Looking for a Dog Number Six is turning out to be very painful.
You'll recall that we narrowed the field to two dogs. The one in the shelter has been adopted. Yay! The other, being fostered by a local rescue group, is not going to be ours. Rescue Group wants a $400 adoption fee, which is about twice what we were expecting.
We routinely pay hundreds of dollars of vet bills, and many time have spent (rather, charged) thousands of dollars of surgery and all manners of special procedures when our dogs have needed anything. Our monthly expenses have always included dog medications, often to an extent that many people would find ridiculous. In our experience, a new dog always needs some medical care right out of the gate. We expect that. Yet to spend $400 just to bring a dog home, when that dog is with a loving foster family right now, is a bit rough for us right now - especially considering there are so many other dogs that need homes.
I had an e-mail conversation with Rescue Group. From her point of view, a person who won't spend whatever adoption fee is requested is a bad risk, someone who doesn't understand that a dog is "well worth that money". From my point of view, she is preventing this dog from finding an excellent forever home over $200. She made it clear the fee was non-negotiable, we wished each other well, and that was that.
I wonder if people in our area who can easily afford a $400 adoption fee are going the rescue route or would tend to purchase a pure-bred dog. Rescue does not seem to be as common here as it is, for example, in New York.
But more importantly, there are so many dogs who need homes. I'd rather spend that $200 on food and care for our new dog than reimburse someone else for their fostering expenses. There are so many dogs at Toronto Animal Services. Why not take one of those?
Why not indeed. I looked at so many dogs on Petfinder this weekend, my heart is aching. I saw so many older dogs in need of adoption. Why are so many older dogs surrendered? What does it feel like to be dropped off at a shelter or a vet's office, to wait for your family's return, only they never come back? What is wrong with people, why do they do that, how do they live with themselves?
We clearly started looking too early. Here's our new plan. Our projected adoption date is Monday, April 25. We'll look at the shelter website that weekend. Of whoever is available, we'll pick a dog closest to our preferred type, and that will be Dog Number Six.
Elsewhere in Allan-and-Laura-land, our washing machine broke in the middle of a cycle, we are writing our Small Claims Court claim, and I still have a final exam to study for and write. Whine, whine, whine. I'm feeling a bit put-upon.