There is no end to the crazy emails and letters that we get. Some are so unreasonable and strange that we just shake our heads. Others make us laugh. Others are highly insulting. Many people give us their opinions or tell us how we could improve or do better, or how they would do it. Many also tell us “thanks” or “great job” or “we’re glad you’re there”. This blog is going to be about some of the crazies though. Come and take a dip with us into the twilight zone of unreasonableness. Are you ready? Are you wearing your crazy hat? You’re gonna need it.
Let’s call letter one “I don’t medically care for my animals, so I now realize you’re not going to adopt to me, so I am going to make that about YOU and not about me“. Hmm. A little long for a title. Maybe I need to wordsmith that a little? OK, let’s go.
In this situation, someone filled out their application to adopt a dog. Our adoption person checked it out and was calling their vet for a follow-up. The vet had no record of them bringing their animals in for care, shots, or treatment for more than five years. Well, heck, we don’t reject them – we ask! There might be a good reason.
We spoke with your vet’s office & they do not have you on record as coming
in since 2005. Have you taken your cat to a different clinic perhaps?
Let me know. Thanks!
Pretty simple, right? Nothing insulting there. Nothing accusatory. Maybe he has a few vets he uses. Maybe he moved. OK, here is his response. Ready? Crazy hat firmly in place? Ok, let’s go. (I am going to leave in all the grammar errors, please note this is how it came in).
No! whats with the 20 questions? Are you people playing some kind of sick game w/me? Are puppies available or Not? Do you often try to frustrate people into saying: forget it? If you don’t want to find a good home for your puppies just say so. Whats next, you want to see my tax records? I belive your process probably gets a lot of animals killed when perfectly good homes are available. And while i’m thinking of it: I was silly to think you were legit when you never even told me how much this was going to cost. I went against my better judgement to fill out this application at the request of my family members, Thanks for proving me right that you people are control freaks and are illigitimate. Petsalive is a farse-you dont care about animals, you only care about your control over those animals. Good job Ms.Kelly-You’ve frustrated a potential good home for an animal. BTW:Your ignorance of our military family offends me and I will be sure to spread the word about your organization throughout the military community. Also consider this my ‘Legal Request’ that you: please delete any of my information and remove me from any of your call lists or data base.
Giggle. OK, I don’t even know where to start. Let’s start at the top. 20 questions? Yes. We do ask some questions on our application to see if you are a good home for our pets and also that they are a good match for YOU! And YES Scott. We DO try to frustrate people into NOT adopting our animals, because really, it is all about getting you to see our pets, go online, fall in love, fill out an application just so we can cackle with laughter here and say “NO!” and keep them ALL for ourselves! HAHAHAHAHA. You found us out. Darn. We try to keep this a well guarded secret. It’s out now.
Darn it, you also found out we aren’t “legit” because we charge an adoption fee. GOSH DARN! I wanted to keep it hidden that we pay $150 to get that dog spayed, and $25 to microchip her, and $20 to get her shots up to date and $75 to run blood and test for e-canis, lyme, heartworm and anaplasma,and $10 to treat for worms, and maybe there was some transport costs and oh she wants to eat EVERY DAY (can you believe it??) and maybe she had some other ailment we treated her for and we do have to pay staff and pay utility bills around here, but you found me out. We are here to rip you off and make millions off of people like you. Because walk around here – CLEARLY you can see we are SWIMMING in money! Wait, I just had to brush some pesky hundred dollar bills off the keyboard. Hate when they pile up like that.
Tell the military about us? I’m not even sure where the heck THAT came from in his paragraphs of crazy. That was an extra dose of crazy. It doesn’t even say on his app he is military and if he did I’m not sure what difference it would really make to the application process (although maybe if he came here I’d thank him for his service to our country) but hey, sure, tell the whole military we wouldn’t approve you because your dog or cat has not seen a vet in at least 5 years. Actually we never got to NOT approving you. Maybe we still would have, we weren’t able to get that far. But um….maybe you should also talk to some of the military that come to us, having to go overseas and have no place for their pets. And we take them in and keep them and care for them and if ok we adopt them out, if not we hold them here and love on them until our military people can get back. And if they don’t come back we take extra care to let someone know that this dog was loved by someone who gave his life for us. OK, but yeah, go tell the military we suck. Sigh.
OK, that is crazy letter number 1. Let’s move on to the next. This one I will call “Unreasonable to the Extreme and Not Guided by Reason or Sound Judgment“. Much more manageable of a title, yes?
OK, so everyone that adopts signs a contract and we go over the contract and explain the contract. We tell them that once the animal leaves we don’t cover any additional medical costs – AT ALL. We don’t guarantee their health or temperament. We can tell you the dog NEVER bit anyone here (or we will tell you if he DID!), we can tell you that he lived with other dogs and liked other dogs, we can let you WATCH us cat test him and see that it all appears to go well but I can NOT guarantee that he will never bite your kid, or that he will love YOUR dog or YOUR cat, or your neighbor. We can’t. I can only tell you what we know about him from our experiences with him. I also can tell you that we treat ANYTHING we see here for EVERY animal, and we always reveal anything we have found, treated him for, or are worried about in his future. Full disclosure. That is how we feel. Why? Because we feel that is fair and honorable, and we want you to make your decision with your eyes wide open. It doesn’t help us to lie to you and have the dog come back – DUH! We will TELL you that the dog had a lump we removed or you should keep an eye on that ear because he is prone to infections, but I cant guarantee that we caught every nuance of every possible medical issue an animal could have now or IN THE FUTURE!
OK, so knowing that, let’s move on to Letter 2.
People adopted a dog I will call “Mr Q”. They emailed us this when they took him home (names have been changed to protect the crazy):
My husband and I adopted Mr. Q last night at your Middletown Rescue. The ride home went well, as did the bath that he needed before he could sleep in our bed. We had one incident last night in bed with Mr.Q, involving our cat CATTY and dog DOGGY. He growled a little at both of them, but my husband told him no, quite sternly, and he settled back down. This morning, it was playtime, early at 5:00 am. Yes, I only had four hours sleep. Its like being with a baby. I was sandwiched in between my Mr. Q and our dog DOGGY, and could not move at all. Meanwhile, Mr. Q, DOGGY and HUSBAND were snoring away. Mr. Q and DOGGIE appear to be getting along. DOGGIE is a little hesitant and I think that is because MR. Q wants to play with her alot, and he is bigger then her. We are watching them closely, and we hope that everything works out ok. MR. Q is a goof ball, just really silly, and very loving. We will keep you posted.
- So far so good right? What a nice email and great to know that all is ok. Then a MONTH – did I say a MONTH – yes a MONTHlater we get a call. Our admin takes the message and emails the staff:
Just got a call from Mr. Q’s owner. She is extremely upset and not happy with her Pets Alive experience. She feels that all dogs that leave Pets Alive must be sick, since they got a “sick dog”. They discovered Mr. Q has bladder crystals a week ago and have incurred multiple vet bills as a result. She told me that we should be doing urinalysis on all dogs since her vet told her it’s a fairly simple test. I attempted to nicely advise her that we are a shelter and that urinalysis is not a test we do here until we are presented with a medical issue. I told her we saw no medical issues with Mr. Q while he was here. She insisted I take the mandatory urinalysis issue to the director.
Second issue-she is very upset about Mr. Q’s behavior. Although he passed his cat test here, she says he is terrorizing her cat. She also says he is destroying their house. She says we told her he got along great with cats so she feels like we purposely lied to her. I advised her that he did pass his cat test here, which she WATCHED, but that we NEVER guarantee any temperament or behavior. At the end of the conversation she did tell me that they were leaning towards bringing Mr. Q back but hadn’t made up their minds. I told her that if they want to bring him back to please contact us first so that we may set up an appt time for them to come in. She also then mentioned how much they love him….
Oiy? Should I start addressing the above or are you already with me here? OK, let’s just skip addressing that – it is sort of self explanatory. Now look at the nice note that Janet, our vet liaison sent her in response.
I was forwarded your email regarding Mr. Q and that fact that your vet has found out he has bladder stones. Honestly, I was very shocked to hear this news. Although it is not out the question, it is quite uncommon for such a young dog to have such issues. We have hundreds of dogs walking through our doors each year, and only two have had similar problems in the last four years. Mr. Q is a great boy though, so of course our thoughts are with him as well as with you! MRS. A,, you are correct in stating that a urine test is overall a simple test. But it would be completely impractical to test each animal that walks through our door. Even when you bring your animal to your vet for their check up, notice that a urine test is not a ROUTINE measure. ONLY if an animal is exhibiting symptoms would you then send out a urine sample for analysis. Not only is that the typical protocol for pets in homes, but it the procedure here as well. There have been numerous times where we have sent out a urine sample on an animal. But it is not something you would do without suspicion or reason. It is simply impractical as well as an unneeded added expensive. We already put quite a bit of money into each and every animal. Between spay/neuter, vaccines, deworming, heartworm/lyme testing, microchipping, flea/tick prevention, as well as heartworm prevention, rescuing dogs is an expensive endeavor. Adoption fees only help to offset some of these costs.
As much as we all feel bad that Mr. Q is one of the rare dogs experiencing crystals/stones at his young age, it truly would be impractical for us to perform urinalysis on every dog. We will continue to give additional medical care to those who symptomatically warrant such. In addition, we hope that Mr. Q is doing better with your cat. He is a sweet energetic dog, and your cat may not appreciate that vigor for life. But generally the cats will come around to them after some time.
Now isn’t that a nice response? I thought so and up until now MRS.A wasn’t a “crazy”. Just “odd”. She only steps into the “realm of crazy” with her responses so far. But…ummmm…ready? Crazy hats set on tight? OK, let’s go!
Janet, In regard to urine testing for crystals, it is routine. It was done at our vets office for our Sheltie. We took in a sample, and they put it under a microscope and saw the crystals. It does not have to be sent out to a lab. MR. Q only had the following symptoms : He peed 4 times inside, and he was drinking alot. As your dogs are in kennels I doubt that those symptoms would be seen there. And there are not always symptoms to see. As for my cat, he is holding his own,and we are working with MR. Q to be calmer with him. I have contacted your facility in regard to MR. Q’s illness. None of you apologized for the cost of his recent treatment ($360) , his future treatment ($360), or the cost of prescription food for the rest of his life. That is not the way to treat adopting parents. I am glad that we adopted MR. M from you four years ago, and that MR. Q is in our good home. This is where HUSBAND and I are on this situation : We love MR. Q. We will not be returning him to your facility. And we will not adopt a pet from you again. Both HUSBAND and I are highly disappointed with how your facility handled this matter, and we do not wish to hear from you again. We adopted our dog DOGGIE in August of this year from a rescue in upstate New York. She came to us healthy and with complete medical testing, including urine. Should we decide in the future to adopt again, we will adopt from the rescue that DOGGIE came from.
- So even though they adopted a dog from us BEFORE – that had no medical issues, they will never adopt one again because a MONTH later this dog developed urinary crystals. Hmmm. A MONTH later, but she has determined it was not only a pre-exisiting condition from a month ago, she didn’t even notice it the whole month they had the dog and lived with him every day. But is SURE the dog had it here and WE should have noticed it. And the way we should have handled the matter was to…what? Take the dog back? Of course we would. Pay for medical expenses? Um,you signed a contract and we discussed that we do not cover anything once the dog leaves here. But we should ignore the contract that was discussed with you and signed…because….you say so? And this happened a month after the dog was in your home. Maybe ::SHOCK:: it happened THERE! And he is destroying your home. Well. He is a dog. Have you trained him? Crated him? Should we have trained him, here in a kennel environment, in a cement run, not to destroy your home? Know what? We should! I will tell the staff to start training them to do that and I also think it would be way cool if we trained them to do your laundry and have a hot meal on the table for you when you come home. How cool would THAT BE!!!??
OK, we are ON it, but um…I still won’t be able to cover any medical bills you encounter a month later and after you leave here.
OK, this is getting too long now, but I have oh so many to share with you. I think this should be a regular feature! “The Crazy Letters of Pets Alive”. I leave you with these excerpts from other Crazy People:
“The HOUND dog we adopted from you killed one of our chickens yesterday. You never advised us he was no good with chickens. We need to return him because you kept this information from us. We do want another dog though but you’d better chicken test this one first. We don’t want to have the same problem with the next dog that we get from you.”
We DID address this!! Juan and Marcos went out and bought a rubber chicken. Now we chicken test all dogs with the rubber chicken. It’s a lot of fun. We pop popcorn.
“I need to return this puppy we got from you. He is jumping on my children!! My children are now terrified of dogs thank to YOU. You should be able to train your dogs not to jump on children. This dog is already 10 weeks old. It is disgusting that he didn’t learn that this was bad behavior while with you. What do you DO there with the dogs anyway? Just stick them in a cage and don’t bring them out until an adopter comes? Anyway we are bringing this one back and we want one that doesn’t jump.”
And with that, I leave you, dear reader.
– See more at: http://petsalive.com/blog/2011/01/10/crazy-letters-we-get/#sthash.Of9RQl2N.dpuf