Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Some people think they're so clever...

So... I would post screenshots, but... no, you know what?  I'll post screenshots.  Hold up on those.

I save texts.  If we're having a conversation and you're set to come over on Monday and we set the time at 1 pm (this is not a post about being on time, but just for example), I will wait until you show up to delete those texts.  Now, I do that MAINLY because I want to be sure I have your number and I can reach you, to reach out, should you not show up, or should I need to reach you last minute like to cancel or reschedule or something.  But... it also shows me when you're not being completely honest. 

Case in point...

Wrong number, eh?  Liar, liar, pants on fire.  I took the screenshots, blurred out the emails and numbers, and deleted the text.  If they don't want to adopt, fine.  But don't try to lie and say, oh wrong number... when it's clearly not.  I could have fun with them and send screenshots... but it wouldn't do any good.  If they've decided not to adopt, they've decided not to adopt.  But how stupid... just say so.  That is all. 

Monday, December 3, 2018

Persistent... vs. Annoying

So, this may be a matter of opinion, and I totally understand that, but I want to share with you an example, as it's a good example of the difference between being persistent and showing interest, and turning into what an annoying pest.

Let me begin.

I posted one of our young guinea pigs up for adoption, fully aware that her color (the silver agouti) is a bit unusual and not often seen in rescue.  Almost immediately, someone contacted me, interested, that night.  I sent her the adoption form and told her I would need a deposit to hold and so on.  She has emailed back in appropriate time frames and everything, and at this point, she has sent me an adoption form (which I now need to look at) and sent me the email that I should send the invoice to.  This is reasonable.

On the other hand... I was at the expo the following day, and the phone rang.  First time, no message left.  Two minutes later, rings again, same number, they leave a message.  I'm at the expo, and I can't hear the phone all that well (not even at the expo, just normally), so I figure I will listen to it later.  So then the person texts me.  She explains in the text that she has emailed twice, and called.  I go to look and see how long ago the emails were, as I'm thinking, ok maybe I missed them from a few days ago or something.  She had sent both emails within the last 30 minutes.

Anyway.  In the texts, I tell her, there's someone else ahead of her interested in the guinea pig.  She tells me she would start driving here now if she thought that would help (it wouldn't... we're only first come first served if I don't already have someone in the process of adopting) and she tells me she's very upset that she's going to miss the guinea pig, she's just sick about it.  I tell her, I will let her know what happens with the first person interested, and I will get back to her.  She continues texting me, and eventually asks how long they have (I said somewhere they have a deadline).  Now, stupid me, I told her, but I should have told her it's none of her business, but I told her, they had until the end of the next day, or a bit more within reason if they are making an effort.  She has called two more times today and texted multiple times, asking, "did they follow through???"  Honestly, I am ignoring it all at this point.  No feeding the troll.  HAVE SOME PATIENCE, PEOPLE.  This is annoying.

I think, a lot of this may stem from the fact that we can get everything NOW.  You want food?  They can deliver it.  You want a furnace filter?  Order it on Amazon Prime and it can show up within 2 days.  That's fine, but... and this may come as a surprise to some people... I have a lot of animals up for adoption, which means that whoever I'm talking to is NOT the only person I'm talking to, and, as I am one person, that means someone has to have a modicum of goddamn patience and WAIT.

People like the one that won't leave me alone about the guinea pig... should the first home fall through, her pestering me to death makes it so that I would not even want to message her.  Maybe you find that mean of me, but that's just how I feel.  Irritating me to death isn't endearing for you. 

Now, this is a bit of an extreme (albeit true) example, but here's more what I feel is what I would consider persistent.  Maybe you sent an email, or a facebook message, or whatnot, and you don't hear back... within a day or two, not an hour (important to note.. also, still have other customers, no matter how you contact me)... then by all means, give me a call or send a text.  But contacting me on every method possible within 30 minutes just cause I haven't responded?  Little much, sorry...

Clearly Not Reading Posts -- Craiglist Style

So, I opened up my inbox today, and I had multiple posts about many of my craigslist ads for the chins.  Not necessarily a bad thing and mostly spaced a bit out, so it didn't make me think it was the same person.


When I opened them, they all read:

"Hey I saw your post and was wondering if he came with the cage and everything"

Had this been to one post, I can sometimes understand, but this was for 14 posts, one of them being my sale post that doesn't even list a specific chinchilla.  Here's the funny thing.  Out of all the posts they inquired about, two of the posts were for chins that CAN come with their cages / accessories... the rest just specify (as all my ads do), something along the lines of, this chinchilla comes with 2 pounds of food, a goodie bag, and a printed out version of our care packet.  Myself, personally, I would read that and assume, that's ALL the chin comes with (as in, they're not also throwing in a cage and just not mentioning it).

In case you're curious... I did not respond to any of these messages.  Clearly, they not only DIDN'T READ to see what it says the chin doesn't come with, but I'm POSITIVE they didn't read any of the chin descriptions either.  I'm not so dying to have chins leave as to waste my time on someone like this.

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Black Friday / Small Business Saturday

So, if you follow the facebook page at all, you know that we had a sale for Black Friday / Small Business Saturday.  We usually have a Black Friday Sale with an open house type thing, but since SBS was Saturday, this year we extended it to be a two day open house.

We had a great time meeting everyone!  We had a decent amount of adoptions, some pre-scheduled, some people that we'd talked to online that decided that Fri / Sat was a good day to stop by, some people we just met that day!  All great people.  We paired up some chins, and all in all, these chins went home:

a white ebony curly carrier female
a beige female
a black velvet male
a dark ebony female
a violet male
and Fluffy!

In addition... we had three chins that are now on hold with full payments and will be picked up around Christmas:

the white violet male
Bella & Luna

Yes, we are four weeks out from Christmas, and yes, we only hold for 14 days... but I will soon be posting on our website that we can board chins if people would like them held longer.  Some of you may be aware of us boarding chins in general, well now that people are asking about it for the holidays, might as well post that it's available, eh? 

For everyone's info, boarding is $15 per week per cage (so should you be boarding 4 chins all in separate cages, that can't be combined, you're at $60 per week).  For people wanting to hold chins, we are still doing our 14 day holds, which means there's currently still 2 weeks of boarding between now and Christmas.  Just for reference.

In addition to our chin sale, we also had our used cages at 25% off and our carriers all down to $7.  In addition, we had some safe chin wheels for sale.  We actually only sold one carrier, but that's ok, we sold 3 chin spins and several big cages!

This weekend is usually a great weekend for us, but like the expo a few weeks ago that surpassed all expectations, this weekend went above and beyond!  Between the adoptions, cage sales, chin spin sales, supply sales, and all that good stuff, the weekend brought in $1715,50!  Believe it or not, we've had more profitable weekends than that, but that's pretty well up there!  On our way to re-building what we had before the money was stolen!

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Chicago Pet Show -- Kane County

So, if you follow all of where we've been lately, you know it's been a busy month or two!  We FINALLY have a week of no expos... but I have a sale and this weekend is Black Friday and Small Business Saturday, so... you know what that means... MORE sales! 

But first, let me share with you what an awesome expo we had at Kane County last weekend.  We adopted, not one, not two, not three, but 11, yes ELEVEN animals!  Let me share with you some pictures of the adoptions:

Forgot to get a pic of a few of the adoptions, but here's who we had adopted:

Cardi B -- baby female guinea pig
pink white female chinchilla kit
Rufus -- baby male guinea pig
four female rats (two pairs)
Peanut Butter -- young female guinea pig
Bosco -- dark ebony male chinchilla
tan female chinchilla
Charlotte -- 7 year old standard grey female chinchilla

And some pics:

tan female chinchilla

Rufus -- baby male guinea pig

pair of female rats

pair of female rats

Peanut Butter -- young female guinea pig 

Bosco -- dark ebony male chinchilla

Charlotte -- standard grey female chinchilla

We also had a great expo in general.  Many people have heard me say that the more rescue-centered expos tend to be better for exposure, but not so much for adoptions / sales... this one just apparently had to prove me wrong!  But let me share with you how unusual this is... in all the years we've been doing expos (maybe 7-8? and I do mean the rescue-expos, not the AAE), we've never adopted out more than 1-2 chins or other animals per expo.  Most expos, we have not adopted out anything.  We started out in the fall adopting out a chin at the Chicago Pet Show -- Libertyville, and here, we adopted out a whopping 11(!!) animals!  Who-hoo! 

For the sales part of it, similar sort of thing.  The three Chicago Pet Show expos are the best of the rescue-themed expos as far as all of the ones we attend, as far as sales.  Many places we go and sell nothing, but of course, get exposure.  Well, at the Chicago Pet Shows, we usually can expect to break $100 in sales, maybe $150 if we're super lucky (over two days).  Want to know just how insane Kane County was this year??  We sold a whopping $531.00 in SUPPLIES!  Talk about insane, right?

So, you're probably wondering, ok, with the animals adopted and supply sales being that high, how much was brought in over the weekend?  Well, let me tell you!  Between the animal adoptions (and the final number is a tad skewed because the tan female and pink white female were babies that were being picked up at the expo, not actual "rescues" being adopted, but...) and sales and whatnot, we made a whopping $1,176!  All of this is helping to replenish the money stolen back in April, but of course, first and foremost, to keep this place going!  Thanks to everyone for their support!

I have to give thanks to my super great helpers.  Jim was there and walked around with our chins during the presentation so people could pet them, and then Chris was at the booth with us and helped the people with adoption forms, questions, helping with signs... she did a little of everything (as she always does).  Everyone who helped out was awesome!  Thanks for all the help!

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Little Quick Updates

So, this will, for once, be a quick post with little updates.

Remember those three custom cages that I built and was stuck with when the buyer flaked out?  The last one sold a few days ago! Who-hoo!  Now I have room to set up, clean, and offer for sale some of our other used cages (that were previous blocked in by those custom cages).


You know how I'm always talking about how volunteers are great... when they show up?  Tis the season!  I had someone email about volunteering (need to get back to them), and also, two people call.  The one called and wanted to come as soon as possible, as she has 40 hours to do and wants to get them done sooner rather than later.  We agreed that she could come the following morning (she called in the evening) and I would have preferred a little later in the day, but she said, she'd be here at 10.  10 goes by, 10:15 goes by... about 10:30 she calls and says something went wrong with her phone, and she needs her phone charged while she's here (cause apparently I have no plugs? you all can charge your phones while you're here, in case that needs clarification), and so she's gonna finish charging it and then walk here, and it's about a 30 minute walk.  Assuming she was charging it from dead, I'll be generous and say ok, maybe that takes 30 mins, plus the 30 minute walk, so she shoulda been here before 12 noon.  As I write this, it is 5:45 pm and she never called or showed up again.

I did get another call though from someone else who has court ordered community service they need to do.  I told them they would have to start next week, as I have stuff going on this weekend, and they said they will call me back next week and we'll work something out. They were thrilled that they could come potentially in the evening, so hopefully this one will pan out.


Two of our long-term residents at the rescue were adopted.  And even, TOGETHER!  Chili Mac (who has been fostered in Island Lake for awhile now) and Layla went to their new home together, a few days ago.  Their new mom, Katelyn, had intended to adopt Chili Mac back in April (both have been here 1.5+ years), but then found some other needy chins to adopt, and knew that ours would stay in good hands, while those chins, eh maybe not.  So, she took home the other chins... but then was an awesome person and contacted us when she wanted to open her home to even more chins!  Yay!  So she contacted us and asked about Chili Mac and also asked about other potentially difficult to adopt out chins, and that's where Layla came up (if you're not familiar, she was the 10 year old hetero beige culled breeder with the watery eye), and she ended up taking the two home!  She's hoping to bond them, with very slow intros, but if not, not the end of the world.  Yay for those two girls finding homes!


Another success story is ChiChi, now known as Buddy.  ChiChi was an 8.5 year old standard grey fur chewer.  Very sweet chin, but the young standard greys aren't super desirable, much less a senior one.  Well, one of my previous fosters (turned foster failure... twice... so they don't foster any more haha) occasionally would ask me about if I had a chin that I thought would pair with their Benny (one of the foster failure chins).  This time when they asked, ChiChi came to mind.  They brought Benny over, we did a quick intro to see that the two wouldn't absolutely hate each other (they didn't) and then the family continued the intros at home, and now a few days later, the chins are sleeping cuddled up all together.  Let's hear it: awwwwwwwwww.


And lastly... that same foster failure family, Claire & Paul, asked me if I had an air purifier, when we were talking about rescue needs.  I specified, I have an air scrubber  (basically, a commercial unit... cost ~$1800 a few years ago.. for a refurbished one... so a very nice unit), but the sterilizing bulbs burnt out and my last filter finally went out... right in April after all the money was stolen.  So, it's been sitting like a big paperweight, about $300ish short of parts, since then.  Well, Claire and Paul are awesome, and wanted to contribute, so they donated $300 towards us getting the parts!  I have since reached out to the company, and they got me a new estimate today (see below), and we will be getting the parts and the air scrubber back up and running soon!  YAYYYY!!

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Liar, Liar, Pants On Fire

If you lie to me, don't think I don't know.

Remember that chin that was surrendered to the vet's office due to abuse, and the vet called me to make sure I didn't adopt the family any more chins?  This post --

They texted me today, asking if I wanted to buy the cage.  At first, I was nice.  I asked, what happened to the chin.  I figured you know, they didn't respond in a few days after I got that call from the vet, when I asked how the chin was, and then when I emailed the adoption paperwork to the mom, and asked her how things were going, so I thought (stupidly, but you know) they'd be straight up and tell me the chin died, or whatever.  NOPE!!!!!

Be honest, people.  I often know more than I let on.  And I was not having a good night.  So, here was the convo:

I suppose this is probably needless to say, but I never got a response... which tends to be an admission of guilt.  So, there's that.

I also never did hear back from the vet, so I imagine the chin did pass.  RIP those two poor chinnies... and the third is still here, looking for a home.

That is all I can handle for tonight...

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Dust at PetStores vs. Here

So, the other day I was at Petsmart getting dog food and I happened to walk down the small animal aisle and I saw the dust and it made me think to post this...

Now, I get people all the time who get a chin here, but then when I ask if they need any other supplies, they say, "no, they'll go to the pet store on the way home."  Of course, that is their choice, but I usually mention that supplies are cheaper here, and that's why I offer.  Some get supplies here, some go to the pet store.  Of course, the pet store has set hours and I can understand that it is convenient (potentially considerably more convenient at times), but I wanted to share an example I found with you from Petsmart, of why I even mention the cost.

This is the dust the Petsmart in Schererville carries.

In case you can't read that, the large one contains 3 pounds and is $13.49, and the small one contains 13 ounces (16 ounces is a pound... so less than a pound) and is $7.69.

Compare this to here, where we charge $1.25 per pound for dust.  Often, we even have those same jars, as a lot of people drop them off here and we wash and refill with our dust.

So, for our prices... the 3 pound jar would cost $3.75 and the 13 ounce jar would be $1.00.

While I understand convenience making a difference... to me, my perspective... $3.75 versus $13.49... and $1.00 versus $7.69... I'd make an effort to go the cheaper route.  But, that's just me.

And this price difference is why I offer... I hear people often comment that chinchillas are so expensive... my reply is always -- it depends where you shop (and often these are the same people that I know I sell supplies, yet choose to go to the pet store instead, lol).