Have you ever made a mistake? I made a huge mistake on April 9, 2013.
Have you ever made a mistake? Well I admit it, I made a horrible mistake that ate me up inside to the point where my conscious was making me physically ill. I gave up a little dog to the Hillside SPCA after rescuing her a month before. I allowed my patience to become rundown & I simply gave up on her. I felt defeated.
Her name is Penny & she was rescued by me and my husband from a hoarder who kept her in a crate most of her young life. So after we thought we couldn't take it anymore we made the hard decision to hand her over to see if they could find a better home with someone who had more patience than we did.
I went there, broken down & in tears, and handed her over to Barb along with a $100.00 donation. Barb promised me that they would find her a good home but she also knew I was very torn over giving Penny up so she gave me her word that if we changed our minds within a few days that we could come get Penny back and that they wouldn't do anything for a few days to make sure we made the right decision on surrendering her. Well, after realizing what I did to this sweet little girl, I called less than 48 hours later to speak with Barb about coming back up there and taking Penny back & giving her the loving home that I had promised Penny I would do the day we met.
I spoke to a shelter worker who informed me that Barb was off until Saturday so I told her my tale and how I made the biggest mistake of my life and that I wanted to come back up there right away and bring Penny back to where she belongs. The worker told me she was already adopted but the tone in her voice told me otherwise. I knew Penny was still there but I didn't know what to do about it. I figured I was stuck until Saturday when I could speak to Barb.
I called into the veterinary office that I have used for years & spoke to them about what I did & how I ended up losing Penny because she was already adopted out. I was told to stick by the phone and that they would call me right back. We quickly hung up & I sat here for a few minutes waiting to see what was happening. My phone rang & it was the vet office calling me back to tell me that they spoke to Barb & I could go up to get Penny. Why did the shelter worker tell me she was adopted already?. Didn't they want this little doggie to actually have a home. I don't know of any shelter that would think a life within shelter walls could be a better alternative than an actual home for a pet. From other horror stories I have heard & read about Hillside, I realized my experience with them was also going to be turning into one of these horror stories. At this point I wasn't only angry, I was becoming terrified.
I left within 5 minutes of speaking to the vet to go retrieve Penny. I get there and I was treated lower than dirt. I felt as if I was on trial for being a child molester, all because I made an honest mistake while being totally mentally and physically rundown. They tried giving me a difficult time over getting Penny spayed while overlooking the fact that she needs a surgery for a medical problem. Both were already on the book to be done through my vet's office. I was still forced to use their phone to make the appointment. I was told I was not allowed to call from my cell phone so I was led into a private office to be forced to use their phone. I called the vet's office & I was asked if they were making me call from their facility. I answered "yes". I was then asked if they were in the room with me, again, I answered "yes". I was then told to hand the phone over to the worker which I did right away. The rest of the phone call between the worker & my vet's office took about 30 seconds. After that it seemed to me like the stalling they were making me endure was coming to an abrupt end. It took about another 10 minutes or so until I was reluctantly handed back my Penny girl.
I had another $100.00 in my pocket that I was going to donate because of them helping me out the way they did but after being lied to and treated as if I was the lowest form of life imaginable, I kept the money & decided that I will no longer donate anymore bags of dog food or money to them ever again. I made a mistake in more ways then one but I learned something these past few days... the most important one being that the horror stories about their staff not being honest with people are true among other problems.
So, if you ever feel you have no choice but to surrender a pet for any reason, please, do yourself & your animal a favor and take it anywhere but there. They don't care that people are human and can (& do) make mistakes every once in a while but they will be more then happy to treat you like dirt while looking down their noses at you.
The happy part of my tale is this: Penny saw Smokey (my 8 year old dog) and Smokey saw Penny & they were so very happy. They gave chase to each other all over the house. They took a break and got a drink with one another from the same water dish at the same time & proceeded to play again. I had to give Penny a bath so after some playtime we headed upstairs to get the smell of the shelter off of her. While bathing her I had to pick off the fleas she picked up while being up there but now she smells pretty, she's all cleaned up & is flea free and in my arms taking a much needed nap while being held and loved my me and Smokey who has become Penny's foot rest.