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10 Common But Terrible Reasons to Relinquish a Pet

Updated on February 13, 2008
Photo by Tihomir Rankov
Photo by Tihomir Rankov

Ask any domestic animal rescuer in the world. For far too many people, it seems, a pet is just a disposable object, deserving only as much love as we have the attention span to give.

Every day, I see advertisements for people "rehoming" their pets with various excuses. There's always an excuse, but it never seems to be a good one. Here's the top ten that I hear, in no particular order.

The Big Ten

1. I'm moving. Unless you are moving to the Sun, chances are your pets would rather go with you than be shuffled from home to home. There is pet-friendly housing everywhere, and what with the marvel of modern technology and all, it's possible to transport your pet everywhere. Even if a building says "no dogs" in its policy, it's possible they'd be willing to bend the rules if you pay a pet deposit or if the owners met your dog. There is almost always a way.

2. The landlord said no pets. Then why did you get one? Before adopting a pet, you need to always ensure that it is within your rental agreement (if you don't own). You should have never given this animal the hope that it would be loved forever if you knew that you couldn't keep it.

3. The animal doesn't get along with my other pets or my kids. Did you properly introduce them? Teach your children proper behavior around their new family member? Is there a safe escape spot for each pet in the household? Did you work with a trainer or behaviorist to iron out behavioral issues? If you did all of these things, your animals and kids would all get along fine. Millions of other families are doing it; why can't you work it out?

4. She's peeing all over the house and chewed the furniture. My husband says she's got to go! Did you even try to housebreak this animal? Or did you expect her to come into your home knowing exactly how you would like her to behave? Animals do not inherently understand human standards; they have to be taught. Almost no pet cannot be housetrained in one way or another. Become an educated pet owner before surrendering your pet for a silly reason!

5. We just don't have the time to love him as much as he deserves. Does he deserve to be euthanized in a shelter after no one has adopted him in 7 to 30 days (if not less)? Even if you get home late a few nights a week, your pet wants to be with you not to adjust to an entirely different household, and that's the best case scenario! There is always a way to get in a relief visit (neighborhood kids would drop in to give your dog or cat some loving for $5 a day, I bet) or two in during the long days when you can't get home.

6. I just had a baby. The cat and the kid together are too much work! A baby alone is "too much work," but that doesn't mean you give up! And if you have had this animal for years, how much of a nuisance is it to you now, really? Is it worth bearing the emotional trauma of giving up your dog when you can just "weather the storm" for a few months and come out of it a happy family? Toddlers and dogs can be pricelessly cute.

7. I'm getting divorced (or just broke up with my live-in significant other), and neither of us can take care of her anymore. How terrible that we allow human disputes to ruin the lives of our animals. There has got to be a way to keep the animal in this case, even if it means asking a family member to "foster" her for a few months until you get your life settled.

8. I got him to be a guard dog, and now he doesn't bark! First of all... what?! Second of all, did you even teach your dog that you want him to bark at strangers? Or just expect that he would? Some breeds of dog don't tend to bark a lot, and some bark like maniacs. Did you do research to figure out which breed would be best for your situation? And because your dog is not filling its role of "house alarm" you want to give it away?

9. We gave her to our kids as a present, and now they don't take care of him like they promised. Adopting a pet with the expectation that your only kids will take care of him is absurd. Do your kids make their bed every day? Offer to do the dishes? Clean the toilets and pack lunch for themselves in the morning? If you want to adopt a pet for the family, that's fine, but expect to do all the work yourself and leave the loving to your kids.

10. I have become allergic. Four words for you: Nambudripad Allergy Elimination Technique.

Photo by Gregor Varl
Photo by Gregor Varl

Honorable Mentions

Here are a couple (I have actually seen these) that didn't make it to the top ten:

  • The dog got too big.
  • I need money for Christmas presents for my kids and want to recoup some of the costs for her vetting over the past year by selling her.
  • The cat seems to hate men and hisses at some of my male friends.
  • I'm moving back home, and my parents don't want her.
  • The new puppy doesn't get along with the old cat, so we have to get rid of the cat.
  • We need new furniture, and we're afraid he'll tear it up or pee on it.
  • The puppy follows me all around the house, and I can't make him leave me alone.
  • We wanted to breed her but found out she can't be bred.
  • She knocks things over when she walks on the mantle, and we can't get her to stop.
  • He needs too much exercise.
  • Her food is too expensive.
  • The kitten wakes me up at night.
  • The puppy nipped at my eight-year-old who was trying to take his toy.

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I'll Leave You With This

We give dogs time we can spare, space we can spare and love we can spare. And in return, dogs give us their all. It's the best deal man has ever made.

-M. Acklam


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    • John Hewitt jr profile image

      John Hewitt jr 6 years ago

      What a beautiful Hub.

      Me and my wife are animal lovers and hate cruelty to pets plus we despise people who are cruel to animals. Unfortunately i had witness a severe case of cruelty from my next door neighbor.

      I was passing their garden and i saw a little Yorkshire terrier laying on an extremely hot concrete patio. It was over 105 degrees outside this day.

      I did not know if the poor dog was dead or alive. On closer inspection it appeared that the dog had no life in it and the owner had thrown a bucket of water over this poor dog in order to try and cool it down.

      Straight away i called animal control as i feared that the little dog was dead. Within 10 mins animal control had arrived and went straight into the garden. What i saw next shocked me within an inch of my life.

      The owner was actually at home watching TV with her dog laying burning to death in the yard. Unbelievable, the set of balls on this woman to ask the animal control guy what on earth he was doing in her yard.

      Long story short, the dog was taken away from her. But i don't know how the dog is doing as the city will not give me any information. I hope this woman gets charges against her for animal cruelty.

    • profile image

      jc 6 years ago

      I'm terribly torn. We have a 9 year old Jack Russell that we adopted at 2. I don't know his past, but he came to us with aggression issues, didn't know his name, or any commands. We trained him and he sits, stays, lays, comes, and listens well. We've given him a good life for 7 years.

      Last year we had a son born. We brought a trainer in to help us do further training with our dog to curb his aggression issues and food aggression issues. But he just can't be trusted around our son. He growls at him constantly. You'd think our dog would not want to be around our son, but he's always near him. We try to be vigilant and keep an eye on them or keep them separated. We've worked to show our dog that our son is no threat.

      But last night, when my wife and I were laying around recovering from food poisoning and a day spent throwing up, we let our guard down. Our son, walking happily around the house, tripped and fell on our dog and our dog bit him in the face. Our son's eye is swollen shut and I pray to God that he doesn't have scars.

      I don't know what to do. I love our dog, but I just can't trust him around our son. I'm torn up trying to decide what to do. I don't want to give him up, but I feel like I've tried within my abilities to help our dog overcome his aggression. I never have trusted him around kids. And I feel stupid, angry, ashamed, and sad that this happened. I feel like I failed both my son and my dog for letting this happen.

      I feel like taking him to a rescue shelter or hopefully finding a no-kill shelter for him is my only option.

      Your point number 3 is hard for me. I introduced them as best I thought possible. We brought a blanket home from the hospital, we try to bring them together to show my son how to pet the dog and our dog that our son is part of us and the family. Our son is too young to know proper behavior around the dog, but we try to show him to pet nicely. But he doesn't care about the dog, he ignores him. So it's not improper behavior on his part that is an issue. There are plenty of spots for our dog to go be on his own. His area is behind a gate that our son can't get behind. He can go upstairs/downstairs as my son can't access those. But our dog is always near our son. He can't just walk away from him for some reason. And we worked with a trainer. When we first got him we did obedience classes. Before our son came home we brought an in-home trainer to help us work with our dog. But with all of those things, it isn't guaranteed they'll get along or be safe. Millions of other families are doing it, but millions of other dogs don't have our dog's issues.

    • helenathegreat profile image

      helenathegreat 6 years ago from Manhattan

      Thanks for sharing your story, Pets are true love. Of course there are some cases, like yours, where the situation changes, and there is literally no possible way for you to continue to care for your animal. Shelters should always exist because of situations like yours. Unfortunately, people abuse that safety net and treat it as an excuse to regard their pets as temporary. It sounds like you truly care for your cats, and that's really all I'm asking for with this article.

    • profile image

      Pets are true love 6 years ago

      Wow, so I never mentioned why I took the 2 cats i had. The family was moving into low rental housing and there was a limit of 2 pets so they kept a cat and dog, and gave up the other 2.

      Today I was reading facebook and see someone I know giving up a cat because, and I quote 'she is old and getting on my nerves!! I also want to switch some things around in the house and need to get rid of her first before I can.....'

      Wow, just wow. I believed you but had just never heard it before.

    • profile image

      Pets are true love 6 years ago

      I just had to weigh in. I had 2 cats that I took for a friend. I ended up in the hospital and when I returned home months later I couldn't work or even care for myself. Because of this I had to move, maybe it's just where I live but there is virtually zero housing that allows pets. I found one place I could afford but they would not allow cats.

      I was lucky that my mom was able to take the cats (I still pay for them) but if she couldn't I would have had to surrender them. As horrible as it is, and I agree that it is, I just would have had no choice. Unfortunately most people's reasons arent as serious, and also too many people buy from pet store instead of adopting the pets who's owners really weren't able to care for them (not just weren't willing).

    • profile image

      Jen 6 years ago

      I truly believe there should be a record system, for when you adopt a pet what happens to that pet and if god forbid you take it to a shelter. If your reasons are that of laziness or pure stupid reasons you should be punished I find it fair that you should not be allowed to have another pet maybe first "offence" only be 5-10years before you can adopt again but for those that have repeatedly returned a pet should never be allowed to have another. I also think that all animals should be spayed before adoption, if the adoptee wants to breed the pet they should have to have their license before adoption not after. I think this may just dramatically lessen the amount of pets in pounds or temp homes. (for those people who have to rehome a pet of financial/health reasons or for the better of the animal I find acceptable)

    • profile image

      Cindy McNash 6 years ago

      The absolute worst I have ever heard was a lady who adopted a dog, and brought him back because "HE DIDN'T MATCH THE DRAPES". True story.

    • profile image

      Paige 6 years ago

      My friend found a beagle that got dumped because she had "saggy tits." She had been bred many times. My friend felt that she could relate to this from personal experience, so she adopted her immediately!

    • profile image

      addie'smom 6 years ago

      I think the most ridiculous excuse I heard in my time working with the local shelter was the family that surrendered their five month old coonhound mix because she wasn't housebroken yet. I remember thinking "were you housebroken at five months? Did your mother send you away because you still needed toilet training?" Another doozie: "the dog barks too much for my apartment" when the breed is such that they are known for barking

    • profile image

      megaen 6 years ago

      unfortunately I know someone a blood relative in fact that had treated her cats and dog like things. She had 2 cats and then found out she was pregnant she kept the cats but after her son was born she said her son "had allergies" She sent her two cats to a family that goes to our church. Normally I wouldn't mind that except they became barn cats, which that's no life for a ex-house cat, it can be a rough awakening.

      After our mother passed away and her son was 5 she adopted a "Grieving cat" yes that's what she called it. She had her for 2 years and then one day she said she didn't need it anymore and took it to the farm. I feel horrible for those cats she took and threw away when they no longer had "use for her" I would've taken them but we are at our pet limit for the city ordinance.

      Now she has 2 hamsters, and a bunny, I pray to God that she doesn't do anything stupid when they too become not a use for her needs.

      **she did at one time have a chihuahua, she had it for a month before she realized she didn't want it, for whatever reason that was. I hope she gave him back to the place she got him from as it was a no-kill shelter**

      I have 3 cats and 3 dogs and our pets have changed over the years, stray take ins, fosters I just fell in love with, our older pets passing away. I've never taken a pet to a shelter or much less thought about it. I love my pets and I can't imagine my life without them.

    • profile image

      hm 6 years ago

      I had to give my 10yr old Ridgeback/Great Dane as we were moving into a seviced apartments for 6 months and the all over the plce due to hubs work.

      He was well trained and obedient as long as he considered you top dog lol. Because of that trait I had to be careful, I had 3 offers to rehome (sad words) him and took the country option, so he went to live on a very large cattle station but of course as house a yard dog who got his warm jammies every winters night he lived well for another 4 years not bad for a dog who weighed in at 80! kilos in his prime, so there are some happy stories. Well I was not so happy for me but he was. Now and then I could visit.

    • profile image

      Megan 6 years ago

      There is NO EXCUSE for giving up an animal to a shelter. If you cannot re-home your own pet to a good home then WHY expect a haven to do it for you. This shows lack of INTEGRITY and is bad karma. I had my cat for 16 years from the cat haven and I moved into many homes with her, even took her on the plane once! She loved ME and was happy where ever I was. This is UNCONDITIONAL LOVE and we see people take this for granted. Shame on them! My cat was my BEST FRIEND and I miss her since she passed away. If people give up their pets I won't have them as friends in mylife as they have no morals or values and no respect!

    • profile image

      HRPetPortraits 6 years ago

      I agree with these completely, in my years of working at a no kill shelter the worse reason ive ever hears is, "we want to find a home for our new dog we got her as a puppy and now shes a year old, can we exchange her for another puppy? we don't want an adult" so you're going to keep taking them in for a year then bring them back for a newer version? i think not. i think ive heard evey excuse in the book but this one stands out plus the ones on the list

    • profile image

      Joanna  7 years ago

      I have a pet turtle - I have had him for 15 years. He is a soft shell turtle which primarily live in water. But he has gotten too big for my apartment. The next tank I would have to get would take up my living room so I am donating him to a zoo. I feel horrible - I don't want to give him up but its not humane to leave him in a small tank. Will he be able to take care of himself?

    • profile image

      Penny 7 years ago

      This really saddens me. I know that once in a while, it is next to impossible to keep your pet but I wish people were able to commit themselves more firmly to the animals they adopt. So many are euthanized every year that its a crime to give up on the ones you have. Nothing that's worth it is ever easy but the rewards are priceless.

    • profile image

      missingcaine 8 years ago

      I had some things happen that led me to have to move from my home and stay with a friend who could not have animals. Because of this I called the animal shelter and they told me that for a fee they would hold my dog, Caine, for me for two weeks before adopting him out. Five days later when I returned to get him I found that he had already been adopted out and was told that they are not a boarding facility. Not all of us give up our animals, some of us have had them taken from us by shelters that have lied to us about what they could do to help us out in a bad situation.

      P.S. to anyone who reads this the animal shelter in question is the Humane Society in Twin Falls, Idaho. If you for some reason find yourself in the same position, please don't make the same mistakes as I have sure that you have everything in writing before leaving your pet with anyone, trust noone.

    • profile image

      boxerfan 8 years ago

      I think its the dumbest thing in the world to give up a pet because of a place your moving to...Hello?? you had the pet 1st..find a place where you both can go! I see things like this every week in the paper & i just want 2 slap that person upside the head. If you think that maybe some time in the future you cant have a pet don't get one or don't move. I would never ever give my dog up because of a place i wanted to live. Figure something out other people make it work everyday! & to the people that say they don't have enough time..umm what made you think you did b4 you got the pet? Cause if you knew b4(which im sure they did) don't get an animal till you have that time & if you never do to bad for you...don't punish the animal cause your a moron....

    • helenathegreat profile image

      helenathegreat 9 years ago from Manhattan

      You're very right, 4Paws. Some people shouldn't have the animals in the first place, and the animal is sometimes much better off in a new home. But all too often the animal ends up dead in a shelter, so it's sort of a double-edged sword.

      Hopefully, someone will read this hub and realize that having a pet might be "too much" for them and just not get one in the first place. Hopefully...

    • 4Paws profile image

      4Paws 9 years ago from Minneapolis

      Sometimes the kind of ppl who make these excuses really shouldn't have the animal in the first place. Many times, when folks relinquish the animal, they are outright lying about the reason. One of my foster dogs came from a woman who said she couldn't keep Lucky b/c of her health. Well, I found out from the vet (we just happened to take him to the same vet that she did) that Lucky's mom was a gambler. She often boarded the dog at the vet for whole days while she went to the casino. When I picked the dog up, I could tell that the woman kept him in a crate quite a lot when he was home. She admitted that she rarely walked him "because of her health." It was obviously much better for Lucky to get out of that situation.

      I have fostered a couple other dogs who jumped the fence all the time at their previous homes. They never jumped my fence. They were simply trying to get away from those humans.

      So, I agree that a dog is a lifelong member of the family. I would never give up any animal in my household. But I don't abuse or neglect my "fur-kids" either. Sometimes it's best for them to find a new home. It's so rewarding to be a foster parent and help an animal move on to a better life!

    • helenathegreat profile image

      helenathegreat 10 years ago from Manhattan

      dafla -- I don't have much of a problem with your rehoming situation. It doesn't sound like you feel bad about it, and you shouldn't. You were in a tough situation, which was putting your bird in a tough situation. Birds can be very high-maintenance animals, especially if you want them to be happy. I actually commend you for being able to see that your bird was unhappy and THEN for going out and trying to find him the best new possible home. That's actually responsible pet ownership and is the opposite of the people I condemn in this hub! Thanks for weighing in!

      ksbteam -- That's great that you've rescued 4 dogs, and in the purest sense of the word! I am just now getting into fostering for dog rescues, and I hope to be able to help as many dogs and families as I can in my short life. :) Thanks for your comment; you're totally right. The best thing at the end of a terrible day is how HAPPY your dog is to see you. There's nothing better.

    • ksbteam profile image

      ksbteam 10 years ago

      Looking at the photos, I want to say "I'll take them all".

      Too often, people use dogs to fill a need and discard the pet when they get a new job or a new home - or find a new significant other. There is nothing sadder than a dog standing by the side of the road who has been dumped off and left. He's hungry and lost and waits anxiously for his people to return. In the past two years I've picked up 4 and been able to find homes for them. All four have turned out to be great pets in their new, loving homes.

      Dogs aren't lawn ornaments or disposable products - they put absolute trust and loyalty in their owner. When you've had a rotten day, did nothing right, and made everyone around you angry - your dog is just excited to see you when you come home. He thinks you're perfect.

    • profile image

      dafla 10 years ago

      I truthfully have given away a pet because I had no time for it. At the time, my husband had just died, and I had two kids to raise and was working two jobs. I barely had time for my kids. It was a bird, and they need a lot of attention if they don't have other birds with them, because they are "flock" animals. I did find him a very good home with a loving family who had other birds. I had him a long time, and I could tell he was getting a little "edgy" being cooped up in the cage all the time alone. He wasn't good with the kids, and yes, we did try to get them adjusted to each other, but my son was 2 years old, and the bird just hated him. He scared the bird to death!

      So I found him a home, and he was much, much happier. He had other birds, people who held and loved him a lot, and when I went to visit him, he looked much healthier. Birds can die from lack of attention. I wasn't about to let that happen just so I could keep him with me.

      I won't have a dog, partly because I'm not a dog person, but mostly because I don't want an animal that has to be walked and bathed and all that. I love my cats. They're so self-reliant, and are happy just to be on my lap while I'm on the computer, watching t.v. or reading.

      I still have birds, and I spend much more time with them now that I'm alone.

    • helenathegreat profile image

      helenathegreat 10 years ago from Manhattan

      I encourage everyone to read this if I hear they are planning on getting a dog. I would rather the dog not adjust to his new life with a "forever" family if he is just going to be dumped later on. Thanks for reading, FitnessDog, and thanks for commenting, as always, Whitney!

    • Whitney05 profile image

      Whitney 10 years ago from Georgia

      There are legitimate reasons for people to have to give up their dog, but I think that what one person feels as legitimate, not everyone feels that way. I do agree dogsdogsdogs scenerio and helena's those are legit reasons.

      But, I'm sure that people who give up dogs find that there reason is legit and a good one. If I recall. there was a woman who's daughter, never allergic to dogs before, gets pregnant and becomes allergic. She gave up the dog. I don't think that was a legit reason, personally, but I'm sure that woman did.

      FitnessDog- I think giving any pet for any holiday or birthday is a BAD idea. Like parents gettign their kid a bunny on Easter, then in a few months when it's no longer cute putting it outside. Next thing you know there are a hundred bunnies. So definitely, a good article for anyone considering a new pet, in this case a dog.

      Definitely takes more than love to take care of a pet.

    • FitnessDog profile image

      FitnessDog 10 years ago

      Great hub--I hope a lot of people read it BEFORE considering a pet. And that always seems to be the problem--people just put in enough thought before bringing a dog or cat or whatever home. Many people put a lot of selfish emotion in the decision.

      I wrote a somewhat tongue-in-cheek list for some time ago (Top Ten Dogs for Lazy Owners) because of the Christmas time talk I heard of getting or giving a dog as a present.

      I love my dog, but it takes more than love to take care of him. And I will always take care of him.

    • helenathegreat profile image

      helenathegreat 10 years ago from Manhattan

      Thanks, dogsdogsdogs! (I've joined your fanclub, by the way.)

      There is certainly always the rare occasion where rehoming is in the dog's best interest or is absolutely necessary. A family who had rescued a dog from the same rescue as us went bankrupt a year later and lost everything. They were forced to return the dog to the rescue because the family itself would have to split up and live with various relatives for a while. Not only could they not afford to care for the dog, they also didn't want to traumatize him by moving him around for however long until they found a permanent place to live.

      The dog was still young, and I believe the rescue found him a new home quickly. It's seems to be the situations where people don't WANT to relinquish their pets but HAVE to (like in the story you told) that it's not absolutely deplorable.

      Thanks for weighing in!

    • dogsdogsdogs profile image

      dogsdogsdogs 10 years ago

      Great hub! When people adopt a pet it should be with the expectation that the pet is part of their family for life. I've heard many reasons why people give up their pets (I volunteer at a shelter) and it's heartbreaking to see these pets dumped off as if they're worthless.

      However, on rare occasions - and I stress the word RARE - there are legitimate reasons for people giving up their pets. I remember one case where a young dog's owner had fallen ill and was getting progressively worse. She lived alone and was often hospitalized for long periods, and would arrange for someone to drop in on the dog and walk him. It still wasn't the same as the dog having a "full-time family" where he'd get lots of exercise and attention, so she made the difficult decision to find him a new home. She tried for months, but was unsuccessful and eventually brought him to the shelter. She was clearly traumatized. We could tell the dog was loved, he was so loving in return, well-behaved, housetrained, obedience trained, just an all-round great dog who was quickly adopted. Her friend came in every 2 or 3 days to visit the dog and make sure he was okay, right up until the day he went home with his new family.

      These are rare cases, but thought I would mention that there are situations where the family is doing the right thing for the dog by finding him a new home. Thanks for writing this hub.

    • helenathegreat profile image

      helenathegreat 10 years ago from Manhattan

      Thanks, Zsuzsy Bee. It's always good to know there are other people who share similar feelings about their animals. When I own my own home, I would love to have extra space to take in all the unwanted pets for which I am able to care! I love that you did this when you had the means to do so, and thanks for the comment!

    • Zsuzsy Bee profile image

      Zsuzsy Bee 10 years ago from Ontario/Canada

      As far as I'm concerned it's a given that when you take on a pet it's for the whole nine yards. When I still had the farm and my children were young, it was an open door to unwanted animals always. The kids and their friends brought something new home it seemed weekly. It felt like a Zoo at times. Most of those 'babies' came from homes where the owners had changed their minds. If I couldn't keep the animals I hunted high and low for a good home. Great hub regards Zsuzsy

    • Whitney05 profile image

      Whitney 10 years ago from Georgia

      As for mam- I think that if you've done the best that you could, which it sounds like you did with a year in training, then you tried your best to make it work. So, like Helena stated, no one is a bad person for doing it, especially if you've tried your best to make it work.

    • helenathegreat profile image

      helenathegreat 10 years ago from Manhattan

      Absolutely, Kat! A cross-country move can be tough on everyone so who better to help you settle in to your new home than your family? Thanks for the comment!

    • Kat07 profile image

      Kat07 10 years ago from Tampa

      I cannot ever imagine giving up any of our 7 pets!!! Our guinea pig even just went through surgery at the ripe old age of 5 to save her life. We are planning a cross-country move within the next 18 months, and I am already trying to figure out how we are going to transport the animals with us. They are our kids, our family - and I know they would never be happier anywhere else but with us.

    • helenathegreat profile image

      helenathegreat 10 years ago from Manhattan

      Thanks for sharing, mkglenney! As I keep saying, there's always a way. And I bet you'll look back on those two crazy days of moving with the whole family in a van very fondly for years to come. And what a great way to start a new life in a new house... with the whole family there, dogs included!

      Pets are a part of the family, as you say. You wouldn't give up your grandmother just because she got a little too old or you didn't feel like bringing her with you, would you? Thanks for the comment, and if that photo looks like your dog, then Star is a beautiful dog!

    • mkglenney profile image

      mkglenney 10 years ago

      Great hub! 

      I have three dogs that I absolutely love and would NEVER give up.  My husband and I and our three children moved from Florida to North Carolina and we brought our 3 Labradors with us.  There was never any thought of giving them up!  The van was crowded but the dogs were angels the two days it took us to drive to our new house.  (Even my kids were angels!  They're usually bickering with each other but they helped with the dogs on that trip.) 

      Pets are a part of the family and should be treated like one, not something to be thrown away. 

      BTW, that last photo of the black dog with his paws on the fence looks just like my Star!

    • helenathegreat profile image

      helenathegreat 10 years ago from Manhattan

      Thanks for the comments, mam. Like I told Kenny: giving up a dog doesn't make you a bad person, especially if you feel like you did everything you could! Dealing with dog aggression can be way too much for people, but it's good that you were able to give him back to a no-kill shelter and you know that he was adopted! Thanks for sharing your story.

    • profile image

      mam 10 years ago

      I used to say that I would rather live in my car than give up my dog. Until the situation above. I still would rather live in my car with my new dog than give him up because of a landloard. But dog aggression was another story altogether.

      I always advocate adopting an animal. Thats what I have always done after my very first dog that I bought as a puppy.

      They are all so precious.

    • profile image

      mam 10 years ago

      Yes, I;m guilty of giving up my dog last year. I still cry about it and think about her a lot. Basically she was a good girl but was very dog aggressive and in the year I had her the training I tried did not help.

      So, one day I just took her back to a no kill shelter and she got adopted thank God to a couple. I just hope they have a yard so my baby doesn't have to interact with other dogs. I miss her and still cry but hopefully she is happy.

    • RFox profile image

      RFox 10 years ago

      Thanks for the link I will check it out!

    • stephhicks68 profile image

      Stephanie Hicks 10 years ago from Bend, Oregon

      Amen!!! Garrett (pictured here with me) agrees completely. We rescued him from the humane society last year. Thanks for writing a thought-provoking hub. Steph

    • helenathegreat profile image

      helenathegreat 10 years ago from Manhattan

      Thank you for your comment, RFox! Many of us go way out of our way to be able to keep our animals; this makes it that much more painful when someone else doesn't seem to be willing to even do something very simple to keep their pet!

      I understand your mixed feelings about number 10, and I understand that allergies can change everything. But Nambudripad Allergy Elimination Technique has overnight cured every allergy I've seen it treat. I apologize that I hadn't linked to my hub on it yet; I've fixed that, and here it is again. There's no need to wait a long time to build up an "immunity" or anything like that because it only takes 25 hours to take effect. It's truly miraculous.

    • RFox profile image

      RFox 10 years ago

      I have heard many, many excuses in my years working in Veterinary hospitals. I must say that I've been on both sides of this.

      First I would never give up my dog in a million years. I pay for an overpriced apartment which I can barely afford because it's pet friendly and allows me to keep my wonderful Holly. I live in a city and have to work my life around my dog. I litter trained her and made sure I got an apartment with a balcony so if I have to work a long day she can sit outside enjoying the fresh and has access to a pee spot. (My dog is a 22lb Cairn Terrier.)

      On the other side. I rescued a cat that came into the hospital even though I knew I was sensitive to cat hair. However Aspen (the cat) had no where else to go. I was it, so I took her in. After a year I became extremely allergic to cats and began to try to find a new home for her. I had to quit my job because of my allergy. And although there are remedies they take a long time and I was really ill. Lucky for me (and this will sound truly strange) my husband and I decided to divorce. That meant Aspen could stay with him in a familiar environment with a person she loved while my dog came with me. That made me happy!

      So while I agree wholeheartedly to 1 through 9. I have mixed feelings about number 10. Allergies can put you in the hospital and can begin spontaneously. And while there are methods to desensitize people to allergens, for some the symptoms are too severe to cope with in the mean time. It becomes a heart wrenching situation. I do not believe these animals should be dumped at a shelter however. If you choose to take in a life then you are responsible for it and that means finding a great, loving home to replace yours if it comes to that.

      Great writing. :)

    • Kenny Wordsmith profile image

      Ashok Rajagopalan 10 years ago from Chennai

      Thank you, Helena. It's guilt for having being weak then. The damage is the same, isn't it, whether you are good or bad when you are weak?

      Yes, that's the last time I'll allow anyone to treat a pet as a nonperson!


    • helenathegreat profile image

      helenathegreat 10 years ago from Manhattan

      Thanks for commenting, Kenny. But even if you feel like you did a wrong thing, it doesn't make you a bad person! Just missing your cat and knowing that you wouldn't want to give up another animal is evidence enough that you're quite the opposite! :)

    • Kenny Wordsmith profile image

      Ashok Rajagopalan 10 years ago from Chennai

      Yes, it is sad, and I'm guilty of this, too, before. I had to let go of our cat. It haunts me almost everyday of my life.

    • Brandy Owens profile image

      Brandy Owens 10 years ago from Wherever life takes me

      Thank you for writing this. I agree wholeheartedly.

    • MrMarmalade profile image

      MrMarmalade 10 years ago from Sydney

      That is a great hub and when you see their forlorn looking faces, staring at you from the other side of the fence at the pound. Your heart is torn.

      A great hub

      Thank you have a great new yerar and abetter 2008.

    • Whitney05 profile image

      Whitney 10 years ago from Georgia

      How about "I just got a new puppy, and they don't get along." I've heard that one a few times. Peole get new puppies, and surrendor their older dog to a rescue. Great Hub...

      Reminds me of my years volunteering with animal rescue groups. I found all the people ignorant. There were only a few good excuses- mostly military, and those were the sad stories, as they usually have no other choice.

      I hated the "I'm moving into a new apartment and they don't allow pets;" FIND A DIFFERENT APARTMENT!

      I've also heard, "my daughter's pregnant and she's now allergic to dander;" I mean it happens, but I'm sorry, but I wouldn't give up my dog. At least I say that now...

    • compu-smart profile image

      Compu-Smart 10 years ago from London UK

      Good tips..My landlord does not allow me pets but i will never ever give up my cat..I would rather give up my home!!