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Old 07-07-2010, 04:56 PM
 
Location: Dunwoody,GA
1,992 posts, read 4,759,657 times
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As I'm writing this, I'm sitting here crying because we had to make the very difficult and emotional decision to surrender our rescue lab. Please know that this decision was not made lightly, but after having had her for two years. Despite our very best efforts, the behavioral issues that she came to us with never abated and actually got worse. I know in my heart that there must be another person/family who is a better fit for her particular needs, but I feel SO guilty and miserable right now. I'm hoping that there might be someone out there who's been through this. Please don't respond to flame me; I can assure you that we already have beaten ourselves up over this and it's something that will stay with us for a long, long time.
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Old 07-07-2010, 05:36 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
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So sorry that you had to make this difficult decision. I gave back a Gt. Dane puppy after 3 months b/c I knew I could not provide him the activity he needed. He found a new home with a family with a 10 y/o boy and a huge yard. I still think about that dog. But it was best for him and that's all we can do.
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Old 07-07-2010, 05:41 PM
 
577 posts, read 1,581,725 times
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I'm sorry about your situation, please, please, please surrender her with a note describing everything so that the next person fully understands what they are getting. It is her best bet to get a permanent home willing to work with her issues and make sure she is a fit for them. Working at the shelter I saw too many surrending but saying their dog was perfect but gave some other reason for having to surrender. This DOES NOT HELP the dog at all ... basically it just means she'll be bounced in and out of homes. All my rescues were adopted with problems but I fully knew what I was undertaking and as a result my dogs have a forever home. Good luck! I'm sorry you are having to do this...but it may be the best thing for her in the long run if she can find a better match.
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Old 07-07-2010, 05:43 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in Texas
5,230 posts, read 11,669,553 times
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I had to surrender a large dog, part Alaskan Malamute, over 30 years ago. To this day, I still feel guilty about it and think about him often, but he needed much room for his size and activity level. I found a wonderful home for him (his name was Rowdy). A rancher with hundreds of acres answered an ad I put in the paper. Several years later, I saw the guy and he said he was doing very well. It's making me sad thinking about it but sometimes, we just need to do what we think is right especially for the animal.
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Old 07-07-2010, 05:52 PM
 
Location: Stuck in NE GA right now
4,585 posts, read 10,840,158 times
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No flame from me, try contacting Lab/retriever rescue I know they are pretty active in GA. Rescuing a dog is a good thing however, sometimes they are not a match.

It's a very hard descision to make but it sounds like you've tried your best for this dog and not all dogs are suitable for every owner. Like a prior poster said make sure they understand what the issues are so they can find the "right home".

Try not to beat yourself up about it. It's a good learning oportunity and in the future it might help you make a better decision on your next pooch.

I've taken two older dogs in on trial from breeders and it didn't work and returned them there were behavioral issues not apparent in the breeder home. I have friend who's just returned a dog to the breeder after months of work with the puppy from 8 weeks to 6 months, it was to be a show and competition dog as this person is a pro dog trainer and it turns out the puppy has really bad hips and can't even sit straight and needs to go to a companion home only it's what's best for the dog in this case as it would definatly have had major physical problems if the pro had continued to work the dog. So don't feel alone, as long as you are being responsible in re-homing you are doing whats best for the dog and you.
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Old 07-07-2010, 06:16 PM
 
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I hope you are able to surrender the lab to a lab rescue organization. As long as you did the best you could that is all that can be expected. At least you tried and gave the dog a better two years than had it not been rescued.
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Old 07-07-2010, 06:39 PM
 
Location: Dunwoody,GA
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Thanks for the kind words. No worries; our contract specified that if things didn't work out, we surrender her to the same Rescue Organization we got her from, which is what we did. I feel certain that they will work very carefully to find the best place for her. We were very honest about the issues and, honestly, part of my beating myself up comes from the vibe I got back from them which was that we didn't try hard enough. I totally get where they're coming from because I know it's not easy to place a dog with behavioral issues, but the whole accusatory vibe really rubbed salt in the wound. It's just hard <crying.>
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Old 07-07-2010, 06:46 PM
 
29,988 posts, read 37,195,013 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CMMom View Post
Thanks for the kind words. No worries; our contract specified that if things didn't work out, we surrender her to the same Rescue Organization we got her from, which is what we did. I feel certain that they will work very carefully to find the best place for her. We were very honest about the issues and, honestly, part of my beating myself up comes from the vibe I got back from them which was that we didn't try hard enough. I totally get where they're coming from because I know it's not easy to place a dog with behavioral issues, but the whole accusatory vibe really rubbed salt in the wound. It's just hard <crying.>
I had to return an owner surrenderd rescue earlier this year back to the owner. It happens. Hopefully your next attempt to rescue will work out better.
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Old 07-08-2010, 11:50 AM
 
Location: St. Louis, Missouri
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i have had to do this a couple of times over the last year or so.....

first one was buddy-the-giant-lab .... 98 lbs of solid, untrained, and undisciplined muscle ..... at 3-1/2 years old, he had had NO training from any of his previous homes..... he belonged to a friend i let move into my house, trying to help him get back on his feet after a rough patch in his life..... no good deed goes unpunished.... fast forward 14 months and i had to kick the loser guy out of my house.... i had had more than enough of his lazy, sorry azz..... he abandoned buddy with me..... buddy had grown very attached to and protective of bailey and me.... he actually burst threw the screen of my living room window when he saw me talking to a neighbor and their dog in my driveway one day ..... he was male-dog aggressive and just too much dog for me..... so i found him a GREAT lab rescue group in tulsa that had room for him.... was one of the hardest things i have ever had to do..... i made sure he was completely vetted and up to date on his vaccs (another thing his person neglected to take care of) ..... and turned over 6 months of heartguard and frontline plus, as well as a GIANT bag of his kibble and about 20 of his favorite bones..... the woman in charge of the rescue fell madly in love with him ..... and he lived with her on her 6-7 acre place until he was adopted into his forever home about a month later..... the only way i was able to live with myself was by repeatedly telling myself that he is now with "lab people" .... something i know i am not... by all accounts, he is doing GREAT with his family and has finally received the training and discipline he so needed..... its been a little over a year and i still check on him periodically......

the next one was techically a foster, but the rescue was REALLY hoping i would adopt him..... i had charlie for about 3 months and i could not do a thing with him..... he had had 2 or 3 course of obedience training at petco and excelled at that..... but he was half border collie (suspect there was a lot o' lab in there too....) and again, WAY too much dog for me and for bailey..... he nipped CONSTANTLY.... i was bruised from my butt to my knees and i can not imagine what bailey looked like under her fur.... i tried and tried everything that anyone suggested, outside of physical repercussions, but nothing worked ..... i had to go out of town for a few days and while i was gone, he was boarded with one of the other fosters in the rescue and ADOPTED..... unfortunately, that adoption failed and he was back in foster with them for a month or so before he finally found his PERFECT forever home..... bailey and i were heading into petco one sunday afternoon and i saw the rescue lady talking to the potential adopters.... i walked over and introduced myself and told them that i had fostered him for a few months and also told them EVERYTHING i knew about this dog.... the good (lots of that) and the not-so-good, (the nipping and some other bc behaviors) .... i thought the rescue lady was going to bore holes through me while i was talking to them, but i didn't care..... people should know everything possible about a dog before they make the decision to adopt. the couple was not phased with the behaviors i described.... he was a retired military dog trainer.... and now charlie is excelling in the perfect forever home he was meant to be in .....

the last one was a beagle boy that kept wandering over to my house ..... the house he would get loose from did not give a crap about this sweet fella and i SERIOUSLY considered keeping him ..... but by now, i had bailey and dave and the kitties charlie and max..... james-beagle could NOT leave the kitties alone, charlie in particular.... she wound up moving into one the cabinets in the kitchen and would only come out when james-beagle was out of the house or closed away from her..... i was STILL considering keeping him when davey-long-legs and james-beagle got into a tussle over a bone in the backyard .... i had never seen such behavior from either of them and it took me a second to realize that they were NOT playing.... dave is 55 lbs, james is about 25 lbs, so he got the worst of it .... fortunately, just a couple of small bites in one of his ears that i was able to treat myself..... so now, i had to close james in the front bedroom away from bailey and dave while i was at work all day long..... found him a GREAT rescue just outside of topeka.... did the vetting, and kibble and frontline and heartguard thing again .... he has since been adopted into a family with 3 young boys.... and parents experienced with beagles, so they know what little escape artists they can be..... and again, by all accounts is doing great and is very happy....... i could not think of a better situation for him if i had hand-picked it myself.....

all 3 of these fellas are in far far better situations than i would have been able to provide for them.... and that is what lets me sleep at night.....

sorry for the long post......
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Old 07-08-2010, 12:29 PM
 
Location: Dunwoody,GA
1,992 posts, read 4,759,657 times
Reputation: 2241
Thanks for the feedback. Similar to your situation #1, our (female) lab was 90+ pounds, and very undisciplined on the leash: tons of barking and lunging/charging, although she would never hurt a fly. But try telling that to your neighbor who is grabbing her toddler in a panic to get away from the ferocious black beast. She knocked me over several times because I wasn't paying close enough attention while she "pottied" and she saw a squirrel/bird/other dog/other person/nothing at all and decided to take off running at full speed with no warning.

She was also a "pacer," especially in the evening; lay down, get up, walk around, lay down, lather, rinse, repeat. And the kicker really was the pooping in the house. If I went upstairs to take a shower/fold laundry/tend to the kids for even 10 minutes, I'd return downstairs to a lovely surprise. She never once pooped in her enclosed area, but seemed to do it when she was mad about being left out. I found myself confining her to an enclosed space more and more, and that just isn't a good thing. I also had to completely quit walking her (other than to potty outside) because of all the other behavior; especially when I had my two little kids with me, I couldn't manage her on the leash.

We are about 95% certain that she came from breeding at a puppy mill; had at least 2 litters, but was dumped, I guess, because she was picked up as a stray. My husband has had one lab or the other continuously for the past 16 years, and he couldn't do anything to train her. I'm afraid she's just too damaged to really "fix." I think she needs a place with lots of outdoor space and a person who works from home, is retired, or whatever to provide constant attention because she was very needy.

Just thinking of those sad doggy eyes, though, breaks my heart. :-(
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