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.
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.
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.
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.