I am a British born, living in Canada. Moved to the countryside in 2009 to a 1909 stone farmhouse. In 2014 we are going to embark on a new adventure with our home ownership.

Life is never ever dull around here and I always have a tale to tell!!

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Millie is back at the shelter................

please let me explain why before judging me.........

We took her to our vet last night to get a check up like you would do with any animal.  We were concerned about her back end as she didn't sit on her bum, she squatted.  Plus if we went to pick her up she would yelp like we had really hurt her, which of course we hadn't.

Anyhow our vet looked her over and she has cataracts, a heart murmur, something wrong with her hips and/or spine and the enamel was missing from some of her teeth.  We would have had to pay for more extensive testing to see exactly what's what; we declined.

Now for someone who has had an animal for a while and this gradually happens you expect that as part of growing old.  However to have all this happen from the get go is a whole new kettle of fish, and one which we didn't expect to happen or were prepared for.

After what we went through with Molly, I was not emotionally ready to deal with all this medical worry again.  Nor are we financially able to deal with it.  So we made the heartbreaking choice to take her back to the shelter.

I am drained with this experience as I was and am felling guilty about taking her back, but I knew we had no choice.  I don't expect anyone's sympathy but thought you had to know what we had done.

39 super stars left a comment:

Sometimes we have to make the right choice for our family. It can be oh so painful and so hard to do and yet....must be done. I honestly should have given our dog to someone years back that could handle her. She has made me fall hard twice. I've had to have a surgery and have a couple of other problems from the fall. You did what is right. Do your best not to feel guilty. Someone who can take on this responsibility might do it.

Oh Gill I think Rita's comment says what I am thinking. hug B

The shelter would have had a vet check her out when she was brought in originally, and they should have disclosed all of that BEFORE you brought her home.

I am sorry it didn't work out, but no judgment here. You did what you needed to do.

If this makes you feel any better, I know someone who has adopted MANY dogs over the years. She keeps them for a bit, then there is some life reason it isn't working for her, so she brings them back. Rinse and repeat. I have lost count. And there was nothing medically wrong with the animals, just that they didn't fit into her life.

Silly billy; of course you can have our sympathy; it is never an easy decision to make . I volunteer at an animal shelter and like I said, all rescue animals come with some baggage. BUT the animal shelter has a duty of care for the animal and for adopters: no animal shelter should rehome a dog with medical needs without telling you about them. You have been let down and Millie has been let down. You absolutely did the right thing. It is very common for dogs to have to be returned in the search for the perfect dog for you. Because if she is perfect for you then you are perfect for her. I myself have fostered dogs and they havent fit in: the last one we all loved but she kept trying to eat our other dogs and that made everyone unhappy. I cried lots but I was also able to write a reference for her: in the short time she was with us we could say she was house trained, perfect with people, but not suitable around other animals and could be possessive so toys needed to be taken away after play; this meant the next fosterers could be chosen with this characteristics in mind and she is now rehomed: a happy ending. So please, dont get down. Write a letter to say what her plusses and negatives are and it may help her find the right home with someone with the funds to help her and who hasnt just had to go through the loss of a loved pet. (((hugs)))

I did something very similar and felt very guilty but dont feel bad, you did the right thing but things did nt work out.

Sorry to hear this. Hugs to you, I know it must have been a hard thing to do :(

Hugs and rid your mind of even one little thought of guilt, as you did what was best for all concerned.

You have nothing to feel guilty about, the shelter should have been up front with you before you took the dog.

You were totally honest with them, you simply could not afford to pay for all the treatment which would have been needed.

I know you were getting fond of Millie.....have a ((((((((((hug)))))))

I'm so so so sorry ....poor all of you...you did the best you could and that is all any of us can do......lots of xxxxxxxxx's your way....

Sending you BIG HUGS and all my support. You did the one thing most people don't and that is TRY. I agree with Rita and that you have to do what's rights for you and your family.


I am sorry you have had to suffer another loss so close to your previous one. No one blames you for having to send her back. Our hearts go out to you.

Gill, don't feel guilty at all. You did what is in Millie's best interest. If you are not able to give 100% emotional, financial, physical help it is better to giver her up to someone who can do this. Millie will find a forever home with someone who has the vast resources needed to give her the care that she needs. It will all work out for the best!

Take care,

I understand your situation, Gill. Never blame yourself. I think you did the right thing.

Oh, Gill, how heartbreaking for you! The poor dog's health issues should have been disclosed to you at the time you showed interest, so you could make a more informed choice. It's easy to become attached quickly (which is why fostering is never a good idea for me...) and so hard to make decisions like this. Try not to feel bad - it doesn't always work out, as much as we'd like it to. {{hugs}}

Oh, don't feel guilty!!!!!! Healthcare for animals costs a bloody FORTUNE - let someone who can afford it give Millie the treatment she needs.
Hugs, hugs, hugs to you, Gill!

Same as last night.
Jane xxx
PS Really annoyed that the shelter hasn't given the dog the medical treatment she needs.

I don't judge you. I judge the shelter. the state of her tooth enamel is an indication that she was likely TEN YEARS OLD. They lied to you. They would know this just from looking in her mouth. SHAME ON THEM! there's nothing wrong with adopting a dog at the end of its life, if that's what you know you're doing and you go into it with full knowledge that the medical expenses are going to be constant and high for remainder of that dog's life. I know you feel miserable, but please know that you were duped and the shelter knew full well what it was doing.

Don't feel guilty, you did the right thing.
The animal shelter should have been upfront and informed you of Millie's health issues before you took her home.

I'm sure you didn't make this decision without a lot of thought beforehand. Sending hugs your way as you cope with this decision and loss.

Totally understand ! The shelter should of told you all the medical problems with this girl . We had to say no to a stray kitten as we just cant afford to take on another pet . Our Miggs had reconstructive knee , muscle and tendon surgery last Feb and it was very expensive and the meds were to and months of recovery for her as well . These things happen no need to feel guilty at all you did your best and that's what counts !

It is too bad they don't check out the animals before adopting them out to let new owners know. Hopefully the shelter will pass that info on to the next owner who will know upfront what they are facing. Hamsters are a fun bunch, low maintenance and very frugal pets...just saying :)

You did what is best for you. I would have done the same thing!

Oh, Gill, don't feel guilty. I know you can't help but feel sad...but the way vet bills are, who can afford all of that at one time. Plus, sounds like you would have only got to really love her only to lose her.

You did the right thing and I know you will feel sad about this but don't feel guilty!

I would never judge you.
Especially since I have never walked in your shoes. Our pets become our family and when you lose one it's devestating, I completely understand you not wanting to go through heartache all over again...

The shelter is at fault, don't feel bad about it.

The shelter should, indeed,have known all this about her and you shouldn't blame yourself. I'm guilty of taking on a lame duck and I ended up with a broken back and neck and now a pony who no one else is likely to take on. If I'd just made the right decision a the time and not been seduced by the idea I could mend a broken soul, I might still be able to ride and not have permanent back ache! You did the right thing Gill.

Honestly, I think that is why Millie wound up in the shelter. Her previous family couldn't deal with expense of looking after her and didn't want to put her to sleep.

Cataracts cost well over $4K to fix and are rarely corrected in dogs.

Don't feel guilty. Every shelter I've had a dog from has given me time to have our doctor check the dog over and take it back if the animal isn't healthy.

Depending on what the vet's find out Millie may never find a forever home and it's not you fault, it's her original family's.

You did the right and proper thing by returning her back to the shelter. The shelter should be ashamed of themselves for trying to pass of a animal with this much medical related issues. I hope you gave the shelter this info because in all reality I wouldn't be able to afford the medical or time consumed for vet visits to have all these problems
Cheer-up and don't beat yourself up over the right decision for both parties.

I have to agree 100% with this! Totally NOT your fault Gill and you have NOTHING to feel guilty about!!

The staff at the shelter should be the ones feeling guilty, not you. If they had disclosed the problems you wouldn't have taken her home. You tried to give her a home but weren't told the full facts - that is not your fault. Sending hugs across the miles. x

So sorry to hear that! No judging from me, you did what was right for you and your situation. I think the shelter should definitely have known about her condition. Hopefully you will find your forever dog soon!

This must have been hard for you to post. I commend you for being honest and doing what is right both for you and the dog. There are different ways of being responsible and it's too bad you were packed an emotional wallop over this ::hugz::

You did the right thing -- no guilt required. The shelter should have given you all the details. I know how you feel, however, as after we lost our Tessie (Cairn, 14 yrs.) I rescued a kitten IMMEDIATELY which was a mistake. I kept him for about four years and realized that I could no longer have him in the house as all my asthmatic family members were reacting to him and wouldn't come around so I had to make a decision -- cat or kids. I opted for the kids, did the responsible thing and took the cat back to the shelter that I got him from (it was my vet, BTW) and while I felt awful about it, I knew I had done the right thing and so did you.

That must have been so tough for you Gill, really sorry you have had to go through this.

That is so sad Gill. The shelter should have warned you before you took her home. Please do not feel guilty. You did what you had to do.

Oh Hun so sorry, I think you did the right thing. You could not go through all that again this soon. I hope and pray your perfect friend will come to you very soon. xxx

I agree the shelter should have been upfront

What a shame- I just started to read your blog but because of what you have just disclosed regarding first adopting this poor animal( who clearly needed a loving family) and then chose to return it( akin to taking an item back to the store because of a flaw or such),I am extremely dismayed that someone would do this. Yes the animal certainly had medical issues and yet you did not see this when you first chose the animal??? How in the world did you miss some of the obvious ones that you speak of??? Had this been a child that you were choosing to adopt and once you got "it" home, it displayed a problem, would you have tried to return them???
What you did was cruel and insensitive and I hope to heavens that you never never have the opportunity to do this to another helpless animal that might be relying on us humans for care and love( and that it sounds like this poor animal never had in its prior life-you could have made a difference) And if my tirade makes you feel any type of remorse, good. Shame Shame on you
Abgurl in Alberta Canada

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