By Janet McAfee
Bailey was adopted from a public shelter when she was an 8-week-old adorable puppy. However, 10 months later her 83-yr-old human suffered a serious stroke and could no longer care for her. No one in the family or circle of friends was willing to take 1-yr-old Bailey. The dog’s future became grim as a family friend desperately called private rescue groups, learning most of them are full due to the endless flow of homeless animals.
Fortunately, Loving All Animals was able to find a foster home to take this precious pup. Bailey transformed from a despondent dog into a happy pup living with Eva Fischer and her pups. It was a perfect match when Bailey was soon adopted by a young couple with another little dog.
Bailey is one of the lucky dogs. Sadly, over 500,000 cats and dogs end up in public shelters every year due to the death or incapacity of their humans. Used to being in family homes, many of these animals become despondent or frightened in a kennel setting, and some end up euthanized for a variety of reasons. Some are senior animals who gave many years of love to their families. Now they are older, often with medical problems, and they are passed over for cute puppies and young frisky dogs.
The phone often rings at Loving All Animals with a familiar tale, “My mother died, and she left 3 dogs and 2 cats behind. I leave town tomorrow, and my landlord doesn’t allow pets. Can you take them?” You may tell yourself, “If anything happens to me, my kids will take my dog.” However, when the time comes, your daughter is married to someone allergic to animals and your son has a full house of critters. If you have an agreement with someone to take your pet, check in periodically to see if their situation has changed. Real estate agents will tell you about the tragedy of animals left behind in empty homes, sometimes deceased due to lack of food and water.
This week, a distraught groomer telephoned Loving All Animals about a dog apparently abandoned at her salon. Susan Clark at The Pampered Pup salon soon determined the little dog’s senior humans were both in hospice care with life threatening conditions. No family member was available to take this little one. Once again, Loving All Animals arranged for a foster home to take in the 14 year old pup. She will require veterinary care, including expensive dental work, in order to become adoptable to a second chance home. Consider making a donation to www.lovingallanimals.org for their life saving work. Now is the time for you to make a solid plan should you pass away or suddenly be unable to care for your animals.
Palm Desert attorney, Henry Casden Esq. advises, “The California probate code allows one to create a trust and put assets there to fund care for the pets they leave behind. Those expenses can include food, veterinary care and grooming. If they care about their domestic animals, including dogs, cats, horses or birds, people should make a plan for where those animals will go. They can name a person as trustee who will oversee the distribution of the funds to care for them. I especially recommend a pet trust for anyone who is in their 70’s or 80’s, as well as anyone who is in frail health.” Casden does pet trusts, and he can be reached at (855) 447-4442.
Do you want your beloved pet to end up in a public shelter, heartbroken and alone? Make a solid agreement with a friend or relative to take custody of your pet, and check in periodically to see if their situation has changed. Make sure their housing situation allows for another animal. Consult with an attorney about a pet trust. Whether you are 33 or 83 years old, have a plan in place for the pets you love in case you can no longer care for them.
Most people assume they’ll outlive their pets, says Barry Seltzer, a Toronto-based estate lawyer and co-author of Fat Cats & Lucky Dogs: How to Leave (Some of) Your Estate to Your Pet. Death and disability are topics many people refuse to face. The situation prompted Seltzer to pen a modified version of the Bible’s Proverbs 29:18:
WHERE THERE IS NO VISION, PETS PERISH. WHERE THERE IS PROCRASTINATION, PETS PERISH. AND WHERE THERE IS NO PLAN IN PLACE, PETS PERISH.
Here is a partial list of Inland Empire shelters and rescue groups where you can adopt a wonderful dog or cat.
COACHELLA VALLEY ANIMAL CAMPUS – This county shelter is now open for walk in visitors 10am-4pm Mon through Sat. ALL ANIMALS AVAILABLE FOR $5 ADOPTION FEE IN JULY. You can view the animals at all four Riverside county shelters at www.rcdas.org, and get the ID number, 72050 Pet Land Place, Thousand Palms, (760) 343-3644. (Public)
PALM SPRINGS ANIMAL SHELTER – This shelter is open every day except Tuesday. View their animals online at www.psanimalsshelter.org, 4575 E. Mesquite Ave, Palm Springs, (760) 416-5718. (Public)
DESERT HOT SPRINGS ANIMAL CARE & CONTROL – Open daily 9:30-4:30. View their animals at www.cityofdhs.org/animal-care-control.com, 65810 Hacienda Ave, Desert Hot Springs, (760) 329-6411 ext. 450.
ANIMAL SAMARITANS – Call for an appointment to adopt. View their animals at www.animalsamaritans.org. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to foster. Located at 72307 Ramon Rd, Thousand Palms, (760) 601-3918. (Private)
CALIFORNIA PAWS RESCUE – Call for an appointment to adopt. Located at 73650 Dinah Shore, Palm Desert. View their animals at www.californiapawsrescue.com, (760) 656-8833. (Private)
HUMANE SOCIETY OF THE COACHELLA VALLEY – Call for an appointment to adopt a dog or cat. This shelter has lots of big dogs and some cats. View some of their animals at www.orphanpet.com. Located at 17825 N. Indian Canyon, Palm Springs, (760) 329-0203. (Private)
KITTYLAND – The shelter is closed so call for an appointment to visit and adopt a cat. Located at 67600 18th Avenue, Desert Hot Springs, www.kittylandrescue.org, (760) 251-2700. (Private)
FOREVER MEOW – Foster based rescue for cats located in Rancho Mirage. Contact them at www.ForeverMeow.org, (760) 335-6767. (Private)
PRETTY GOOD CAT – Foster based rescue for cats located in La Quinta. Contact them at www.prettygoodcat.com, (760) 660-3414 (Private)
BFF4pets – Foster based rescue for dogs and cats located in La Quinta. Email them at email@example.com, (310) 431-7818 (Private)
LOVING ALL ANIMALS – Call for appointment to visit and adopt dogs. Located at 83496 Avenue 51, Coachella, www.lovingallanimals.org, (760) 834-7000. (Private)
LIVING FREE ANIMAL SANCTUARY – Large outdoor shelter for dogs and cats up Hwy 74, Mountain Center, view animals at www.living-free.org, and call (951) 659-4687. (Private)
MORONGO BASIN HUMANE SOCIETY – Located at 4646 Sun View Rd, Joshua Tree, www.mbhumanesociety.com, call between 11am-2pm (760) 366-3786 (Private)
CITY OF SAN BERNARDINO ANIMAL SHELTER – The shelter is now open for Walk in visitors 12 noon – 3:00pm Tuesday through Saturday. Hours for adoption 10am – 5pm Tuesday thru Sat. Google “City of San Bernardino Animal Shelter” for website to view animals and get the ID number of the animal you want to meet. Located at 333 Chandler Place, San Bernardino, (909) 384-1304 or (909) 384-7272. (Public)
SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY ANIMAL SHELTER AT DEVORE – Shelter is now open for walk ins 7 days a week. Call (909) 386-9280. View animals at www.sbcounty.gov/acc and get the ID number of animal you are interested in adopting, 19777 Shelter Way, San Bernardino (Public).
DREAM TEAM ANGELS RESCUE – Foster based rescue located in Grand Terrace/San Bernardino area. Contact them through website www.DreamTeamangelsrescue.com, (360) 688-8884. (Private)