Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Craigslist Pets: How (Not) to Re-home Your Pet

I posted a dog-training ad on Craigslist yesterday and made the mistake of browsing what else shows up in pet-related pages. And when I say mistake, I mean HUGE mistake.

Mother German Shepherd and her eleven puppies, $300 for all, must go now. Purebred this. Mixed that. Mixed this mixed with mixed that. "Ever occur to you to get her spayed, idiot?" posted elsewhere. Nine week old puppy needs a new home because owner moved to a place with no fence -- how much time did you have to do that? There's a shortage of houses for sale all of a sudden, and you had to take the fenceless one? In the space of a week?

If you need to "rehome" your purebred dog, call the breeder first. If you went to anyone worthy of the title, you signed a contract to do exactly this. If you don't call, then you're in breach of contract, and the breeder could conceivably sue you. Breeders who really are breeders care deeply about where their dogs end up.

If you need to find a home for anything alive, and you don't have someone to take it back, make it too pricy for snake food or pit-bull bait. Never, ever, ever, post an animal as free. Nobody else will assign a higher value to your animal than you did.

Try the newspaper. Yes, you have to pay for the ad, but the person reading it had to pay for the paper or visit a library. Call it a basic test for means and/or literacy of your intended purchaser. Try your friends -- they're friends for a reason, I hope.

If you think a dog needs a fenced yard, and you don't have a fenced yard, don't get a dog. If you have a dog and you think he needs a fenced yard, get a fenced yard. Don't have a big surprise on your hands because you didn't think.

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