Consider this true story…… a woman in Memphis, Tennessee was murdered by someone she knew. He was someone who had done work around her house so he knew the lay out of her home and knew that, even though she had nine greyhounds, he was not in any danger of being attacked. He knew that she lived alone with her dogs. He was caught when a camera captured his image while he was using the woman’s ATM card.
Five days later, the police found her body in her home. For five days her dogs were without food or water. The adoption group that she worked with took all of the dogs (which she had adopted) and they were subsequently adopted into other homes. Fortunately, she was an active member of her greyhound adoption group because if she hadn’t been, all of the dogs would have been removed by authorities and perhaps would never have had a chance to live out the remainder of their lives.
The lesson here is that we should have a plan in place for someone to take care of our dogs if something happens to us. Our dogs depend upon us to take care of them. They cannot take care of themselves. If you go on a trip and leave them at a kennel, please think about what would happen if you didn’t come back home. Also, consider what you would do if you ended up hospitalized from an accident or illness and could not get back home. Who would know that you had a dog at home waiting for you? Who would take care of your animals while you are sick, incapacitated, etc.
Please take the time to sit down and work out an emergency plan that will work for you. One suggestion is to place a card in your wallet next to your driver’s license stating that you have animals at home and to please call the number of a person you designate (and who can be called) to get them. Work it out with family members, friends, co-workers to take care of your dogs if something happens to you. Keep this information current.
Also, if you don’t survive, do you have someone designated who will take your pet? You should have your designated caregiver call our group to inform us that they are to pick up the dog in the event that we get a call that your pet is alone and we take it back. Our group would probably be the logical contact if you don’t have another person designated and we would take it and start looking for a home for it. We need to know if you have other people who will look out for you so that we don’t place a dog that already has a home to go to. If you prepare a will to include money to care for your dog, don’t leave the money to the dog. It will be much more difficult to get the legalities sorted out. Leave money to your designated caregiver to use to take care of your dog. You can be specific about how the funds are to be spent.
Do not assume that your greyhound adoption group will always be around as a safety net. Many adoption groups go out of business. What would happen if the organization you adopted your greyhound from went out of business? Our group has taken in many greyhounds from people needing help and the group they adopted the dog from is no longer operating. Please take the time to think through all the possibilities.
Life may be going great but we all know that anything can happen at any time. Please care enough about your dog(s) to make plans in the event of an unforeseen emergency.