This is the story of an adoption attempt for a dog named Connor, and an experience with a rescue called Forever Home Rehabilitation Center in NC.
If you’ve read stories on now people werent able to adopt a dog because they got denied for whether unfair reasons or not meeting unrealistic standards and policies, this isnt one of those stories. However, this all just seems unrealistic.
After moving on from Brysen, I started searching petfinder.When searching border collies in my area, not much shows up, by the 3rd to the 5th page, your already far out of state. I found Connor on my search, he had a perfect description, playful cuddler, house broken, good on a leash and loves to swim. Growing up I never had a dog that like to swim so he caught my attention, but I saw he was in North Carolina. He was far. But I liked him. I figured there had to be a way.
It wasnt a decision I made over night, I want to try to adopt him. I did some research on the rescue. Seemed like good people, though they didnt state anywhere that they did out of state adoptions, I researched some people who adopted from them and they seemed quite satisfied with going through them. But I didnt know if they did out of state adoptions. So I inquired through email. I didnt get a response right away. I tried another email they had on their site, but this time I asked for an application. They got back to me a day later with the application and I filled it out and submitted it.
So I waited, a few days passed and hadnt heard anything yet. So I emailed them asking for the status of my application, a few days later they responded to me saying that they appreciated my interest in Connor but he is a nervous dog and that they didnt feel comfortable adopting home so far away
Okay, so that was the end of that, or so it should of been. Aside from my experiences with border collies, I wasnt new to nervous and fearful dogs. I currently have one. Ive worked with him and his fear issues. I didnt mind taking on another one. I talked to some friends and got some opinions. One friend suggested telling them a little bit more about me so that they would feel more comfortable adopting him to me, another friend said that being persistent pays off. So a few weeks after the rejection letter, I sent them an email. A descriptive letter of who I am, what I do and why I though I would be a good match for Connor. I also sent them an email just reassuring that they got it. It went well, I received and email, and I quote exactly:
“We got your email and we are interested in adopting Connor to you. Can we set a time up to talk over the phone?”
I was quite thrilled! I responded immediately with my phone number and told them I was free all day they could call me anytime. So they said okay. They will call me tomorrow.
So of course tomorrow came. Then the next day, and the next day..and the next day…..
Days turned to weeks. I tried emailing them. Calling them and contacting them through their Facebook page. They were active on their Facebook page, is it possible they were ignoring me?
On a different forum site (an animal related forum) I posted about this situation, and everyone agreed what they did was wrong. The topic was further discussed and it became a whole discussion about adoption in general.
Either way, I didnt know what was going on, but I started to search again. Found nothing I switched and started looking at akitas for adoption, another breed favorite of mine. Wouldnt you know one day as I was planning to visit a local shelter to visit a dog, I get this notification on Facebook:
“Sorry we have kinda left you on the back burner. We have been going through some personal issues lately and have not been responded to emails and phone calls accordingly. We are in KY at the moment. Connor is still in a foster home. We are rehabilitating there lab mix for dog aggression at the moment. They want to keep Connor but only if it is a success with their other dog. When we get back from KY 2-step the lab mix will be going home. If Connor and 2step do not get along on 2steps end they will be returning Connor back to us. I will contact you either way if it is a success or not and you will have first tibs of Connor. Connor is great with other dogs and cats. He can be nervous of people mainly men but has made great progress being in a foster home and getting the exposer of the city life that he needed. Sorry again for leaving you in the dust. Thank you for being so patient with us?”
I had A LOT of thoughts in my mind, like: Why’d you ignore me for a month in a half? Really?? I had been inquiring about Connor since October, why would you do this?? City exposer?? Aggressive lab mix?? THESE WILL ONLY WORSEN HIS ISSUES.
But I kept my actual visual response civil. After all this was on their public Facebook page. I accepted their half-hearted apology and just asked them to keep me posted on him. My friends and some other people got involved in the comment section, asking why would they do this? You knew Stephanie wanted that dog. That wasnt very professional of you guys. At first it was all civil. But after the rescue said they would let me know in two weeks what was going on with me possibly adopting Connor. But of course in two weeks they didnt let me know however in a private message they did say “I understand you really want him. All I can offer right now is we will let you know if the foster family changes their mind.”
Of course things got a little out of hand on their facebook page, I didnt care since I knew I wasnt getting Connor, but people got on their page and started speaking out against them. Everyone agreed what they did was just not right and that they deserved to know.
But of course it was my fault because in private messaging I got this:
“We have been honest with you and you have created a lot of judgement towards us. This has gotten out of control from us keeping in contact with you. Connor has been helping their other dog and I’m not rushing the foster parents who have done such great work with Connor. I’m sorry waiting has caused so much conflict.”
Again, I kept my response civil. But at that point I wish I hadnt, it didnt matter anymore so I should of been more blunt. It annoyed me that they tried to twist the whole thing on me like I’m the bad guy.
“We have been honest with you and you have created a lot of judgement towards us.”
I created judgement towards you?
Judgement is earned by the actions you take. I found it really immature of them to assume because theyre being honest about how they treated me makes what they did to me okay.
“Connor has been helping their other dog and I’m not rushing the foster parents who have done such great work with Connor. I’m sorry waiting has caused so much conflict.”
Though I get the sarcasm, waiting hasnt caused conflict. Its what you did. You cant justify screwing someone over the way you did simply because it worked out for someone else.
That was the last I heard from them. They ended up deleting the comment thread on their Facebook page. Then they posted a video of Connor playing with this 2Step dog. My friends did comment on that one but it didnt go very far, nor was it acknowledged.
The Connor video
A user started a thread on a forum website (for a animated show) about adoption, and when I replied about this whole thing. Again everyone agreed about what they did was wrong. A friend of mine even posted the thread to them, but of course they deleted it. Funny how it took a month and a half to respond to me about giving a dog a home, but that they didnt waste two seconds with.
There was just soooo much in question with what happened. My biggest question is why would anyone do this to another, why would one animal lover treat another animal lover this way?
then of course nothing else adds up.
They originally said no to me that they didnt want to adopt him so far. But to our knowledge, Connor now lives in KY. Calculating the distance from me to them, I am about 7 hours and 40 minutes. But when you calculate the distance from them to KY is a little over 9 hours, and thats just to hit KY’s border, thats not including where these people in KY live. So that didnt add up.
Forever Home Rehabilitation Center has over 20 dogs that reside there as permanent residents. Aside from adopting out dogs, they do train unadoptable dogs or people’s pets as an additional service, they train under Ceaser Milan’s “pack” training methods. These dogs that live there are the ones that do the “training”. So my question is why use Connor when you have all of these dogs to do that job for you, better yet, why would you use a dog that someone already inquired about?
I also wonder what happened in the month in a half that they couldnt respond to any of my emails or phone calls. According to a post on their Facebok, they didnt answer emails or phones accordingly, so other people didnt get responses from them either. Yet these people with the aggressive lab mix managed to get to them. Who were these people? Did I get screwed because these foster people were possibly friends with this rescue? Was I a victim of “its not what you know its who you know”? Because clearly, what I knew about the dog and about the issues this dog had didnt matter to them. Did these people get first “dibs” on Connor because they paid them to train their dog?
Other questions I wonder is did these “foster” people know someone else was interested in Connor? If they did, how much did they know about the situation? Did they know anything? Or did the rescue people just keep them in the dark completely? Or did the foster people know the situation in full and didnt care and just wanted Connor, or did the rescue people change the story in their favor?
The questions just go on and on.
But in conclusion, I didnt get Connor. If you were to make a comment regarding the situation they would ignore you, as they clearly dont feel what they did was wrong. Which worries me because it just makes me think they think they can do this to who ever they want.
If you are in the Knotts Island/Virginia Beach area and thinking of adopting a dog, or looking for assistance in dog training, you may want to reconsider if you’ve looked into them. Anyone able to pull something like this off on something with out much guilt can and will likely do it again to any unsuspecting person looking to give a dog a forever home.