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RE: views on rescues

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Posted by: jiffypop at Thu Mar 23 00:24:25 2006  [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by jiffypop ]  

Thanks, Katrina, for answering these questions so precisely and patiently. I probably would not have been so nice. As a rescue, I get really tired of the folks that just want a "free" animal. I've done a rundown on my rescue budget on this forum before. I'll reiterate in the short version. Housing, heating, feeding and generally caring for the animals that we take in costs me between $800 and $1500 per month, depending on the time of year and what kind of extra costs we may incur. I do rescue because there is a great need for it and because I feel that it's what I should be doing right now. Helping animals in need has always been a priority in my life.

I work part time as a pharmacy technician. I don't make a ton of money, but I own my home and my vehicle. I don't feel the need for vacations, fancy dinners out, new furniture and carpet, and pretty clothing. Most people that do rescue sacrifice those kinds of things for 2 reasons...they probably can't afford them and they can't take the time away.

I still believe that an animal that is given a value (as in an adoption fee) will be held in higher regard than an animal that is acquired for free. People are more apt to provide the needs to an animal that they've spent some cash on. People that spend $40 or so to adopt an iguana are probably the same people that will spend another $40 for a good lamp that will provide that iguana with adequate UVB. That $40 adoption fee does not even come close to covering my first months investment in that iguana.

It just doesn't make sense to me why people gripe about a reasonable adoption fee on a rescued animal but are willing to pay a breeder a fair price or buy from a pet store where the animals are marked up 200% or more. Are people that do rescue just supposed to be martyrs and not try to recoup some of their costs? Should we not charge an adoption fee because we may have an emotional connection to our rescues?

I just took in a large group of 26 lizards that were left behind when their owner died. This was a major undertaking for us but we either did what we did or the animals were going to be euthanized. There are some really nice animals in this group including 4 Cyclura Iguanas, several pairs of nice monitors, and 9 Tegus. Needless to say, all of these animals are big eaters and my food budget is gonna skyrocket. I'm not gonna just "give away" a Croc monitor that I've rehabbed, heated, and fed $50 worth of rodents to when someone is selling them on the classifieds for $500. Some responsible person out there will be willing to pay a $100 adoption fee for that animal and we'd both feel lucky! What makes this different from a sale is that the new owner will have to jump through all the hoops that any potential adoptor does....application, interview, photos of enclosures, and sign a contract. And yes, those contracts are enforceable.

And, I also ship animals, weather permitting. I use FedEx, UPS, and USPS. Personally, I haven't had a problem yet with any of them. Animals are shipped with a health certificate from a vet, at the new owners expense. Heck, I've even driven 500 miles to deliver an adopted animal!!


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