Friday, June 28, 2013

Paperwork and more

So, yesterday and today were like the paperwork days.  Yesterday we had limited power (as in, my laptop worked because it had battery backup), otherwise the house had no power, so I input all the receipts and such that were not debit card receipts into the chin docs.  Today was the "fun" part (dripping sarcasm).  Taking the pile of receipts that I have and the 5 adoption paperworks that I had, and going through those, posting relevant stuff, so on.  And balancing/reconciling 2 bank accounts.  Fun fun.  Sounds like it wouldn't take that long, but for each adoption, this needs to be done:

  • Notation made in Chins Past & Present Excel as to adoption, adoption date, etc
  • Notation made in Chins Past & Present Word as to adoption, adoption date, adoption people, etc.
  • Put up adoption on Happy Customers page on website
  • Put up adoption picture on Happy Customers page on website
  • Money recorded in our Expenditures and Cash Flow excel sheet
  • Previous owner emailed with pics to let them know their critter has been adopted
  • Go through emails in wanting chins folder (so if anyone else was hoping the adoption would fall through, they could be emailed -- and also to move over all emails from the adopter to our Chins & Critters folder)
  • Move folder with animal pics and info from the regular spot on the harddrive to the "Chins No Longer w NWI" folder 
  • ...and approx. 7 days after adoption, email the adoptive home asking how things are going, if they have questions, etc.
Reading over that, that may not sound like a lot to do.  And really, it's not, but it takes forever.  I was doing that, reconciling the bank accounts, and inputting one recent addition (Eeyore) into the files (Chins Past & Present Excel, Chins Past & Present Word, and Chins Past & Present - Stories) and it took me from like 8 pm until... well, it's now 11:29 at the time I am writing this sentence.  It takes a long time, which is why paperwork piles up... cause I never can find the time to do it, so I need to just plop myself down one day with the pile and make my way through it.  Usually it doesn't back itself up this bad, but with the new job... not as much time to do this stuff.

So, on a plus side, now the Happy Customers page is up to date, as is the Donations page (well, almost...).  I also finally updated the missing info (like, pedigreed lines and such) on the Our Chins page. 

Getting all the pets fed and watered takes a good hour and a half if it's done every other day.  That's not including the time it takes to get the veggies and leafy greens ready for the pigs/rabbits.  So that brings us up to about 1 am.

Let's see, what else.  I do have a halloween holiday toy (orange and black) in the works.  Have a few made up and have a picture taken, but the toy won't actually debut until more of the fall-season.  Also have a christmas wreath (anything goes PLUS dyed red and green -- idea courtesy of some of our customers, thank you) that I just strung up on wire today.  That one's going to be an extra $1 over the cost of the regular anything goes PLUS toy, as dying 14 inches of wood takes some time and coloring.  Also won't debut until the winter season, as it will be like our holiday toys and will only be around during the season the colors coordinate with.  Unless, like that one year, I make so gosh darn many that I have 4th of July toys from June to January of the following year.  But hopefully, I have learned my lesson on that one and will now only make a few at a time.

.... but, let's say you people who read my blog are the elite few who get to see what these look like before their respective seasons:
Halloween Holiday Toy

Anything goes PLUS toy - holiday wreath edition

I think they look pretty good.  I will be shooting for a darker orange on the holiday toy next time.  The original orange was even lighter than that, and I probably can't get it too much darker, but it's a nice orange.  May even have to try out a holiday toy that's the reverse -- nice burnt orange pine blocks and black pumice.  Maybe I will give that a shot and see how it looks.

Though at the moment, the anything goes PLUS toy - holiday edition will be staying the christmas/winter holiday edition.  I can tell you now I don't have enough hours in the day to make one of those in every color the holiday toy comes in. 

But I do have some toy pieces here that I haven't played around with since I've gotten them in, so there could be a new toy on the horizon eventually.  

So anyway, both toys are up on the supplies for sale page (the second without a picture, as that pic above is clearly not the one that will make it on the site), but are not available in the webstore for some time. 

I had a customer who's helping out with a rat rescue in her area who wanted to know how many used water bottles I have (turns out, 10 -- 4 glass, 6 plastic), so I emailed her about that.  Went through a few more emails.  Answered some questions about the trial run program vs. the borrow program.  Added the borrow contract to our Available Chins page.  Was going to post Scooby and Ziggy tonight but it's like 1:56 so that's not happening today.  Maybe tomorrow.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013


So, I really should be putting up cages on the website or doing a multitude of other things, but when  I went to put up cages, I noticed that the rat cage is still on hold.  And feeling like it's been quite some time, I pulled up the email of the person who had the rats on hold. 

Turns out, I have not been applying my own policies.  This person sent me their adoption form on May 25th.  It is now June 26th.  I could write a book explaining my policy and such, but it might just be easier for me to paste the email:

I'm emailing you because I have three female rats on hold for you, which I cannot hold for you any longer.

I have policies in place, and it has come to light that I am not applying them to everyone.  That really is not fair to the people and the animals who suffer because I am giving people favors.

Our policy here at the rescue requires animals to be picked up within 14 days of being put on hold, unless a deposit is put down, which then gives the to-be adopter 30 days to pick up their animals.  I looked back in my emails and you sent me your adoption form for these rats back on May 25th.  As it is currently June 26th, that makes today a month and a day since I put them on hold for you.  The point of not having long holding periods is not to make people run to get here, but to not have the animals waiting around for someone who either takes months to come or never shows up at all, which further delays their adoption and often causes me to pass on good homes while the animals are on hold.  The grand majority of people who really want the animals are here within 14 days.  After 10 years of running the rescue, I can count on one hand how many animals have been adopted by people who took longer than a 2-3 weeks to get here.  

These rats that I've had on hold for you, I have had two other families want to adopt.  Both I told, I have them on hold for someone, it hasn't been that long, and these families went and got rats elsewhere.  Meanwhile, I checked my dates today, and turns out, it has been a month.  That's obviously not a good example of me applying the policy, and really, I cannot wait around forever.  These girls have already missed out on two homes, and I don't feel it's fair to them to keep doing that, when I don't feel we're closer now to you coming to pick them up than you were at the end of May. 

If you do happen to find a time where you can make it out this way, let me know.  You could still adopt the rats.  It's simply that I can't keep going against my own policy, as the policy is written in the best interests of the animals, which would otherwise be home with their new families now, rather than still here at the rescue.    

So, the rats will go back up for adoption until/if we ever have a date set for you to come by.


You know, I read the above, and I almost think I'm being harsh.  But it's true -- very few people who wait this long ever end up adopting.  A miniscule number compared to everyone else who shows up within a week or two.  This person is maybe around an hour and a half away.  So not around the corner.  Fair enough.  But in a month she doesn't have one day she can come by?   I tell ya, I'm not that busy, so it has to be their schedule preventing them from coming by.  Which is fine, but makes me question, if they can't find the time to come by, if they adopted the rats, would they have any time to interact with them?

In all reality, my feelings on this  are that I'll get an email back, saying oh sorry sorry I'm busy.... and I have no doubt.  I'm busy too.  But experience has shown this type of thing typically doesn't work out, and these rats could have been in their new homes by now. 

It's not even a rush to get the pets adopted.  I mean sure, I want them adopted quicker rather than them living their lives out here, but most people I tend to give the benefit of the doubt.  And it seems, those are always the ones that end up pulling this kind of thing.  Busy, fine.  But most rescues won't hold animals period.  A few will, but only for a deposit.  I must be one of the only lunatics that allows for a 14 day hold without a deposit.  And the reason I do so is because I feel the whole deposit thing can be a mess.  Say someone can't come by for 2 weeks -- how are they going to get me a deposit?  If they mail it, say they mail it Monday it gets here Friday (hey, that's what happened last time I mailed a package to Indianapolis), and they pick up Saturday?  That's just stupid.  I would need to require deposits by credit card or something like that, and that's just something I don't really care to mess with.  But sometimes it seems like I really should.  Partially, because our deposits are non-refundable.  That means that if you put down a deposit on an animal and don't pick it up within the 30 days (or decide not to adopt, or whatever reason you "can't get it"), you forfeit the money.  The point of non-refundable deposits (which all rescues use, by the way) is so that while the animal is sitting on hold for someone, not up for adoption, someone is paying something to help care for the animal.  Basically, since the animal can't be adopted out to someone else, the to-be adopter is paying some money towards its care ahead of time.  And you know, if someone puts down a deposit and then adopts, that money is put towards the adoption.  So, the people fully intending to adopt should have no problem with this.

Course, I would tend to think that people would not want to put down deposits to hold an animal for them.  But another part of me says, if they don't want to, why not?  If they're going to get the animal, they're not going to lose the money, what's the problem?  But this is a debate for another day, I have work in like 6 hours. 

In the meantime, I am taking the rats off of hold, her cage off of hold, and her items in the webstore off of hold as well.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Affording Pets & Changing Minds (Updated!)

Let me share with you part of a conversation that has been going on for the last few days.  Relevant parts only because this goes on and on.

So, first she asks about two guinea pigs and how much they'd be with a cage and food.  So I tell her, the two she wanted would be $55 together (which includes a discount), the cage would cost an additional $30-50 depending on which she wanted, and food would be additional also depending on how much she wanted.  So potentially between $85-105 just for the pigs and cage.  Not counting any food, any food bowls, water bottles, veggies, etc.  

And I told her, the one pig she was interested in is currently on hold for someone, but I could let her know if they decided to back out.  So then she asks, how much is the other one by itself.  I tell her $35.

Her:  Now I don't know if I could get it because of money right now so I will let you know.

Ok, so I asked her, is she sure she wants him put on hold, because the holds only last for 2 weeks and if she doesn't get him in two weeks, then he'd be up for adoption for anyone.  She says yeah, put him on hold.

Texts starting today:

Her:  Hi I think I wa talking to u about bashful I will not be getting that I am looking for a chinchilla by a chance do u have a chinchilla

Me:  I mean no offense but if you were saying you can't afford a guinea pig you definitely can't afford a chinchilla.  A chin + cage and all the stuff you'd need to care for it usually runs 250 at the very minimum

Her:  Oh wow.

Her:  Ok thanks for the help and all the things you did haha

Me:  No problem

Her:  How much for a chinchilla alone with nothing at all

Me:  I charge 75 and up but since you mentioned you don't have very much money I think you should wait.  If something should happen to the chin vet bills are typically $150 and up

Her:  We have money!!!!!!!lol we just need to get a check but 75 ok I'll ask

Me:  You just said you couldn't afford a 35 guinea pig how is 75 cheaper than that?

Her:  We have money I just changed my mind.  We have money trust me

Me:  I understand that but yesterday you said you didn't have the money.  By saying you can't afford a guinea pig, a chinchilla would be way out of your price range.  In my mind, if you can't afford a guinea pig, you would not be able to adequately care for a chinchilla as they are considerably more expensive.  If a guinea pig at 35 was too much yesterday, there's nothing you could say that would make me approve you to adopt an animal that is considerably more difficult and expensive to care for.

Her:  My parents got a check..... We have money now they said I can get one so I am looking but looking for some on craigslist ok thanks bye

AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH.  She's going to go buy one of those $50 chinchillas with cage on craigslist, feed it junk food all its life, and when it gets sick, it's going to sit in its cage and die.  Because that check they got?  What do you bet it's welfare?  Disability?  Something of that sort?  The way she worded it, I would not imagine paycheck, especially not on a Monday.  Sorry if I sound biased, I have nothing against people receiving those benefits, but a lot of people on those benefits really are living benefit check to benefit check, and should not have pets, as if those pets ever needed any vet care, those people would not be able to afford it.  Not saying they're bad people or anything, and some will afford vet care, but I know many people on disability with too many pets that would never see the vet's office.  But I digress.  The point is, if she didn't have $35 yesterday, but has way more now... I'm betting give it a few days and they won't have $35 again.  And once someone settles themself in my mind as someone who can't afford a chin, I'm not adopting them a chin.  Sorry, no way, no how.

And I get that she changed her mind, from the pig to the chin (which I could go on about as well, but I won't....), but that doesn't change the fact that $35 was unaffordable yesterday.  That is the whole problem.  If $35 is unaffordable, then the $75 for the chin is definitely unaffordable.  What about the cage?  Typically, this person would pick up the cheapest cage possible.  These type of owners are the ones that put their chin in a 10g tank or a gerbil cage, because the cage is like $10 and well within their budget.  A good cage starts at like $75 from here with wood shelves, they're definitely more expensive than that at the pet store.... which is why the typical result is they get the cheapest cage they can find on craigslist.  And... since they know nothing about chin care, this type of person goes for the cheapest food, which is not usually a good food, and also usually has all sorts of junk in it that's bad for the chin.     

For anyone sitting here reading this getting mad thinking I'm being an ass -- these things happen. I have numerous chins that come here that people have said they can't afford even the basic necessities for.  People who get the chin free or cheap and then can't afford a proper cage, much less vet care.  I had several people within the last year that ran out of food for the chin and did not have the money to purchase more, for 2-3 weeks!  So we get this half starved chin that's been downing hay and anything else in the cage even vaguely edible because its starving, but their reason for dropping off the chin is never, "oh, we can't afford it," no, it's usually "I don't have time."  As if there's nothing wrong with the fact they haven't properly fed the chin in several weeks.  This stuff really does happen, and I want to prevent MY chins from going to any of these homes.

And you know what?  Maybe I'm wrong.  Maybe this person does have money and could afford chin care.  But for me, I have a feeling that that's not the case here, and her lightning-quick animal change would suggest to me that she wants a chin cause she saw one somewhere and it was "cute," and that's about as far as it goes.  Maybe I'm wrong.  But regardless, if she wants a chin, she will need to get it elsewhere. Because I will believe the first thing someone says to me.  If you tell me you're broke, you can't tell me, a day later, oh you're rich.  I will believe the first thing, as people tend to change their story when it suits them -- but they're not always that bright to say they have money in the first place.  So, she will have to get a chin elsewhere, my chins will continue to go to homes that have been checked out and approved.

Sorry if you're reading this and I'm talking about you (as I recently found out a lot of people read this blog), but I'm sorry, I just can't take that chance.

Updated!!  Two hours later, we start again, because apparently the whole concept of "I won't approve you to adopt means nothing."  

Her:  Will the chinchilla come with a cage

Me:  No

Her:  Ok so the chinchilla is 75 alone

Me:  Yes

Her:  Where you located

Me:  Munster, IN

Her:  Ok thanks

Now.... this doesn't seem all that aggravating except, 2 hours before, she asked how much for the chinchilla itself, I tell her 75, and then, oh, 75 is with a cage?  No.  Where did she think I got the $250 for everything?  If the chin came with a cage, that would be some might expensive accessories!  Lol, but as to the other stuff, posts from yesterday:

[the below takes place after asking how much for two pigs, a cage, and food, and I tell her, the one pig she asked about is on hold, but if it wasn't, the two pigs would be $55, the cage would range from $30-50 depending on size, and food is extra]

Her: And where are you located?

Me:  I'm in Munster, IN

Her:  How much is bashful it's self

Me:  He is 35

Her:  Cause I'm interested in both but sence sammy is looked at I am interested in bashful and 35 is that with the cage and food or no and can you send me a pic and please put bashful on hold for me

Me:  the 35 is just for Bashful.  None of the animals come with a cage.  He will come with .... [and I go on to talk about the care packet, food, chews]

Like... she doesn't even listen to what's being said.  Case in point:  She asks me how much is Bashful himself.  $35.  Oh, so is that with a cage?  *facepalm*  This is basic english people.  Say I go to a hardware store and they have a bundle that comes with a drill, drill bits, and some screws for a bundle price of $50.  I ask the salesperson, "how much are the drill bits themselves?"  And they tell me, "$5."  This girl would ask, "oh, does that come with the drill?"

Also, note the fact that when she asks about if Bashful comes with a cage, this is the second time she has asked that (yesterday), which prompted me to say that none of the animals come with a cage.  Yet then she asks, does the chinchilla come with a cage?

It's people like these that make me want to pull my hair out.

Busy Days

So, Saturday was busy.  First, had one of the regulars in the morning getting supplies.  16 lbs of food (out of my newly opened, last 25 pound bag) and 5 pounds of dust.  So they showed up, got their stuff, and moved on.

Then my 10:30 doesn't show.  So, it's almost 11, and I have other people coming, so rather than end  up with everyone here at once, I called em up.  Turns out, they were supposed to be set for next Saturday.  And it was totally my goof up -- in fact, I had even emailed saying "on the 29th, 10:30 will work just fine for me."  Yet.... it was the 22nd.  So, I apparently wrote the appointment on the wrong week.  Whoops.  My bad.  I apologized and re-wrote it on the correct date.

So then, it's just after 11, and I get an email from someone I'd been emailing back and forth before the previous night... saying they're coming at 12.  I also had a 1:30, and the feed store isn't open forever, so I decided to go to the feed store to replenish my food and get back before 12.  That's pushing it.  Not so much on a weekday, but on a Saturday?  Yeah.  So, apparently I rarely ever go to the feed store on Saturdays, because man was it busy!  And it's never busy.  So, got my chin chow and got home.  My noon appointment got there before me, but just a few minutes.

So I came in, let them in, and it was a mom and her two boys and they wanted to see some of the rats.  The one boy wanted to get one, the other didn't like how the claws felt on his skin.  The mom said she'd get back to me.

Then the 1:30 arrives.  So, she was coming to adopt Ivan and get a cage and a lot of other stuff to the tune of like $430 total.  Big order.  So, I actually had to leave at 2:30, so it was a bit rushed showing her everything she had and all.  She wanted me to show her a hair ring check, so I pulled out Toby and showed her.  Of course he didn't have a hair ring lol.  But she saw how it was done.

But let's go back to the prior day - Friday night.  I laid down at like 6:30 pm intending to take a one hour nap and get up at 7:30.  Well..... I think I fell asleep and never set an alarm.  So, I get up like 9:30ish, and scramble, because that $400ish order is not put together, and that includes a large cage (31 x 21 x 50) that needs to be wiped down and vinegar'd (already washed and cleaned, but has collected dust and some areas need a vinegar wipedown) and have like $55 worth of shelves cut, bolted, and put in.  So, had to do all that. Then had to get the rest of that $430 order ready.  Lots of stuff, so I was up til like.... 3:45 prepping for that order and the other pickups for Saturday.

So later, on Saturday, after all my people had left, I brought in the chin food.  My dad helped a bit, one bag at a time.  To try to make things go quicker, I did 2 bags (50 pounds) at a time.  Apparently that was a really bad idea.  Both of my wrists feel like they were run over by a car and are very very unhappy if I lift anything even textbook weight.  Ouch.  And... just about everything is heavier than that.  So, if anyone wants to lend a hand (or their brother's/boyfriend's/husband's/kid's hand), I have 250 pounds of chin chow that needs to be sorted by mill date and moved about 20 feet, down a set of maybe 7 stairs, and neatly stacked.  Not far, but I'm clearly not doing it anytime soon, considering whatever I managed to do to my wrists.

And usually I can do 50 pounds!  That's not uncommon... but I dunno, this time it didn't work out for me.

Then Sunday, yesterday.  No one stopping by for critters, so just working to get some cages ready to be listed on the site, packaging up some orders and getting shipping quotes, and cleaning some cages.  I have another courtesy ad that needs to be put up on the website, and I gathered the info for that, so that should be easy to do when I get a chance to start on it.

My pile of paperwork is growing, so I really should go through that.  But that wasn't Sunday.

What I did get a chance to go through was a box or two of these adorable appliques and buttons that I plan on eventually listing on the website webstore.  Got them from a friend and I am using what I have room for, and other people can enjoy the rest.  I need to figure out what to charge for these, I am going to have to look them up somewhere to get an idea of what retail is and go from there.  All nice stuff, like some disney appliques, some raggedy ann and andy, some pooh bear and that kinda thing.  Animal stuff.  All cutesy stuff. Will eventually get it up on the website, but currently it's like at the bottom of my list.  So probably not right away.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Scams and stuff

So, not much been going on lately.  Mariah, one of Amber's guinea pigs, did get adopted by a family that grows their own veggies all organic and everything.  Very nice people.

Other than that, it's been about business as usual.  Had a lot of things piling up on Wednesday, so Thursday (yesterday) was the day to figure out shipping quotes for everyone, get packages packed up, and so on.  So,  that was like 2 hours worth of cutting wood and packaging.  Most of them were just shipping quotes, so nothing too difficult, so those all got emailed out last night.

And then there was this email.  I got an email maybe a week ago from a guy and his wife saying they'd ran across the rescue and wanted to make a donation, but wanted to know more about the rescue if I could email them more info.  I do occasionally get emails like this, so it didn't seem out of the ordinary.  Course, if you read the title of this post, you know it wasn't your average "donation."  So, I email some info, and about a week later I get another email saying thanks for letting them know the info, they just want to make sure that  where they donate, the money is going to the animals.  Fair enough.  They asked if I volunteer at the rescue or what position I have, so that got me started on another long email about how there are volunteers (thank you all!) but not super often, so most of it is just me.  Which is fine, I take advantage of whatever help I can get.  So then last night I get an email back, which read:

Hi Ashley
   Thank you for your wonderful letter,
We made up our mind that we will be making two donations, one to your org, and the other to a small rescue.
   We have spoken to our agent, He will make out a check of $1600 to you. If it is okay with you, We want you to kindly deduct $800 for your org and have the remaining forwarded to the other rescue. They are old couple who use their home as a shelter have 6parrots, 4 furies and 17dogs, a litter of 6pups just arrived. dog that is desperately in need of a surgery.

I would like to know what name the check be addressed to and also an address it should be mailed to. 

Have to go now, heading to the movies with the Mrs 
Regards to your Family

D & S, up until that, this whole thing did not seem suspicious.  I do get emails now and then from people wanting to donate and just wondering how the whole rescue works, and then this.  This just goes to show these people are getting smarter than your average "The price of Africa has willed you $5,000,000, all you need to do is cash the check and send $1,000,000 back to his nephew."  Which is more your average scam.  This is a lot less money, which I suppose for some people would raise less flags.  For example, I was talking to someone about this (won't say who), who asked what the problem was with cashing a check and sending part of it to someone else.  Which just proves there are people still out there that aren't aware of these scams.

So, I emailed back...


I'm sorry, I can't do that.  I have read plenty of scams that require you to cash a check, send money back, and in reality, none of that money is actually there in the check, so you've just sent a buttload of your own money back to the other party.  I can't afford to chance that that would be the case here, as many people are fooled by those scams, and the rescue doesn't have that kind of money to play around with.  

I would love such a large donation and the rescue would benefit from it, but I see no reason why your agent would not be able to write out two checks for $800 each, which would not require me to send any money back.  If you are unable to do that, I am unable to accept your donation.

...and that's that.  I'm sure I will never hear from them again, but if I do, I'll be sure to post it here.  I'm not one of the stupid ones, and I have no doubt that the guy with the parrots and stuff is really the guy and his wife writing the email thinking "hehehe we're gonna get $800 from this sucker!!!"  Ah, no.  Sorry, wasn't born yesterday.  Sorry for the disappointment.

And actually, this really pisses me off.  Cause I genuinely care about the rescue and about getting donations if someone is thinking about donating, and I spent a decent amount of time answering this guy's questions about the rescue, and all of you who have emailed me know how I can go on and on and on for pages.  And I totally did with this guy, and then it's all a scam?  Pisses me off.  Not just because it's a waste of my time, but because it's a waste of rescue time that could have been spent listing animals, cleaning cages, and so on and so forth.

Unrelated, yesterday, had my mom down at the rescue with me.  I will be civil and say that there are definitely better vs worse people to have helping you, and with my mom not being able to stand for long periods of time, I realize I really need  younger people helping me out, as there's only so much someone can do sitting at a table.  But, she got some stuff done, so she was a bit of a help.  Dyed some toy pieces, filled water bottles, sifted out the rabbit litter pan.  As I packaged up the orders and fed everyone and so on and so forth.

In unrelated news, Ivan is going to be picked up Saturday, so today I need to make shelves for the cage they're getting and break everything down and pack it up.  I see I have two more emails from them, that I really should get to looking at, but you'd be amazed how little time I seem to have now that I have a full time job.  But I'm hoping to enlist my mom's help yet again today for setting up that cage.  I told the adoptive home that I would get it set up with shelves, and take pictures so they could try to recreate the cage at their house, and then take it all apart including breaking the whole cage down.  This is not a fun cage to put together, but I imagine taking it apart won't be too too bad.  I wouldn't want to be the family putting it together.  Don't get me wrong, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to piece it together, but this cage is more akin to a FN or something that has various panels that go together, rather than one big chunk of wire that all snaps in place.  Not specifically more complicated, but takes a little more thought.

Well, I should get to starting on real work now, it's 8:30.  Later.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Phone Call

This was from a few days ago, but I didn't want to forget about it.  Was driving along, and the phone rings, and usually I'll pick it up, but I'd been letting the calls go to voicemail that day because I was trying to get some errands ran and such.  But this was an out-of-country call, and I will always pick those up, because I don't want to have to call them back and pay the charges.  We have long distance, but not worldwide.

So, it turns out it's this guy from Saudia Arabia who has two chins, who just had a baby.  He had separated the adults and had mom in with the baby, and the baby was a few days old and had picked up some hay and was munching on it.  Well, apparently he'd read somewhere that if a baby chin ate hay too early in its life, it wouldn't digest and would cause stasis, and he was terrified this baby was going to die because he saw it munching on hay (which he had explained he'd removed, and then called me).

I told him I didn't know where he read that, but not to worry, we (and other breeders) feed the mom chins the same way we do before pregnancy (with pellets and hay) and in 10 years, no babies have died due to that.  I explained that the baby would try the food at this point, and moreso later on, but wouldn't be able to actually eat enough of it to sustain itself until it was older.

And then we talked about him caring for the chins, he ships in Oxbow from the states (pellets and hay), and gives them a variety of different Oxbow hays (timothy, orchard grass, alfalfa).  It sounded like he was caring for them well, and he wanted to know my thoughts on Oxbow vs. Mazuri.  As local people know I lean towards Mazuri, but that's mainly because I could never afford to feed Oxbow on such a large scale.  But if a chin is doing fine on Oxbow, I told him it's fine to stick with it.  He seemed relieved to hear that as well.

So he said thanks and that was it.

What I find interesting is how he ended up calling me.  I mean, he must have gotten my number either off my website or some rescue page, but I always find it interesting when I get the call.  Like, out of everyone in the U.S., he called me, you know?  Just interesting.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Shipping Prices & Weights & Time Delay for Orders

Ok, so a situation arose the other day leading to the subject of today's blog.  Er, subjects.

First -- time delay for orders.  Most orders I can get out within a day or two.  Those include orders for food, dust, treats, etc.  The orders for hidey houses, the wooden vehicles, and other such things list on the webstore that they can take up to two weeks as they can be made to order and are not always just sitting here ready-made.  Shelves are one of those things that can take longer as well, as I have to cut the shelves on a table saw.  That cannot be done if I am getting home at 10 pm, as the saw is, oh I dunno, loud, and would wake everyone up.  

And the last thing that will not take one day to do -- figuring out shipping.  I'd say at least 70-80% of what I deal with with orders are people asking, I want this, this, and this, how much will shipping be?  I mean, it is a LOT of what I do.  That is also not something that is going to take one day.  Let me explain.  First, if you want an order of whatever, I have to get it all together.  That means, if you want a 16" shelf, I have to cut a 16" shelf (see part about using the table saw), put on bolts, because it's rather difficult to find a box that will fit a 16" shelf without actually having the 16" shelf in front of you.  Then, I get that sanded, together, and with everything else, find a box that fits the stuff without me having to throw in 5 pounds of extra packaging material, and weigh it all.  Maybe this doesn't sound like it takes a long time, but say this person wants a water bottle.  I need to accurately pack that water bottle like I would if I knew the order was going out, because that can change the weight of the entire package.  Same with anything breakable -- it gets packaged and wrapped as if it was going out.  
So, I had this order the other day where someone wanted a shipping quote.  For a 16" shelf and two chin chillers.  I believe they emailed Tuesday.  I told them that I wouldn't be able to get to it until likely Thursday, because I already had orders in front of theirs (Tuesday), Wednesday I have class, not home until 10 pm (no table saw), and so maybe Thursday.  Turns out I actually got to it Friday, so I got their shelf cut/sanded and the chin chillers wrapped in bubble wrap and box found and packaging put in.  I email the person that the box weighs 9-10 pounds, so shipping comes out to $17.50.  This is the email I get back:

Sorry I am all set. The package can't weight more than 5 pounds even if the tiles were made of brick. You took to long to get back and I was looking to have these items paid and shipped by now. 

So, I'm not upset that I lost the order, I have plenty.  What I have really come to dislike, though, is the mentality that when someone emails me, I'm supposed to drop whatever I'm doing, whoever is in front of them, to work on their order.  That's not how it goes.  Paid orders typically get done before I do shipping quotes, and even then, those go in the order of how I received them.  Hers was not first in line.  It took four days for me to get her a shipping quote.  I guess for her that was too long.  Me?  I think that's reasonable, considering I have a full time job, run the rescue, and do stuff for the store.  If I sat home doing nothing but the store, I would think four days would be too long.  But not considering I have a real job that requires 40+ hours per week.

Moving along.  What I am really upset about is the fact that she doesn't believe that it weighs 9-10 pounds.  I emailed her back saying that if she'd like, I'd be happy to show her a picture of the box on my scale.  The one thing that I pride myself and the store on is that I don't overcharge on shipping.  I typically charge actual shipping + $0.75-$1.00 as a cushion in case I'm off (because shipping is typically calculated before the box is sealed, so the tape and such can sometimes add a little bit in shipping).  I hate the stores that charge $15 to ship something, and when you get it, it's in a priority mail box (small) which is $5.35.  Unless that is the only store in the world that sells what I am looking for, I will buy elsewhere.  So usually, those companies do not get repeat business from me.  I HATE that and so I will not do it to my customers.

So, she has not responded, which is fine, and I really don't care specifically about losing one order, but for everyone who reads this, I want you all to see:  

Box open showing shelf in box, two bubble wrapped chin chillers, and packaging paper
box closed on the scale showing 9 lbs 4 oz.
Sorry for bad picture quality, was using my phone for the pics.  So, between 9-10 pounds?  Sure.  5 pounds?  No way.  I don't know how light people think things are, but here's about how it works:  
  • a 6' x 8" x 1" board of pine weighs roughly 6 pounds
    • consequently, 16 inches weighs roughly 1 pound, 5 ounces
  • four bolts, eight washers, and four wingnuts weigh roughly 7 oz
  • chin chillers weigh roughly 2 pounds 11 oz each
    • so, two chinchillers together weigh roughly 5 pounds 7 oz
  • the box isn't light as air, and this one is thicker (to support the chin chillers and not rip), so the box could be 1 lb itself
  • packaging isn't light as air either -- so add in maybe another pound of packaging/tape/etc
  • TOTAL = 1 lb 5 oz (pine board) + 7 oz (hardware) + 5 lb 7 oz (2 chinchillers) + 1 lb (box) + 1 lb (packaging/tape) = 9 lbs 3 oz.
Amazing, isn't it?  I am happy to show people their package on the scale when they do not believe the weight.  I have had people tell me that my shipping charge is considerably too much, and I will tell them, well, if it is, I will refund the excess shipping once it's been shipped out and I know how much it was over actual shipping.  Almost never fails that I will quote someone $12 for shipping and shipping will be $11.50.  I do typically keep an overage of $0.50-0.75 cents for handling charge, so that person would not get refunded anything.  I can't help that shipping is expensive.  I wish it was less myself.... but it is what it is.
Oh, and by the way.... granite/marble are more dense materials than brick.  So the same piece would weigh less if it were made of brick, not more (as she suggested).

Solid granite 2691 kg/cu.m.
Solid marble 2563 kg./cu.m
Brick, common red 1922 kg/cu.m

^^ taken from

I actually sent this person an email a few mins ago with the picture below -- I just let her know that I didn't want her to think I was trying to cheat her (cause I'm not), and that the entire package would have a hard time being under 5 pounds, when the readout shows that the chinchillers themselves weigh a combined total of 5 pounds 7 7/8 oz (and 8 oz = 1/2 pound).  I just don't want her to think I'm being dishonest.  Cause word can get around.

May have more to post about later, but for now, this is it.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Going's on.

Not too much going on lately.  Went to Six Flags (yay!) with Amber, as a mini-vacation from our respective rescues.  If you ran a rescue you'd know why we need days like that every so often-haha.

Came back Saturday night, and Sunday had people coming by.  The one picked up a cage that had been on hold for awhile.  Had someone come by and drop off a lop-eared rabbit.  Sort of agouti colored, will have to ask Amber what this color really is called.  Big rabbit for 9-10 months, and mostly potty trained!  Awesome.

Then had someone come by to look at Haku.  He's on hold for someone on my waiting list, and they wanted to come by and see him before bringing their chin here for me to try intros.  They liked him, so intros will be later this week.

Got an email about Boom & Pow that I need to answer.  Also some emails about donations.  It's amazing how quickly you can get behind.

Oh and this was a good one.  I have a cage for sale and someone texted asking if I have the bottom part for it.  So I asked if they meant the pan, and I said yeah.  So they asked how much, and I told them the price for the cage.  They said, no, just for the pan.  Well.... I told em, if I told you the pan... the cage would be useless to me.  Because this cage has a slide in pan, so it's not like you can just go get a custom square cut to the size.  Wouldn't work.  And... really, this person knew that, because they have a cage that they can't use....because they apparently have no pan.  I mean... maybe this is just me.... but I would think, anyone with that cage is NOT going to sell just the pan, because that makes the cage useless.  I mean, good try, I suppose, but I doubt they're going to have any luck.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

New Stuff

So, new stuff. The person with the rats emailed back and really didn't explain why she hadn't responded to any of my other emails, but said she wanted to still adopt.  Ok.

Then, I've been going back and forth with this one person about guinea pigs for a bit now.  First, they asked if I had guinea pigs, yes I do.  They want to know how much they are, so I told em, and they asked if I still had Squirt and Wizard.  That must have been a day or so past when Squirt was adopted, but I slacked on getting his ads down (my bad), and so I told her, sorry, we didn't have him.  But still had Wizard.  To answer the question about which we had and prices, I directed them to the website.  This was the person that asked if I would still have guinea pigs in a month's time. And I had told her, I really don't know.  So then (and this is all over a maybe a week's time, in texts), she asks if I still have Sammy and Bashful and I tell her yes, and she asks if she can reserve them for a month.  So, I tell her, for that long, she needs to put a deposit down.  So then she asks, can she get updates if I get more new pigs in.  I would assume, so if cuter ones come in, she could switch to those.  I told her, and this applies to everyone potentially adopting, if she's not positive which animal(s) she wants, she doesn't need to be putting down a deposit.  Every once in a blue moon, I will let someone transfer a deposit to another animal, say, if something happens to the one, or it doesn't get along with theirs, or whatever.  But, adopting out animals isn't like making sure you wash your sheets every few weeks.  There's actual work involved, feeding them, cleaning them, etc, and I told her, the problem is, say I hold them for you for a month.   Then I get in new ones and you decide you want those instead.  During that month, I may have turned away people asking about the ones you had on hold, because I thought you were going to get them.  Therefore, in the event you were to decide to not get them, now I've wasted a month of time and potentially lost out on adoptive homes for them because I let you change your mind.  Maybe that seems harsh, but this is how some animals end up being here for a year or quite a few months, is because they'll be on hold, that person will vanish, they'll get on hold again, that person will decide not to adopt, and so on and so forth, and it almost NEVER FAILS that during the time they are on hold (for someone who does not end up adopting them), I have to tell someone, sorry, they're on hold, you can't adopt them until that person decides not to.

Like with Mariah.  She was on hold for that one person, and I had someone email who sounded like a great home, and I told them, hey, I can let you know if they decide not to get her, but I can't promise anything.  I never heard back.  When the original person decided not to adopt Mariah, I emailed that person back and said, hey, she's up for adoption if you're still interested, but never heard back.  From what I know of that potential home, I think they would have followed through and adopted.  But... I told them they couldn't, because she was on hold.  Now, that's a completely different situation, because that person decided not to adopt, in general, versus wanting to get a different pet.  But still, with the current one, I told her, if you're not positive those are the ones you want, don't put them on hold, cause I won't change it later. 

Ok, so a few days pass and again she asks if I have Sammy and Bashful and I say, yeah, I do, and she asks if she can put them on hold and this time she says she wants to put them on hold for 2 weeks (which is the longest animals can be put on hold without a deposit).  So I tell her, that's fine, but pickup HAS to be within the 2 weeks.  It's not like on the 1st you can say, let me put them on hold, and then you diddle daddle and finally schedule pickup on the 30th.  No, if you're putting them on hold on the 1st, pickup better be by the 15th, or you will be getting an email saying hey, you need to come adopt your fuzzball.  It's one thing if something comes up and someone has to cancel or reschedule, but people try to get around it however they can.

Anyway, that's beside the point. I told her that'd be fine, but I need a completed adoption form to put an animal on hold (which I really do need to stick to, as that's what I keep telling myself is the best way to do it).  So anyway, she gets me the answers to the adoption form back and asks how long she has to pay the deposit, and I told her, she has 5 days, which I think is reasonable.  She said she wants to pay by debit card, so now I'm just waiting for that.  I told her, her 30 days (which is the longest a deposit will get you) will start the day I receive her deposit.  In this case, considering she originally wanted to pick up in a month, because she's moving (I did ask, curiosity got me), I imagine she will be waiting until day 5 to put down the deposit so she has the max amount of time to pick them up.  But maybe not, we will see.

Unrelated, but the person who adopted Lucy, she also had one of our breeding chins, Jessie, as a foster case for her eye watery-ness.  She has become a case of a foster failure, as she asked to adopt her.  With Jessie's eye issues, she had been pulled from breeding a while back, and I had been debating putting her back, not putting her back.  When Meredith and I were at the Ritterspach ranch in Ohio, I asked Jim what he thought about eye issues, genetic or not, and he said they're typically not, but I still didn't particularly like the idea of the possibility of it being passed on.  Hence her going to foster (which I like never do, by the way, which is why no one ever hears about it happening) with this lady.  So, her eyes have improved a little and she's gotten a clean bill of health from this person's vet (despite the eyes), and she's currently living with Lucy.  I got an email a bit ago asking if she could adopt her.  So I finally got around to emailing her the forms that she needs to fill out and sign and get back to me with the adoption fee and then Jessie will be her chin.  Which frees up a spot in my runs to get a nice puffball white female from Jim next time we go out to his ranch.  I am actually excited about that. 

Let's see, what else.  Winx is currently still on his respirachin (?) cleanse.  I think it's day 4 or 5, and then he gets his water switched out again and probiotics on day 7-8.  The stuff actually went in his water, and it did say it doesn't have a taste, but I left another water bottle up on his cage in case (the cages with the valve water bottles -- like his -- typically have a ryerson bottle as well, in case the chins can't figure out the valve).  So I made sure that had water, and he has drinken some out of the ryerson bottle, which he usually doesn't do, but he's clearly drinking the water with the solution in it.  It's got some sort of dye (food coloring would be my guess) to make it a medium green color (noted on the bottle so that it's obvious if you're still "using" it or not), so there's no doubt his water has something in it.  Either that or I have a flourishing algae colony in his water bottle, lol.  He seems fine on it, I have been giving him extra supplements as well.  He probably thinks this is great, more treats than he's ever had!!, but at his age (10 -- and he's a pet store chin), and the fact that he's barely 500 grams as it is, anything that's going to help him along I can deal with.  I've been giving him some of our supplement, as well as a variety of other things.  I have some marshmallow root here, some supplement ingredients that were given to me by someone, so I can't use them in supplement that I'd sell (because I don't know, where it's from, if it's organic, etc etc), but he can have it, because I do know what it is.  So he's getting our supplement, some additional ingredients, some ryerson supplement, I have a sample of tanya's broad spectrum supplement that he's getting 1/2 teaspoon every few days, and then someone dropped off some forever feisty supplement, herbal fusion I think, so he gets that as well.  And I have a bag of another herbal supplement I bought way back when that I dole out.  He doesn't get this all at once, but over time.  I have some much variety here I need to use some of this stuff up and not replace it because I have no more room in the drawer where that stuff goes.  So he's getting that, and eating it all up.  I did buy him the weight loss/appetite supplement that tanya (fuzzies kingdom) makes and it came in the mail the other day, so I intend to use that and hopefully see positive results.  We shall see.

So,  I've been trying out the organic herbal supplement (by us, NWI) with the chins here, and it's apparently two paws up.  It's not going to replace the cheaper, $2.50/pound ryerson supplement (for the breeder chins) anytime soon, but I can switch off every other day or something.  The reason I wanted to make the supplement wasn't because I really wanted to sell supplement (as if I need more store items to mess with), but rather, because it's so gosh darn expensive to buy herbal supplements that even if it was just marginally cheaper by myself making it, over time that would add up.  And in reality, the cost of the herbal supplement (for ingredients & jar) isn't a ton less than the $8.50 I charge.  But it is cheaper to get it in bulk, make it myself, and sell it as well, rather than shipping in small amounts here and there from fuzzies or another supplement place.  So, it's apparently chin-approved.  I don't know yet if it's guinea pig or rabbit approved, but according to the guinea pig/rabbit experts, it is safe for them.  The herbal sampler, on the other hand, has jasmine in it, which is not safe for the piggies.  I can make it without the jasmine (and throw in extra of everything else to make up the subtraction) for pig owners, if someone wants that, but I need to know ahead of time, not when you walk in the front door.  Supplement and herbal sampler creation take a bit too much work to be on-demand.  

I want to say that's it for new things going on.   

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Latest Going On's

So, I know I've been slacking with what's been going on lately, so time for a little summary.

The court date for Tazzie and Sugar -- the other guy won.  He said he was going to keep the chins, and despite my argument that I found it suspicious that one day he is "forced to sell them" and the next day he can "keep" them, the court believed him and so he gets to keep the chins.  But the judge did tell him, in response to his comments (in the emails) about how the contract was one-sided and unfair, that he did sign it, and it is enforceable, so if he was to get rid of the chins, he does need to abide by it.

Moving along, then I saw two of the other chins we have on craigslist.  Emailed the person, of course, she denies she listed them, took down the listing, says she was hacked.  See, the funny thing bout that is when I'm hacked, people try to steal bank account info, they send emails with viruses to everyone in my contacts.... but never do they go on craigslist and post an item for sale.  Cause guess what?  They don't actually have that item to sell, so it's not going to benefit them if someone was to call.  Shes' sticking with her story though, and the other lawyers at work have advised me that since it's all circumstantial evidence that I have, if she was to go to court and lie and say, no, she didn't do any of it, she was hacked, unless I could prove otherwise, I'd just be losing money again.

So their suggestion was to beef up the contract and put in liquidated damages provisions, court costs provisions, and so on and so forth, and a provision that if we see the animals for sale, we reserve the right to demand they be returned.  So I will be working on this at some point.  The point is to make it really seem like it's a serious matter, which it is, but also to make it more harsh on the people who want to pull this shit and try to sell the critters behind my back.

I am going to email the person back, though.  I probably should just not reply to her statements that I am harassing and stalking her, and she should get a restraining order against me (really?  yeah, she said these things -- all I did was send two emails -- one stating that I saw the ad up listing the chins for sale, and asked to set up a time to get them back, and, when she denied that, another email stating that I found it to be a really big coincidence that someone in the same town as her had the exact same two black velvet chins as her, same age chins, same age kid, same exact cage, and just so happened to be selling all of it -- but it wasn't her... and I told her, I have gone to court over this before and I can again.  So, of course, that's threatening, stalking, and harassing.  And she should file a restraining order against me.  Uh-huh.  Oh, and I'm being rude.

Let me paste the relevant portion of the email:

I am aware of what the contract states, and it only "asks" that I return the chins if I can no longer care for them, which seems more like a request. And as I care for them, I do not feel the need or the want to return them. I really do not appreciate the harassment and the stalking and the threats. I should be taking you to court and get a restraining order for all of this nonsense. If you want the chins, I want the money I paid for them. I did not try to adopt just to sell. You are being extremely rude.

Ah, no.  The adoption form asks that we be contacted, the adoption contract, which is signed at pickup, states that the chins "will" be returned.  I also find it interesting, that, since she wants to keep the chins, she would even offer to give them up if I pay her.  Hmmmmmm.

Anyway, I do plan to scan in a copy of her adoption contract and email her and just nicely point out, hey, this is what I'm talking about, so if the time does come when you try to sell them.... this is why you are required to bring them back, it is not a request.

Moving along.  Mariah was on hold for quite some time for an individual in another state who was trying to find a good time to come by.  So, she doesn't email me for quite some time, bypassing the day she had originally wanted to come by, so finally she emails me back saying that her son had emergency surgery and now they can't make it out here.  Now, I'm not one to typically sit back and call people liars, but these people lately....  like in this case -- the pig is originally from Amber's rescue, and she requested that the new owners keep in contact with her.  So Amber had facebook-friended this person.  Apparently, over the course of the days that this son allegedly had this emergency surgery, this person was posting about how wonderful the days were, oh, nice and sunny, oh wonderful day to lay around -- all "happy" statuses that I, personally, would never even think of posting if my son was in emergency surgery.  Heck, I would not even BE on facebook if I had a kid going through surgery and aftercare, but if I was.... it sure wouldn't be posts like - oh isn't the world wonderful???  So... I would tend to think, with this, that this person simply decided not to adopt, and didn't want to say that, and figured a sick son would be a good excuse.  I don't know that that's the case, but that's what I would tend to think.

Moving along again.  I had 2 rats on hold for someone who wanted to come by between the 3rd and 9th.  They were supposed to get back to me with specifically when they could come, and they were even thinking of adopting a 3rd female.  And they had a cage and a TON of miscellaneous used items on hold.  So, all was good, until I realized the last time they emailed me was 5/25.  Ok, that's way past the 5 day email and 2 day notice....and I'd sent them multiple emails within that time, none of which they had responded to, so I emailed them:

As you now haven't responded for 11 days, I am taking these rats and your items off hold.  The rescue's communications policy actually says that people only get 7 days before animals go off hold, but I thought maybe I would hear from you, but I unfortunately have not.

Personally, I would have preferred an email saying you decided not to adopt, now's not a good time, you don't have the money, or just "I can't adopt," no explanation needed, really.  I find it not only disrespectful to me and to the rescue, but disappointing as well, as not responding to emails and letting me know you're not interested in adopting hurts the animals, in that that's just more time they will have to spend here, more time they spend away from their forever home that will love them and shower them with attention.  Someone may have been interested in adopting them, but because they were on hold for you, and they saw that on the website, they may not have contacted me.  So they may have missed out on a home they could have had, because I was not made aware that you no longer plan to adopt.

If you decide at some future time that you would like to adopt, the only way you will be able to put an animal on hold will be to put down a deposit before the animals will be put on hold.

So they are back available for adoption as well.

Moving along, I got several panicked phone calls from Amber last night.  Apparently, this one rescue that had adopted both a chin and several guinea pigs from me, and guinea pigs from Amber had a lot going on.  She had something like 17 pigs, and a few days later had 3 left.  Turns out she got a pig from her friend, didn't quarantine it (major mistake), and whatever that pig had started spreading and killed almost all her pigs within a matter of a week or two.  Did she take them to the vet for medical care?  No.  Too expensive, she'd have to borrow money.  Yet, on both Amber's and my adoption forms, there is that question about "can you afford medical care" (or something of the sort), which she must have put "yes" on, or she would have not been able to adopt.  To make things worse, she just purchased a large parrot for $450.  I find it interesting that she had money to do this, but no money to take the animals to the vet?  Someone with this poor financial handling should not be buying more animals.  I mean, if the parrot gets sick, now she won't have any money for that either.  Amber told this person that if she could bring the pigs to Amber, Amber would take them to the vet.  She said, not without gas money.  I know gas is expensive, but she's only about an hour away, and paying for gas would be exponentially cheaper than paying for vet care for the 14 pigs that died and the 3 remaining pigs.  Needless to say, this person is now on our Do Not Adopt lists, and we have contacted other rescues to make them aware of this as well.  If someone wants to know who this is, let me know, I'll get you the name, but for here, let's just say don't deal with any rescues in Kocomo, IN.

In other news, I ordered the appetite stimulant/weight gain supplement from Fuzzies Kingdom for Winx, so he will be getting that in hopes of plumping him back up.  Got in some revitachin(?), something of the nature, supposed to help improve health, so he's currently on the 7 day dosage of that.  He's a tad bit heavier than the previous time (515 vs. 505), but every little bit helps!  Still bony, so the supplement hopefully will help with that.  He definitely is eating and pooing, but I don't know if he's not eating enough, or what.   I now have a second food bowl in the cage that I put some extra supplement and extra goodies in for him.  Can't hurt.  And putting it separate from his food keeps him from digging through his food bowl.

Everyone lately is emailing/calling about Ivan.  He is listed as being still under evaluation and on a waiting list hold, but people just ignore that and I have actually been asked to move someone ahead of everyone on my waiting list "because they really like him and want him."  Really?  All they know is what it says on the website
  • Ivan -- mosaic male chinchilla -- 5 months old -- ready approx. 6/17 (waiting list hold)
...not exactly tons of descriptive information.  I have been emailing them all back, saying, you know, there are 3-4 people on my waiting list wanting a young white male, I can contact them if all these people back out, but I wouldn't get any hopes up.... so far, no one's responded to those emails.

So, I have re-listed all the animals this month, hopefully that will kickstart some adoptions, as the rescue has been literally dead lately.  Just a few supply pickups from repeat customers that I see every so often, but nothing new, with everyone backing out lately.

Boom & Pow are finally off their medical watch.  The day prior to them going up for adoption, they developed loose poos.  Not really loose, but like, squishy when they'd step on them.  So I'd be scraping them off the shelves.  So, first few days, I give them just hay, shreddies, and so on.  Doesn't fix the problem. So, I give em probiotics, doesn't fix the problem.  So, I give em a dose of antibiotics and that doesn't immediately fix the problem either, so I figure give em a few days to see if it clears up on its own, as some chins are just prone to squishy poos every now and then.  Finally, maybe a week or two has passed since my first noticing the squishy poos, and it occurs to me, I don't know if they both have it.  So, I leave Boom in the cage, move Pow to one of the other cages, and by the next day -- neither has loose poos.  Of course.  Re-intro'd them and they are now ready to go be adopted.

I want to say that's it for the latest news.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

One little thing

So, not a lot has been going on, been slow at the rescue, but busy in all other areas of my life.  With my new job, my orders are starting to pile up, so those may take longer now than they have in the past, as I no longer have 24 hours a day to work on them.

Main reason for posting, though, is this -- about knowing when I will get more rescues or when I will adopt rescues.  Here's the thing.  I don't know.

Case in point.  I had someone text me today asking me if I had guinea pigs for adoption, which I do.  They asked if I had two specific ones, and I said something to the effect of, the one went home the other day, the other is still here.  Then they asked, "when are you going to get new ones in?"

Ok, first, this isn't a pet store, so in reality, there's no such things as "new ones," but I digress.  Regardless.... I don't know.  I told this person, right now, I'm already over my limit of guinea pigs, so I don't currently have any open cages to take in more.  Further explained, in order for me to take in more, I would need the current 3 adult males adopted out, as one of those cages is going bye-bye (like I said, over limit), and the other cage has the two adults, and I need no pigs in it to accept other pigs.  So I told em, it could be tomorrow, it could be next week, I don't know.  But I told em, for me to have new ones, several things need to happen:

1. three adult male pigs get adopted
2. someone contacts me wanting to drop off a pig
3. someone actually shows up at the rescue with a pig (you'd be amazed how few people that contact me about surrendering actually show up)
4. the pig stays here for 30+ days for evaluation/quarantine
5. the pig is put up for adoption

This isn't like one little thing, hence, I don't know if/when any of this will happen.

Moving on, they said a few more things and then asked, "well, will you still have two in a month?"  *facepalm*  That's like the same question just twisted a little.  Short answer is, I don't know.  I told them, if the pigs aren't adopted, sure.  Or I may have different ones if the pigs are adopted.  But I can't promise that the same animals will be here in any span of time if they're not on hold.

I once crunched the numbers, and the average critter is here about 3 months (that's including the 30 day eval/quarantine).  So, it's very possible the animal will be here a month from now, if it was just put up for adoption.  But, it's also very possible that animal has been here for 6 months and it's overdue to be going home.  The 3 months is one of those weird statistics, because I have some animals who never hit the adoption floor (like the two mosaics I current have, both are on hold, pending evaluation, to go to people on my waiting list), and other animals that will stay at the rescue for a years' time.  The average is 3 months, but it could vary widely.  Some months I adopt out a ton of animals.  There was one week, in 2012, where I adopted out 7 animals.  Some months, not so much.  Currently, I have two rats on hold for someone who's not getting back to me (so they may not be on hold much longer), and other than that, the emails/calls are not flowing in from people who want to adopt.  It's slow.  And I really can't predict this stuff.

I think what it all boils down to is this -- and this is just my viewpoint on things, but... -- if someone sees an animal and wants to adopt it, they should specify as such, even if they don't have the money to adopt it yet, they can put down a deposit on it to hold it for them, for a reasonable amount of time.  Asking if I will still have the animal, x months down the road, and then getting upset when I don't, is just a lose-lose for everyone.  I can't predict the future.  If you know someone who can, send them by, I could use that every now and then.