Several weeks ago, we adopted Christine. She is a 9-year-old golden retriever who was surrendered at a local kill shelter by her human family, which “no longer had time for her.” She was adopted and then returned one day later by someone who said that she did not get along with the other dog in the household.
We adopted Christine because it is harder to place older dogs, particularly when they have been returned. She is an absolute joy and from the moment she entered our house, she has gotten along very well with our other dogs. She loves playing in the snow and she is slowly but surely getting over the confusion that necessarily occurs when you’re someplace for nine years and then you’re not there anymore. And she absolutely loves her vegan food! (But in fairness, she is a golden and would eat cardboard so we regard our more selective canines as better indicators of how much dogs like a good vegan meal.)
There are always nonhuman animals who need homes but given the current economic crisis, many people are losing their homes and many shelters are reaching or have reached capacity. There are so many sad stories out there.
Please, if you can adopt a homeless animal—a dog, cat, bird, mouse, fish—anyone who needs a home, do so. Adoption is an important form of activism; they’re in this mess because of us. The least that we can do is to take care of some of them.
And if you do adopt, remember that it may take some time and effort to get a new family member accustomed to and comfortable with her new family. Don’t give up if a new dog or cat has some difficulty adjusting. That’s normal. We have had a good many “problem” dogs over the years and we’ve always been able to solve the problem with love, patience, and understanding.
And one thing I can say with certainly: all of that love has been returned by our canine family many times over.
So please adopt if you can.
Gary L. Francione
©2010 Gary L. Francione