Friday, June 05, 2009

What I never say but would like to...

I generally don't work with serious aggressive dogs. I did once and this is what happened.

Now granted that was five years ago and now I feel better equipped to deal with what may happen but I mostly refer on to a person who has been training dogs for over 20 years... not five.

When I worked in the Home Decor store I could sell an ugly vase with a smile on my face and know the consequences weren't dire. Sure the neighbors might whisper behind the home owners back but it wasn't life or death.

Now it is.

Recently I had two cases of aggression come to me. The first was a Border Collie mix who would basically try to kill any other dog she met while leashed. The owner called and said they just eeded a little "brush up" on their manners. Slowly I pulled out of her that the dog had bitten a dogwalker, menaced her three children (backing one into a corner) and the whole murderous rampage while walking thing. She seemed dedicated to this little dog named "Tulip" and scheduled an appointment quickly with my referral person.

The second was a mini schnauzer named "Annie" who came to me through a shelter referral. Annie was exhibiting strange repetitive behavior, circling exclusively to one side, and had recently rushed out to rip at the pants of a neighbor. She as of that point hadn't bitten anyone...yet. I referred her on too. She too quickly made an appointment.

Now I come to find out both owners scheduled one appointment and then never followed through. Never made another appointment, never worked with their dogs and ow want to "rehome" these aggressive pooches. Here's the letter the other trainer got from one

We have tried to use the clicker more, but since we are not home that much it has been hard to train her. She is better around strangers while we walk the dog but still ballastic with people coming to our house unless they have the time to get to know her.-and most of the time they don't-Kid's friends (in and out of the house ) and solicitors, repair people. We put her in the crate. I'm afraid she might run out the door with the kids not being that careful. She was doing so good at the park that we let her off leash and she plays with the other dogs. Unfortunely a couple weeks ago she bit a runner that just entered the park. His pants did not tear, but had a small flesh wound. After the bite he still kept on running in the park. He filed a police report. We are planning to bring her back to the shelter. I emailed SPRD to see if she is adoptable through their organization. Do you know of anyone who is capable of controlling her with strangers and wants a sweet mini schnauzer who is now potty trained? she does not bark at home at all and just loves to cuddle. Thanks for all your help.

Here's the other

> After much agonizing deliberations, we have realized> that we need to find a new home for Tulip :(> As you know she is a very sweet dog. But> unfortunately, due to her size and aggressiveness with other> dogs, she is to much for us to handle (w/ 3 kids). > She's not getting the attention and walks she needs> because we can't take her everywhere with us like we> used to do with our old dog. We used to take our old dog> to soccer games, parks, etc.. with us but we can't with> Tulip. She was suppose to be my son's dog (as he> picked her out at the shelter) but because of her size and> aggressiveness (& pulling) we can't let him take her> for walks. So after a few tears, we've decided we need> to find a new loving home for her. She deserves the best> and we were hoping maybe you could help. If you know any> one who would be interested (or any organization I should> call) please let me know. I think she can be better if> someone has time to train her and work with her more,> but she might always be a bit aggressive with some> dogs.>> She is such a sweet girl and still sleeps with my son> at nights, so this will be hard but we know its the right> thing to do. So if you know any interested parties let me> know.

Basically these two families took on the responsibility of owning this pet and when it got too hard they want to give that responsibility to someone else.

This the response I want to give...

Dear asshole owners,

I'm so sorry that little Fido turned out to be more than you can handle. I'm so sorry that when cute ball of fluff grew up and was ignored for long periods of time he turned aggressive. Who knew that was going to happen? That's right we all did. And when you saw a problem coming, as you did many months ago when you called me, you chose to ignore it.

You were given tools to work on the problem why did you choose to let it slide? Did you not understand that when you adopt something you are committing for life? Do you understand that this problem is your fault? You caused this...YOU! So now you want to pass off your mistake onto someone else? Will you tell them the truth or will you lie about sweet little Fido to get him out of your house?

Do you know that Fido eventually will more than likely end up in a shelter? That is after three or four other new homes, escalating problems and more than likely a bite incident. Oh and just to be clear that bite victim is likely to be a child. I know you are trying to protect your child but by doing that you are endangering someone elses.

So, no I will not help you to re home Fido. But I will tell you what to do. Take responsibility euthanize your dog yourself. March over to the vet explain that you were an asshole (he'll believe you, like me he has seen a lot) and kill (no more euphemisms) your dog yourself. Let him have the luxury of not spending his last days shivering in a concrete kennel in fear. Let him be warm and in your loving arms one more time. Let his last moments be with the person he loves the most, horrible asshole. Then as you wipe the tears from your eyes promise me you will NEVER own a dog again because you don't deserve one.


Travis said...

I expected this post to outrage me (it did). I did not expect it to make me cry (it did)

hopemcp said...

Melissa, I would have used stronger language with the idiot owners (and did as I read). You went too easy on them.

What did you actually tell them?

Michele Chastain said...

WOW!! Your response letter should be posted in every adoption shelter in the country.
I cannot even count the number of people who return animals as if they were nothing more than something they purchased at a department store.
And how many times have people come in, turning in a dog or cat because "they're moving" ??? I am always like WTH? when this happens (and it happens a lot.)
I want to scream in their face, asking if they want to turn in their kids too, since "they're moving" -- but then I shut up because I realize that as crappy as what they're doing is, at least they're bringing them to us instead of just leaving them behind altogether like we see so often as well. *sigh*