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Olivia

Question for Rescue Groups

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We really dont take owner surrenders esp Border Collies anymore because they are pawning off a dog that they dont want to euth. We actually returned one to an owner and made them take the responsiblity to euth after they flat out lied about the terrible bite history the dog had. It cornered my mom in a room over food. The dog had become so food agressive that it no longer applied to his food bowl but, the container any dog food or treat might be stored in.

 

I just want to chime in on this piece. Maybe I'm misreading it, but it sounds as if you're saying owner surrenders can never be trusted, and they're all dogs that are going to eat somebody. Maybe I'm being silly, but I find that statement ridiculous and a dangerous one to put out for people to read, because someone is going to believe you.

 

Can owner surrenders be aggressive? Sure. But so could a dog coming from a shelter. Where do you think at least half of the dogs in a shelter come from? People surrender them there instead of to a rescue. There's no difference there. Being surrendered directly a rescue is no more a sign of aggression than anything else.

 

This is where doing a temperament test on a dog and getting as much information as possible is key. Otherwise you have no idea what you're getting, and it's Russian roulette by dog.

 

I've known MANY owner surrenders that were nice, happy, non-aggressive dogs. People are trying to do the right thing and find their dog a safe place to go and find a new home. There will always be the owners that don't want to take responsibility for their biting dog and try to pass it off to someone else, but those people dump dogs at shelters frequently too. Those dogs just generally never make it up for adoption.

 

On the issue as a whole, I'll admit that I have a soft spot for the damaged ones. My oldest and first BC is fear aggressive, and #'s 5-7 were "unadoptable", though they're not the kind that will just run out and bit someone if given half a chance. As much as I hate euthanizing a dog, there are some that just can't be placed. I'm more of the opinion that you have to look at each dog on a case by case basis. Who did the dog bite (owners, kids, strangers, men/women), severity of the bite, situation they were in, how many times have they bitten, etc. I think most people, especially dog-savvy rescue people, know when a dog's bite history is problematic or a one-off. That's why I'm not a fan of blanket policies.

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Whisper has bitten everyone in the family at least once. In EVERY case, it was because we stuck our hands in the middle of a dog fight in order to stop the fight. I chalk that up to human ignorance. We did not go about trying to end the fight in the proper way. She will also nip at anyone she doesn't know who tries to be too familiar with her. The exception to this seems to be the vet office--maybe because it is not her territory? Whisper will somtimes nip at me when I groom her, but a sharp "cut that out" usually ends that very quickly. She then gives me a long-suffering look and settles down. She has a very much "Win At Any Cost" mentality. Luckily for her, so do I. I run the show in the household.

 

All this means that I monitor her closely if guests come over--she's come a LONG way in the time that I've had her, but as much as I love her, I still don't trust her. And I will never re-home her. Not that I would anyway, but knowing this about her means I can't in good faith put in in another home.

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I just want to chime in on this piece. Maybe I'm misreading it, but it sounds as if you're saying owner surrenders can never be trusted, and they're all dogs that are going to eat somebody. Maybe I'm being silly, but I find that statement ridiculous and a dangerous one to put out for people to read, because someone is going to believe you.

 

Can owner surrenders be aggressive? Sure. But so could a dog coming from a shelter. Where do you think at least half of the dogs in a shelter come from? People surrender them there instead of to a rescue. There's no difference there. Being surrendered directly a rescue is no more a sign of aggression than anything else.

 

This is where doing a temperament test on a dog and getting as much information as possible is key. Otherwise you have no idea what you're getting, and it's Russian roulette by dog.

 

I've known MANY owner surrenders that were nice, happy, non-aggressive dogs. People are trying to do the right thing and find their dog a safe place to go and find a new home. There will always be the owners that don't want to take responsibility for their biting dog and try to pass it off to someone else, but those people dump dogs at shelters frequently too. Those dogs just generally never make it up for adoption.

 

On the issue as a whole, I'll admit that I have a soft spot for the damaged ones. My oldest and first BC is fear aggressive, and #'s 5-7 were "unadoptable", though they're not the kind that will just run out and bit someone if given half a chance. As much as I hate euthanizing a dog, there are some that just can't be placed. I'm more of the opinion that you have to look at each dog on a case by case basis. Who did the dog bite (owners, kids, strangers, men/women), severity of the bite, situation they were in, how many times have they bitten, etc. I think most people, especially dog-savvy rescue people, know when a dog's bite history is problematic or a one-off. That's why I'm not a fan of blanket policies.

 

You forget we are in The northeast. Dogs are in short supply due to good Pr of spay and neuter it's why we take dogs from the south. You dont have to beleive me about the owner surrenders in Pa but, it's our experience. I'd go to a shelter any day and take my chances.

Most likely the other issue which isnt on the topic is owners here waste your time and money saying they will surrender the dog only to give it away on the day you are supposed to receive it. I've gone so far as to go to thier house without a delay of time or issues to find the dog was given away they forgot to call me.

 

By going to a trusted shelter they evaluate the dog for us and put no bias on the issue. Even they can make a mistake. We have a few damaged dog who live their lives at Friends of Pep. The problem is you as a rescue can only have so many of those dogs and they take up the space that might save as many as 10 other dogs in that year.kwim

 

Friends of Pep has probably at this point put 850 southern dogs in great homes over 4 years. I would say about 400 would be border collies and mixes. Our return rate is still only about 2 to 3 percent. Our euth rate is only about 1 percent possibly less. As far as I know the only Euth we have done in a years time was for Mange that defied Treatment and swelled weeping scabbed joints causing the dog horrible pain.

 

So you may feel I shouldnt say what I did but, I'm sharing a personal experience. I'm also the goof stuck at the gate with a drunk owner surrendering 2 dogs one that already bit me. Who then drives away without telling me their names.

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You forget we are in The northeast. Dogs are in short supply due to good Pr of spay and neuter it's why we take dogs from the south. You dont have to beleive me about the owner surrenders in Pa but, it's our experience. I'd go to a shelter any day and take my chances.

Most likely the other issue which isnt on the topic is owners here waste your time and money saying they will surrender the dog only to give it away on the day you are supposed to receive it. I've gone so far as to go to thier house without a delay of time or issues to find the dog was given away they forgot to call me.

 

By going to a trusted shelter they evaluate the dog for us and put no bias on the issue. Even they can make a mistake. We have a few damaged dog who live their lives at Friends of Pep. The problem is you as a rescue can only have so many of those dogs and they take up the space that might save as many as 10 other dogs in that year.kwim

 

Friends of Pep has probably at this point put 850 southern dogs in great homes over 4 years. I would say about 400 would be border collies and mixes. Our return rate is still only about 2 to 3 percent. Our euth rate is only about 1 percent possibly less. As far as I know the only Euth we have done in a years time was for Mange that defied Treatment and swelled weeping scabbed joints causing the dog horrible pain.

 

So you may feel I shouldnt say what I did but, I'm sharing a personal experience. I'm also the goof stuck at the gate with a drunk owner surrendering 2 dogs one that already bit me. Who then drives away without telling me their names.

 

I'm in the Northeast as well, and we take dogs from PA all the time, including owner surrenders. So I'm also speaking from experience.

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I'm in the Northeast as well, and we take dogs from PA all the time, including owner surrenders. So I'm also speaking from experience.

 

 

Yes but, your Glen highland employee. Are you not? Sadly us small rescues that deal in Bc dont have the Pr The big guys do and if they are a great dog with a responsible owner they get them.

It costs them to surrender and they are evaluated fully before being accepted. I have no paid trainers or staff.

 

Everyone tries to be polite and not step on The large all breed rescues and pull dogs in their territory so to speak, That pool of Owner surrenders in Pa shrinks even smaller.

 

I also think those dogs were rejected by other BC rescues who evaluated them and turned them down. We gave them a chance (the situation was misunderstood) and it We ended up with the scars to prove it.

 

Like it or not I have to be nice at my job as a nurse to keep it but, I dont have to take dogs who bite who will exhaust our small resources.

 

This is also a forum to share my experience (mostly bad) and you share your and say Yours is great.

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Olivia, to answer your question, NEBCR does not take dogs with bite history. If a bite occurs in rescue, our Board makes a decision on case to case basis. A quick 'nip' delivered by a stressed dog that got surprised by someone zooming past him or her would obviously be judged differently than if a dog punctured someone's arm with little warning. I know of a couple of dogs that nipped/bit, were allowed to be adopted by their foster home and are doing great in the right setting (and with experienced people). But liability is of course a huge concern.

 

Sheryl, I am sorry you have had such a bad experience with local owner surrenders. Thankfully, our experience has been similar to what Courtney describes. Most of the owner surrenders we have seen fit the description provided by the owner, and most of the ones we have taken in turned out to be great pets. And btw, NEBCR has no paid PR and no employees (GHF is mostly volunteer based too, btw). How do you screen the dogs you take in from private homes? We generally won't even see the dog until we complete a long intake profile over the phone, get vet contact info and receive a picture (to make sure it is a border collie or a close mix). Then we have a volunteer evaluate the dog in its home. Of course, there are exceptions, but we do our best to be careful exactly for the reasons you mention. If you are concerned that you are getting dogs that have been rejected by other border collie rescues in your area, why not contact them to see if they would share info if they sense that a person they rejected will try to go and dump the dog onto someone else?

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