Thursday, February 2, 2012

Should You Really Have A Dog?

Today I took an inquiry about Greyhound adoption. Nothing unusual for a Thursday. I answer the phone every Thursday for a Greyhound rescue.

Usually, prospective adopters have done a little bit of research and want confirmation or refutation of what they have heard or read about Greyhounds.

Do they need to run miles every day? No. They really enjoy a daily walk and if there is a safe, enclosed area convenient for you, they enjoy a run. But mine have made do with running in the backyard and making a circuit of the living room.

Do they really have to live indoors? Yes.

What is their life expectancy? That's not an easy question to answer. Our Greyhound, Zephyr, died a month before her 7th birthday because of aggressive bone cancer. I have heard of some Greyhounds living to 14 or even beyond. 12 is a really good lifespan for a greyhound.

These are the sorts of questions one expects. There are other questions that make me glad that I'm not screening the caller's final eligibility for adoption.

Can I get a rescued dog for free?

When can I see the dogs and choose what color I want?

My teenage sons have been nagging me for a dog. Do you think I can depend on them to look after it?

I responded to just such a call today, becoming more and more concerned about my caller's potential to provide an adequate home for a retired racing Greyhound.

Then came a surprise. The caller was particularly interested in Italian Greyhounds! She assumed that, in addition to offering Greyhounds in different colors, we would also offer them in different sizes! Something like Nordstrom for Greyhounds. "May I see that same dog in dark brindle in a ten pound size?"

I hastened to explain that the dogs we rescue and place are BIG, FULL-SIZED GREYHOUNDS and that Italian Greyhounds are a completely different breed with their own breed rescues. I encouraged her to contact her local Italian Greyhound Rescue.

Forgive me, gentle reader, for forwarding this prospective adopter to another rescue. But I did so with full knowledge that Italian Greyhound rescuers are very exacting in their requirements of prospective adopters. I think their dogs are safe.

I really am eager to see all needy, homeless dogs find a forever home. But, some people shouldn't have dogs.

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