I have a lot of animal rescue stuff on my facebook (quelle surprise!) and every now and then I have to bite my tongue and hold my hands behind my back due to amazingly stupid, (I hope) well-meaning but ultimately fatally stupid people.
One of these came along last night. A friend posted a photo of a lovely cat looking for a home. A friend of hers had rescued it but was unable to offer the kitty a permanent home. So far, so good. I always ask for the following information when a little one needs a home – age, sex, current location, reason why the animal needs a home, is the animal used to other animals of the same species/another species, is it used to kids, any health issues/ special needs and if a dog, how much exercise it needs.
Now, people who are not used to rescue often do not include many of these details. If you don’t do it, you tend not to think about all the ramifications but the last thing I want to do is put an animal who has had a bad start into a home for which he/she is unsuited and has to be rehomed again. I want to rehome for life. So I think about all the next steps that might be involved.
As was in this case and I went back and asked for these details. Bless her, my friend said she would go get them.
But then popped up one of her friends. Okay, so I am a snob – bite me. When I saw the txtspeak from a grown man, I shuddered. When his txtspeak was then littered with exclamations about how he “wants” the cat, she is so cute, I just knew.
No thought to whether he could provide her with a home that would suit her, no thought to the future, just an “I want” and then … then he mentioned that he had had a kitten but it had died. So I gently asked what had happened. Oh she never came home one night. And then I asked how old she was. Four months.
He let a 16 week old kitten (to give some perspective here, kittens are not properly ready to leave their Mums until 12 weeks) out. At night. And now he wants another cat and he’s hoping if he shows enough enthusiasm, someone will just hand the cat over. So I bit my tongue and sat on my hands, begged for the right words and when nothing came out of my brain except “you stupid trolloping twatwit”, I logged off.
I logged back on again when I had found the right words. Carefully, I mentioned that most rescues suggest that kittens are not let out until they are six months old, spayed and have had their second lot of vaccinations. This keeps them safe from fights, illnesses and unwanted pregnancies. Needless to say, I got no response.
This afternoon, the complete and utter useless piece of self-indulged humanity sent me a private message asking whether there was any news as he wanted the cat. He hadn’t bothered to read the conversation on the photo to see that in fact I was not the carer of the cat. I very tersely suggested he contact my friend instead.
After all, what room is there left to think about the animal when your brain is full of “me, me, me!!!” instead?