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Oops! Pound gives away pooch after family asks for it back

CyberKitten
December 3rd, 2004, 08:46 PM
Times & Transcript | Canada
As published on page A1/A2 on December 3, 2004

Oops! Pound gives away pooch after family asks for it back

CALGARY (CP) - Their dog got lost so they called the Calgary Humane Society.

But the society denied having the dog in custody, then adopted it out to another family, which won't give the pooch back.

"It's devastating," said Holly Ruby, who said she is considering legal action.

"I don't think they know the impact this has had on our family. Zack is such a nice and friendly dog. He's my favourite dog. I've been losing sleep over this."

David Ruby took the couple's three dogs with him when he went for a run Nov. 11 near their country home in Balzac north of Calgary. Zack, a yellow Labrador, didn't return.

The Rubys began searching for Zack when he didn't turn up the next day. They also called bylaw officers, vet clinics, animal shelters and neighbours.

When Holly Ruby phoned the Calgary Humane Society on Nov. 13, she was told the shelter didn't have the dog.

But it turns out the shelter did have the pet - it adopted Zack to another family four days after the first call.

Society spokeswoman Cheryl Wallach said she's never seen a situation like this in the 14 years she's worked for the shelter, but she stopped short of admitting it made a mistake.

"This is difficult for everyone involved," said Wallach. "We'll definitely look at our procedures and processes and take a look at everything that was done in this case."

The humane society has asked the adoptive family to return the dog to the Rubys, but they refused, Wallach said.

"They can get another nice new dog. We can't replace the four years we've had with this dog," Holly Ruby said.

twinmommy
December 3rd, 2004, 09:31 PM
This is SOOOO sad :sad: Don't you think that real animal lovers would give that dog right back?? Strange that they've only had him 2 weeks and they are being so difficult (?) If they can prove it's their pet, could they not involve the authorities? The poor dog would probably love to be back home too!

:confused: :confused: :confused:

CyberKitten
December 3rd, 2004, 11:38 PM
I do not understand that either!! But this is not the first story I've read in this vein. The "Pound" seems to be noted for giving away aninals as fast as they can go out the door, one way or the other, sigh!! There was a story a few weeks ago about the SPCA in Dartmouth who "mistakingly" euthanized a kitty ewven though the poor cvat had not even been there for 48 hours!! The family is suing but it does not help them in their loss. That said, it is also a cautionary narrative about ensuring your pet is identied properly!! (Still tags can come off- makes one long for microschipping).

Yin Yin went to the vet for her second set of vaccinations and she was the best behaved being in the entire place! And everyone who works there (and these are people not given to ooing and ahhing over pets) was really taken with her!! She was such a good girl!! Not a whimper or a yowl when she recieved her injections and while all those woofers were barking up a s storm, Yin Yin peeked at me through her carrier as if to ask "what is their problem?". A real sweetheart!!!!

LavenderRott
December 4th, 2004, 09:37 AM
The family that adopted Zack did, indeed, return him to his owners. Here is the news article.

link (http://canadaeast.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20041203/CPN/32045022)

Rainy
December 4th, 2004, 10:25 AM
While I feel terrible for the family that lost the dog.I am feeling worse for the family that met,fell in love and adopted him.It's not a matter of "doing" the right thing.It's the fact that these people went out of there way to rescue instead of buy....Met,fell in love with and brought him home as part of the family.I know if someone contacted me about my kitty Smokey I would have been devastated.The moment I walked out of the SPCA with my kitty he was and always will be mine. :sorry: the family that adopted had to go through that.

Iggette
December 4th, 2004, 10:37 AM
awwwwwww very sad , but glad to see the adoptive parents gave back this loved pooch, I think they deserve acknowledgement for such a kind jesture :thumbs up

Bugsy
December 4th, 2004, 10:48 AM
If this dog was up for adoption at the pound... a simple "in person" visit by the original owners would have proved fruitful no? :sad:

Also, how could the pound say "No we have no Yellow Labs? Surely.. it is such a popular breed they must have had at least 1 :confused:

I would have loved to see Zack's tail on reunion day... :D

mastifflover
December 6th, 2004, 06:20 PM
From what I heard is the only reason they returned him to the pound so they could return the dog to his family was because of the outrage of people that they would not give back a family pet.

CyberKitten
December 6th, 2004, 06:29 PM
Thanks so much for the update Lav! That's great news that the family has their dog back!

I think it is a sad situation for all involved. The "Pound" is the culprit here but I do think the dog needed to be returned. If you found an animal and knew someone somewhere loved that animal, surely you would return it. And even though I feel sorry for the adoptive family, while they surely loved their new pet, surely they realize the dog is happier with the family he knows and loves! It's just tough for everyone. (and as mentioned before, this is not the first story I have read/heard about SPCA situations)

LL1
December 7th, 2004, 02:55 PM
I agree with you Rainy. Have to be honest, if I were the family I would not have returned the dog.


I am feeling worse for the family that met,fell in love and adopted him.It's not a matter of "doing" the right thing.It's the fact that these people went out of there way to rescue instead of buy....Met,fell in love with and brought him home as part of the family.I know if someone contacted me about my kitty Smokey I would have been devastated.The moment I walked out of the SPCA with my kitty he was and always will be mine. :sorry: the family that adopted had to go through that.

GsdDiamond
December 7th, 2004, 03:56 PM
It all depends on how long the adoptive family had the dog before they knew it was a mistake in adopting it to them.
The article says:
The dog was lost on November 11
The pound was called on November 13
The dog was adopted on November 17

How long did the family have the dog before the HS contacted them about the error?
The second article says: "they nursed him through kennel cough illness, they bonded with him"

Personally, I think they adopted the dog, they wanted to keep the dog, but pressure made them give it back. They knew it was wrong to want to keep the other family's pet of four years, but it sounded like a "spite" thing.

If any of us, Heaven forbid, lost our precious companions, would you be OK with the newly adoptive family keeping your loved one? I doubt it. They knew another family loved him and wanted him back, but they adopted him, because of an error on the HS part. Wrong is wrong.

LL1
December 7th, 2004, 04:19 PM
I read that the dog went missing during a run on the 11th. When he wasn't back the next day, then they were concerned and decided to look for him. I wonder how often he went missing.

I also wonder why he was not chipped, tagged or tattooed so he would be readily identified if he ever got lost. The dog legally became the property of the shelter and the family adopted it is what I understand.

I don't think it would have been wrong to keep the dog.

.......David Ruby took the couple's three dogs with him when he went for a run Nov. 11 near their country home in Balzac north of Calgary. Zack, a yellow Labrador, didn't return.

The Rubys began searching for Zack when he didn't turn up the next day......


Personally, I think they adopted the dog, they wanted to keep the dog, but pressure made them give it back. They knew it was wrong to want to keep the other family's pet of four years, but it sounded like a "spite" thing.

If any of us, Heaven forbid, lost our precious companions, would you be OK with the newly adoptive family keeping your loved one? I doubt it. They knew another family loved him and wanted him back, but they adopted him, because of an error on the HS part. Wrong is wrong.

GsdDiamond
December 7th, 2004, 04:34 PM
To play Devil's Advocate, there are many people, who live in the country, who allow their dogs to run free. I'm not saying it's right, and certainly don't advocate it, but it does happen. He may be an outside dog, being that they're in the country. Maybe they have ACRES of land and the dog has a tendancy of wandering the back 40. I have family (inlaws) in Saskatchewan who allow their dogs to do this. Their dogs aren't microchipped or tattooed either.

Did the dog have a history of running away? Most likely not or the man wouldn't have taken the dog with him for the run. They did what "most" people would have done. They called the HS, and everyone else they could think of, including neighbours. The HS is at fault here, not the family who lost their dog. The family who adopted him should have returned him once it was discovered it was the HS who screwed up.

I don't want to argue with anyone over this, but just because someone rescues a dog from a shelter or HS, doesn't mean it was the right thing to do and we should applaud them for taking a stand. Personally, I think the mother and teen should have returned the dog when they found out what happened. They were asked to do what was right, and only did so when pressure was brought on them. After all, would you want to look like a villian in the eyes of the media? I know I wouldn't.

LL1
December 7th, 2004, 04:54 PM
I'm not looking to argue at all. I read it the exact as you tho - they didn't worry about the dog until it didn't show up the next day. I read that as if it was normal, I don't know anyone who wouldn't worry immediately. They apparently didn't.

I agree tho - there are country dogs and dogs allowed to run free, and that might have been the case here. No way to know. I wouldn't place a dog in that kind of situation to be honest.

I wouldn't think they looked like villains when reading it in the paper. Just voicing a different opinion than yours. If the dog landed in my rescue from the same situation, and I adopted it out; or if I adopted the dog myself, I would not return it.

I do hope people learn from this - and not allow their dogs to get loose, and properly identify their dogs, and also if anyone ever loses a pet, they need to go in person to all the shelters, phone calls do not cut it.


Did the dog have a history of running away? Most likely not or the man wouldn't have taken the dog with him for the run. The family who adopted him should have returned him once it was discovered it was the HS who screwed up.

I don't want to argue with anyone over this, but just because someone rescues a dog from a shelter or HS, doesn't mean it was the right thing to do and we should applaud them for taking a stand. Personally, I think the mother and teen should have returned the dog when they found out what happened. They were asked to do what was right, and only did so when pressure was brought on them. After all, would you want to look like a villian in the eyes of the media? I know I wouldn't.