Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Congratulations on your new baby Gomez!

I am seriously annoyed. To the point where I can almost feel flames curling up from the ends of my hair. It's hard to breathe because my chest is tight. I'm picturing the people (not the animals) at the Cleveland APL in many horrible, tortuous positions.

I first drafted the title of this post on July 27. Why? Because on July 21 we'd picked out a cute little kitten at the local APL. She was waiting to be spayed, but they said that we should probably be able to bring her home the following week.

And yet, I've never written the post. Why? You might reasonably ask. The unreasonable answer is that we've not been allowed to bring her home. About a week after we put a hold on her, she still hadn't been operated on, and she got sick with an upper respiratory infection. She's been sick ever since, which means that even though it's been a month, she's still on surgery wait, and actually still sick.

After Keith and I placed the hold on her, I started hearing stories from family and friends about how strange it was that they wouldn't let us bring her home to await surgery. Because when lots of animals are together they—surprise!—tend to pass around illnesses.

I completely understand why it's important to spay and neuter pets. Bob Barker has made it clear. And, as a responsible pet owner, I always intend to spay and neuter our dogs and cats.

I also understand that not everyone in this world feels the same way. So shelters need to do what they can to ensure that their animals are spayed and neutered. However, there are much better ways to get pet owners to have the procedures done. Like include the fee as part of adoption and give the new owners a certificate to have the animal spayed at a local vet's. That way they've already paid for it, so it's extra incentive to get it done. Or, Jen and Ben in Michigan said that the shelter will take extra money as an insurance policy that you have the procedure done. Once you have paperwork to prove that your pet's been spayed/neutered, you get the money refunded.

I just called again today. After waiting on hold for 15 minutes (which always puts me in a great mood) I was told that Gomez is no better--may actually be sicker--than before. They didn't say anything to indicate that she gets moved to the top of the surgery wait list because we've been waiting a month for her or anything like that. Just that the kitten's not available, and they'll call us when she's ready to bring home. I asked if we could bring her home and bring her back for surgery and was told, "absolutely not."

I hate to abandon a poor, innocent kitten, but this is f*&@ing ridiculous. Why would you make it this hard to adopt a homeless animal? As of this afternoon, Keith and I are trying to adopt elsewhere. If we're successful, we'll send a strongly-worded letter explaining exactly to the Cleveland APL why we did not adopt from them. I urge anyone that's in the Cleveland area: learn from our mistakes and do NOT adopt from the Cleveland APL.

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