realistically, both phoebe and clyde are huge problems for me in terms of management of the whole. now i am not going to nuke either one of them cuz it is not their fault they are both messed up. phoebe's ADDH and neurosis and clyde's brain damage are just more difficult to deal with special needs. but in terms of actual and real risk for harm, it is in fact not that great. not to say they won't bite someone, human or animal if i don't keep them safe, but they aren't going to maim or kill anyone altho they may drive me insane.
it is so much easier to care for the dexter's, the lexie's, the jeds, the toby's, the roscoe's, the bill's... but unfortunately that is not the only kind of animal that needs help. the phoebe's and the clyde's do too and not many people are willing or able to help them.
when an animal comes to saints, there is only one criteria to their staying...they cannot pose a significant risk for harm to one of the other animals. some still get in here, carly and jesse for example. but we don't always know what is coming til they actually arrive and settle in. then we manage them, in carly's and jesse's case, they are kept isolated from the others. others are kept separate from some, like some dogs and cats.
it all comes down to risk management and harm reduction and when i hit the wall and can't do either, then if we can't find anywhere else for them to go, we help them to pass from here. i make no secret of the fact that i have had to euthanize for extreme danger a very few times in the past 20 years...4 times to be exact. but i don't do it lightly and i don't do it unless there is no other choice.
i just want to make this real clear here, before the rumours start flying, clyde is not a vicious or unsalvageable dog. he has already been salvaged and he has done really well. he is an epileptic dog with brain damage who will one day die as a result his disease. until that time, while it is safe and in his best interests, he will continue to be cared for by me. there are those who will not agree with my allowing him to continue to live and there will be those who will not agree with me when i decide to help him die...but he is not in anyone's care except mine. his life and the quality of that life and the ending of that life is my burden of responsibility.
and that is what doing rescue means to me, accepting the responsibility, easy like lexi or hard like clyde (or really freaking irritating, like phoebe.)