- Supporter in 2014
One of my guinea pigs is a rescue bought through a pet shop. I'd seen him a few times on my visits and queried them. He was actually from an adoption centre that was overcrowded so the pet shop took him in to try to rehome him. He was available for an optional adoption charge, so I could have taken him for free. After finding out details of the adoption centre I decided to pay for him as the centre received the donation, not the pet store. To me, that was a rescue.
I've since seen the petshop use this 'adoption area' to sell off their unwanted pets, who have been there for a little while. I remember asking about one and they said he was in there because they'd had him for a few months and hadn't sold. They did want a fee for him, £10, which is cheaper than the rest of the guinea pigs, but wasn't optional. That's not rescuing, that's buying from a petshop.
- And got the T-shirt
If you search the forums here and at Guinea Pig Cages, you can find some truly dreadful pictures of the way breeding guinea pigs are kept and treated, and how they're shipped to the pet stores. All you've done is perpetuate that kind of animal abuse.
I'm sure there were pigs available from rescues and shelters near you when you got your pig. They also needed homes, but taking one of those pigs would not have provided a breeder and a pet shop an opportunity to get rid of, and make money from, a guinea pig.
Some states have had success in stopping pet stores from selling puppies and kittens because of the horrendous conditions they're bred and kept in. I can only hope that one day that will happen for all animals.
They are all animals and they do need homes but giving them money and providing a demand for their "merchandise" is funding the issue. Its a bad short term solution. We could all go out and buy up all the guinea pigs at every local pet store but them the breeders would breed more and more mommies and babies will die because they don't care about proper diet, or genetics or sanitation... The only thing they care about is profits. This is why real rescues are non profits because its about care of the animals...
I don't want to sound crass or mean at all. I just want you to really, really think about this. You are mourning and need to give yourself some time to heal. I support whatever choice you make. I just hope you can understand why we feel the need to be honest with you.
I rescued him, cases like this are definitely vital because pet stores don't care what happens even to animals they sell, they care even less about the ones they can dump off.
Go get that pig if you haven't got him. My little Zorro has a great life now as best as I can do for him (course it could be even better, but it could be worse too, he could belong to a little kid who feeds him crap hay or no hay, pellets with dried stuff and crap, and keeps him in a teeny cage forever)
Unfortunately, he has already been replaced by another guinea pig in the tank.
Yes rescues normally charge a fee for an animal. It helps to defray the costs of housing/feeding/medical care of the animal. In no way does the rescue earn money off the adoption fee. Good rescues are always in the red.
There is another reason to charge an adoption fee. To make sure the person is really interested in the pet. It seems that people value something for which they pay. It also means the person is serious about adopting. With the case of guinea pigs, it also ensures they won't be snake food.
Our rescue took in a pig under similar circumstances. Petco had a young male that had a horrible URI. They did take it to the vet and treated it for several months. I was actually contacted through the vet as he was the one I also used for my pigs. I was told that the pig was healthy but that he had noisy breathing and couldn't be sold like that.
Unfortunately, poor Moby came to me with much more than "noisy breathing." This poor pig was working so hard to breath that he didn't have any energy for anything else. His breathing was horribly labored. I had him for 3 days and I have never had a pig with such a will to live. I cried to watch his suffering. I loved that pig. In the end, I put him down to end his suffering. What made me mad was that the petstore people should have found compassion for this pig and put him down themselves. "Noisy breathing" my butt!
Still... they at least sought medical care for him. That's more than most petshops will do.
I visited the Petco once again looking for some advantage to treat my boys with. The large pig was still there, but this time he was a "manager's special" and on sale. He was no longer placed with the other pigs - his spot having been taken by a fresh batch of pups. I told the person (who I thought to be a clerk) that I felt bad for the pig, and he asked me if I had any pigs. I told him that I did and he said that he was the store manager, and that for me, the pig would be free with any purchase. I guess he saw how sad I was about the pigs plight, or maybe he was just desperate to be rid of it.
I know some people would disagree with what I did, but I figured that I had to buy something anyway, so I might as well take the pig with me. God forbid no one took him and he got given away as snake food, or brought into the dreaded back room. At least the petstore didn't profit from the sale of the pig, and on the receipt he was marked as "discount - damaged".
I think in the long run, you have to decide for yourself if that pig deserves to be taken. It didn't ask to be bred and placed in a petstore, its circumstances were just unfortunate. As for me, I took the pig, but I won't go back into a petstore that sells pets if I can help it, because I can't just keep taking in every pig that I come across who I have sympathy for.
If I could afford the money and time to care for another pig I wouldn't think twice about rescuing him or her, pet shop or not. I paid a woman £80 for my twin boys after finding out that she kept them out in a run on the wet grass all day in winter while she was at work. Their poor little feet were so cold when I collected them.
- Mr Demus 625
- Supporter in 2012
I appreciate the the feedback, and LandosMomma is very right in that we do need time to grieve and figure out what is going on. Should we adopt iPig he is not being brought in our home until everyone gets a clean bill of health which as of now they all have, with the exception of Mephster who is my priority. Who knows we may not end up with him, but we did express interest and told her to let us know when they need to have him out.
So I present iPig, she let me sneak a picture of him! He was so mellow and loved the attention. His eye actually didn't look bad at all, it appears to be constantly draining which I would go over with the vet as he's on meds now.