Saturday, May 25, 2013

A Personal Defect

We decided to try to stay ahead of all the incoming kittens by having a mini-adoption event today.  It was rather impromptu with a weeks notice and a paid online ad.  We let the Petsmart staff know about 5 days ago  that we'd be putting out cages, etc. 

It wasn't our turn in the adoption centre, so the cages would have to be in another area of the store.  We had about 13 kittens and 5 adults.  Nice numbers and friendly, cute kittens! 

I wasn't there when it happened, but one of the volunteers from the OTHER rescue went bizerk when she saw us with our cages.  She started red-faced screaming at our volunteer - obscenities... demanding we pack up and leave!   Gratefully, our volunteer was sensitive enough to politely suggest she go speak with the manager of the store.  The other rescue's volunteer stormed to the manager and started screaming at her too.  Her arms her waving, her face was red, people were staring.

How horrifying.   What kind of personal defect do you have to have to treat other volunteers that way? 

It's pathetic when these things happen with rescues;  Lack of class, tact and professionalism.  You'd think we were competing for a profit or something.  Shit.  I just wanted to adopt out some cats into loving homes today.  Honestly, I'm glad I wasn't there when it happened this morning.  I don't think I would've been as ...um....diplomatic as our volunteer over the situation. 

Those of you who have read my blog over the past 5 years, know that I'm not a stranger to altercations and other rescue's bullshit.  But I usually retreat.  It's one of the reasons I started my own rescue.   But I've NEVER verbally assaulted another volunteer like what happened today. 

I'm tired tonight and this crap has hovered over me all day today.  It sat on my shoulder like a piece of bird shit.  (I guess I could've said "dark cloud", but "bird shit" felt more accurate)  We had 9 adoptions today - 3 of them were ADULT cat adoptions.  That's enough to make me smile and make the whole day worth it. 

I'll think good thoughts about this other rescue.  I know how embarrassing it must be for their volunteers, the customers in the store, and the store staff to have witnessed it.  It's an imperfect world and we're all volunteers trying to make the world better for animals.  

10 comments:

Tails from the Foster Kittens said...

congratulations on the adoptions!!!

Sparkle said...

I am glad kitties got adopted, especially adults! How sad that some humans let their egos get the better of them.

Khyra And Sometimes Her Mom said...

More 'adults' that seemed to forget it is all about the ANIMALS -

I'll lift my glass of Tempranillo in your direction -

Cheers for your work!

Shannon said...

I'm gonna tell you something you don't want to hear. Ok 2 things. First one being that you don't know the whole story. You weren't there and in every conflict/confratation/fight there are at least 3 sides - yours, mine and the truth. Furthermore, it's horrendously unfair and irresponsible to post this story and paint another volunteer and the rescue they represent in such a negative way given the limited amount of information you have access to.

Secondly, I think what your rescue did - highjacking a store from another rescue in your own interests was kind of crappy. Given how long you've been in rescue, you should be able to recognize the importance of the public accesibility that being a store affords cats. But without a thought to that you were able to organize an adoptathon at a store that it wasn't your turn to be in. You also didn't bother to even call and notify the other rescue. I would have been upset too and would have had a few strong words for whoever was there representing Forever Homes, quite possibly to the point that I would have asked you to pack and up leave too. You know very well that your 7 adoptions probably translated to fewer for the 'resident' rescue - which means less income, fewer foster spots and fewer cats that can be rescued next week. Whether you see it as such or not, you are competing for homes and what you did equated to unethical business practices.

House of the Discarded said...

Hey Shannon - Thanks for the comment. Perhaps I needed to be more clear:

1. We were invited by the store to come in and do an adoption event ANY TIME we want. The other group is offered the same. It doesn't matter WHO is in the adoption centre.

It's about finding cats homes.

2. No, I didn't tell the other rescue we were coming in. Last time I offered to share an ad with them for a mutual adoption event, they agreed and never bothered to pay me back.

3. It might be tacky (to you) that I've told this story. I didn't mention names and it's my blog to rant if I wish.

-B

Anonymous said...

For what it's worth, as an adopter, I'm looking for "the" kitten/cat, not just "a" kitten/cat. Having two (or more) rescues in one location does NOT decrease any one rescue's chances of me adopting from them. If they don't have "my" cat/kitten there, I won't adopt at all. There's no competition from my perspective, , since it's about the cat, not the rescue. Nonetheless, thanks for the update, Beth.

hmacross said...

I see this story as one about interpersonal relations and how one represents whatever group one is representing.

There were many ways the volunteer from the other rescue could have handled the situation, but the one they chose put their organization in a bad light.

When we were in Petsmart stores, I often had to listen to the public rant on about the cost of adoption, indoor homes, s/n policy, adopting bonding pairs etc. There were many times I wanted to give the person a piece of my mind, but that would have reflected badly on the rescue, not on me.

I think that sometimes we forget what the common goal is in rescue.

Anonymous said...

Sorry Shannon, but your response is petty and out of line. I don't know how things are done where you live, but the rescue groups (yup - groups with an S at the end) I'm involved with here in Ontario work TOGETHER. We are all in this together, and having a mini-adoption day when there is another rescue being housed at PetsMart is not a big deal. As someone else mentioned, this is about the ANIMALS, and giving potential opportunities to find THE cat/kitten that is best suited to their homes - it should NOT be a "free-for-all, let's choose any cat/kitten without consideration to his/her compatibility to our household." Because you know what? Frequently, those are the innocent furbabies who get returned.

Quite frankly, I don't care what the whole story is - I find the fact alone that one volunteer would scream at another and demand they leave the store a stomach churning combination of horrifying and revolting.

In addition to remembering why we rescue in the first place - whatever happened to treating our fellow humans with dignity and respect?

Jane

Shannon said...

Jane -
Do you want some dignity and respect? How about minimizing the name calling (petty) and personal attacks (Beth said this volunteer had "personal defects") for starters? And recognize that telling one side of the story is disrespectful?

Disagreement is not always disrespectful. Open discussion and constructive criticism is VITAL for us to learn and grow as humans. Despite what is said, we are not always our own biggest critics and sometimes (usually?) need it to be pointed out when we're in the wrong.

Elaina Newman said...

Beth I have never made a comment or statement on your blog before I have always enjoyed your blogs I have even adopted from you when you were with Toronto Cat Rescue, I do not remember what my girl's name was you might remember her (she is a tortie, young, was pregnant. I got her on a Monday, if I had not gotten her on the Monday, Tuesday she was being put down) anyway the reason I am getting off my ..... is ENOUGH IS ENOUGH what ever was done was done for the cat's. STOP with any and all name calling I know for a fact that you Beth work major overtime for the cats if for any reason two different rescues find them selves working in the same store (even with invitation) they should not resort to name calling or any negative acts ( please excuse spelling) it is all for the animals. Yes, open discussion and constructive criticism is "vital" for our growth etc. as humans but again ENOUGH IS ENOUGH, LEAVE IT ALONE. Nobody needs to be childish about it by repeating and repeating, stop and just be thankful that some furbabies got forever homes.

Elaina Newman and her many furbabies