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Animal Rights Irresponsible Rescue?

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kourt1313

Well-known Member
Cavy Slave
Joined
Jan 12, 2012
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308
I'm going to try to avoid giving a name here unless it becomes necessary as I don't know who trolls these boards, but is it possible to report a rescue you feel is not doing a proper job of caring for their Guinea Pigs, and if so who do you go to to file said report?
 
if its a liscends recuse then id think so but if its not then theirs not much you can do ):
 
It looks like they are. They claim they have 501c status.
 
I would think you would report it to whatever Animal Control department exists in your city or county.
 
Maybe you could also reach out to a reputable rescue in your area, and see if they have any suggestions or could look into it, too. They might be able to go check it out in a non-confrontational way to get more details. Or have a contact in animal control. Whatever info you can build up may make animal control more likely to investigate.

You may be able to get their 501c3 status reviewed or revoked. I'm going to bet they used the " preventing cruelty to children or animals" qualification for their exempt purposes. If they are abusing the animals in any way, it would appear to eliminate their qualification.
 
I just want to point out that any Animal Control department is not going to do anything unless the animals are being abused or are in danger. If they have food and water, are not overcrowded or obviously ill, and there aren't so many of them that a person can't take good care of them, AC won't get involved.

It may not be the food you'd feed, or in the size cages you'd use, but AC has a pretty low standard, so if they're not starving, AC will probably think it's ok.
 
Our animal control will come out an check on a complaint, and are especially sensitive to people who are portraying themselves as rescues but aren't acting like one. It may just be because of the rescuers-turned-hoarders cases that keep happening, but it couldn't hurt to sound them out, or to ask another rescue if they know someone in it. We're lucky because we are a small town outside of a big city, so that probably is part of it.

What do you think would happen if you talked to them and asked why they are treating their pigs the way they do? I don't mean in a hostile way, at least not at first, but to see how they think.
 
You can call the CA Dept of Agriculture to investigate. Here in IL, they check out complaints of abuse or neglect. PETA will also investigate but they usually require that you have photos before they'll get involved. How is this rescue not properly caring for their pigs?
 
I don't know if I can call it abuse or just flat out no education. I noticed when one pig was taken out another was put directly in it's cage without cleaning or disinfecting first. Once she knew for sure I was taking Matisse she put another pig directly in. This can't be good and my vet yesterday said no it should have been cleaned thoroughly first. They are kept in cages no better than what chickens are kept in, no more than about 8 inches tall, maybe only 12 inches wide, and about only 2 feet deep. Her "favorites" however are kept in 3's in 2x4 C&C cages. None of the cages look like they are ever thoroughly cleaned with a real bedding change by the way. And they are kept in a garage. When I arrived there that night it was about 6pm and the garage door was wide open and it was chilly out. My mom asked her about that. She said the door is closed most of the time but they "handle the cold better than they do the heat"... Really? Cuz if one is available Shelby will snuggle up with a heating pad... So really, it's no wonder Matisse has a little URI going on, but it's one thing to have just him be sick. Now my Shelby has it also and I have double the vet bills due to her neglect.
 
I don't know if I can call it abuse or just flat out no education. I noticed when one pig was taken out another was put directly in it's cage without cleaning or disinfecting first. Once she knew for sure I was taking Matisse she put another pig directly in. This can't be good and my vet yesterday said no it should have been cleaned thoroughly first. They are kept in cages no better than what chickens are kept in, no more than about 8 inches tall, maybe only 12 inches wide, and about only 2 feet deep. Her "favorites" however are kept in 3's in 2x4 C&C cages. None of the cages look like they are ever thoroughly cleaned with a real bedding change by the way. And they are kept in a garage. When I arrived there that night it was about 6pm and the garage door was wide open and it was chilly out. My mom asked her about that. She said the door is closed most of the time but they "handle the cold better than they do the heat"... Really? Cuz if one is available Shelby will snuggle up with a heating pad... So really, it's no wonder Matisse has a little URI going on, but it's one thing to have just him be sick. Now my Shelby has it also and I have double the vet bills due to her neglect.

How long ago did you get them? If it was very recently, I'd make copies of your vet bills ask for reimbursement since they sold you sick guinea pigs. What does your adoption contract say? There should be a provision that states something about the health of the pet. Not all "rescues" are reputable. She's probably in it for the money.
 
How sad. I would report them, if anything it will put flags on their name and if there are any other complaints they can look at their records from when you reported them.

I think that if their cages are not cleaned, they keep them in changing tempature conditions resulting in illness and are adopting out sick guinea pigs, this could be grounds for an investigation.
 
Wow... Just wow... This was my first time going to a rescue and I wasn't given any contracts at all. I filled out the application and noticed all she did was take it from me, I don't think she even read over it. Not knowing any better I figured this was normal. So basically she is just in it for the money and by having no paperwork she's covering her own butt (ie: hey I have no proof he didn't get sick after he was in your care). She did email me back finally asking if I could send video of the "puffing" sound Matisse was making (before I figured out it was sneezing) so she could help me figure out what it was and she told me not to worry about his eye, some pigs excrete more grooming fluid than others. I emailed her back saying "Yeah ya know I was totally thinking that too until I heard Shelby sneeze and he NEVER sneezes. $300 later at your recommended vet and I have two pigs with URI's." I hope she got the message loud and clear. *shaking my head* I'm glad I have a beautiful pig out of all this that will be healthy at some point but my heart is breaking for all the other pigs there. I will be figuring out a way to pursue this further.
 
I feel your pain. I adopted a pig last weekend. I was told she cut her foot the night before we got her...the rescue showed me the place she was hurt. It looked a bit odd, but I'm not an expert. A week later, I am pretty sure the piggy has bumblefoot. This didn't just happen in the week we have had her, her foot has looked bad since we have had her. I emailed the rescue and told her that I was concerned...her reply was that she didn't notice anything! ARRRGGG!
 
I'm feeling more and more so lucky with our rescue! They are totally open to follow-up calls and e-mails and walked us through some bonding issues with Triton and Jumble and then Triton and Oink. They go out of their way to do solid matches on piggies. And whenever we go to a "speed date" / adoption meet, every pig has to be inspected by a tech before they can go around other pigs. They'll clip toenails if they are too long. Any evidence of illness and you have to wait for the next meet. You not only do the contract, but they give you any vet papers; at a minimum, the certificate showing when and where they were spayed/neutered and which vet at that practice. They sell C&C, fleece, carefresh, etc. at the meets, at cost. Teach you how to weigh and keep health logs, etc.
 
Wow... Just wow... This was my first time going to a rescue and I wasn't given any contracts at all. I filled out the application and noticed all she did was take it from me, I don't think she even read over it. Not knowing any better I figured this was normal. So basically she is just in it for the money and by having no paperwork she's covering her own butt (ie: hey I have no proof he didn't get sick after he was in your care). She did email me back finally asking if I could send video of the "puffing" sound Matisse was making (before I figured out it was sneezing) so she could help me figure out what it was and she told me not to worry about his eye, some pigs excrete more grooming fluid than others. I emailed her back saying "Yeah ya know I was totally thinking that too until I heard Shelby sneeze and he NEVER sneezes. $300 later at your recommended vet and I have two pigs with URI's." I hope she got the message loud and clear. *shaking my head* I'm glad I have a beautiful pig out of all this that will be healthy at some point but my heart is breaking for all the other pigs there. I will be figuring out a way to pursue this further.

If she's a non profit, she probably has to keep a lot of records. If you paid by check, you have proof you purchased from her. I'd still try and pursue getting her to cover some of your vet bills. Reputable rescues will always have an adoption contract to protect you and them from liability.
 
I just wanted to chime in here and tell you that I am 99.9% sure I know which rescue you are talking about. I volunteer for several different guinea pig rescues here in Southern CA. Although I am not sure what exactly happened with your pig, I do know she spends $1000's every year on vet bills for the pigs she takes in. Many of the ones she has rescued are in permanent sanctuary because they have health issues that make them un-adoptable. In all of my dealings with this rescue I have never ever heard or had any reason to believe that she would knowingly adopt out an ill pig.Unfortunately guinea pigs hide illnesses and they tend to come out when the pigs are stressed.

The cages at her rescue are 100% cleaned each week, I have been there when this is being done. If you happen to be there right before cage cleaning day then yes I imagine they would not look so great. Any guinea pig owner could tell you that their cages are not at their best on cage cleaning day. Although her cages are not huge 2x4's they are the same ones used by a very large and reputable rescue down in San Diego. Most of the pigs who you claim are "favorites" in the larger cages, have been there longer so she gives them this extra room. I am a person who wants the best for the pigs, which is why I volunteer with the rescues.

I would not personally help any rescue if I saw something that made me believe the animals were being mis-treated. This person has helped to save a countless number of guinea pigs throughout Southern California. She works closely with the other guinea pig rescues too so that we can get as many out of the shelters here as we can.Her pigs are given the medical attention as needed by one of the very best vets in Socal, they are fed high quality timothy hay, pellets and are given fresh veggies daily. I really am sorry that your piggy got sick. It happens and its awful. I have had my share of piggy illnesses over years and you just never know when something is going to hit. I always tell new adopters to boost up their pigs immune system by giving extra supplemental vitamin C. I hope that your piggy starts to feel better soon and that he has a long happy life with you.
 
Wow... Just wow... This was my first time going to a rescue and I wasn't given any contracts at all. I filled out the application and noticed all she did was take it from me, I don't think she even read over it. Not knowing any better I figured this was normal. So basically she is just in it for the money and by having no paperwork she's covering her own butt (ie: hey I have no proof he didn't get sick after he was in your care). She did email me back finally asking if I could send video of the "puffing" sound Matisse was making (before I figured out it was sneezing) so she could help me figure out what it was and she told me not to worry about his eye, some pigs excrete more grooming fluid than others. I emailed her back saying "Yeah ya know I was totally thinking that too until I heard Shelby sneeze and he NEVER sneezes. $300 later at your recommended vet and I have two pigs with URI's." I hope she got the message loud and clear. *shaking my head* I'm glad I have a beautiful pig out of all this that will be healthy at some point but my heart is breaking for all the other pigs there. I will be figuring out a way to pursue this further.
 
Just based on what you've described, nothing really sounds like anything that would need to be reported, to me. When you're running a rescue, and you're taking in a large number of animals, sometimes you have to make sacrifices for space - the thought being that it's temporary and hopefully they will be adopted and provided much larger cages and much more individual attention. I also don't see a big concern with the idea of them being in the garage - no, it's not ideal, but again, it's hopefully a temporary situation and she's probably doing quite a bit of good by taking in these unwanted animals and attempting to find loving, permanent homes.

It also doesn't strike me as a huge issue that your pigs have URIs - I've taken in many sick pigs from our Humane Society, it kind of goes with the territory and in my opinion isn't really a reflection on the rescue itself.

Reporting her might risk her rescue status, and then what would happen to the animals needing temporary (or permanent) sanctuary? I think it might serve a greater good to volunteer and help her out, or provide her with some information and education if you feel it's needed.
 
Kudos, Paula, for that last paragraph. It's very constructive. :)
 
I'm feeling more and more so lucky with our rescue! They are totally open to follow-up calls and e-mails and walked us through some bonding issues with Triton and Jumble and then Triton and Oink. They go out of their way to do solid matches on piggies. And whenever we go to a "speed date" / adoption meet, every pig has to be inspected by a tech before they can go around other pigs. They'll clip toenails if they are too long. Any evidence of illness and you have to wait for the next meet. You not only do the contract, but they give you any vet papers; at a minimum, the certificate showing when and where they were spayed/neutered and which vet at that practice. They sell C&C, fleece, carefresh, etc. at the meets, at cost. Teach you how to weigh and keep health logs, etc.

Dang! That is some rescue! I've never heard of all that! What rescue is this? Maybe we can adopt some of those practices here!

If you are really concerned, go back for another visit, see if it's the same way. Then start calling other rescues-they can probably advise best. Good luck!
 
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