Rescue Journal

THE number ONE reason an animal becomes at risk...

Carol  ·  Jan. 25, 2009

for rehoming, surrendering, or incontinence and it becomes an even bigger more complicated issue if it happens to be a saint's animal.

the incontinence could be emotional or behavorial, it could be due to illness or does not soon as they start pissing or crapping in the house...sooner or later, they are almost always out of there one way or another.

so let's be honest about it, let's not blame the animal and make them pay the ultimate price and pretend they are gone for a bunch of other reasons. let's just own up and say..."can't deal with this."

and then smart, know limits and accept them, in the future.......stay away from cats, senior animals in general and a lot of little dog breeds....don't make the same mistake twice.

if a person cannot find a way to deal with body waste in a low stress, respectful and compassionate manner...then do not go there, especially in senior care because the animal at some point is going to lose.

we do not euthanize incontinent animals...we do not care if an animal is continent or not. we do not allow our adoptive or our foster families to euthanize incontinent animals either. so fostering or adopting from saints means that either you are ok with incontinence issues, now or in the future..or you are ok with returning the animal to us if at some point it becomes an issue.

there is no middle road on this, no negotiation, no getting around it one way or another, no coming up with other excuses to cover up the real issue. know thyself really well and know saints really well too. there is no use in pretending that eventually the time won't really come...if they get old enough, it most certainly will....and no saints animal... past, present or future will ever be euthanized for is just not ever going to happen.

i have no problem with people reaching their limit and being unable to take a step further...but see that limit coming and get that animal back here BEFORE they have no second chance.
we need to be fair, be kind, give them a chance at finding happiness is NOT their fault....if they could help their incontinence, trust me they would.

we need to think long and hard about what senior care means...cuz an 8 yr old might be fine in that department but might have a real house soiling issue at fifteen. and not fair to stress out an ancient one because we forget that bladders and bowels grow old along with everything else.

we need to be honest and avoid the old wives platitudes....i have lived with HUNDREDS of incontinent does NOT embarrass them, it does NOT upset them in the least, it does NOT strip them of their is a natural part of aging and they get this, it is no big deal.... upsets a human....then it stress's them out because they just stressed out someone...and THAT strips them of their dignity, THAT makes them feel embarrassed because loud and clear, they heard someone say..."this is not good" and they understood.

incontinence is a vicious circle...the more it happens, the more upset and unhappy everyone gets...why be unhappy? why make the animal be unhappy...why even think for a second that ending their life will make it all good?...honestly, it just makes them dead.
let's make it fair, let's make it right, let's not worry too much about mistakes and breaking hearts, let's just try to keep them happy and really is ok to bring them back and let me worry about pee and poop and happy....i am really good at all of's a weird and funky but uniquely useful is why i love what i do.

once a saint always a saint and that means forever safe from the unhappy risks of incontinence issues.



One of your best posts. Still can't understand people for whom death seems a perfectly rational solution to pee and poo around the house.

Chris T

At our house we have laminate and we wear shoes in the house. There is a bucket at each end of the house and it is just cleaned up. No worries.

Tucker is in a belly band with a pad as a big dog with an incontinence problem means lots of urine. He is completely manageable in the house. Occasionally there is a little dribble and it is just cleaned up. All animals have accidents at some point or another whether because of age or they are sick. There is no point in getting upset about it they can't help it.


"it is a natural part of aging"

Yup it sure is! And it happens to us too! I hope people who dump incontinent pets will also get dumped once they start to leak themselves.

Our 19 yr old kitty occasionally has accidents and there's no way we'd ever get rid of her. It's not fun especially if you step in it first thing in the morning but it's not a huge deal. Clean up... and then go and cuddle her and make sure she's ok!


No, I don't believe he felt ashamed/embarrassed after I told him it was fine.

I imagine he read my body language, heard my tone, saw that I was personally okay with it, and he was fine.


was he ashamed? or did he suddenly realize he was weak and vulnerable? and whatever it was (because i can't read their minds anyway, i just guess)did he continue to feel upset when he knew you were ok?

the animals i get here because of incontinence did not have the ones they love telling them it was ok. the "it's ok, no big deal, no problem babe" they hear here for the very first time.

i do believe that dogs especially, read us as their moral code...their code of "right" or "wrong" " good" or "bad" to a large degree depends on what they hear us say.

this is why they do not chase the farm animals or argue very often with each other when i am really upsets makes me REALLY is not that they think personally it is a " bad" thing to do (they think it is what dogs are supposed to do)...but they know that I think it is "bad" so they try not to do it...especially if i am around to see.

for dogs that love us, whose lives are built around cooperating with us...they read our moral gauge for what is ok.

and 90% of humans cannot and will not truly be ok with body waste...we think it is "dirty", that's how we have been raised...odd when you think about it, because we carry it around INSIDE of us...when it is on the is not touching us at all.

dogs left on their own however...will roll in urine and feces...they sometimes eat it or lick it...they do not have the hang ups we have...around here they see it only as something that goes in and out and that we clean up to make it go away and keep it tidy around here. nothing to be "ashamed" or "upset" about.

and i am not saying animals want to live in body waste because they don't...animals like being clean and dry too...they don't want it on or near their person unless they choose sometimes to roll in poop.

but we make it the big deal or we make it nothing at all...we tell them how they should feel or if they should worry....left on their own, they will just move away and forget it was them at all.



"we need to be honest and avoid the old wives platitudes….i have lived with HUNDREDS of incontinent animals…it does NOT embarrass them, it does NOT upset them in the least, it does NOT strip them of their dignity…it is a natural part of aging and they get this, it is no big deal…. UNLESS…it upsets a human….then it stress’s them out because they just stressed out someone…and THAT strips them of their dignity, THAT makes them feel embarrassed because loud and clear, they heard someone say…”this is not good” and they understood.

I beg to differ.

When my Jack was being nailed by Hemangiosarcoma, and the drugs made him pee where he laid, he was indeed embarrassed. That boy and I went through everything in our lives, together. I never once winced at his problems...never once grimaced or thought "DAMN!". Not once.

But I saw his face, when he peed all over his back end the first time. It wasn't my imagination at all Carol. He was thoroughly embarrassed.

I held his face in my hands, and told him that all was right. It was okay. I told him I was okay with it all. No problem my babe!

He understood. No more shame.

They DO get embarrassed.