Monday, October 1, 2012

[OntarioCaliforniaFreecycle] File - NEW RULES ON PETS


Dear Members,

I had a rule that members could not use Ontario Freecycle for giving away or requesting pets. Given the overcrowding situation in our shelters and the often lack of guarantee that they are all no-kill, I think it's time to reconsider that rule.

Part of the reason I did not want to use Freecycle to give or get pets was because we could never be sure where our pets were going. But now bringing them to shelter is even more concerning. I know many people are forced to give up their pets because of economic circumstances so I don't want an owner or the pet to suffer needlessly. I also know sometimes when people are placed in that position they have a short time to take care of many things and the pet situation adds to the stress.

That being said, we will once again allow reasonable pet re-homing on Ontario California Freecycle. Here are some guidelines to follow:

1. Make sure you meet with the person giving or getting the pet to see what the environment will be.

2. Be sure to offer all copies of vet visits, licensing, shots, etc. to the new owner or to request them if you are the person getting the pet. Just for an example: Dogs cannot be groomed by professional groomers if they don't have rabies and other vaccinations.

3. Be aware of any behavioral or health issues the pet may have. (We provided a home for an abused dog several years ago and did not know he had a heart condition which later led to his demise. I would still have taken him but would have been more cautious about care if I had known about this.)

4. On behavioral issues, please be sure to let the new owner know what to expect. You wouldn't want to give a pet to someone and not let them know they like to chew on the sofa and then have the person who re homes the pet end up bringing them to the shelter after the dog or cat just does what it has always done.

5. Be sure you have good communication with the new owner. Unfortunately there are a few people in every community whose intentions are not favorable. It pains me to say that but I had a scary situation with someone who came to claim a cat he said was lost and the way he treated the cat (who would not go anywhere near him) and then threatened to kill it when he thought I couldn't hear him really put me on guard.

If anyone has an suggestions about this, please feel free to let me know.

Ontario California Freecycle

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