Rescue Group Voice Mail

Author unknown

Hello: You have reached 123-4567, Tender Hearts Rescue. Due to the high volume of calls we have been receiving, please listen closely to the following options and choose the one that best describes you or your situation:

Press 1 if you think we are veterinarians and want free medical advice.

Press 2 if you know we are a rescue organization but want to save money and have us give you free, untrained medical advice anyway.

Press 3 if you make $200,000 a year but still want us to pay to spay the "stray" in your yard (house).

Press 4 if you have a 10-year-old dog or cat and your 15-year-old son has suddenly become allergic and you need to find the dog a new home right away.

Press 5 if you have dogs or cats, had a baby and want to get rid of your dogs or cats because you are the only person in the world to have a baby and dogs or cat at the same time.

Press 6 if your dog or cat is sick and needs a vet but you need the money for your vacation.

Press 7 if you just got a brand new puppy or kitten and your old dog or cat is having problems adjusting so you want to get rid of the old one right away.

Press 8 if your little puppy or kitten has grown up and is no longer small and cute and you want to trade it in for a new model.

Press 9 if you are elderly and want to adopt a cute puppy or kitten who is not active and is going to outlive you.

Press 10 if your relative has died and you don't want to care for their elderly dog or cat because it doesn't fit your lifestyle.

Press 11 if you are moving today and need to immediately place your 150-pound, 8-year-old dog or 10-year-old declawed, never-seen-a- vet cat with dental problems.

Press 12 if you want an unpaid volunteer to come to your home today and pick up the dog or cat you no longer want.

Press 13 if you have been feeding and caring for a "stray" for the last three years, are moving and suddenly determine it's not your dog or cat.

Press 14 if you are calling at 6 a.m. to make sure you wake me up before I have to go to work so you can drop a dog or cat off on your way to work.

Press 15 to leave us an anonymous garbled message, letting us know you have left a dog/cat in our yard in the middle of January, which is in fact, better than just leaving the dog/cat with no message.

Press 16 if you are going to get angry because we are not going to take your dog or cat that you have had for fifteen years, because it is not our responsibility.

Press 17 if you are going to threaten to take your ten year old dog or cat to be euthanized because we won't take it.

Press 18 if you're going to get angry because the staff had the audacity to go on vacation and leave the rescue in care of a trusted volunteer who is not authorized to take your personal pet.

Press 19 if you want one of our perfectly trained, housebroken, kid- and cat-friendly purebred tiny dogs that we have an abundance of.

Press 20 if you want us to take your dog that has a slight aggression problem, i.e. has only bitten a few people and killed your neighbor's cats.

Press 21 if you have already called once and been told we don't take personal surrenders but thought you would get a different person this time with a different answer.

Press 22 if you want us to use space that would go to a stray to board your personal dog while you are on vacation, free of charge, of course.

Press 23 if it is Christmas Eve or Easter morning and you want me to deliver an eight week old puppy or kitten to your house by 6:30 am before your kids wake up.

Press 24 if you have bought your children a duckling, chick or baby bunny for Easter and it is now Christmas and no longer cute.

Press 25 if you want us to take your female dog or cat who has already had ten litters, but you can't spay her because she is pregnant again and it is against your religion.

Press 26 if you're trying to make one of our younger volunteers feel bad and take your personal pet off your hands.

Press 27 if your cat is biting and not using the litter box because it is declawed, but are not willing to accept the responsibility that the cat's behavior is altered because of your nice furniture.

Press 28 if your two-year-old male dog is marking all over your house but you just haven't gotten around to having him neutered.

Press 29 if you previously had an outdoor-only dog or cat and are calling because she is suddenly pregnant.

Press 30 if you have done "everything" to housebreak your dog and have had no success but you don't want to crate the dog because it is cruel.

Press 31 if you didn't listen to the message asking for an evening phone number and you left your work number when all volunteers are also working and you are angry because no one called you back.

Press 32 if you need a puppy or kitten immediately and cannot wait because today is your daughter's birthday and you forgot when she was born.

Press 33 if your dog's or cat's coat doesn't match your new furniture and you need a different color or breed.

Press 34 if your new love doesn't like your dog or cat and you are too stupid to get rid of the new friend (who will dump you in the next month anyway).

Press 35 if you went through all these 'presses' and didn't hear enough.

This will connect you to the sounds of tears being shed by one of our volunteers who is holding a discarded dog or cat while the vet mercifully frees him from of the grief of missing his family.


Another Reunion

03:46 PM CDT on Friday, June 16, 2006


A complicated dog ownership dispute was settled Friday.


Precious is now home with its owners.

A dog rescued from the flood waters of Hurricane Katrina is now back with its original owners, but it wasn't an easy reunion.

The year-old rottweiler hadn't seen its owners in months -- not since it was rescued from flood waters in New Orleans. But at least the trauma of separation is now over.

A Central Texas family who adopted Precious agreed to give her back rather than fight for ownership in court. The Taylor family filed a lawsuit claiming the operator of an Austin rottweiler rescue group allowed the dog to be adopted rather than return it to its owners.

Attorney Scott Hendler says it's a nationwide problem facing other hurricane evacuees trying to reclaim their pets.

"There were sections of New Orleans that were very low income and wiped out when the levy broke. I think a lot of these rescue groups were making assumptions that these people weren't fit to care for these animals. And that's just wrong," he said.

Precious is now headed to San Antonio where the Taylors and their other dogs who survived Hurricane Katrina now call home.

Congress is considering requiring states to come up with evacuation plans to follow during natural disasters that would include pets.


Miracle Reunion Story

A cat named Brillo was rescued after Katrina from St. Bernard Parish and taken to Camp Lucky. where he managed to escape.

Yesterday he showed up at his home which is now a FEMA trailer on the property. He traveled three miles in ten months.

Susan B is the volunteer who has been working closely with lost and found pets and their owners from St. Bernard Parish and received the phone call from Brillo's owner who was simply overjoyed. Susan said "he was sobbing so that I could barely make out what he was saying. I do believe he is in a state of shock."

A miracle.

Denise, who has been Cat Coordinator Extraordinaire for No Animal Left Behind, attributed the following comment to Brillo as we were giving him virtual high-fives late last night:

f--k this shit, I am going home! Good kitty :)

Take Your Dog to Work Day


Tribune Media Services

June 23 ought to be a national holiday, says Kathy Stobaugh, project coordinator at N.N. Jaeschke Inc., a property management company in San Diego.

That's because June 23 is Take Your Dog to Work Day, which Stobaugh enthusiastically supports.

"It's more than a fun day to bring the dogs into work," she says. "Last year, three employees felt so left out of the fun, I mean they were jealous of everyone with their dogs. So, they've each since gone ahead and adopted a dog. As a result, three more dogs aren't in a shelter and now have a home. If even half the businesses in America participated, we'd empty out the shelters."

Stobaugh may be a tad overly optimistic, but Take Your Dog To Work Day is gradually catching on, and adoptions do occur as a result.

Patti Moran, founder of Pet Sitters International, kicked off the first Take Your Dog to Work Day eight years ago.

"The idea has always been to encourage adoptions," she says. "I thought, if everyone can see the loving relationship, the bond we have with our dogs, it might motivate adoptions."

Indeed, countless dogs have been adopted as a result of the event. Moran remembers one, in particular. The Loews Hotel in Annapolis, Md., held a Take Your Dog to Work Day promotional event called Bark Breakfast, where a local shelter brought in a dog named Severn -- the name of the river in which he'd been found floating.

Moran says, "Businesses have all sorts of fun events; one had a wienie contest, another had a sort of Dog Olympics. It's great, but I'm most pleased when I hear that dogs find a second chance because of Take Your Dog to Work Day."

When the event began, about 500 businesses participated. This year, more than 10,000 firms are expected to join in, not to mention the entire city of Portland, Maine.

In Portland alone, more than 100 businesses of all sizes will allow dogs on what is now a city holiday, albeit unofficial. The Animal Refuge League of Maine will adopt out dogs at a downtown park.

Across the country, several businesses that once participated in Take Your Dog to Work Day no longer do because every day is Take Your Dog to Work Day. "They saw the value for the employees," says Moran. "And the sometimes predicted disturbances created by dogs just didn't happen."

Of course, seriously allergic employees may not be so thrilled. Stobaugh says that at her company, those employees simply take the day off.

The truth is, as long as a dog is only in the office eight hours to so, the dander (which causes the allergic response) doesn't have the chance to get into the air system, or to stick on the walls, desks, get into the carpet and ultimately create problems for people with allergies.

Moran adds another option for Take Your Dog to Work Day, which can also work for people who are afraid of dogs: a dog safe zone in the workplace.

All sorts of businesses participate in Take Your Dog to Work Day, from small, family run stores to firms such as BMW Financial in Hilliard, Ohio (suburban Columbus), with 750 workers, joining in this year for the first time. While employees won't bring their best friends with four legs to the office, they will offer dogs for adoption from a local shelter. They'll also raise money to benefit pets in shelters. A behaviorist and dog trainer are among animal professionals who will answer questions, and hopefully prevent more dogs from landing in shelters.

"It's a start, and perhaps next year we'll expand, after all, this is different," says Juli Long, a lease end specialist at BMW Financial (offering financing services to BMW customers). "But we believe that supporting adoption of pets is good for the community."

Hoover, a terrier mix, is the 2006 Take Your Dog to Work Day Poster Dog. Actually, his full name is Hoover Charleston Roo McGinnis. While his littermates were adopted from Our Lady of Mercy Catnip Cottage in Summerville, S.C., Hoover just couldn't find a home. Finally, he was adopted to a family in Miami. However, they abruptly changed their minds. Homeless again, it seemed Hoover's time was up when Mark and Monica McGinnis fell in love with the dog, who has a strange habit of hopping (thus the Roo in his name, as in kangaroo).

Last year, Hoover went to work with Monica on Take Your Dog to Work Day, meeting and greeting dogs and people at the BJC Medical Center Nursing Home in Maysville,Ga.

Hoover's spunk is inspirational to everyone he meets. Perhaps, at some level, he understands how close he came to not finding a home.

"We believe every pet should be a wanted pet," says Moran. "Take Your Dog to Work Day is our way of trying to matter."