Well, there is a collection of 100 dogs making their way to Nova Scotia, Canada, from California, USA, to be placed into the animal adoption / fostering / rescue system here. At first glance most folks will think that is a good measure on behalf of the rescuers involved in this project. But is it helpful to the immediate animal welfare community here? Is it really necessary at this moment in time considering our current adoption / fostering needs here in the province for animals waiting for homes.
Whenever you have a particular system which is experiencing a high taxation on it’s internal resources, it will not be of any benefit to add to that strain of resources. It’s the practicalities of economics. Don’t push when pushing will tip the scales unreasonably and not in your favor. The animal adoption / fostering community here is, more or less, always in a sensitive state of being over burdened. It’s an unfortunate normality for the rescue community. Why make it worse?
These 100 dogs are going to require 100 potential foster parents / forever family adoptees to apply for them. These same persons would have looked at potential adoptable animals that are CURRENTLY in the local fostering / adoption system. Every SPCA branch, every shelter and rescue in this province just lost that connection to the 100 potential applicants.
The solution is rather simple – adopt / foster local dogs. Only import possible adoptions / fosters when and only when the system here has an agreeable level of vacancies in the community – ie when the SPCA branches, shelters and rescues aren’t packed with animals. The animals en-route have no pre-arranged adoptions or fosterings as of yet so they will be placing an immediate burden on the adoption / fostering community here.
So who will shed a tear for the 100 animals currently in our communities who will be stuck in the system for an undetermined length of time because they just moved down the list quite a bit in regard to public awareness and priority? Who will adopt one of the many large breeds currently in the system when there are several cute and cuddly smaller breeds on their way here?
Having said all the above, I am myself a dog lover as well as an animal rescuer and would prefer to see each and every dog get a loving home. But I am practical about this love that I have for the larger dog community. I perceive it to be more effective to adopt locally.
What if this becomes a trend where upon every so often large batches of adoptions / fostering are being fed into the province and the current population of adoptions / fosterings here will suffer more so. Another way to look at this point I am trying to make is to consider the feral cat population. Rescuers are doing their very best to help deal with this growing problem but what if they started to ship rare and cute cat breeds from California in large numbers? The attention that would have gone towards dealing with the feral cats may be side tracked and focused on the imports. Then we are left with a worse problem then when we began.
What about the funds obtained from monetary donations, as well as donations of supplies that are now going to reroute to these imported dogs and will not be available for current cases of need? The animal welfare issues that a particular locale / population faces is just that – it is their responsibility to address. In my humble opinion these dogs should have remained in California and the good folks of that State should be addressing their needs / care, etc. On the flip side of the coin the people involved here should be helping to address the various issues we have ongoing in our local animal welfare community.
We are a small province who just happens to be one of the poorer provinces in this great country. Every region has financial burdens, every animal welfare community has a very limited / finite base of resources to work with. California is, in comparison to Cape Breton, a larger population as well as a wealthier population then we have here. They have easier access to certain resources then we have here.
After all is said and done our passion to help animals, our compassion to do the right thing, and our reasonability in carrying out these things effectively and efficiently needs to remain balanced and in check with current local needs. A misguided gesture soon becomes an undesired burden.
- The humane alternative: No-kill shelters (hamptonroads.com)
- Foster homes are saving animals (mysanantonio.com)
- ‘Concern for animal welfare in is increasing in Africa’ (newint.org)
- Charlotte SPCA saves 40 puppies from kill shelter (charlotte.news14.com)
- Rescued Rescuers takes in dogs until permanent owners can be found (nwfdailynews.com)