Unfortunately, not everyone feels the same way. What's even worse? Most of these people are former pet owners.
Since I have adopted all of my dogs from different rescue groups, I have quite a few connections on Facebook and Instagram. I love to peruse the transformation stories of dogs that have gone from being a starving stray to a pampered pooch. And I also enjoy viewing the dogs that are currently available for adoption.
What I have been reading recently has honestly been breaking my heart. It appears that several of the previous dog's owners have suddenly decided that they "do not have time" for the dog anymore. So, they drop the dog off at a shelter where it is quickly put on the list to be killed.
I simply cannot imagine what must be going through a surrendered dog's mind. "What did I do to make my master not want me?" "Is there something wrong with me?" "Am I unlovable?"
I'm sure that these are just of few of the thoughts swirling through the dog's brain as he/she tries to comprehend what is happening. One dog that I read about had been in the family for seven years. He got along great with everyone. They just simply decided one day that they "didn't have time" for him.
How could they let this dog go after having him for so long? Wasn't he a part of the family, too? What changed so much in their lives that would make them give him up?
Another biography that I read came from a Dachshund with Dachshund Rescue South Florida. This dog was rescued from a high kill shelter after her owners surrendered her because they got a puppy of a different breed and "didn't have time for her." Really? You are taking a perfectly healthy, happy dog who loves you and your family and giving her up because of the "out with the old, in with the new" mentality?
Personally, I believe that the "no time" reason is simply an excuse. These people just do not want the responsibility of caring for the dog anymore. Someone needs to inform these heartless people that this is not how life works. What if we tried to do that with the mortgage payment? "Sorry, Bank of Edwardsville, I simply do not have time to pay the bill. Therefore, this month's payment will be free."
And what about children? Can you imagine someone turning a child in to DCFS stating that they "don't have time" to raise him/her? National television would blow up with that story. Parenting groups from all across the country would be up in arms. Protesters would abound.
But, for dogs, many seem to deem this as an acceptable practice. They don't bat an eye before handing their dog over to, essentially, be killed. How do these people sleep at night? How can they continue on as if nothing has happened? As if what they did wasn't horribly wrong?
While being the owner of six dogs can be a bit crazy at times, I cannot imagine my life without a single one of them. And I work full time and exercise five days a week. Plus, I clean the house, do laundry and go to the grocery store. Things that are all a normal part of life.
Furthermore, people know exactly what they are getting into when they adopt a dog. They know that there is a certain amount of time that will need to be committed to raising and loving their new addition. And the passing of time does not change this knowledge.
Additionally, people are not trying to make their new situation (s) work. One example that comes to mind is that of an adorable Terrier. His owner took on a second job and promptly surrendered him. Even if the owner knew that having the second job would greatly compromise the time that he/she would be able to spend with the dog, couldn't he/she have waited until the second job began to see how it would truly affect their relationship?
Another common example is when a married couple is having a baby. Many rid themselves of the loyal family dog. Why? The dog loves them the same as he/she always has. And it would love the baby just as much.
These animals have feelings. And they have spent their entire lives loving us unconditionally. Yet, many are so quick to turn their backs on this loyalty in the name of convenience. Dogs are not tissues. They are not meant to be discarded.