Am I just heartless?

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by stardogs, Jul 29, 2012.

  1. stardogs

    stardogs Behavior Nerd

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    I've seen posts on fb recently asking for donations for the care of severely disabled and neglected dogs and I just look at the dogs and can't help but think that euthanasia might be more humane. Does anyone else think like this?

    These are dogs with multiple *major* health issues: genetic malformations that make eating difficult, traumatic loss of eyes, mange, Cushings, etc. and both come from abusive/neglectful situations. I just can't help but wonder if their caretakers are pushing the dogs past what is humane and it makes me incredibly sad for both the dog *and* all the other healthier dogs that could be saved in their place.
     
  2. JustaLilBitaLuck

    JustaLilBitaLuck New Member

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    You're not being heartless. You're being realistic. The rescue that I work with doesn't knowingly take in dogs (from animal control or surrenders) that have extreme health issues. Why? Because the amount of time and effort it would take to try and save that one dog could be used to save another ten dogs. It's horrible, and it's sad, and I feel for those dogs...but it's the big picture.
     
  3. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    It's wrong.
     
  4. Moth

    Moth Mild and Slightly Nutty

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    I think there comes a point where the quality of the dogs life is never going to be what it should be and the money poured into the situation would do much more good for other animals...

    ...so no I do not think you are heartless. I think sometimes perspective and being practical and realistic is something that needs to happen more in those type of situations.
     
  5. sassafras

    sassafras mushinois

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    Nope, and I'm right there with you.
     
  6. stardogs

    stardogs Behavior Nerd

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    I showed the dogs to DH and he agreed with me, but I'm glad we're not the only ones. One of the dogs had pictures posted of her "being a dog" - she's just lying on a rug, not even curled like a "regular" dog and to me that is soooo far from truly being a dog. It just broke my heart. :(
     
  7. MandyPug

    MandyPug Sport Model Pug

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    Someone posted a photo of a dog who's throat was slit right through the trachea asking for donations for the surgery to save the dog. That's an especially big case in my opinion of "PUT THE DOG DOWN"
     
  8. smkie

    smkie pointer/labrador/terrier Staff Member

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    For someone like Patrick, he did a complete recovery, it took a long time, but his progress was steady and that I think is what works for me. I think there is worse things than dying. I have a real hard time with some of them, and think they make unnecessary suffering. So right there with you.
     
  9. MericoX

    MericoX Roos, Poos, & a Wog!

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    No you're not heartless, and I feel the same sometimes as well. Some of the dogs, it just seems cruel, yes you can probably get them healthy, but what kind of life will they lead in the end, and how much of that money could be going towards helping dogs with a much healthier/fuller outcome in life.
     
  10. JacksonsMom

    JacksonsMom Active Member

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    I do tend to agree.

    I will say, for my own dog, I'd definitely go to extreme measures if it meant he had a chance at a healthy life still, or a decent quality of life. Of course I wouldn't let him suffer, but I definitely would go to great lengths to help him.

    When it comes to dogs who may or may not have a home anyways, and are sitting in a shelter, etc, it's a tough call. I don't think it's cruel to humanely euthanize though.

    But then again, you do read of stories of very happy dogs who were not going to be given a chance, and then they ARE given a chance, and end up living very happy lives in great homes. Hard to say.

    But I totally get what you're saying and agree.
     
  11. crazedACD

    crazedACD Active Member

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    It depends on the situation for me. I do agree with some severe situations, and as I've said before I don't think senior dogs should be treated for very much. 6 months of treatments for an extra year of life isn't worth it to me. Thing is some of these extreme cases can put a rescue on the map, and spur donations. Is it great for that dog..maybe not..but if the rescue can keep it's doors open and thus help more dogs with the extra influx of donations. Not saying it is inherently the right thing to do, but perhaps that is the thinking behind it.

    I picked up a puppy off the side of the road that was in extremely bad shape the day before moving across country. I was prepared to bring the dog to be euthanized but I quickly started contacting people and a local rescue was more than happy to take her on. She recovered nicely and when I moved back I actually got to see her with her new mom. She did have lasting bone defects from poor nutrition, but, just needed treatment and some time to get to decent condition.
    Pics of her the day I picked her up..
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Just a few months later..
    [​IMG]

    When you see the befores and afters of some of them..it kind of makes it worth it. There's also the point to where the more of a sob story a dog has, the more people that are interested in adopting and wanting to help it.
     
  12. Cthulhu7

    Cthulhu7 Mitch & Erin

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    I had a similar experience at Petsmart. The local shelter had some dogs there, and there were 2 chis that had come from a puppy mill. Both were deformed, had medical issues, and were missing their back legs.

    All i could think was how can anyone bring themselves to adopt two dogs that are not only going to need extremely expensive care, but are never going to have normal lives? To me, it goes way beyond "special needs." I just can't imagine those dogs ever truly being happy.

    I really felt terrible thinking it though, and i do hope that someone is willing to try for them. I know I'd never be able to afford the kind of care they need.
     
  13. Kilter

    Kilter New Member

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    I think it's a sad part of life, that not every dog gets saved. I do see how some rescues do the drama card, right or wrong, but at the same time some dogs they do save would be better off put down humanely.

    I also see how the rescues bash the local HS for putting dogs down - but they do test every dog that comes in and make choices based on what they can work with and adopt out that isn't going to get returned. And knowing some of the people that work there, also found out that the rescues have dropped off or not 'saved' dogs they'd had in that had issues. Yet the same rescue bashes the 'kill shelter' - makes you think!

    They do keep a certain number of problem dogs to adopt out but found that if every dog up for adoption has 'issues' then less people come in to look for dogs.
     
  14. Romy

    Romy Taxiderpy

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    ^^ This.

    For me it depends on the long term prognosis. Mange looks really dramatic and painful, but really is easy to treat and clears up beautifully, usually without any relapses if good care continues.

    But if it's something like an autoimmune problem that causes their body to attack its own muscles and has no cure? The poor dog is probably better off put down.
     
  15. Red Chrome

    Red Chrome New Member

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    I personally feel most rescues that do the pity posts just want the extra donations. Lets face it, dogs that have a before and after like the one posted above gather more donations than tthe average rescue dog.

    *I am NOT saying all rescues do this....just some.
     
  16. ihartgonzo

    ihartgonzo and Fozzie B!

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    I'm very sympathetic... but I am also a realist. ESPECIALLY with rescue dogs, it's very sad, but when they need thousands for their care and have a long, hard road of recovery, with a good chance of not recovering; it just seems wasteful to put so many funds into that one life, when dozens could be saved in their place, and when the animal is suffering.

    This local toy breed rescue regularly takes in horrifically disfigured and sickly dogs, gives them months of intensive care and surgeries and treatment, taking donations from good-hearted people. They currently have a 10 year old Yorkie with a spinal issue, which requires $3000 of surgery and care. Like, really? You could save 30 healthy young dogs from dying with that money and care. D: The dog can't even look up currently, and can hardly eat or drink. His owners dumped him because they couldn't pay for the surgery... some one should step up and put the poor guy to rest.
     
  17. crazedACD

    crazedACD Active Member

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    The rescue that took that puppy was actually a pretty decent rescue. FB wasn't as popular at the time, but they didn't plaster her all over asking for money to treat her. I think they put her in their newsletter and put her story on their web page, but didn't ask for donations specifically for her. They ran off their own funds so to speak, it wasn't 'if we don't get xx we can't treat'.

    I was telling the lady I worked with about the woman I got Soldier from..she let her dog get knocked up every heat cycle, and dumped all the pups at the high-kill shelter every time. Without any hesitation they told me they would go pick up the dog and spay it for the woman at no cost (unfortunately the woman didn't care..). They really went above and beyond, even behind the scenes.

    And like I said, if the rescues can generate enough donations to keep running and help more 'average dogs'..then I don't really see a huge issue. That rescue had probably about 100 dogs in foster homes. Sometimes a healthy looking dog can get injured or get sick quickly and those bills get pretty high just treating a broken limb or infected spay...stuff that should be done and not euthanized for.

    Now..there was a dog overseas, maybe in Bulgaria, that had all of her legs cut off. A rescue took her in and I think fitted her with all prosthetics..that is absolutely ridiculous. Dogs with deformities and those requiring extensive surgery especially with a reduced quality of life..I can agree there. I do think temperament and suitability for living with humans should be taken into consideration as well.
     
  18. Teal

    Teal ...ice road...

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    Not heartless at all.

    I do think sometimes there is an animal in bad shape that just really gets peoples' attention and efforts are pooled together to save it.

    But if a rescue is constantly taking in dogs with costly issues and poor chances of recovery, I think that just says a lot about the people running the rescue.
     
  19. Xandra

    Xandra Active Member

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    It depends... I think once in a while it's OK because it is quite satisfying when it works out and aside from donations it feels good to have a super special case and invest lots in it and see a 180. Yes as a general rule rescues should be pragmatic about helping as many dogs as possible but I think it's OK if the people indulge in something that makes them feel extra good once in a while. People will probably donate more and as long as the rescues don't search out these special needs cases to bring in money, or keep them alive with a very poor prognosis, I don't have a problem with it.
     
  20. JessLough

    JessLough Love My Mutt

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    Well, I can pretty well gaurentee nobody is getting rich off those heart-puller cases.

    Whilst I definitely do agree that it's inhumane to prolong the suffering just to say you kept them alive, it's a huge difference being an outsider looking in to somebody who sees the dog and sees a will to live
     

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