I was having a conversation with a friend who works with Australian Shepherd Breed Rescue. We were discussing how we both wish there was a better word than “Rescue.” It’s pejorative to all the people who have legitimate reasons for having to relinquish their dogs, and not sufficiently incriminating to those who irresponsibly or impulsively get a dog and then irresponsibly or impulsively look to dump the dog.
So we were trying to come up with a new term that doesn’t have an aura of baggage associated with it. I came up with INOH dog. As in dog “In Need Of Home” but reads as “I know.” Thus, we could nix “Rescue” and “Shelter” from the dog lexicon in one swoop.
My secret thought for the meaning behind the meaning is the dog saying, “I know” just because one human wasn’t in a position to do right by me, doesn’t mean the next one won’t.
So that’s the work on the back-end. On the front-end, we need to continue to educate and help guide people to get the right dog to begin with, regardless of the source. The only way we’re going to end the need for Shelters and Rescue is for people to put a lot more thought and research into obtaining their dogs than they currently do.
And the first step I’d take is not letting people choose by looks first. Like on the TV show, “The Voice,” people would have to make the first choice about selection based on what was a good fit for their needs. (We all know Blake needs a good country twang, and so on.) They’d have to fill out a basic questionnaire about their living situation and what they’re looking for in a dog and why. Then we’d move on to educating about what breed would best meet those needs. Then we’d help them do their homework to learn everything about that breed. Then we’d have an educated dog person help to select the right dog for the best fit. Then…
Yes… I know. I’m a dreamer… But, really, what a great business for someone — INOH Dog Match-Maker. It’d be a decent start.