It is sad whenever a dog is surrendered to a shelter – having once felt the love of a family only to have it ripped away. But for a dog like Pinky, it is the nature of her being surrendered that makes her story such an emotional roller coaster.
Pinky was found in her carrier at the door of the Sacramento SPCA with all her toys, her bed, and a note for the rescuers. The note, written in Pinky’s voice, expressed the surrendering family’s rationale for giving up their dog, as well as their deep regrets that it had come to this.
Here is the kicker – Pinky was given up because she had fleas.
The note stated that Pinky’s fleas would not go away and that the family was too destitute to afford help. In the note, the family is clearly distressed by their situation, but felt wholeheartedly that giving up Pinky was the only reasonable decision.
What makes it even more upsetting is that the family was wrong.
Had the family enlisted the help of the shelter rather than leaving Pinky on their doorstep like a baby at a firehouse there is a good chance they would have been able to keep their dog. Alas, Pinky was dropped off anonymously, meaning there is no way to determine where she came from.
Moreover, because of the nature of her drop off, a lot about her is left up to speculation. Typically when someone surrenders a dog, they tell the shelter the dog’s approximate age, breed, temperament, and whether they get along with other pets or children. Not having that information, the Sacramento SPCA now has to do a lot of guess work to find out how to best get Pinky adopted.
The overriding consensus among people at the shelter is that the family who surrendered Pinky were dealing with a full on flea infestation. Pinky certainly had been ravaged by these little critters, but “we treated the source of the problem…with a topical flea preventative,” said Sarah Varanini, an employee of the Sacramento SPCA. So while their home may need to be fumigated, in terms of clearing up their dog all the surrendering family had to do was go out and buy some Frontline Plus.
What that means for the family is, despite surrendering their beloved dog, their house is still going to need to be treated for fleas! Now, unless they plan on giving up their house as well, they have yet to escape this itchy problem.
However, hindsight is 20/20, this family made a painful mistake that cost them the companionship of their beloved dog, and now Pinky has to find a new home. If you are in the Sacramento area and are (or know of) someone looking for a lovely, little pooch, visit the Sacramento SPCA site and email them about setting up a time to visit with Pinky or any of their other wonderful pups.
And if you ever have a dog that comes to have fleas, before you surrender them to a shelter, please consider PetPlus – a membership service that could save you hundreds a year on flea and tick meds, as well as heartworm and prescription meds too.