Tonight, as I forced our big lab to head out to do his duty in the middle of a winter storm, I thought for a moment about survival. How long could he last outside in the elements? What about non-domestic animals…they know survival skills. For domestic animals, pets if you will, survival usually does not get more complicated than asking for a meal or getting somebody’s attention when you need to take care of business. Jake, our lab, is laying quietly and warmly in the next room now with not to many survival issues on his mind.
Sadly, as I have come to learn, some people who decide to walk away from their homes in foreclosure leave behind pets. I do not understand this as I have been a dog lover for all of my life. Our dogs have been like a family member. I have to gladly report we have never gone to a recently foreclosed home where Grandpa was left behind. So, it is very hard for me to understand pets.
A Better Solution-No Paws Left Behind
A few years ago, recognizing this sad situation, a not-for-profit was formed called “No Paws Left Behind (NPLB).” A few days ago, the group rescued their 1000 animal from a foreclosed property. I have heard the excuses of financial hardship causing people to leave their pets behind but I really have a hard time accepting that. If these pets were really treated like I have treated our dogs they would not just be left behind. I guess I have no evidence to prove that sentiment but, like I said, I just do not understand how this happens. And the reasoning of financial hardship, seems like a real reach.
One of the things I really like about this group is they recognize that this problem is really about the people who chose to own a pet. In their mission, it states: we further pledge to act as a support group for those who find foreclosure imminent and need help finding shelter for their beloved pets.
Prevention is a noble goal. Lets hope that more defaulting homeowners decide to talk to this group before they leave their pet locked up in the cold basement. Maybe make this information part of the counseling and collection efforts.