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Eileen Stein

Rescue organizations buying dogs from breeders at auctions

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I know that some rescue organizations buy dogs at commercial breeder auctions to "save" them. I've never understood the rationale for this -- sure, that particular dog may be saved, but the breeder is encouraged to breed more because it increases his/her profits, just as a sale to a private dog buyer would, and rescues would never recommend that individuals wanting a dog should buy from puppy mills. But I thought very few rescues did this. However, a recent investigative article suggests that the practice is growing, that prices being paid are increasing, and even that GoFundMe sites are being set up to support such purchases.

 

Seems crazy to me.

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The whole article made me twitchy.

 

I was especially dismayed by the statement that "The smaller populations of shelter dogs make it harder for some rescue groups, especially those dedicated to specialty breeds, to find what adopters want."

 

I always thought the goal of rescuers was to put themselves out of existence when they'd rescued and adopted the unwanted dogs into homes.

 

Helping to perpetuate and line the pockets of puppy millers in this way is twisted logic in the extreme.

 

Thanks (I think) for sharing.

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"JoAnn Dimon, director of Big East Akita Rescue in New Jersey, says that buying breeding-age dogs not only cuts into overbreeding but also makes it harder for commercial breeders to profit in the long run.

 

"'That breeder is going to make thousands of dollars off that [female dog] if he breeds her every cycle, Dimon said. I just bought her for $150. I just took money out of his pocket. I got the dog, and I stopped the cycle.'"

 

So how naive is she to not think that another bitch will have been brought in to take her place as a breeder already? This makes no sense.

 

The whole article is disturbing in so many ways.

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I read this earlier today. Its a bit mind boggling.

 

The past several years rescue has become such a moral imperative for some that they *need* to perpetuate it in any way possible. Thats a pretty unhealthy mental state to be in - perpetuating the problem so you can remain a savior in some illogical way

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Twisted, like Munchausen (sp?) by proxy?

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I think they have been buying dogs at auctions for a long time.

 

So many puppy mill dogs here end up in rescue. Missouri is just full of puppy mills. I guess when the dogs aren't good for breeding any more they end up in rescue.

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I was especially dismayed by the statement that "The smaller populations of shelter dogs make it harder for some rescue groups, especially those dedicated to specialty breeds, to find what adopters want."

 

I always thought the goal of rescuers was to put themselves out of existence when they'd rescued and adopted the unwanted dogs into homes.

 

Helping to perpetuate and line the pockets of puppy millers in this way is twisted logic in the extreme.

 

 

My thought exactly.

We all want to put puppy mills out of business.

The way to put someone out of business is NOT to support that business by buying something from them.

 

This is seriously twisted thinking. I have many times gone through the logic with another person who wanted to justify buying a puppy mill or backyard breeder dog by using this line of illogical reasoning. Most have been able to see the bottom line once explained to them. The fact that this person, a supposed rescue person, doesn't see that is very disturbing indeed.

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Twisted, like Munchausen (sp?) by proxy?

From Web MD, "Munchausen syndrome by proxy (MSBP) is a mental health problem in which a caregiver makes up or causes an illness or injury in a person under his or her care, such as a child, an elderly adult, or a person who has a disability."

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I think of it as a milder sort of Munchausen ~ more like, "I get to be a hero because I rescued this poor dog".

 

There's also the tendency, (need, perhaps?) to attribute every little quirk a dog has w/abuse. Oh, I'm sure he was abused, he doesn't like strangers/loud noises/the color orange. Drives me nuts.

 

And I still recommend training basic manners/commands. All dogs, (most living beings, I believe) benefit from knowing the rules of whatever community they live in. Inconsistency causes real mental distress. Learning good manners is a good thing for any living thing.

 

Ruth & Gibbs

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I think of it as a milder sort of Munchausen ~ more like, "I get to be a hero because I rescued this poor dog".

 

I'd guess with the rescuers it's more akin to hero syndrome, which is a very real thing, than it is similar to Munchausen syndrome by proxy.

 

I can't say for sure because I wasn't the one who made the analogy, but I read the original reference to MSP as rescuers buying dogs at auction is twisted, like MSP is twisted. And, of course I agree that both are equally twisted.

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In Munchausen's, the perpetrator is possibly seeking attention for him/herself or making him/herself irreplaceable to their victim oftentimes by being solicitous to the very person whose condition they are claiming or actually causing or perpetuating. "Rescue groups" that purchase dogs at auctions because they either don't find sufficient numbers of the "right breeds" in shelters to keep themselves in business or keep them needed as saviors/heroes, or because they simply think they are "saving them" (while they are just helping to perpetuate the very businesses that produce and exploit the animals), seem to me to share a similar twisted logic to those with Munchausen's.

 

So maybe my analogy was flawed or there were better ones but there still seem to be parallels to me.

 

And I am in absolutely no way being disparaging of responsible and reputable rescues and those who work with and for them. I have the utmost respect for them, always.

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According to an article locally, the CDC estimates somewhere between a quarter million and a million 'rescue' dogs are imported into the IS per year. This because there simply aren't as many dogs as there are people who want them. 'Overpopulation' has loong since been overcome.

Now, someone is going to fulfill this desire - which is estimated at 8 million dogs per year. Rescues and shel;ters buy the imports and resell them. We now have canine rabies strain - which had been eradictaed in the US back again. Along with some zoonotic diseases we're getting new strains of virtually every dog disease among these imports.

There seems to be a rising demand for Border Collies as pets, leading to anything black and white and around 35 pounds being listed a 'Border Collie'. NAIA is in the forefront of research into this situation.

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There seems to be a rising demand for Border Collies as pets, leading to anything black and white and around 35 pounds being listed a 'Border Collie'. ...

 

They don't even need to be black and white. In my search for another dog I frequently look at Petfinder. Some of the dogs listed as border collies or border collie mixes are anything but. :rolleyes:

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This is disturbing in so many ways. It sounds like many rescue groups are just as bad as the puppy mills.

I'm also shocked that there are still dog auctions going on.

 

Samantha

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I never liked, and avoid the use of the term "rescue", when it comes to rehomed dogs.

After spending her first year apparently being neglected, my current dog Kit was surrendered to a shelter covered in over 100 ticks, her fur matted with diarrhea. The shelter in turn contacted the woman I got Kit from. The staff knew she rescued Border Collies and could see Kit was a total sweetheart. The shelter does not have the funding to keep animals for very long before they need to euthanize.

 

I am thankful for that shelter’s staff networking to save a lovely dog from being put down for want of a home and lack of funds. Of all the dogs I have owned, Kit has by far the best temperament. I am also incredibly thankful to the woman who rescued her and allowed me to have such an awesome dog. I do consider Kit rescued and the people who saved her rescuers. However, I don’t say I rescued her. I just got very lucky and hit the lottery the day I brought her home.

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I've volunteered with rescues for about 10 years now. I've seen some dogs who were relinquished from decent homes because their people didn't want them any more and some from very loving homes where people found themselves in situations they couldn't do much or anything about. These dogs may not be truly rescued and perhaps may be more appropriately referred to as rehomed.

 

But I've also seen some dogs that were confiscated from puppy mills and survived some truly horrific situations and arrived in such terrible physical and emotional health that it was amazing they even survived, much less managed to go on to lead normal or nearly normal lives. Or dogs who'd lost their families in natural disasters and survived only through human interventions. I'm not sure how anyone could believe these dogs were anything other than rescued.

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I agree with urge to herd on people who attribute every quirk to former abuse. I don't know how many times I have tried (and often failed) to talk someone out of this attitude. People apply it to cats as well. This is simply ignorance; I tended to think that way myself many years ago before I knew better. What seriously irks me are the people who choose to remain willfully ignorant; the dog may very well not benefit from that.

 

According to an article locally, the CDC estimates somewhere between a quarter million and a million 'rescue' dogs are imported into the IS per year. This because there simply aren't as many dogs as there are people who want them. 'Overpopulation' has loong since been overcome.

That reporter doesn't know everything, nor does the CDC.

It may be true that there are that many dogs being imported by rescue groups. But it is not true that overpopulation has been overcome, let alone long ago.

 

The animal shelter here receives 50 dogs a day at times, and they don't all get adopted. That is just one shelter in one town in a country that has thousands of shelters. I don't know what that is, if not overpopulation of dogs.

 

Backyard breeders and puppy mills churn out tens of thousands of ill-bred puppies per year, many of whom will end up on the street or in a shelter due to congenital defects or simply because the person who bought the puppy loses interest.

 

It is possible that there is no overpopulation in one town or one county. But certainly not overall in the country.

 

As for the term "rescue", I disliked it at first, myself, and still find that it is inadequate to describe the entirety of these animals. There should be a better word, but there isn't one that covers all of the circumstances through which these animals end up homeless. Some are most genuinely rescued. Some are simply turned in by people who don't want to keep them any more, and have suffered no trauma or danger.

 

I use "rescue", because these days everyone understands what that means, and it is simple. But I like to point out to people that not all rescue animals come from a bad place or have been abused.

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>>I use "rescue", because these days everyone understands what that means, and it is simple. But I like to point out to people that not all rescue animals come from a bad place or have been abused.<<

 

Exactly. It is shorthand that even non dog people vaguely understand. Neither Kit or the other dog available for adoption when I went to see them had been abused. Just neglected. They both adored new people on sight and if Kit hadn't been there, I would have happily taken home the other dog. But without the person who I consider a rescuer, Kit likely would have been put down at the shelter and the second dog would have kept having puppies until she died of the heartworm her rescuer discovered and had treated.

 

There are lots of dogs that end up in rescue who have had good or decent homes too. I do see Kit as immature/backward due to her first year of life, but she is catching up. She was wonderful at Day 1 but nearly nine months later, every day she is more awesome as she gains wisdom and our bond deepens. She still has foolish random puppy chewing issues that I know will eventually fade and at age 2 attribute to her immaturity. And she is a food thief which I predict will be a lifelong issue and attribute to her being a dog. ;)

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Two of my dogs came, separately and 7 months apart, from two different trash dumps. Kylie was inside a metal dumpster, crying, in June, at 4 weeks old. Thud was found in January, hypothermic, and near starvation - he was trying to eat frozen to the ground discarded shrimp cocktail at that county dump.

Bug was a private rehome through craigslist. She had a perfectly good home and her former family loved her. They had a Situation and she needed a new home. So they found her one. I hear about them once a year, when they ask how she is and if they can have a picture.


...I agree that in general 'rescue' is sometimes inappropriate, but I'm pretty content calling those two rescues, you know? And I don't feel like people using 'rescued' to mean 'adopted from a rescue organization or shelter' is a big deal to me, in particular, except for the amount of excessive hero complex, pride, and condemnation of anyone who has ever rehomed an animal as some kind of monster. All the nonsense? Is honestly (for me) a separate issue.

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terrecar,

thanks for the link. That article also includes links to other articles that are also perhaps worth a look.

As with many issues, this one is many-layered and looking at all of the angles is quite interesting.

 

I don't think that there's anything that will truly put the puppy mills and BYBs out of business short of a shift in the public's understanding and attitude towards dogs and how they should be treated.

 

This may happen, over time, as some other notable attitudes have changed. I would like to see this shift in my lifetime, but don't know that I will. What we can all do as individuals is our best to educate people, one or two at a time, and I put effort into that whenever I can.

 

Often, when it is a person who genuinely likes dogs it turns out they simply didn't know any better, and will change their thinking.

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