, it’s that you can give them a new home, and they’ll love you unconditionally.
Coda-bear is a Yorkie who was an SPCA cruelty seizure for medical neglect. (SAINTS)
Three veteran B.C. animal rescuers shared their most outlandish and heartbreaking reasons animals are ditched.
My dog follows my son and not my daughter around the house I want the dog to love my daughter
I am going on a holiday and don’t want to pay for boarding
My dog doesn’t like to walk in the rain
One of the many great animals residing at SAINTS farm in Mission, B.C.
Carol Hine, owner of SAINTS, a farm sanctuary for old, sick and unwanted animals
We want to put in a pool so there is no room in the backyard for the dog any more
We did not think the cat would live this long (he was 12!)
Relocating to another province and do not think our 20 year old cat will do well with the change so we want to leave her at a homeless animal shelter instead
We love him/her soooo much but we do not have time for him or her any more.
We just bought a new condo and didn’t know our 60 pound, 16-year-old dog was too big to come with us
The breeder told us this was a micro pig who would not get any bigger than 30 pounds and will not be destructive in the house. (Reached 50 pounds and kept growing)
We are moving out of the country and the airline won’t let us fly our dog
A new boyfriend said ‘it is the cat or me.’ The new boyfriend wins.
I have an old/crippled/stinky/dirty dog and am ashamed for my holiday visitors to see them (The owners don’t actually say this, but it happens at every pound and shelter at Christmas. We call it “cleaning house for the holidays.”
Moose, adopted from SAINTS farm in Mission. (SAINTS)
DH Vancouver Staff
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