Sunday, March 22, 2015

Never Use Craigslist To Find An Animal a Home

If you are someone who is involved in animal rescue, chances are this post will not tell you anything you didn't already know. It is my hope, though, that at least one person will read it who learns something because it is a message that needs to be spread: #Craigslist is not a friend to animals!

People who commit unspeakable acts of cruelty to animals often get them by answering Craigslist postings. People involved with dog fighting frequently get the dogs or other animals they use for bait by answering ads from naive pet owners who place a #freetogoodhome ad. The home many of these animals end up in is anything but good. If the animal being given away is a #pitbull , a dog fighter may want it as a possible fighter or breeder.

I believe that most people who, for whatever reason, can no longer keep their pet want to place it in a loving home. If so, they are not going to hand their pet over to just anyone. If someone with cruel intentions answers a "free to good home" ad, they are not going to show up at the door without a good story. They may even have someone who looks less sketchy and appears more believable get the dog for them. No matter how good the person seems, you can't know for sure what kind of home the pet will really end up in. I have read many horrible true stories about dogs and cats who were given away or sold at low cost to people involved in dog fighting or even just sick individuals who get pleasure from torturing animals. Some of these stories are stuck in my head and I know I will never forget them.

I believe the right thing for Craigslist to do is no longer accept ads for animals being given away or sold at very low cost. Since Craigslist will probably never do this, the next best thing would be to place in big, bold letters above the animal listings section a warning about the unscrupulous people who often answer those ads so at least people aren't naive about the risk they are taking.

It is heartbreaking to think of a cherished pet who must be re-homed due to an allergic child or perhaps moving to an apartment that doesn't allow pets to fall into the hands of someone who would do it harm. If a person must find a new home for their pet, it is best to find someone who would like to adopt it whose character you already know or surrender the pet to a no-kill shelter.

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