by Lee Juslin
The aim for every breed rescue organization is to find that perfect forever home for each dog they rescue and save. And, these all volunteer groups work hard to do just that by actively marketing each dog through their website, on sites like petfinder.com, and through community outreach.
Sometimes, despite the best efforts of the dedicated rescuers, a dog just doesn’t seem to attract interest from prospective adopters. Roberta of Coastal Carolina Boston Terrier Rescue says there are four criteria that determine a dog’s adoptability: Age, Appearance, Behavior, and Health.
Most adopters come to rescue wanting a puppy or, at least, a young dog. Many adopters, too, are not willing to deal with behavioral or health issues. Then, as unfair and arbitrary as it sounds, many look at the photos of dogs on the group’s website or Facebook page and fall in love with one or two and reject others that just don’t look as cute. This was the case with Dutch.
At seven years old and with the average Boston lifespan of sixteen years, age was not a factor for Dutch. Nor, did he have any major behavioral or health issues. Slightly larger than the breed standard, Dutch is a gentle, laid back boy who is somewhat hearing impaired and though shy, he is not aggressive, around other dogs. As Roberta described him, “He’s a big marshmallow.” Yet, despite aggressive marketing including multiple photos and a very cute video, there has been little interest in Dutch.
The average time from in-take to adoption is two and a half months, and most dogs receive multiple applications. Dutch has been in foster care for six months and during that time there have been only three applications submitted for him. None of those three panned out.
Roberta summed up the difficulties for a rescue organization, especially a small one. “In rescue, we believe every dog deserves a chance at a loving forever home. If we take in a dog that is unadoptable, he stays with a foster parent or is kept in sanctuary where he has a safe home with rescue paying all costs. This is often the situation with seriously ill or very elderly dogs, but Dutch is not in that category. Unfortunately, we have a saying in rescue: ‘The longer they stay, the more we pay’.”
Sometimes, when a dog is adoptable but languishes in rescue, the group looks to previous adopters, foster homes, and their roster of volunteers to try to get an adoption. While this sometimes works, it can mean the elimination of a much needed foster home. But, Roberta says they have not given up on Dutch who has so much to offer a potential adopter. “We are still determined to find this sweet boy the perfect home.”
Watch Dutch on the silver screen here:
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