Here's my take on it. As a shelter volunteer my main role is adoption counseling. READ: Adoption Counseling. I endeavor to make a good match between a homeless dog or cat and a potential adopter. It doesn't need to be the most perfect match, I'm not sure perfect matches even exist. But a good match, a responsible match, can and should be made for the good of the animal and the adopter.
|Isis playing ball. Believe me, Siberian Huskies are NOT for everyone! The few times we've had them at the shelter, I've thoroughly discussed the challenges with potential adopters!|
Shelters are increasingly under pressure from the communities they serve to increase adoptions and eliminate euthanasia. These are worthy goals, but when shelters start thinking about finding homes for the animals in their care as largely a numbers game it concerns me. If a shelter Director pulls her staff and volunteers together for a meeting and talks about how she wants everyone to increase their weekly adoptions, then offers incentives for doing so, that is worrisome. What's next, adoption quotas? Doesn't it remind you of the sleazy used car salesman cliché?
|Phoebe doing her movie star pose. I adopted her from the shelter I volunteer at. If an adopter is looking for a dog to go running with, lazy Phoebe would NOT be a good choice!|
|This gorgeous, friendly dog was Big, Powerful, and super Energetic! He'd be a great dog for many individuals or families, but may not be the best choice for every lifestyle.|
What is your opinion on shelters offering incentives to staff or volunteers based on the number of adoptions they make? Has anyone experienced this type of model in a shelter or rescue, and if so what was the impact on adoptions, returns, and public opinion? Please leave a comment and weigh in on this concept, I'd like to know what you all think!
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