What would you do in this situation? (animal shelter problems))?

The animal shelter I’m with a lot is a "no kill", meaning the dogs typically aren’t euthanized (yeah, right.) and they will have dogs that are there for many many months. My problem is there is a 12 year old dog that they keep putting in a small cage. Technically the dog can turn around slightly and stand (like a crate), but the dog has bad arthritis and I believe needs to be able to move to a large dog kennel ( where the dog can move around.)

The dog is 35 lbs and has been there almost a year. When in a small cage the dog has guarding behavior and gets nervous. When in a larger cage it flourishes. It is a highly profitable high turnover shelter so they do have room if they would just allow him to be in large dogs, but instead they always over load themselves, cramming dogs in too small of cages and places too many in the large runs.

Because of his age, how long he has been there, and his personality change I have begged the staff to allow him into a run and they refuse. I’m going to the board now to bring up the point not only of this dog but the over crowding, by choice. (This is not a good thing that saves lives. When they over crowded the dogs get aggressive, territorial, and are more prone to be put down or sent to sanctuaries.) Am I doing the right thing?? Help please!! The shelter is starting to not like me.
What if they ban me from volunteering?

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7 Responses to “What would you do in this situation? (animal shelter problems))?”

  1. paul d says:

    Do not back down or walk away.
    Advertise that poor dog as if you were advertising your own soul.
    Even if they remove you, still focus on getting that dog a home, I know you may not want to lose being a volunteer but to me getting that dog a home is more important.

  2. bloomorningglory says:

    They may ban you from volunteering. I’ve seen it before in my area. If you disagree too much and get too vocal, they decide you are more trouble than you are worth. Can you find a rescue to take the dog? Many rescues use fosters homes to hold the dogs until an adopter comes by. If one of them has space that might be a great option for this particular dog. If they are full maybe they would be willing to put your dog on the waiting list. Or if you are willing to foster yourself and the shelter is willing to let you do that..

    Unfortunately this is becoming a common problem with no-kill shelters and most people don’t have a clue 🙁 Sometimes no-kill means less than optimum living conditions. Good luck! Tough situation.

  3. GreyhoundAdopter says:

    If you are concerned for this dog – then why don’t you offer to foster him and bring him to your home? You can then work hard yourself (by placing ads in Craigslist – for example, putting up flyers at the grocery store, etc) to find him some prospects for a good loving home.

    It sounds like they are over-flooded with dogs. You as an individual can’t save them all – but you have the ability to make a HUGE difference in this one dogs life.

  4. Lorraine says:

    God you poor thing witnessing all this. I don’t blame you for trying to do something about it.

    Rescue is a sad situation.

    I am with a small rescue and we can only take in as many as we home – ie – when one gets rehomed we have a space for another.

    In the meantime we get 5 to 10 calls A DAY to take dogs in and only rehome 1 to 2 a week. As you can see the statistics don’t match.

    Any rescue that is taking in all that is offered is either euthanising lots or cramming them in, and even then they cannot maintain that I wouldn’t of thought.

    It would seem then that a No Kill shelter isn’t always the answer is it, because if the dogs are living in horrendous conditions for about a year then what is the best thing for that dog, especially a 12 yr old poor little thing.

    I would definitely take this as far as you can even if you don’t get to volunteer any more.

  5. Girl says:

    You’re doing the right thing!!!! More people like you need to be in charge of these shelters! Why are those people working there if they dont have a heart! Keep fighting! Like the person above me said… you are the only voice this dog has! Please dont give up.

  6. AllyMacLeod says:

    It doesn’t matter if they don’t like you. You are the only voice this Dog has. If you walk away, you are walking away from him. Loud and clear honey! You can have a lot of backers on your side. There are tons and tons of people that would take an older dog. Eff the Shelter and not liking you. Who cares? I wouldn’t give a darn. Take a picture of him and send it out. Give him a voice.

  7. V Floyd says:

    I think you are doing the right thing in going to the board. This dog is in pain with arthritis and being unable to move around is making it worse. What is the point of saving an animal’s life if that life is just going to be miserable?

    The shelter should understand that you are just doing your job, having a heart and caring for animals. Not trying to cause trouble for them.

    Maybe you could start asking around and find a home for this old boy. With an older person who is lonely, or a couple with no children. There are lots of people who would take him, I know I would if I could. Would you please post what happens at the meeting? I would like to know what happens with this.