Desert Messenger

March 6, 2013

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Page 10 March 6, 2013 Dog abandonment on the desert By Beth Praast Unfortunately, it is once again that time of year in Quartzsite - a time when many of the winter visitors and winter residents begin preparing for their trek back north. The time of year when the shelters reach their maximum. Do you have any idea how many dogs are left and abandoned out on the desert or in town each spring? More than I care to count. The excuses I hear are: ���Can���t afford to feed him any more���; ���Moving to assisted living, can take her with me���; ���He was so cute as a puppy but grew so big, he won���t ���t in my motorhome now���; ���I am too old and feeble to take her for walks anymore���; She just ran away when we were hooking up the 5th wheel and don���t have time to go look for her���; ���I don���t have the patience for a pet now���; He���s just not a good traveler���; She���s in heat and drawing the coyotes too close to my RV���. The real loser excuse, ���she���s at the bottom of the food chain, it���s only natural for the coyotes���. Well folks, there is no more Paw Power. No place locally for your pets to be dropped off. These dogs have been family for the past 4-6+ months and now you leave them behind to become the ���bottom of the food chain��� for the wild animals on the desert. If they could only speak, the sad tales you would hear. The heart wrenching stories of lost, confused pets who do not know what they did wrong to become lost or abandon. I know there are many reasons that someone cannot take care of their dog, either temporarily or permanently. There is no shame in that. It might be a devastating ���nancial situation, a health emergency, a ���re or ���ood, a death, etc. I just want to let you know that there are alternatives to abandoning your dog on the desert. I do not fault anyone who has to consider his or her options. Sometimes things happen in life and maybe a situation has become so devastating that a dog may need to get a new home. I just want to say that there are options and maybe this can help you come up with a good idea. I know the stress and emotions of a rough situation can make it hard to think up ideas. My hope is that this article will help. There are people that really do believe that a dog will make it just ���ne if they are put out and abandon. They are not bad people; they just do not understand the realities of what happens if a dog is left behind. The reality is that these dogs are frequently hit by cars, suffer great pain and then eventually die from their injuries. Dogs that are abandoned that have lived in a home have no way of knowing how to take care of themselves on the desert. Many times, they die from starvation. Some dogs that are abandoned can lead to dog packs that may attack animals and people. ���Since 1992, we���ve only trusted Jeff, owner of Windshield Magic, with our auto and RV glass. Jeff always does quality work, gives us very affordable prices, delivers on time and treats us like family. We wouldn���t go anywhere else!��� Gift ! te Certifica a s Pizz Silly Al���Windshield with RV ement replac Y! YUMM Roy T. Livingston, TX Why Choose & Trust Windshield Magic? ��� Over 22 years RV install experience ��� The highest customer quality rating ��� Work with all Insurance companies, including Candian ��� Here in Quartzsite from Nov. to April ��� Help with your insurance deductible ��� From rock chips to full replacements, we���ll gladly do it all. 41 West Main St., Quartzsite, AZ Give us a call: 1-800-560-8061 Your RV and Auto Windshield Specialists! ���We���re looking forward to meeting you and getting you safely on the road again��� Jeff and Nonda OPINION There are many alternatives to dumping your dog off in the desert. I will highlight some information that may help you keep your dog. Please check out some dog rescue organizations that will take care of your dog. They may even be able to help you ���nd a place for your pet if you can no longer keep it. If you need to ���nd another home for a pet, remember many rescues and shelters generally are nonpro���t and continue running on public donations. There is an alternative to abandoning your dog on the desert! ��� House Training Problems ��� It can sometime be dif���cult to house train your dog, but please take the time and be consistent and persistent. If you are having dif���culties with house, training please contact a dog trainer. ��� Veterinary Costs ��� Veterinary bills can be high, but if you do not have the means to take care of your dog or puppy then you should not take one into your home in the ���rst place. You might consider pet insurance if you are having trouble keeping up with vet bills. ��� Barking - Unfortunately, I cannot stay with my two puppies and have to sometimes leave them alone. We use an anti-barking dog collar , which works great in my dog-barking situation. ��� Hyperactivity ��� Hyperactivity and destructive behavior can be a problem. This can be more a luck of the draw when you get a new dog or puppy. It is a fact that some dogs are hyperactive. If you are having issues with a hyperactive dog, again you should consult a professional dog trainer. My suggestion is to make sure you give you dog ample exercise. This can often times bring down their activity level and curb destructive behavior. ��� Aggression - I sometimes have issues with Beau and his aggression towards other dogs (and yet he is a Border Collie puppy ��� not usually an aggressive dog at all. In general, Beau is very easy going and gentle with people. However, he is often afraid of other dogs and shows this by being aggressive, lunging, and barking. The goal is to expose Beau to other dogs that are well behaved in hopes that he will be less fearful and less aggressive. ��� Abandonment is an issue as can be seen by our overcrowded animal shelters. If you���re considering abandoning you dog because of one of the above behavior issues then please consult a professional dog trainer ���rst. Most of these issues can be solved by simply working with your dog or puppy.

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