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Am I doing the right thing??

pigsmakemesmile

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I was at Country Juntion....known as the world's largest general store. They sell everyting from furniture to animals. I recently visited the store last weekend and as always....went into their pet store to check on how the animals are doing. They totally reorganized the pet area. Puppies in huge tubs...rabbits in large but medium sized tubs mice...rats,etc.
Oh man I thought, I wish I could just change this picture. It'll take an act from God to stop the selling of animals in petstores. I'm thinking if they could use their resources to help the plight animals needing homes rather than obtaining them from breeders or just selling them all together... I don't know..just a thought when I was in the store.
So I emailed country junction...praised them for the nice work they did. Mentioned how I'm, like others, big avid animal lover, told them I have 5 pigs, rabbits, rats so on. I stated " oh by the way, did you know that guinea pigs have....need....etc. I also made it clear that anytime petstores by from breeders, takes away the chance of a sheltered/ rescued guinea pig from being adopted, I also stated that the store purchasing from breeders also adds to the large population of unwanted guinea pigs and adds to the current problem of pigs needing homes. I also pointed out that many of the pigs in shelters and rescues, come initially from petstores. I mentioned the " adopt-don't shop" philosphy and that petstores should be in the buisness of selling pet-supplies...not pets and explained why. I even suggested some of the products he should be carrying and why and which ones they should remove and why.

To my surprise, I got an email response from the Vice President of Country Junction. He stated appreciating my response and he will see they make the changes I recommended and even asked me to send information to him on the local rescues:eye-poppi < yah my eyes popped out of my sockets. What do you all think???? It be nice to see some kind of positive change. But I'd like to do it correctly and appropriately. I need your input....am I doing the right thing???
 

claire

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Of course you are. Well done. Every tiny change adds up.
 

bamby71994

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Tiny what do you mean? If they follow though she would have easily saved 100s of animals! Congrats, perhaps more of us should do this too?
 

claire

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I didn't mean tiny to sound derogatory. I meant even if they only implement some of the changes she suggested, it's worthwhile.
 

guineapigluver1

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That's awsome!
 

fieryone

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That would be fabulous if this person is honestly listening and not just giving you lip service. Please let us know if he follows through with his response! If so, that's great that you were able to make a difference.
 

pigsmakemesmile

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What I'd like to see are rescues coming to Country Junction with their pigs that need rehoming and teach education on the issues regarding gp, proper homing, feeding, health etc. Since I doubt they'd stop selling animals in the store, I'll be happy with a compromise..I'd like to see Country Junction obtain their pets only from the rescues and shelters rather than from breeders. This would be a good medium because so many people from all over frequent the store, many come in with their children and pets. I'd like to see the store used as a medium to help rehome animals and help change the face and perception of the "small animal pet."

For all you rescue gp people on this forum, I would like your input and some advice as to what is the best way to get this going. I've never done it before.
 
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MCR_Rox

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Maybe you should tell them to screen adoptions and that some shelters would be willing to travel a bit in order to rehome their animals. I know there aren't a whole ton of guinea pigs in PA, but there are tons of cats and dogs in shelters right now. Maybe if shelters and rescues aren't willing to have their animals inside of the store, they'd most likely be willing to have adoptables advertised, instead.

I just checked on the locations of Country Junction stores, and apparently there's one in Wilkes-Barre. I know there are a few guinea pigs up for adoption at the SPCA of Luzerne County.
 

pigsmakemesmile

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There's a huge rescue in Florence NJ called Have-a-Heart gp rescue. They were involved in the seizure of pigs from a backyard breeder in lancaster PA..they talk about it on their site. I thought I'd email them to get their input. There's also Furry Friends in Wallingford Pa where I got 2 of my boys from. what is the name of the place up by you MCR??? I thought of this also...maybe having the store stop bringing gp in from the breeders and save the pigs for adoptable days and do some advertising.
 

pigsmakemesmile

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I drafted my email response. I was asked for a list of rescues and I'm in the process of confirming active rescues before forwarding their names. MCR, I took you comments about adoptions and screening into consideration while I drafted my email. I'm pretty excited...wouldn't it be nice if the petstore obtained the animals through shelter and rescues and doing adoption with education days??? Oh and I'm also including other rescued / surrendered animals ie dogs, cats, hamsters and gerbils. I need input...just hit me with it... I can use all your advice. thankyou. I'll keep you all posted.
 
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Peggysu

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WOW! Nice job. They could be the example stores need!
 

BubuCandyBlue

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...wouldn't it be nice if the petstore obtained the animals through shelter and rescues and doing adoption with education days??? Oh and I'm also including other rescued / surrendered animals ie dogs, cats, hamsters and gerbils.
Good job! Keep us posted on the changes!
 

pigsmakemesmile

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Here is my draft, If you all could please reveiw and give me input, what should I add, delete or change. This is something I've never done before...I don't won't to come off sounding harsh, my goal is to offer information and suggestion with a qualified reason to back me up...here goes:

Dear Mr. Burke,

Thank you very much for your reply to my email. I was most pleasantly surprised. I would truly be happy to give you the names of rescues and shelters.

I don't know if you heard recently about the Monroe County SPCA closing their doors here in Stroudsburg. My daughter volunteered there 3 days a week and cried when she heard the news as it was so unexpected. I don't understand the need for breeders when so many animals are needing homes. Breeders only help add to this growing population. Some breeders have poor reputations because of their undesireable breeding practices which are, in some instances, very cruel in how they manage their animals.

I frequent your petstore often with my kids. Last year, I asked to hold one of the guinea pigs there, I really wanted to adopt the animal, but I knew in doing so, only another one would take it's place and I would be supporting the breeder, and unfortunately, the same holds true for your rabbits and other small animals, I couldn't bring myself to purchase one just for that reason.

Regarding the rescues and shelters, they do the work. They bring the animals, they screen the adoptees to help ensure the animals go to good homes.

Screening adoptees for the animals is important, most adoptees have good intentions and there are some who purchase for other purposes such as, for example: obtaining guinea pigs to feed reptiles (snakes) . On another note, there was a case this past December outside Sacremento California, a man was arrested for torturing 100 guinea pigs....the media report stated he had purchased them from several pet stores. In another case, Have a Heart guinea pig rescue was involved in obtaining multiple guineas pigs-161, from a backyard breeder in Lancaster, PA back in 2007 and again in 2008. The breeding was for the purpose of human consumption, the pigs were found in deplorable conditions, some were badly injured, others were severly infested with mites which to a cavy, is known to be brutally painful even leading to death. Pictures of these pigs can still be found on Have a Heart's website, these are just a few examples but the list is large.

Another good practice that Rescues and Shelters do is help educate people in the proper care and housing of the animals. There's a lot of good information available, people / customers just need to be pointed to it. An example is" Guine Lynx". It's a site on how to properly care and ensure the health of a cavy. It's quite interesting, you may even suggest to one of your petstore department employees to just visit the site. It will help them correctly answer questions to inquiring customers and, help maintain your current guest pets while awaiting homes.

I have 2 suggestions: to consider with-holding bringing animals in from your current supplier/breeder and instead, bringing in rescue/shelter volunteers to hold adoption days in your petstore. The service is free, the volunteers do the work .. Although you may not make a profit from selling the animal, your profit margin may/will increase on selling needed petsupplies and, not needing to purchase the animals from your current supplier or pay them a percentage from the sale can amount to a savings.

Another suggestion is to offer better quality pet supplies, ie: Oxbow 's line of cavy and rabbit food and "Wellness" line of quality dogfood.. to name a few as many responsible pet owners look for quality products. "Oxbow" a "top-line" high quality brand rabbit and guinea pig food, can only fbe found locally in Petsmart, the only store closeby other than online is located in Hackettstown, NJ. "Wellness" brand line of dogfood is only sold in Pet-Supplies-Plus. Both stores are here in Stroudsburg. So people in your area need to travel out. Overall, selling high quality pets foods and supplies sends a positive signal to future and current petowners that you care about quality and the well being of animals.

Overall with just a few changes, your buisness will be supporting a worthy cause in the community and help save many pets and, will enhance your reputation.

These are some of the rescues and shelters in PA and NJ.

Have a Heart Guinea Pig Rescue-NJ they include homes that foster guinea pigs here in PA
Wheek Care Guine Pig Rescue -PA
Western PA Cavy Rescue
Cast Away Critters-PA started by the James A. Hueholt Memorial Foundation
Camp Papillon-PA -rehoming dogs, cats and on occasion other animals. They've been holding adoption days at the old Ertle -Subaru dealership in Stroudsburg PA once a month, the animals are fostered by the volunteers until forever homes are found.
For Bunny Sake Rabbit Rescue- NJ They do not have a facility...their buns are fostered in homes of its volunteers until forever homes are found also.
TJ's S.A.R-NJ, rescues hamsters and other small animals
The Pennsylvania Spca and humane society

I varied the rescues to include all species of animals based on what I see you offer in your petstore.

I know I've talked more than a mouthful...It's just my way of expressing my love for the animals. I hope that this information helps.

Best Regards
Lynne Richman
 

Peggysu

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I feel it sounds good. It's not rude in any way and is tactful. I would wait for more advice as mine is limited.
 

pigsmakemesmile

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Just wanted to update everyone. I went ahead and sent my letter...a week ago. No reply but...at least I tried.
 

Peggysu

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What a bummer.
 
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