Thursday, July 7, 2011

Homeward Bound Pound Service Pack Two

As predicted, some people were pretty unhappy with my post yesterday about Homeward Bound Pound's impound statistics for 2010/2011.

They thought I was too negative and slanted in my writing and I'm sure that's true. I've never said that this blog was anything other than my own personal opinions, and anyone who thinks that this blog is something other than that is being misinformed. I could also be completely wrong 99.99% of the time, and there's not too much I can do about it, I try very hard to be accurate - I do a lot of research, I look for all sides of an argument before I make a decision on what to write - but in the end - it's really just my own vanity that makes me write anything here. Period.
It was brought up that in the past - when the NS SPCA had the contract for sheltering services for the Pound - in different areas of Nova Scotia - they refused to work with rescues - the only way rescuers could get an animal out of the pound was to pay the full adoption fee and get the animals out - that was especially true at the Cape Breton SPCA, where they had a notoriously high kill rate. It was a huge bone of contention for years.

Now the NS SPCA is a no-kill organization and works with a very different paradigm - but in the past they didn't. I would say though, if they had the sheltering contract for the HRM today - would they release animals to rescue more easily than Homeward Bound? I don't know, I can't speak for them.

I guess the reason why I took such a negative tack was because I didn't see anything positive in Homeward Bound's statistics.

20% of the dogs were just let go by them. I don't know what kind of temperament tests they use - if the dogs actually were actually too aggressive to live - Nathan Winograd says that 99% of dogs are saveable when it comes to aggression issues. Temperament testing is a huge bugaboo for me.

And giving 10% to rescues - why isn't Homeward Bound doing anything in the No Kill Solution - like getting dogs out to the public, having adoption drives, having a website that's actually updated, doing advertising for the dogs waiting to be adopted - they're doing none of those things. They're doing nothing to actually help or save the dogs in their care.

It's a little known fact that I have actually had a good and friendly relationship with the manager of the Homeward Bound Pound - and she has given me an open invitation to go visit the pound - all I have to do is call her and I can go visit.

I've never taken her up on her offer. Why not? I figure that there's nothing there that I haven't seen elsewhere, and she would just show me what she wanted me to see. I wouldn't really learn anything. It'd be a waste of both of our time.

On the flip side though - 80% of the dogs there - if their statistics are actually true - are leaving Homeward Bound alive - so a person who goes there everyday would probably be exposed to mostly good endings instead of sad endings, which is a good thing. I'm sure that the people who work there are passionate about the work that they're doing and believe that they are helping the dogs and injured cats of the HRM.

My concerns are the costs that we're paying them to do it, the way that they're deciding who lives and who dies, and how they decide which dogs go out to rescues, who the rescues are - and the fact that they've made money off that dog - and they're offloading costs to that rescue.

I've had an interesting experience today going through the typical negativity that I get when I write one of these posts - usually it doesn't fizz me and I can get right back on the horse and just write what my next target is going to be - but I'm having a curious reaction this time.

I'm feeling very un-attached to all of this, and feeling like "I don't have to justify my reasons for writing what I thought about Homeward Bound" - to the people who thought I had written a slanted post - taking it personally, which is something that I never do.
And I'm thinking to myself - I don't want to spend my time giving the gears to Homeward Bound, I really don't give a shit about them. I'd much rather spend time climbing rocks with Bubby and working on a dog friendly Halifax at this point in my life.

So long story short - this post was a long answer to why I was negative last night - and the end of this post is indicating that I am perhaps not going to be doing the heavy dog politics beat in the near future and instead am going to focus on having fun with Bubby and seeing about where I can get into that's dog friendly.

That's the reason for the photos in this post too - I took them tonight when me and Bubby were at Prospect Bay - all of them except for the one of Bubby in his toy box.  He is seriously the 2nd cutest dog in the world.

Don't be hatin'

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