Dog rescues and shelters are seeing an alarming rate of puppy returns from the height of the coronavirus pandemic as the world reopens (Pictures: KDVR/The Denver Post)
Puppy adoptions were through the roof at the height of the coronavirus pandemic, but it appears that many new dog moms and dads are having a change of heart and returning the pups.
One canine shelter in Colorado has had double the number of dogs returned in the past four months than they typically have in a whole year. There are now more than 200 dogs up for adoption, according to Moms and Mutts Colorado Rescue, a nonprofit dedicated to the wellbeing of dams and their litters.
‘It’s awful. We watch these dogs that come in the front door,’ Moms and Mutts Colorado Rescue executive director Aron Jones told KDVR on Friday. ‘Their people drop them off, they sign all the paperwork and then the dog sits at the door and cries.’
The nonprofit made many changes to its adoption process to try to curb people from returning the dogs at the end of the pandemic, but has still seen an ‘extreme number’ of returns, Jones said.
‘I think what is happening, the world is opening up, people are going back to work, they’re traveling. People aren’t just lonely anymore, so the dogs are not necessarily fitting into their lifestyles,’ Jones said. ‘And they are returning them instead of trying to make adjustments to keep their dog now that the world is opening up.’
Moms and Mutts Colorado Rescue is going through 25 to 30 bags of dog food weekly, with some adult dogs consuming an entire bag a week. They are in need of food and donations.
‘We really just need to be able to sustain these dogs until they get adopted, really become a financial burden for us,’ Jones said. ‘Without any adoption fees, we are dying.’
Jones urges people who adopt to explore doggie daycare or training before deciding to return the pooches.
Animal Rescue of the Rockies has been inundated with requests to foster or transport dogs from shelters that are too full.
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