Following the passing of my last dog, it has taken me a long time to consider another pet however the idea of a rescue appealed to me on many levels so I went to an animal rescue foundation. I got as far as an interview and was rejected because I expressed doubt about the all-positive reinforcement training they told me they insist on. While I have always praised the behavior that I want to encourage I also believe in addressing unwanted behavior.
I was never questioned about my history of dog ownership (13 of them over my life) or asked for a reference from my vet who would certainly be able to attest to my ability to provide a loving, stable home. I am given to understand that the foster family of the dog in question gets to decide whether or not an applicant moves forward in the process. This individual is interpreting the notes (themselves an interpretation collected by a volunteer) from a telephone conversation and decides my worthiness. It did seem that a lot of people without apparent training have an odd division of labour.
There are lots of good people who want nothing more than to adopt an unwanted animal. This experience with this animal rescue foundation has made me wary of the gatekeepers who may have an organizational agenda that seems at odds with their core purpose
I bet you went to an animal rights rescue instead of an animal welfare rescue. There are “’All Positive/Force-Free’ all the time” animal rights rescues in every city. They think they know more about dog behaviour then dogs when as they revealed to you they know very little. Steer clear; training a dog is like steering a car. Adjust its attitude a little to the left, a little to the right and you get to your destination, no muss, no fuss. If, as they want you’re only allowed to turn right, you like a dog will end up in the ditch. Dogs die because of that sort of asinine animal rights nonsense, which ironically ultimately makes the animal rights rescue the abuser. Where do the dogs end up when they are finally completely unmanageable? Back at a rescue, or worse. There are far too many animal rights rescues run by ill qualified people that no doubt love dogs but it seems all to often, not as much as they seem to hate people.
The difference between welfare and rights is that the former is all about keeping them warm, fed, finding them good homes and protecting them from abuse. The second embrace the belief that animals are equal to humans and should be afforded the same or better rights and things like saying “No” should be considered a form of abuse. For the main stream their attitude and approach marginalize the more plausible parts of their agenda. They have been known to go to lethal extremes. Do a Google search with the words “animal rights, terrorism” and you’ll get over 1.5 million eye opening hits. Animal rights groups are considered by most governments to be significant terrorist threats.
In my city we have an outstanding animal control and humane society and although the average tax payer doesn’t know it the animal rights rescues have for years tied up the city, the animal control and the humane society’s resources, trying, without qualifications or credentials to “educate” them. It would be funny if it weren’t for the 10’s of 1,000’s of dollars wasted, and animals and people they’ve hurt.
It’s safer for anyone looking for a pet or to donate money for their welfare to stay away from rescues that are animal rights oriented. Go to an animal welfare rescues and shelters like an animal control or humane society. Another good bet are breed specific rescues. On average they’re all more professional and knowledgeable then the wannabe that couldn’t see past their own bizarre agenda to your worth as a dog owner.