Hi. So I lost my lab to cancer a month ago, and I was doing the looky-loo thing on rescue sites as well as shelter sites online. And of course, I found a dog that needs help (in my opinion She is at a local city "pound", and looks to be an owner surrender (5 years old and spayed -- though they didn't bother to post her name.) She's been at the shelter since 4/29 so about two weeks. I tried contacting a Lab rescue group that my vet has worked with in the past, and I haven't heard back from them. Basically, I asked them if they would have a foster home for her if I payed all her fees and transported her. I haven't heard back from them, and I KNOW rescues are busy. I told my husband about it, and he thinks it's too soon to bring another dog home.
Is there anything else I can do? I could call the shelter I suppose and see when her time is "up", but having volunteered at a different city shelter in the same metro area, I know they can get VERY touchy about telling random callers this info and they don't like to arrange releases with unaffiliated individuals (which is understandable.) I checked to see which rescues the shelter is affiliated with, and there are only two--one of which is up to it's ears in dogs, and the other is not a lab rescue. I have a friend who used to do Golden Rescue and she told me that the city shelters would not release to the smaller rescues and would charge them an adoption fee to take dogs out--but I am willing to pay this and any required licensing fees etc. I have contacted my Golden friend, and I am contemplating contacting my vet (who I just found out helps corgi rescue.)
sorry for your loss.
what are the conditions at the shelter? Is this a pound, a humane society? Is she at risk of being put to sleep?
Rescues are ubber busy. Depending on the conditions were she is, she may not be top priority, they generally try to save dogs about to be euthenized. So if she is safe it may take more time. If she is at something more like a humane society or nice clean shelter and safe they may not wish to bring her into rescue - making room for dogs in dire need and out of time.
And your friend is correct, some shelters will not work with rescues, or only with SOME rescues so there may not be much a rescue can do even if they wanted unless you adopted her then relenquished her to the resuce.
If you could sign up as a foster home for one of the rescues the shelter is affiliated with and see if they can pull her for you to foster that may be the best avenue. Otherwise, just sharing her locally to find an adopter.
Charlie (foster) and Rocky
Update: So at the prompting of my Golden friend, I drove out to the warehouse district to visit this dog at the shelter. It's been years since I was at this shelter. It is a city owned animal control and adoption site. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. The woman I spoke to said they do no euthanization unless the animals is too sick or injured to save or if it shows aggressive behavior. They do relocate to rescues but only if they are registered with PACTFA (?) and are a certified 501 c3. She said if the animals don't get adopted or transferred then her team is not working hard enough, and that it's never the animal's fault (this is so different from the shelter across town that is mandated to put down animals when they reach ~ 80% capacity.)
I visited the dog, and no, she is not a purebred lab. I would guess lab + some large hound breed -- she was VERY tall, thin, and had longer than average ears. I would not call her "aggressive" but she did not seem to be too happy seeing me. She kind of did a kennel guard and constantly barked in my face--she may be totally different in a non-shelter environment, but I don't think she and my schip mix would make a good pair. They would probably constantly try to fight for alpha status (my Jackson lab was happy to be the omega dog.) I did manage to let a few individuals who do rescue know about her, and one wants to know more about working with this shelter. My mind is more at rest. BTW, thanks for the feedback!
I'm so sorry for your loss, and I'm also sorry this girl was not a good fit for you. You can try contacting all the lab rescues in and around your area, and even a little outside of your area. A lot of them will transport. I got Dixie from Joyful Rescues in NY and I follow a group on FB called Save a Lab. They have adorable dogs. I'm not sure where you're located though. And don't forget Joe at SPARRO! He has a litter of pups right now!
I have had 8 dogs in my lifetime and I have both waited to adopt after a death and also adopted ASAP. I strongly recommend ASAP because it is impossible to be miserable with a new dog in the house. When I got 2 year old Mardi I worried for the first few days that I didn't adore her--she was a nice dog, she clearly needed me, but the magic wasn't there. That feeling didn't last more than 3 days. Nothing will ever make me forget the previous dogs but Mardi is a constant presence and she amuses me, loves me, makes me love her, and really needs me. I couldn't honor my previous dogs more than to get another ASAP because I learned from all seven previous dogs that having a dog at my side completes me and makes me feel alive! I did choose Mardi carefully from three adoptable Labs to make certain I was giving her and getting from her the best possible fit. It is too bad that dogs' life spans aren't longer but that is the reality and I now can look forward to 10 or more years of loving my new best friend. Every dog I have had has been unique and I understand there is no way to replace the most recently lost dog, but the joy of the new dog becomes just as wonderful as all the previous ones.
You mentioned you were willing to pay for a dog's foster care so I assume you could manage an adoption fee. I heartily recommend checking with labs4rescue.com to find a new Lab. Mardi is a half-Lab but I learned from my old Lab/Cocker the half lab blood is enough to insure a fabulous disposition. Labs4rescue brings a lot of Labs up from Louisiana because Southern folks often don't believe in spay or neuter and there are thousands of nice and very needy dogs available. They research potential adopters very carefully (checked with my vet and found someone from Syracuse to travel 40 miles to check me and my house) and required a signed contract that I will follow all their rules. They also provided a 2 week trial period during which I could decide if Mardi weren't the right dog for me because I have 2 cats and I was not about to stress them by bringing in an unfriendly dog. It was a great way to find Mardi and me forever friends and the cats have adjusted well. Good luck.
Thank you all. I went back on the internet to check up today, and she is no longer listed. Either she got adopted or rescued yesterday--there were quite a few people in the shelter yesterday. I hope she found a happy home. We are in Colorado, and this state does see a lot of rescue imports from the midwest especially.
NanM, thanks for the advice. I really do think we need another dog (in addition to Samson schip). Jackson was my husband's first dog, and I think he has very mixed feelings about adopting at this point (he's the one who taught Jackson to hug). I will check out Labs4rescue and keep my eyes and ears open for a new family member.