I care deeply about Cocheco Valley Humane Society and all the work they do for animals in the Seacoast community. I don’t like seeing people bad mouth them. As is the case with animal shelters, people think that all animals in the shelter would be better off in a home, not in a kennel…regardless of the home. Last summer an elderly woman tried to adopt a dog at Cocheco and realized that the adoption prices had been raised since the last time she was there and she did not want to pay the adoption fee. She wanted the dog, but thought the initial cost to adopt a dog was outrageous. The adoption fee of $250 is a drop in the bucket compared to what a responsible owner would pay over the course of a pets life. So this woman created a whole media circus and got a lot of people involved. Many people were upset with CVHS. Here are some examples of what Fosters printed:
It then was revealed that she couldn’t even adopt a dog because her landlord wouldn’t allow it.
In essence, she created all this drama and bad press for Cocheco and couldn’t even adopt a a dog. Terrible.
Fast forward to February 22, 2011 and another article about CVHS is in the papers…again with negative press:
I kind of got mental about it for a bit and then decided to put my knowledge of Cocheco to good use and wrote a letter to the editor at Fosters and it got printed!
To The Editor:
I was dismayed to read another article about CVHS’s “adoption denial.” Portraying CVHS in anything less than a positive light is a disservice to the animals in their care, the staff and volunteers, and the mission of the shelter. While this article hasn’t garnered as much public outcry as last summer’s adoption cost story, it isn’t the type of press that the shelter needs or deserves.
I have volunteered at CVHS for over a year and would love to adopt all the animals there, but know this wouldn’t benefit my pets nor would it help the animals at CVHS. Adoption guidelines are in place to make sure animals and potential adopters are a match. This includes, but is not limited to, ensuring that potential adopters have the means to provide a loving, caring home for the animal’s entire life, verifying animals currently in the home are compatible to the animal they want to adopt, and making sure that animals are up-to-date on all vaccinations, micro-chipped, and spayed/neutered.
These guidelines are not “hubris” on the part of CVHS. They are making sure that every animal adopted has the best chance of finding their forever home and, in the case of requiring spay/neuter, to help reduce pet overpopulation. It is unfortunate to see owner’s returning animals because they did not meet their expectations or bringing in unwanted litters of kittens/puppies. CVHS then steps up, provides shelter and care for these animals, and does so with compassion not arrogance.
Currently, there are four cats that have been at CVHS since January/February 2010 (Betty, Precious, Star, and Hershey) and two dogs that have been at CVHS since August/October of 2010 (Jake and Denny). I am certain that the staff wants nothing more than to find them homes, but adopting them out for the sake of getting them adopted would be irresponsible for everyone involved and doesn’t align with CVHS’s mission.
I am a strong supporter of CVHS and was disappointed to see another article that doesn’t benefit their cause. I would love to see more articles about the animals available for adoption. Foster’s used to post a “Pet of the Week” and hasn’t done so since September 2010. The animals listed above would make amazing pets for the right home. Foster’s should help spread the word about available animals and the positive things CVHS does in our community. If you can’t adopt, I strongly recommend filling out an application to volunteer at CVHS. Trust me, there is nothing like getting a big sloppy kiss from Rowan (available for adoption) just because you took him for a walk and gave him a good scratch behind the ears.
I don’t know that it will do any good, people will complain no matter how hard you try to show them the right way. I’m happy that it got included though. Maybe, just maybe, it will get one of those cats or dogs adopted…or better yet, all of them!!!
"I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. And I will not let what I can't do interfere with what I can do." ~ Edward Everett Hale