Megan's Head

A place where Megan gets off her head.

Small Fury

You all know how hysterical I got when my animals died, one in a tragic accident and two from old age. I am an animal person. Big Friendly has managed to stave off my countless attempts at getting ‘this dog’ or ‘that cat’ until I was back from my travels and we could offer a more stable environment, where I could invest time and energy into making a new adoption part of our home. Both Big Friendly and I are befok when it comes to animals and will do anything for them.

I have real concerns. Chassie our crazy boy cat went from being one of four to only child, and I have to make sure that any dog that comes into this environment understands that he is our little king. I believe this reflects the seriousness with which I am approaching the whole thing.

So, after a home inspection, I was turned down this morning as being unsuitable by PETS to adopt a dog because my property is too small and my courtyard unsuitable. I am in a complete froth of rage. PETS, An organisation that rescues dogs from dire situations, places them in foster homes (up to 42 of them at one property) has decided I can’t adopt a dog and should go for an adult cat instead.  Now, it’s not like I don’t share their concerns for placing animals appropriately. I do. But surely, part of the job is reading the people. Surely. PETS, I don’t understand what you are doing. I really don’t.

I will change my plan of action. I am determined to offer a rescued dog or puppy a better life. It is a no brainer. I just think that sometimes those big, animal egos get in the way of seeing real good.

Dear PETS, I do not ever want to read about how this or that poor animal was homed and then returned to you. I do not want to hear your plea for homes if you have no idea which ones are good ones. I wasn’t heard by you. You didn’t see me. You told me more about how you think animals should live than seeing how loved, pampered and well treated any animal would be in our care. You really suck. And you totally hurt my feelings.

I just want to be clear. There are many organisations out there. I am completely happy to go through a home inspection. I am happy to pay a big adoption fee. I know I can’t have the biggest dog. I know I need a dog that’s ok with cats. I’m not pissing around.

Here is a picture of the offending courtyard although why this is relevant I have no idea. I would never dream of confining a dog in it ever.

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29 Comments

  1. Janie

    Dear Megan,
    Thank you for your response. I am 100% sure that you will look after your animals and that you will love them dearly.
    I wish i could attach a picture of your courtyard here so the rest of Cape Town can judge for themselves if they would find the space adequate. We need to act in our rescues best interest and because they have suffered enough we need to ensure they have love, good food, attention but also adequate space etc.
    As for your allegation that we have 42 fosters at one home – That is completely untrue and whoever gave you this information is lying!
    We understand that you are upset about our decision, but please try and see our side of the situation and please do not attack us for wanting the best for the ones that cannot speak for themselves.

  2. Dear Megan

    I can understand your frustration in not being approved to adopt a dog from us. However, we need to be consistent in our processes when it comes to adopting our pets out.

    What I feel is upsetting though is that your blog has many fabricated facts. Where exactly did you get your information? I am the Foster Home coordinator and never have we had 42 animals on one property or in one foster home?

    I am all for Freedom of Speech, but in the same breath one should make sure of ones facts before badmouthing a reputable organisation that has the most dedicated and wonderful volunteers, all working together in the best interest of all our fosters.

    I do not doubt that your animals would be loved. But unfortunately your courtyard would not meet our minimum requirements for a dog of that size.

    Good luck in your endeavor to rescue a dog. You are right – there are many organisations out there – and I am sure you will find the right companion that will be more suitable for your environment.

    Thank you for rescuing and not buying.

  3. Stinelle

    Hi Megan,

    Could you possibly let us know where you got your information of the 42 dogs on a property, as we have NO fosterhome with that much animals.

    A dog that has to little space will get frustrated and end up being destructive and naughty – and as you mention – it WILL end up in a “return” of an animal. If we just rehome animals left, right and centre without taking this into account, the animal will be returned to us – this is VERY traumatic for an animal to be tossed around like this.

    We do take every animal’s own needs into consideration before homing them. Unfortunately we can not just rehome animals without taking every single factor into consideration.

    After taking all these factors into consideration I do think it was the best decision for the animal.

  4. Hello Megan

    I understand you are disappointed that your application was not approved, but to keep a dog in such a tiny space, which I am sure becomes like an oven in summer, is just duplicating the conditions many of our rescues are found in. Dogs, no matter how small, all need space to run.

    None of our foster moms has anywhere CLOSE to 42 dogs either, so please do not spread untruths about our organisation. Even if we did have 42 dogs on one property, places like Lucky Lucy Foundation also have many dogs on one property, so it has no bearing on your application being denied.

    We understand that you love animals, we all do or we wouldn’t be doing this. I love horses but I don’t have any because 1 000 m2 is not sufficient space. I think the suggestion of a cat is a great idea – we have so many looking for homes. Please consider it.

    Your feelings may be hurt but Pets does not suck. Pets has not only an outstanding record of rescues, but regularly supports and educates people in the townships AND regularly holds Spay Days at no cost to the residents. . . we are holding one this Saturday and at the end of the day there will be at least 50 animals who will no longer be burdened with an endless cycle of pregnancy, and thousands of unwanted puppies doomed to die slow agonising deaths from starvation, anaemia from ticks and fleas, mange and a myriad other illnesses will not be born.

    In closing, I look forward to seeing an apology to Pets, we have done nothing but look out for the best interests of our animals. You have been unfair in your criticism and misleading in the information you have put onto the web.

    Kind regards,
    Kelly

  5. megan

    Dear PETS people. For the record, I am not confused as to why you turned me down, and you have every right to. I am explaining, from a very hurt and angry place, why you were so completely wrong.
    And Louis told me about the 42 animals on a plot.
    I thought I made myself perfectly clear explaining why you had passed up on a very loving, perfect home for a rescued dog, and that you needed to look beyond a photograph to the person behind it. You didn’t.

  6. Janie

    Dear Megan,
    The fact that you think we made the wrong decision is your own prerogative. We know we made the right decision for Drake and we do not regret our decision or plan on changing it either. We look at all aspects of the application. Fact is – the space is not enough for Drake. Surely you must see that this is not about you, but about what is right for Drake?? Drake and his needs are our first priority (as with all our rescues). Surely you must also realise the space you have is not adequate for a active playful puppy?? Also – This is NOT about the “person behind the photo” as you mentioned. You know very well that the application was approved for you to adopt – SUBJECT TO HOME CHECK. We do a home check because we need to see that the space, area kennels etc is adequate and in place. In other words – If you had adequate space for Drake there would have been no problems. Again – The application was turned down because of lack of space not because of the person applying. As for Louis – His fact are completely inaccurate!!

  7. megan

    Yes, you are right, Louis got more facts wrong. I agreed with Louis that the space was not right for Drake. I spoke at length with Louis about adopting another dog who would be more suited to the space. Surely Drake is not the only dog you want to home?
    Drake wasn’t suitable at all anyway because he has never been exposed to cats. If I had known that I would have cancelled out the possibility of him after I had specifically asked that in my first email.
    Don’t make this all about Drake. Stop defending your poor decision and stop making excuses.

  8. Janie

    Strange that now suddenly “Drake was not suitable anyway” ….??

    Strange that you never even emailed me to ask for other available doggies..??

    Look Megan, i understand that you are angry about being declined but fact is – PETS will not re-home any dog to you because your property is simply not suitable for a dog. Also after your unreasonable outburst its quite clear that if things don’t go your way you react in anger. Taking into account that pups and dogs don’t always do as we would want them to…. I am now even more sure of my decision as i previously was!! Actually – The best decision ever!!

    I was not defending our decision – I was explaining it to you but now you have moved from “us not looking at the person, to the dog was not suitable anyway”. What will it be next??

    I will NOT stop making it about Drake because – THIS IS ABOUT DRAKE AND WHAT IS RIGHT FOR HIM!!!!!

    RE-HOMING IS ABOUT THE ANIMALS AND NOT THE HUMANS!!!

  9. megan

    Well I think that just about explains what I’m dealing with.

  10. Janie

    Yes that 100% correct – You are dealing with an organisation where its ALL ABOUT THE ANIMALS!!!
    Not about the humans and what they want

  11. Cheryl

    I’m actually taken aback by this – the fact that PETS did a homecheck that is! Many people have told me that they have adopted from PETS without a homecheck ever being done. Go to Stodels, pick a up, and no worries!

  12. Cheryl

    I’m actually taken aback by this – the fact that PETS did a homecheck that is! Many people have told me that they have adopted from PETS without a homecheck ever being done. Go to Stodels, pick a pup, and no worries!

  13. Janie

    Hi Cheryl,
    I’m not sure who your source is but that is certainly NOT the case!! At every Stodels adoption day we have a team of volunteers who do home inspections and every adoption is still subject to application approval as well as home inspection. Note that there are other organisations that also use Stodels as adoption day premises but obviously we cannot account for their actions. We have an adoption day at Stodels this Sunday again and you are welcome to come and experience our adoption applications etc for yourself.

  14. Beilla Gans

    So, people in apartments (flats) can’t have a dog? Facts, (here in US) prove otherwise. What about the wonderful walks on the beach and otherwise? They don’t count?. When I saw pictures of the dogs playing on the beach I thought, how lucky they were. Crazy. Tante B

  15. Pablo'sDad

    Perhaps the lovely people at PETS should move away from their computers and get back to finding homes….it does surprise me that they seemed wholly unprepared to deal with the reasonable disappointment of a person who adores dogs. I’d suggest that Janie might want to consider directing her ire in a more profitable direction, rather than at a person dedicated to opening her home to a rescue.

  16. Candice

    Megan, I have been in your home many times, and before your beloved pets passed on I was witness to just how loved and happy they were. All of them. And not once were they confined to your courtyard, let alone in the heat of a summers day. They were walked every day and bought lovely soft beds and given oodles of love and attention and the run of the house. I understand an organisation’s concerns about space, but surely after a discussion with you they would have realised that any dog would be most loved and adored in your household, and never, ever ‘confined’. Their continuous emphasis on the size of your courtyard shows me that they didn’t ask the right questions or take the time to find out what kind of life you would offer the dog. When there are so many animals out there desperate for homes, I just don’t get it.

  17. megan

    You and me both Candice. You and me both.

  18. Adrian Galley

    You express your understandable disappointment and get abuse in return. These sanctimonious somebodies certainly need brushing-up on their people-skills.

  19. Gail Super

    hey I am so glad that some reasonable people have just spoken. It seems so sanctimonious to turn down a home on the basis of yard size. Does PETS know about how loved dogs are in NYC? Great Danes live in tiny apts….sorry I am repeating what another comment said but it needs reiterating. It’s something very South African about saying that size matters….come on! As long as the doggie gets love and walks and company that is all s/he needs. So PETS lost out and so did Drake. Anyway I have heard of another place- Watershed, and if you want their deets just inbox me Megan. I can’t believe it!!!

  20. Stinelle

    Hi guys,

    I just want to mention a few things.

    We are ALL volunteers and most of us have full time jobs- so everything we do is purely because we love animals, not for ANY other reason!

    Its always easy to point fingers, but are any of you willing to do this? – going into townships, bottle-feeding, fostering, coming home and need to do 200+ emails, attend adoption days, etc.

    By declining an adoption, we are taking the animal’s best interest at heart – I personally think it should be more concerning if we just approve every single one- just to get rid of the animals- which we obviously don’t.

    Believe me, we don’t complain, but sometimes we have to make tough decisions and get this kind of responses….

  21. Louis

    Allow me to enter the frey regarding this house check. After all, I am the volunteer that did it.

    Let me straighten all the facts, and show you all the reality of the situation in which the DOG would have had to live, had we allowed this adoption.

    Please follow me to present the full picture, for reason being that this comment system does not allow me to post pictures, which in this case, is very necessary to show the full picture.

    http://www.wireless-it.co.za/drakeadoption.pdf

    Please go read the full version of events.

  22. Adrian Galley

    Dear, oh dear. Like a dog with a bone, we just can’t let this one go. Besides, one gets such a clear view from the moral high ground, doesn’t one? What interests me though, is the extent to which our judgements are made from a subjective, and dare I say, prejudiced perspective. Might I recommend some reading, wherein you’ll find much evidence to support the view that the degree and quality of interaction between humans and non-human companions is a far better indicator of the animal’s well-being than physical circumstances? (Although the levels of literacy displayed on this thread suggest I may be barking up the wrong tree).

    [Shore, Elsie R.; Riley, Michelle L.; Douglas, Deanna K.2006. Pet owner behaviors and attachment to yard versus house dogs. Anthrozoos: A Multidisciplinary Journal of The Interactions of People & Animals. Volume 19, Number 4, 2006 , pp. 325-334]

    [Kobelt, A.J; P.H. Hemsworth, J.L. Barnett, G.J. Coleman. 2003. A survey of dog ownership in suburban Australia—conditions and behaviour problems. Applied Animal Behaviour Science Volume 82, Issue 2 , Pages 137-148]

  23. As for Louis – His fact are completely inaccurate!!

    you can’t argue with that… i know Megan very well and her devotion to the many animals that she has looked after and cared for is one of the things that stands out most about her – i don’t think she has been treated with a lot of respect and understanding here and agree completely with her other blog which won’t let me comment on it – jus stop being so PETSy and admit you made a mistake and find a suitable animal for her – this stopped becoming about Drake the moment she realised he was not the best dog for her place but with all the other dogs you are trying to place surely there is one who is suitable for her space and as she said all the walks – beach and park – that she does as well [have been on one with her before and know this to be absolutely true] – ai.

  24. Sue-Ann

    Is it just me or are the PETS people completely focused on the size of the yard and not on the actual living conditions to which a dog would be subjected? It’s one thing if, during the home check, they are told that the dog will be kept in the courtyard. But when they’re told that the dog will be an inside animal, taken for walks, etc, why this focused insistence on one courtyard? PETS, are your homechecks just about the physical living space or do you take into account the animal’s home life?

  25. Sue-Ann

    Wow, Louis, I’ve just read your account. Are you just generally that vitriolic or are you majorly pissed off at Megan for daring to write down her opinion on why she was rejected? I guess your account answered my question – you seem to care only about the living space and not about the conditions in which the dog will be living.

    And I don’t mind saying that your final few paragraphs reek of maliciousness. You’re trying to shame her into ‘being worthy’ of having her opinion respected? This is the kind of person who decides whether or not someone is able to give an animal a loving home?

  26. Stinelle

    Hi guys,

    We never said that Megan won’t be able to provide an animal a loving home – we actually suggested that a cat might be more suitable….but this fact seems to be totally ignored….

    And in this instance the reason for declining the adoption was in fact the space…. We have a lot of experience with rehoming animals and after 5 years we do know what to look out for. A medium sized dog will get terribly frustrated in a small space – and then they will start to be destructive (doesn’t matter how much love and attention they get).

    Unfortunately we do have certain standards and we stick with them (these aren’t things that we thought about in a 5 minute meeting, this is actually things that we experienced, so we do know what to look out for)

  27. megan

    You know what Stinelle? Your pathetic attempts to tell me I should have a cat (I already do) show me how little you know, and how happy you are to wield a position of power. You know nothing. You were not at my house, nor did you ever meet my beautiful, much loved, content, stimulated amazing, long living rescued dogs whose happy lives I shared until they died of old age. Don’t tell me you know what to look for if you did absolutely no looking. I have had enough of you and your self-righteous, ignorant rubbish. I want nothing to do with you, or your half-wit team. Go away. You are an ignorant idiot.

  28. Stinelle

    You know what Megan – I never accused you of anything or took you on personally…… so I really don’t appreciate you calling me an ignorant idiot.

    I actually said that we NEVER said that you CAN’T give an animal a loving home. We simply thought that it might be more suitable for a cat – this was a suggestion – we didn’t force you to take a cat – so what position of power???

    I do understand that you are upset about our decision, but I only tried to explain why our approval ladies made that decision.

    (If you didn’t want us to raise our opinion – why on earth did you sent the link to this page to us?)

  29. megan

    I am sorry Stinelle, I couldn’t resist. I ran out of the tight control I had been operating with when I saw you repeating what everyone had said over and over again without taking in a word I had said. I repeat. I. Have. An. Adult. Cat.
    I only tried to explain, and re-explain, and re-explain why the decision your ‘approval ladies’ made was based on little or no information.
    I am frustrated because you all understand so little, and have grabbed hold of the shortest end of the stick.
    I wrote the post and sent you the link because I hate skinnering behind backs and I felt like it was an issue that might receive positive engagement. I was wrong. You all managed to get knee-jerk and hysterical. Not as knee-jerk and hysterical as me, I admit, but I am the injured party here.
    Please take the time to read my follow-up post in which all of this is explained. Again.

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