So, I’ve been a little dog-obsessed since Tuesday. Both in sadness in Sasha’s passing and in concern/anticipation in finding a new dog. I’ve actually been somewhat surprised just how hard I’ve been taking the loss of Sasha and I’ve got to say, there’s really something to be emotionally prepared for a death rather than it happening all of a sudden. I’ve truly been sad and depressed. When Sasha’s predecessor, Lira, died back in 2009, I wrote the following:
I’ll also mention that I’m so glad we got Sasha before she died because I think it would be extra sad to all of a sudden just not be a dog-owner any more.
Very true. Part of it is that I’ve been a dog owner every day since August 1998 and all of a suddenly I’m not. I do hate that. So, not that we can “replace” Sasha, but we are looking to be a dog family again as soon as possible and I’ve been spending lots of time on breed rescue websites and a little bit looking at shelters. A few observations…
1) What the hell is wrong with people?! Why the hell do so many people make a commitment to a sweet, loyal, and sentient being and totally renege? So sad.
2) Who are those people? I’ve never actually known anybody to give up a dog that didn’t personally find a good home for it. I suspect that the rate of dog abandonment/surrender is substantially higher for those of lower SES. And, I’m also thinking it’s also much higher for those in rural areas. I doubt there’s any data on this, but I’d love to see some.
3) Related to point #2, I really wonder about how SES and urban/rural relates to breed ownership. The Durham and Wake County shelters seemed to be almost half pit bulls (though I love how the Wake shelter always referred to them as American Staffordshire mixed). The shelters in rural counties had a much broader mix. I also wonder how much of that is Raleigh-area rescue groups taking many of the most adoptable dogs and disproportionately leaving pit bulls behind (and I imagine there’s many fewer rescue groups in rural areas). Obviously, richer people are more likely to own purebreds, but I’d also love to see some information on breed ownership and other demographics.
Alright, hopefully next dog-related post will be to announce a new one.