We DO Care About Pet Rescue

I know we don’t talk about it much. We don’t talk about any pet-related causes much. I know a lot of other blogs do, and we don’t want to seem callous, but it is not what we are about.

In our special corner of the pet universe, we are champions for small dogs – specifically, keeping them active and at a healthy weight. Small dogs have gotten labeled too many times as “lap dogs” and people don’t realize that proper exercise is just as important and necessary to their health as it is for bigger dogs. We are also champions for the human-pet relationship and the benefits pets bring to our lives.

It is not that we don’t care about pet-related causes. We DO. We just don’t want to water down our message and think that many of the great bloggers out there already cover pet-cause topics wonderfully and thoroughly.

I do struggle with this though because we are huge proponents of pet rescue and the adoption of shelter pets. As many of you know, we adopted Gretel from a really cool rescue. Almost all of my pets as a kid came from “the pound” or were needy strays that we took in. I don’t want to ignore that part of my passion for animals.

I have found the fit! I organize the Adventureweiner Club of Seattle – one of the biggest Dachshund clubs in the City. Many of the members own rescue dogs and are very active in local animal causes. In unrelated news I have been thinking about expanding our scope of club activities. It makes sense that one of the “expanded activities” our club should include is the support of pet-related causes, including pet adoption and rescue.

I recently attended BarkWorld in Atlanta where I met a couple of women who launched a campaign to raise the awareness about pet adoption. Pet adoption campaigns are changing. Proponents have realized that there are still a lot of stereotypes about pets at rescues in shelters. There is still a misconception that they are all “damaged” in some way. Adoption awareness campaigns are moving beyond the “get your pet at a shelter” message to a “rescue pets are not damaged goods” and “shelter pets add to your life” messages.  I really wanted to find a way to work with these women and their campaign.

We hosted another Adventureweiner Green Lake Walk this weekend. I approached the club members about creating event around this campaign and cause. I received a lot of encouragement and support of my ideas. I am still working out the details and will share them with you later but it looks like it is going to happen.

So how does this fit in with our blog? As I said, I don’t want to dilute our message about the importance of exercise and health for your small dog but I don’t want to leave out this important part of my passion. The Ah-ha moment came for me when I realized that most of the pet-cause activities of our club will involve some kind of tie to exercise (in this case it will be a walk to raise awareness). So I DO feel comfortable sharing our efforts with you on our blog because it is important to show you that the two causes are not mutually exclusive. The promotion of physical activity can be tied into supporting pet-related causes.

So for now I am going to leave you with this thought: Pets have been shown to increase human health and wellbeing and a lot of pets can be found in shelters – so the two things are related. The inforgraphic below from MastersInHealthCare.com illustrates it well.

Please Include Attribution to MastersInHealthcare.com With This Graphic Perks of Pets Infographic

Comments

  1. says

    Splendid “eureka” moment. I have truly appreciated your emphasis on small dog activity, health and exercise; I now frequently remind people how dachshunds are tough dogs with a earth hunting background; they need to be healthy, which point has been devastatingly brought home this past week with my long hair tweenie Seymour developing IVDD and a 4 hr rush to the nearest university vet school/hospital for surgery. Improvement is yet to be seen but he is eating all he can.

    This entry is also timely because I held my tongue at my local pet products store on Saturday while two women discussed getting “designer” dogs from a breeder in a town near-by; they actually talked about Petfinder but then said, well, most of those dogs are …shelter dogs…like they had some sort of disease so the emphasis you found at Barkworld is well founded. Walk and hike on!
    Roberta recently posted…Just a little Mischief….My Profile

    • AdventureJess says

      I know…I saw that. I am so sorry! Unfortunately, keeping them fit and healthy is not a cure-all because a lot has to do with genetics. It sure helps though.

      When I was at BarkWorld this last week I heard that puppy mills are heavily involved in “designer breeds”. Many just pump them out to fill the demand and some have experimented and come up with some of the most popular ones. It saddens me to think that puggles originated in a puppy mill. This is a very lengthy article (I haven’t even got through it all) but it talks about this issue. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/02/04/magazine/04dogs.t.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1

      I am not saying that people should not buy from a reputable breeder but getting a dog from a rescue ensures it did not come from a puppy mill.

    • AdventureJess says

      Studies prove this! I think I need another one though because I could use to be even more active than I am :)

  2. says

    Some like big, some like small, some like short and some like tall – we are all different and that makes the world go around. My purpose is to provide fun and educate people on my breed. We don’t talk much about pet rescue either as it is not our niche. I do blog about family members that have been adopted on occasion but mainly we are about fun times and adventure. Don’t ever feel bad because you are not with the crowd, it is good to be different and it does not mean you don’t care :)
    Emma recently posted…I Wonder Why | GBGVMy Profile

    • AdventureJess says

      Thanks Emma! My whole life I have always marched to a different drummer. I think uniqueness is special and to be valued. However, when you stand (almost) alone you can start to have doubts that you are doing the right thing. I am glad I finally found a way to give myself permission to touch on these issues on my blog but rescue will not become the main focus. Like I said, it fits as yet another way to motivate you to get out and get active with your small dog :)

  3. says

    Great post, love the tie in to pet rescue. I am a member of PETA, I encourage pet adoption, and I also give the world a litter of the very best mini dachshund pups I can once a year. People get too radical about breeding dogs: I like to remind them that if all breeding stopped for 20 years, that’s one generation, there would be no more Dachshunds left anywhere in the world, and the breed would be extinct for all practical purposes. That said, puppy mills are horrendous and need to be shut down. Animals should have civil rights, as far as I’m concerned. This whole “Man shall have dominion over the earth ” thing has been taken to extremes throughout human history. My blog is about the fun and funny side of having wiener dogs, with some serious training information underlying the stories. I hope my stories also reflect my respect and love of all animals.
    Ann Sowards recently posted…Wiener Repartee And A Whelping Story (Continued)My Profile

    • AdventureJess says

      Hi Ann. Not that you are saying this but I don’t see “saving rescues” and “responsible breeding” and two sides of a coin. I totally agree with you and think that there is room for both in this world. What I didn’t mention here is that my family bred angora rabbits when I was growing up. They are not dogs but the concept in similar. I admire good breeders and well bred animals. I think where you get an animal is your choice but in my mind they need to either come from a reputable breeder or a rescue. Anywhere else could mean they came from a puppy mill or back yard breeder, both of which are not ok in my eyes. I DO find it unfortunate that needy animals without homes are busting the shelters seams and the adoption of these rescues needs to be encouraged. I think if someone is on the fence about what they want they should check out a shelter pet first.

      I like your blog. I added it to my Feedreader and will look at it more when I have time.

  4. Elizabeth says

    Very well said. I think you managed to drive your point across by tying it into the overall focus of your blog. Let me know if I can help pass the word around about your walk – once you get it going :)
    Elizabeth recently posted…I Love My Dog ArtMy Profile

    • AdventureJess says

      Thanks! I am hammering out the details with the people who run the cause campaign right now. My hope is that I can have the details figure out by this next weekend.

  5. says

    What a great idea, and I love how it ties in with your main blog focus! I’m an advocate for rescue too, even though my dogs are from responsible breeders and I’ve been one myself.
    It was so cool to read all those facts! Particularly the activity level ones. I didn’t realize just how much exercise Nola and I get till we were in Richmond and weren’t getting our normal amount (3-4+ hours a day). I think Nola and I drove ourselves up the wall!
    Amanda
    Dachshund Nola and Her Mom recently posted…Trip PicturesMy Profile

  6. AdventureJess says

    3 to 4 hours a day? Way to go! We get that on hike days but on other days sometimes we only get a half hour. I can’t imagine going from that much every day to little or none. I would go crazy too :)

  7. says

    Great idea, every bit helps doesn’t it?
    One thing though- when you say “getting a dog from a rescue ensures it did not come from a puppy mill”, etc., it may not come directly from a puppy mill/store but I know plenty of rescues that were originally from mills or stores. I know its just your wording- but it made me think. And maybe I’ve confused myself more. At least the store/mill is not getting a double purchase :)
    Katie recently posted…Catch Up.My Profile

    • AdventureJess says

      You are very correct Katie. A dog in a shelter may have originated from a puppy mill. There is a decent chance if the original owners bought the dog from a pet store on a whim, decided they didn’t want it and surrendered it to a shelter it did. As you assumed, my wording, although a bit confusing, was meant to intend that you did not “purchase a dog that came right from a puppy mill”. To me, once it hits the shelter it becomes a rescue dog. If you adopt a rescue dog you are “saving” a dog that was already produced at a puppy mill, not creating a demand for more.

  8. says

    Great point that you need to balance your focus with all of the other worthy topics out there. When you’re providing such great information and support for keeping small dogs active and healthy it’s important that people know they can always go to you for that, so I’m happy you’ve found the best way to help your community while still branching out to another area. Plus, I love your approach. I don’t have a special THING you do (running, biking, kayaking, whatever) so if it weren’t for my pooch, I would just be sitting around feeling bad about not going to the gym.

    Not sure if this helps in your pursuit but here are links to a few articles on how your dog can be a great workout partner. Maybe you can use some of the wording, arguments, etc.:
    http://www.boxingscene.com/exercise/53305.php
    http://www.pennlive.com/bodyandmind/index.ssf/2011/06/mans_best_workout_partner.html
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/09/26/us-fitness-dog-idUSTRE78P45B20110926

    • AdventureJess says

      Thanks! I will definitely check out the articles. Your words make me happier and more confident about my “branching out”. Like I said, I don’t want to dilute my message but I think I am actually enhancing it here. We love to hike but we also like to do other active things. We also realize that hiking isn’t for everyone and the important thing is to just get active in whatever way works for you. I have been trying to show people that WHAT you do isn’t as important as just doing SOMETHING. Helping shelter animals and other pet-related causes is near and dear to many people’s hearts. I am to show that you can use that passion to inspire you to get active.

  9. says

    I liked your graphic. The very first one I have seen that pointed out rescues as an alternative to purebreds without the preachy “don’t shop adopt” lingo. The idea that pets are worth the cost and that a rescue is a economical alternative to a purebred is a great message. Kudos to the graphics designer!
    2 brwon dawgs recently posted…Monday Mischief–Killing The Cone Of ShameMy Profile

    • AdventureJess says

      You are totally right on! I knew I liked it for some reason. As you know (hopefully anyway) I do not take sides in the breeder/shelter debate. There are so many factors that go into getting one or the other and everyone is entitled to their own choice without having to feel shamed.

  10. says

    Good luck with Adventureweiner! I agree about getting rescue pets…all of mine are. My daughter even rescued a pedigreed great dane from a puppy mill. So sad. Still despite her troubled past, with plenty of love and patience the Dane has proven herself to be Great!
    Loy Cerf recently posted…A Baby Boomer Tests Her MemoryMy Profile

  11. says

    Great post! I wrote a similar post on my blog a while back. It is so important to research your breed before you buy or adopt. It is also important to ask questions about the dog you are considering. Of course, there’s always the dog that adopts you, too! Keep us up to date!
    Beth & 4Doxies recently posted…I didn’t do itMy Profile

  12. says

    Hey Chester, Hey Gretel, Jet here.

    We think your blog content and focus is wonderful. We learn a lot, enjoy your photos and appreciate the care and thought behind your purpose.

    We also admire your expansion as a result of your recent experiences. What a wonderful way to join to vital areas: fitness and rescue. You know we have a soft spot, since all the fur family members in Casa Jet are adopted!!!

    You could even have a walkathon for your favorite rescue!!!

    Keep up the wonderful posts, you rock!
    Jet recently posted…Tasty Tuesday – String Beans for the HolidaysMy Profile

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