Wednesday, November 20, 2013

What MIGHT You Accomplish if You Let Go of Your Fears?

Twenty years ago I remember listening to an audiotape from a self-help guru telling the story of his aunt who wouldn't drive on the freeway because she couldn't merge.  Although she was a competent driver otherwise, she had this deep-seated fear of merging and what MIGHT happen if she tried to merge onto the freeway. She  limited her life to where she could drive in her local neighborhood and via side roads.  She missed out on many vacations, family gatherings, special events, etc. all because of what MIGHT have happened.

Sad, but true, I see this sort of thinking all of the time in animal welfare. Shelter and rescues make policies based on what MIGHT happen.  They are held hostage by their fears, instead of looking at the research and basing decisions on logic and common sense.

These are just few examples of what makes me beat my head on my desk daily. I'm sure you can think of others:
  • We can't adopt out pets as gifts because they MIGHT be returned.
  • We can't adopt out black cats at Halloween because they MIGHT be used for evil purposes.
  • We can't do same day adoptions because people MIGHT have buyer's remorse.
  • We can't post pictures of found pets on our Facebook page because people MIGHT try to reclaim a pet that isn't theirs.
  • We have to do home visits because people MIGHT have unknown dangers lurking in their household.
  • We can't adopt out barn cats because people MIGHT think that means it is okay to let cats outdoors.
  • We can't post our adoptables on Craigslist because people MIGHT use them for bait or research.

Nine thousand animals per day die in our animal shelters in America.  The greatest risk to companion animals is not what MIGHT happen if you take a chance on trusting the public. The greatest risk to companion animals is that they will be killed in an animal shelter.

Be bold.  Merge onto that freeway and see what is possible when you stop being held hostage by your fears. The animals are depending on you.

1 comment:

  1. Kathy, you are right on!! Not to mention the rescues that insist that adopters feed their pets expensive premium food, insist on fenced yards etc.etc, etc. for every animal that is held on to "because" at least one is put down.