PRO: Folks who know when to rehome a beloved animal

Beloved pets

Beloved pets

Who else has seen people unconditionally BASH other people for putting an animal up for adoption / rehoming? You hear things like “your dog is family; you CANNOT rehome him.” “You have no soul.” “How could you do such a horrible thing?” My most beloved horse rescue group has actually issued a statement that they will NOT adopt out a horse to anybody who has ever given an animal to rescue before.

While I CAN SEE how the statement can apply to SOME PEOPLE who do part with animals without consideration to the animal (some for profit, some because they don’t want to deal with an elderly animal, etc), please, if you’ll allow me, I’d like to point out a few items that I would like people to consider before making blanket statements such as that.

You cannot know what the other person’s life situation is like at that moment. It might appear obvious that someone is heartlessly dumping an animal, but please pause and consider:

  • Perhaps there is an illness in the family and they cannot give the time the animal deserves. When stress in a family is high, it can be so draining on an emotional level that there is just no ability or energy left to care for the beloved animals.
  • Perhaps there is a financial change and they are at their wit’s end of making ends meet and recognize that pet food comes secondary to people food, and can’t bear to watch the animal’s weight drop.
  • Perhaps a family member has developed a new, severe allergy to the animal (This one is so easy for other people to judge! “Oh, take some allergy medicine then, idiot!” “So run an air filter!” “Bathe and brush the animal every day. Duh.” But until you have lived every day and night with terrible allergies and had your immune system and sleep and skin and overall HEALTH break down slowly because of it, you REALLY don’t know what it’s like).
  • Perhaps the ANIMAL is unhappy. There are matches between owner and pet that turn out to be very wrong — the pet needs FAR more exercise and stimulus than the busy, working owners can provide. The pets rehomed have a whole new shot at a busy, adventurous life! I know several people who have done this for their pet.
  • Perhaps the ANIMAL has the medical issue. I KNOW it looks horrible to see the ads of people rehoming animals with medical needs but think about it. Not everybody is able to provide the necessary care. Not everybody has the finances! Not everybody has the dominance needed in some cases to administer the care to an unwilling animal. Not everybody has the time to provide the level of medical attention the animal needs throughout the day. Sometimes there is the option of euthanizing the animal or seeing if an able home will take the pet in.

There are SO many other possible scenarios.

My personal stories:
I have personally parted with 3 cats, 2 horses, and my beloved dog.

  • My first pony. She went to a very good home when I went away to college. It was very traumatic for me and was not at all what I wanted to do. When I came back from college, however, her “children” loved her too much and she was too happy. I did not ask for her back, like was the arrangement.
  • My first two cats are with my ex, or else he has rehomed them. I do not know.
  • My almost first cat, I rehomed quickly. We adopted her the day before her euthanasia day and I fell in love with her. But I was so allergic, I couldn’t sit with her for even 5 minutes. It was very sad. She was very beautiful, regal, and friendly. My boss at the time took her in! And she fit in SO PERFECTLY with their family and her child human writes elementary school poetry about their “good” cat. 🙂
  • One of my horses, I had shipped to a rescue in a different state, for financial reasons. I’m still not sure I made the right choice on which horse I kept — One of them had to go, so I kept the one who costs literally half as much to feed. But I was very connected with the horse who went to rescue. She also had medical issues so nobody in my state would touch her with a ten foot pole. I had planned to get her back once my finances are stable again, but firstly, when will I ever have finances? and secondly, they have already stated they will not adopt out to someone who has given up an animal to rescue… My own state’s rescue offered to euthanize her for free. Instead, she has lived years now in the most wonderful, hay-filled field with other horses she gets along with (they have sent me many pictures over the years). Once I have a month with some extra money, I am going to donate to them again.
  • My beloved boy (my dog). He will live out the rest of his life with my parents. He is so blissfully happy with them, and they are in love with him. He has the best life any dog could ever hope for. I only wish I could be living there, too.
  • My current pony, who lives out of state still. I’d like to have her here but realistically, I don’t see how I’d ever leave the house to go visit her. So instead, I will surely have to part with her. I chatted with someone yesterday about giving her to them for free (I know the person and he would treat her fairly and ride often). But she is a tough one to rehome because she doesn’t get along with other horses (she’s not just the most dominant mare; she’s kind of mean to the other horses).

Anyway, please don’t judge someone because they have rehomed or given up an animal. While there can be cases of poor intentions, please don’t assume that is the case. In many cases, it will be best for the animal.

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