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To feel, well, REALLY unhappy at seeing puppy on freecycle...

(66 Posts)
Hadeda Wed 19-Oct-11 23:21:58

Digest of latest freecycle posts includes a pedigree puppy offered, 12 weeks old with AKC registration. Post says child has allergy which is reason puppy must go.
Which I can sort of understand, but really - freecycle???! Old sofa, used desk, cricket equipment, puppy; it just doesn't sit right. Couldn't she go back to the breeder? Or to the RSPCA or similar who will vet any new home carefully? Weird.

worraliberty Wed 19-Oct-11 23:23:56

I'm surprised they allow it?

SkinnedAlive Wed 19-Oct-11 23:24:46

That is weird sad As you say you would think the breeder would take her back or there are often breed rescue for specific breeds. Could you contact them and suggest it?

troisgarcons Wed 19-Oct-11 23:25:25

NO different to the newsagents staffie adverts - "give us 400 quid and a brindle is yours" .... at least with freecycle you know they aren't making money out the pup - and i doubt they would let it go to a random stranger without checking. Disreputable people would make money out of the pup.

ChippingInToThePumpkinLantern Wed 19-Oct-11 23:25:48

Freecycle doesn't normally allow it.

You could reply & give them the name of some 'NO KILL' rescues near you. The SPCA is not the best option sad

I hate seeing animals treat like this it makes me so sad & angry.

fourkids Wed 19-Oct-11 23:41:31

"I hate seeing animals treat like this it makes me so sad & angry."

Treated like what?

advertised to a wide audience while, for all anyone knows, it's sat at home in a cosy basket by a radiator chomping on a dog chew?
rehomed because a human child turns out to be allergic to it?
given away rather than having a further profit made on them?

Joolyjoolyjoo Wed 19-Oct-11 23:44:04

This makes me really sad too sad. Most good breeders will have a clause saying that the puppy MUST go back to them if it is to be rehomed. Giving animals away for nothing encourages people to take them on a whim. This is the reason even the animal charities ask for a reasonable donation.

Some idiot will look at that ad and think "Ooh a pedigree- that's worth money!" Something for nothing. "We could breed it and make even more...." It's not even about whether they can give a puppy a good home, whether they can afford insurance, vets bills- they just see something that usually costs hundreds right there for nothing.

If the owners of the pup want to find a good, caring home for their pup this is totally the wrong way to go about it. People who are serious about getting a puppy and are committed to the sacrifices and expenses DON'T generally look on Freecycle for it sad Sounds to me like the owners just want rid ASAP [even sadder]

holdenmcgroin1979 Wed 19-Oct-11 23:50:09

unfortunatly many of the dogs used as bait to train dogs for dog fights come from this sort of advert,

fourkids Wed 19-Oct-11 23:50:57

Most good breeders will have a clause saying that the puppy MUST go back to them if it is to be rehomed hmm

however your other points are very valid - except that even when giving away a settee on Freecycle, you get to choose who gets it. It's a bit of an assumption that the advertiser will just dump what was presumably an expensive puppy on the first person to reply.

DogsBeastFiend Wed 19-Oct-11 23:57:14

Please will you email the Mods ASAP and ask them to withdraw the post and in future not to allow advertising of animals?

A pup given away like this is a gem for a puppy farmer to breed from - or at least to a backyard breeder. I'll link to some of the reasons why this shouldn't happen and what awful things CAN happen in a mo. Briefly, the dog could be used to breed from time and again, abused, used as bait in fighting... and at best, if the new owner tires of him or can't keep him for more genuine reasons, they won't have anywhere to place him. I'm a rescuer who places unwanted dogs in no kill rescue and I have enough trouble doing so, despite having contacts across the country. For the average owner it's harder still.

If you can, please would you also alert local INDEPENDENT rescue (which provides all the things I'm going to state here) to this dog ASAP and ask if they can approach the person offering him, either, tbh, as a rescue or posing as an ordinary member of the public, so that the pup can be taken into a safe environment where he/she can be neutered, assessed, vaccinated, where the new owners will be homechecked and where the dog will be able to return to if ever at any stage of his life the new owner can't keep him.

sismith42 Wed 19-Oct-11 23:59:11

It's better than dumping the dog somwhere. Also, I got two gerbils from there and I'd like to think I was a responsible pet owner...

Joolyjoolyjoo Thu 20-Oct-11 00:05:18

Fourkids- the reason for this is that good breeders genuinely care about the pups they produce and would HATE to see them end up in dodgy hands. As I am prepared to bet this one will.

puppy farmers and their ilk are clever- they will not turn up to see the advertiser saying "We want to take your puppy and breed it to death to make a quick buck". No, they will be lovely, make all the right noises, even bring their kids/ neices/ nephews. The puppy owner will think that he/ she has found a good home for their pup- but will they do a home-check? Grill every applicant about their lifestyle? Discuss costs and expenses? Will they really make a huge effort to find out the suitablility of the home they are proposing? I doubt it sad If they wanted a well-vetted home, they would have contacted their breeder/ rescue/ the breed rescue society. They just want rid. Freecycle, ffs sad

"It's bit of an assumption that the advertiser will just dump what was presumably an expensive puppy on the first person to reply" Why? The cost of the puppy obviously doesn't matter as they are giving it away for nothing. ie they just don't want it. At only 12 weeks old, they can only have had it for a few weeks (quite a short time for allergies to manifest themselves, be diagnosed, realise they have no other option IME, but anyway..)

Most decent breeders will interview you on at least 2 occasions before they will even let you see a puppy. Many of the good breeders I know will turn down more people for puppies than they will sell to. There are soo many other, better ways that these people could have gone about rehoming their poor puppy, but they obviously didn't care enough to look into them sad

Joolyjoolyjoo Thu 20-Oct-11 00:05:55

x-posts, DBF!

DogsBeastFiend Thu 20-Oct-11 00:06:32

Backyard breeders

If you'd be so kind it would be of HUGE benefit to the canine world for you to warn the Mods of allowing ads like the one you found. My local Freecyle states that it won't but offers details instead of reputable rescues, for the benefit of both those who want to rehome their dogs and to those who want to offer a dog.

If it helps please tell them that I'm happy to put together something to explain the reasons why rescue is ALWAYS the best, safest option, for both owners and dogs, and to expain more about backyard breeders, puppy farmers etc and how to spot them. Please pm me if you think that will help. FYI the post I wrote here demonstrates my point.

Sorry if I sound like I'm taking over your thread, I don't mean to, I just saw something which troubled me and about which I might have something to offer. There are plenty of other posters who know much about rescue/abuse/the dangers of dogs being advertised as this one is and I'm sure that they'll add far more than I can.

DogsBeastFiend Thu 20-Oct-11 00:11:24

"Giving animals away for nothing encourages people to take them on a whim. This is the reason even the animal charities ask for a reasonable donation."


I'm both a network rescuer and a hands on volunteer for a no kill rescue. That rescue, like all others, charges for the dogs they rehome. The average fee is £150.

In NO WAY does that cover the dogs food, vaccinations, vet check, flea and worm treatment, spay or neuter, bedding, lighting, heating, staff costs and so on. It's a token amount to deter those who will adopt on a whim. As the rescue Boss puts it... "People tend to think more carefully about owning something if it costs them, and they tend to take more care of it".

DogsBeastFiend Thu 20-Oct-11 00:14:20

Fourkids, what's your hmm for? I'd go further than Jooly and say that a good breeder will ALWAYS contract to taking back a dog if the owner can't keep him, even if that's in 10 years time... as will ANY reputable rescue.

Joolyjoolyjoo Thu 20-Oct-11 00:20:53

DBF- you are right! When I was looking for dog 2 I contacted oldboy's breeder. She wasn't planning any more litters (only breeds every few years), so I looked elsewhere. Oldboy was 4 at the time. She contacted me a few weeks later to say she had oldboy's sister back, due to her owner's divorce, and was I interested. I had to decline, having booked a puppy, but it was no matter- she kept her until she died at a ripe old age.

If I was getting a pup/dog now that I am older (and wiser wink) I would/ will go through rescues first, but good breeders do exist, and they take their responsibilities seriously. THAT is why they say the pup must go back to them, not for any alterior motive, as I think fourkids suspects.

fourkids Thu 20-Oct-11 00:24:08

Joolyjoolyjoo, Not in Britain (assuming this puppy is in the USA from AKC reg).

I have known dozens and dozens of breeders in my professional life, and while I absolutely agree that good breeders can be very sensible and caring about their pups, and that they do often find out a lot about potential homes, most do not do 'home checks'. There is a good reason for this - good breeders of good puppies attract buyers from far afield, often hundreds of miles away, so it would just not be practical.

I have bought several puppies over the years, and had a breeder ever tried to tell me that I was compelled to return a dog to him/her should I ever need to rehome it, I would have laughed. Someone did however once try this when selling me a horse. I explained nicely that you have to loan it if you want it back - if you sell it, it becomes the new owner's property. As it happens, I would sell it back to them at the same price I'd sell it to someone else (if I were selling it). And I have also asked people for first refusal if they sell a horse or pony on, but this is slightly different to "the puppy MUST go back to them if it is to be rehomed"

As troisgarcons says, this is no different to an ad in a shop window or paper, and as sismith42 says, it is better than dumping it.

To be fair, yes it might end up in the wrong hands. And personally, I would never advertise an animal this way, but to assume it's going to end up having two litters of pups in some grotty shed for the rest of its life or end up being mauled to death as as trauning for pitbulls is a tad alarmist.

MillyR Thu 20-Oct-11 00:26:39

I will admit that I got my dogs as a result of responding to a Facebook post. I think it was acceptable because my SIL knew the previous owner, and was therefore able to make a judgement about the kind of home the dogs had come from and the suitability of the dogs for us and us for the dogs. It would also not have worked out for the dogs to be returned to the breeders because they came from separate breeders and would have had to be separated from each other, which would have been distressing for them.

fourkids Thu 20-Oct-11 00:27:31

I might add, many good breeders I know will take a dog back that they have bred (assuming they are in a position to do so). I'm not in any way disputing that.

ChippingInToThePumpkinLantern Thu 20-Oct-11 00:31:44

Fourkids - hopefully the others have answered that question for me to your satisfaction now hmm It sounds like the breeders you have known are the 'backyard breeders' that should be avoided.

DogsBeastFiend Thu 20-Oct-11 00:37:45

Fourkids, you've been dealing with disreptutable breeders. A decent one WILL, no question about it, expect you to contract to returning the dog to him if you can't keep him. There's good reason for that - why do you think rescue does it? Do you think that we WANT to take dogs back, that we WANT to have them taking up spaces which cause rescue to have to say that they can't offer that space to a dog who will die in a pound without one?

You are speaking as someone who has bought pups from breeders. I am speaking as a rescuer who deals with this sort of situation and who day in, day out picks up the pieces from the bastards who take the buyers money and then won't take the dog back. The GOOD breeders know this, they know the problems I and my kind face and they KNOW the likely result if they don't take dogs back... which is why they WILL and they DO.

And I can assure you that whilst you might find Jooly's comments alarmist, she as a vet and I as a rescuer know that whilst the situations described don't of course happen to every unwanted dog they are FAR more common than you are giving credit to. I'm troubled that you are presenting your opinion as fact when that is far from the case.

Puppy farming is on the increase, it's rife. I've spotted several cases of it with posters here on MN who have identified what they thought was a genuine breeder - some are detailed on Doghouse, many more have been discussed between me and the posters via pm in order not to alert the puppy farmers to my awareness. All have been reported to various appropriate authorities.

For anyone to say otherwise is misleading and dangerous to both the canine workd and to prospectve owners and their families.

Equally there is, as there has ever been, a HUGE problem with backyard breeding, where again very frequently I and other rescuers pick up the pieces... as do the vets and the families who end up with dogs with all manner of genetic and behavioural problems, none of whom the breeders of course want to take back when the shit hits the fan. There is a VERY high chance that this pup will end up one of those as a result of being advertised free and through Freecycle.

Joolyjoolyjoo Thu 20-Oct-11 00:39:24

Yes, but fourkids, an ad in a shop window vs dumping it are not the only choices here!!

Alarmist or realistic? I have said someone taking it to breed it for cash is a (strong) possibility. As is someone taking it on a whim who sadly doesn't have the time/ money/ commitment to look after the pup properly. I am a vet, and hear time and time again how people don't want the family pet speyed/ neutered because they "want to make (their) money back on it"- after all it's got papers! Who gives a shit about the potential health problems the pups could have in later life, which could cause real heartache (and huge expense) to future owners? Not their problem, is it? I see this from people who DO genuinely care about their pet, never mind people who have acquired an "expensive" dog on a whim, for nothing.

I have a friend who used to breed dogs. She had a "return to me" clause. On discovering that one of her (now young adult) dogs was being advertised free to a good home, she took the biggest guy she knew with her and drove 200miles to get "her" puppy back. She then rehomed him (free) to someone she knew and trusted. You may laugh, and the thing you sign may be unenforceable, but some breeders are very dedicated to the pups they produce, and will move heaven and hell to make sure they don't end up in the wrong hands. Many people are happy to return the up to the breeder if it doesn't work out- these folk are happy to give the pup away for nothing- what is the difference? It makes it easier for owners if there is a get out clause- why would you scorn that? As for the money (as everyone seems to think it is about the money)- as in the link DBF posted, good breeders don't make money from breeding. It is a hobby, a passion, and the amount they spend on their dogs is often more than the amount they get from selling them. The money is a detterant to people who are not properly committed, and rightly so, IMO.

lesley33 Thu 20-Oct-11 00:46:56

Freecycle does not allow this. Contact the moderators - someone has missed this.

fourkids Thu 20-Oct-11 00:47:58

ChippingInToThePumpkinLantern - Yeah, I guess so. (Although, as far as we are aware, this dog hasn't been 'treated like' anything). Lucky for many of the breeders I have had dealings with to be so rubbish yet still have huge waiting lists for (championship) puppies and regular qualifiers for Crufts.

TBH I myself wouldn't get into a debate about good and bad breeders because we all know that both exist. And I have seen some breeding establishments that make me very sad.

However, I am a stickler for people's rights as well as animals', and someone here is getting a right slating simply because a couple of people don't agree with their methods of advertising a puppy. No-one but the present owner (and anyone who asks for the puppy) knows what sort of checks they will do, or how rigerous they will be, so to assume they don't give a toss and are carelessly condemning this puppy to a lifetime of misery, without any evidence at all to suggest it, is sensationalism. This puppy may very well move from one home that didn't work out to another loving, caring, safe home where it may spend the rest of its life.

The points about good reasons for charging for pets are valid and sensible. And, as it happens, I'm slightly surprised you can freecycle animals too.

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