rescue is rescue because it has a few iron-clad rules that are different from the rest of the world's....like you never turn a blind eye, or engage in convenient fairy tales, or pretend you don't know what you really do know as far as your rescued animals go. you find a way to deal with whatever it is you have to deal with..and quite frankly you accept the responsibility that if you absolutely cannot deal with it...either it really can't be dealt with OR..you are just unwilling to do it.
but sugar coating shit in rescue is the most irresponsible thing you can possibly do to the animals....next to...making things seem worse then they already are.
for example...you cannot portray a dog like jesse who bites as some poor little misunderstood waif, who just needs a kind and experienced person in his life to make everything perfect again.
jesse can be a dick-head...just like people can also be dick heads. and i think it is not only dangerous but also disrespectful to him to minimize and make up a bunch of excuses for his biting behavior.
dogs have inherent personalities just like people do..they are not these mindless blank slates just waiting for the right person to write the right formula to define them...they are themselves not mirrors of who we say.
and i am also not going to tell you that jesse is an unpredictable, biting raging beast just so i can put him down and be done with him. we know jesse bites so we make sure he doesn't actually bite anyone. and despite being a dick-head..jesse is also a sweet and loving dog. just like us...dogs can have many sides to them..they are not just one single thing all of the time. and i cannot make him into the monster he is not just so i can get rid of him.
and in sugar coating..i cannot sit here and pretend that someone(s) like wilbur and charlotte have not been extremely difficult and challenging for us to rescue. cuz someday someone may find themselves in our shoes and think..hey this was supposed to be super easy and convenient and since it isn't..i don't have to follow thru. i absolutely cannot pretend to send them on to a working pig farm (no matter how well those pigs are cared for) without admitting that there are 2 fates for working pigs..breeding and slaughter. and i personally don't rescue animals so they can be bred or slaughtered.
rescuing old dogs sounds like this absolutely warm and fuzzy and heart filling thing to do...until you learn that they still have easy or difficult personalities like any dog...jesse is 15 now,, and he is STILL a big dick!.
they have issues like incontinence, dementia's, and massive ongoing vet bills attached, and you can't train them to not be incontinent...you can't train them not to be confused, you can't make them be young and healthy again...you just have to deal day after day with whatever they happen to throw at you.
old animals are simply a ton of work...don't get me wrong..i think it is great work but work is still work.
rescuing old cats can be even harder ... by nature cats are not cooperative, go with the flow kind of ceatures. quite often the little bastards are totally ungrateful and either stop eating in protest or start slashing/biting in anger....and when they get stressed, they get really sick which opens up a whole new can of worms to have to deal with.
when you are rescuing..whether one or many..there are a bunch of things that you can expect and at the top of the list is..it will not be easy. so the first iron clad thing thhat you have to ensure is...are you really up to it? i mean...are you REALLY up to it? can you do it? can you follow thru? can you ponder, plan and stretch to do whatever it is that you have to do? and the second part of being iron clad is...can you be honest? can you tell it like it is? the good, the bad, the triumphs, the shame without making the good stuff sound even better until you are the bright shining hero in this and the bad stuff sticky with so much sugar coating it should make you gag? (trust me..at times the temptation is there to send a couple of inconvenient pigs to that fairy tale happy pig farm as quietly as you possibly can!)
rescue is a great thing to do as long as you actually do it. but..pretending it is some story that you have already written out the story line for, pre-writing the script on how it will go...changing the intrinsic parts to make it feel good or rescue acceptable...that doesn't really seem fair to the animals.
rescue is full of mistakes..it is full of regrets..it is full of hard things that sometimes magically work out and should have been easy things that fall flat in disaster.
the iron clad in rescue is...come what may..do the very best that you can, and follow the animals thru to the end..live the real life they are living and try not to pretend.
it won't make rescue perfect but..it will keep it true.