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Room at the Inn

It was purely coincidence that we ran an article about the forgotten cats at Animals in Distress, a small local shelter that's been struggling to find donations, volunteers and adopters. We profiled Gizmo, one of the sweet adults available for adoption. He was being mercilessly picked on by Moose, one of the other cats at the shelter. Luckily for Gizmo, just as we posted the article about him, one of the volunteers fell in love with him and decided to take him home. Hopefully he will blend in well with the other kitties in the family and if it all works out, Giz has a place to stay for life.

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I love hearing about adults getting a good home, but of course, just as Gizmo leaves, an apple-head Siamese named Clive, was given up by his owners. Carole, the President of A.I.D. could not turn him away. She knew he deserved a chance at find a great home. The reason he was surrendered? Not that he's mean or unfriendly. NO. They're MOVING and “can't take him.”

I don't understand that and never will. If you adopt an animal and you move, you take it with you. You don't leave your KIDS or your Partner behind when you move do you? You don't, on purpose, move to an apartment that does not allow pets, right? If they say NO to pets, then you find somewhere else to live? I'm not solving world peace here. Come on. This excuse is really getting tiresome to hear-and I seem to be hearing it every day.

I'm starting to wonder if we, who do rescue, make it easier for people to dump their pets. Think about it. If all rescues said "NO!" when someone pulls the "moving" or "no pets" excuse, then maybe they would step up and take responsibility for their pets for the LIFE of that pet, not just until the novelty wears off?

I know. Who am I kidding?

Sometimes I just want to slap people. Not you. Of course.

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I may have recently lost a friend over this. Someone I've known through an online game site has gone through a few difficult years. She got a divorce & her ex got custody of her son. She was alone & depressed. But she got a kitten, watched her play & grow up. She slowly became less depressed, gained some confidence and I thought she was finally evolving into her true self. Then all of a sudden she decided she was moving. Since it would cost a little more for security if she had a pet she started trying to give the cat away. I tried to use some restraint, avoided saying cruel things but I still tore into her. How could she abandon this beautiful animal that brought her so much joy when she could find none? She has since decided not to move, making me glad I didn't comment that I now better understood why her ex got her son. But it did make me wonder how much of a rent savings would make it worth leaving her kid behind? We really don't talk any more. Sometimes the better you know people the less you want to know them. Slapping her would have made me feel better.

p.s. So happy for Gizmo. He looks like such a sweetheart.

I remember a time when I had to move when I was in my early 20s and couldn't take my cat, Anais, where I was going. Thankfully, I was able to find her a loving home with a co-worker (who had long told me she wanted her). But I'm not sure what I would have done at the time if I hadn't been able to do that. I know NOW what I'd do, but there are people -- for example, those being evicted from homes being foreclosed on -- for whom finding a rental that takes pets is impossible, even if they could afford it, which they likely can't.

These people are in some of the most horrific of circumstances when it comes to having to make difficult personal choices. It's awful, but what options do they have, really? It's hard enough finding rentals that take children, which many of them have. There really are places where pet-friendly housing isn't just at a premium, it's non-existent as far as actually having units available. I heard from a friend of mine who works at a shelter, saying in the last year or so, she has witnessed some of the most wrenching surrenders she has ever had to watch because of people being forced out of their foreclosed homes. They never imagined they'd have to give up their pets, and were torn up by it, but they had no other options.

I've begun to think it might be a good business to get into, providing pet-friendly housing for people who rent.

I'm not excusing this giving up of animals for a move, or saying it's right. I'm appalled by it myself. But I am saying there really are times when people have no other choice. However, I also think that far too many people view their pets as just another piece of furniture to be disposed of before moving on with their lives, who make no attempt to even find homes for them, and this is infuriating and I would also get in the "slap them" line.

I know that there are people who move, and leave their pets behind,
like an old box of books they don't want, BUT there are people
that sometime have to make that hard choice, due to certain reasons.

My husband walked out, which left me with no choice but to move in with
a person who would not allow my cats. I felt like I was being cut in two. Not only had I lost the one person who promised stand beside me in life, but I lost my three children, one that I helped deliver, after I found and took care of her mother.

I tried to make sure that I found a group that would find them good homes, and even paid a fee and made sure that their records went with them.

I agree that there are some people that just could care less, but some of us care enough, to give them to someone that may find them homes, and at least have some chance at a better life, and not just kick them to the curb, and wish them good luck.

Just a thought-BaltimoreJaxs

Hooray for Gizmo :)

I too have a very hard time understanding how some people can just give their pets up due to 'moving'. Even where I live, where it can be a bit harder to find places that accept pets, there will always be somewhere. It just takes a bit of time, and sometimes a bit of bargaining. I'm a renter myself, and I am moving in 2 weeks, and if I hadn't had my cats, then I could have had any number of places in no time at all. But I found a place that not only allowed cats, but didn't charge an extra fee.

The local craigslist pet section is full of listings for animals needing a home due to moves, or the ever present 'we had a baby and can't keep the pet', or the 'I'm moving in with my boyfriend/girlfriend and they're allergic.'

hmph. I moved three cats 1800 miles in three days in the cab of a truck. Not exactly fun, but they're FAMILY, for Pete's sake.

The moving thing has always annoyed me. I do think there are too many people who don't make enough of an effort.. though some truly just have no choice.
BUT.. why do they have no choice? Can we advocate for laws that require landlords to allow pets? After all, at one time landlords could bar families that had children, they could bar gays. Instead of spending a lot of time and money trying to convince people not to eat fish, why doesn't PETA put some effort into pet friendly legislation for renters? Why not strike down some of the town ordinances that limit the number of pets a household may keep? (I know those are there to give the town a way to control hording and limit nuisance owners, but couldn't there be some way other than a blanket rules that limits the count of pets (it's 4 in my town, but we clean up after the dogs, don't leave them out to bark and at present everyone on the street has cats so no one minds if they get into the garden-- we're lucky)
I also wonder, in terms of the security deposit issue.. would it be less expensive for pounds, shelters or rescues to help subsidize pet security deposits than it would be to house, vet and place a surrendered pet? Especially if we could put legislation in place to limit how much security could be asked.. to say 10% of a monthly rental?

There are REASONS to have to give up your pets when you move (leaving an abusive spouse, catastrophe, etc.) and then there are EXCUSES for giving up your pets when you move. I think if you really got down to it, there would be FAR fewer of the "oh I'm moving" abandonment cases than there currently are if they were all for legitimate reasons.

For example: my home was totally destroyed by a tornado about 2 years ago. My husband died also, but my cats survived (I cried for a solid hour after they were found). The only place I had to go after getting out of the hospital was my mom's house with her incredibly territorial cat. There was no way I could bring my cats with me. But, through some begging and bribing, I managed to convince a family member to take them for a few months.

Those of us totally dedicated to our pets will do everything in our power to make sure they stay with us, but every once in a while we still have to give them up.

I hate the moving excuse too.

My Katie Kitty Too could slap someone for you...

voting for you, too.

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