23
   

Too old to adopt kittens!

 
 
Reyn
 
Reply Thu 10 Sep, 2009 08:59 pm
The story below (I hope it's readable enough) is about an elderly woman who was not allowed to adopt kittens from a private pet adoption agency, due to her age.

I have to agree with the agency's policy of not allowing seniors over age 70 to adopt young cats. As a matter of fact, I think 70 is even perhaps a bit on the high side. This agency is a cat-only rescue group, but I would extend this to dogs, if they had them, too.

My wife volunteered for some time for this same agency working out of our local Petsmart. She said that so many older cats never get adopted, because many only wanted very young kittens, or slightly older ones. This is a shame, because older cats could make wonderful pets, too.

It's all well and fine that the lady in the story says that her daughter will make arrangements for her pets in the event of her death. What she fails to realize is that they will be that much older (her last cats were 21 & 18), and very likely not as adoptable as a young kitten. Sometimes, too, a cat will stop eating, due to pining for the loss of its owner.

Again, when this woman complains, "That's not right. That is prejudice", in response to be turned down to adopt a kitten, she really is not thinking of the animal's best welfare, but rather of her own needs. What would have been so wrong in adopting a 5 year old cat?

How do you feel about this issue? Is the agency's policy right or wrong?

http://i66.photobucket.com/albums/h246/Reyn2244/tooold3.jpg
 
Reyn
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Sep, 2009 09:08 pm
Late edit:

I think my main beef with this is that the older cats in the shelter are mainly ignored. Don't they deserve a loving and caring home, too?

If it was you, would you consider a 5 year old cat, for example?
Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Sep, 2009 09:14 pm
@Reyn,
I'm still thinkin'...

so many rules.

but if you have to draw a line...

back later.

(i'm tryin' to get gram to give in and get another pet, and she is way over 70)
edgarblythe
 
  3  
Reply Thu 10 Sep, 2009 09:18 pm
70 is too many pets, no matter who you are.
Chumly
 
  2  
Reply Thu 10 Sep, 2009 09:22 pm
I read the article to my wife and she quipped "The old lady looks after them too well and they are living too long, wait until we are that age, any cat we get won't last!"

Now don't expect me to fully understand her humor or intent, but there you go pretty much ad verbatim.
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  2  
Reply Thu 10 Sep, 2009 09:35 pm
@Rockhead,
Rockhead wrote:

(i'm tryin' to get gram to give in and get another pet, and she is way over 70)


Good. Good for her, and better than a cat or dog living out its life in a shelter, assuming a no kill shelter. Lots of people die before they are 30, too.
Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Sep, 2009 09:42 pm
@roger,
yeah, she's had 3 "last dogs"...

i was gonna give her bubba, but she's a little brain dead sometimes (bubba) and i think gram would do better starting with a kitten and raising it right.

if i found the right temperament in an older cat, i would be ok with it. (dink was not a baby when we hooked up)
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Sep, 2009 09:49 pm
It has been proven that pets helps keep old people engaged in life and with quality of life, and people matter more (a lot more) than pets. This is a no brainer......... no age limit.
0 Replies
 
Ceili
 
  3  
Reply Thu 10 Sep, 2009 10:37 pm
Good lord. We are now denying the elderly pets 'cause they might not make as long as the cat? WTF, now we are infringing on the rights of human beings in favour of cats. Are you kidding me? This woman is right, they are discriminating against her.
My grandparents didn't die till they were 98/99 yrs old. I'm allergic to the damn things, but my granny always had her pussies, 2 Siamese and a Persian. We weren't always around but the cats were and it was a mutually beneficial relationship for all. The cats lived a good to a good old age on the farm.... they weren't given up.
Why should the elderly be denied the oppourtunity to raise a kitten on the off chance they may die. A 10 years old could die raising Lassie. Bureaucracy sucks.
roger
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Sep, 2009 10:48 pm
@Ceili,
Yeah Ceili!
0 Replies
 
margo
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Sep, 2009 01:54 am
Perhaps I need to stock up on cats now.....

Won't Poss-cat be amused! I don't think so!

How cruel!

roger
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Sep, 2009 02:27 am
@margo,
If you play your cards right, you could end up being a supplier of kittens to the elderly.

He might be amused, indeed.
0 Replies
 
msolga
 
  2  
Reply Fri 11 Sep, 2009 05:59 am
@Reyn,
Oh for heaven's sake! It says in the article that she'd informed the shelter that "her daughter & a friend would make arrangements to find a good home for her pets should anything happen to her". What more could the shelter possibly ask for? And it's not as though there's a shortage of homeless & dumped cats, as a result of a huge public demand for them! What a silly decision on the part of the shelter!
patiodog
 
  3  
Reply Fri 11 Sep, 2009 06:33 am
@Reyn,
So, looking at the article, I see that an organization called TLC has a policy of not adopting out kittens to the elderly, and that the SPCA has a policy of encouraging them to adopt a mature cat.

The name "TLC" smacks of a small, private, closed admission rescue organization, very possibly based out of somebody's home. These types of organizations typically don't take any more animals than they can handle and function in a no-kill capacity. As such, they have the time and resources to rigorously screen adopters to try and ensure that the animals they send out don't end up back in the system. Because a kitten likely has at least 12 and very possibly 20+ years in front of it, it is not at all unreasonable to expect that it will outlive its owner in this instance. Is that a bit cruel to older adopters? Perhaps. But small organizations have the prerogative to choose where their animals are homed. The SPCA (almost invariably a large, open admission shelter with a civic contract that cannot afford rigorous screening of adopters) stated policy of encouraging older adopters toward older cats is surely more humane, at least from the human side of the equation.

Here's something else that's cruel: watching the public flock into a large, open-admission public shelter to ooh and aah over the puppies and kittens while every animal over the age of one year languishes in its cage next door. Encouraging older folks to adopt older animals has a double benefit from the shelter's perspective: it helps get one of their adult animals adopted and it helps (in the big picture, if not always in the particular instance) to reduce the likelihood of that animal being brought in again. Also -- though this is more of a concern for dogs than cats -- young animals are frequently returned because their owner's don't have the time and/or energy to keep up with them. I know, I know that we all know 80-year-old grannies with more vim and vigor than our miscreant 16-year-old nephews, but they are the exception rather than the rule.

And I can tell you that assurances such as "my kids will make sure the animal goes to a good home" cannot typically be trusted in the wake of a loved one's death or incapacitation. Believe me, I see it all the time. There are too many other more pressing considerations -- hospital bills, funerals, finding space in a nursing home, fighting over the will, getting rid of unwanted stuff, selling the home, etc. -- for most people to be bothered with finding a home for Mum's kitty. Am I cynical? Perhaps. But it's informed cynicism.
sozobe
 
  2  
Reply Fri 11 Sep, 2009 06:37 am
@msolga,
Yeah, I agree.

I think there are two different issues: first, the plight of older cats in shelters, and second, whether there should be rules about someone's age re: adopting a kitten. I think the second issue is stupid -- no, there should be no age limit.

I do think it's a shame that so many older cats languish, and would welcome some sort of action to remedy that. Maybe some sort of outreach program for seniors, taking cats to their houses for a trial period and if the person likes the cat, they can keep it. Whatever. But I think that's a separate issue.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Sep, 2009 06:38 am
@patiodog,
Quote:
Because a kitten likely has at least 12 and very possibly 20+ years in front of it, it is not at all unreasonable to expect that it will outlive its owner in this instance. Is that a bit cruel to older adopters? Perhaps. But small organizations have the prerogative to choose where their animals are homed.


surely we the general public can afford to piss off these whack jobs with our disdain for their lack of compassion for humans, and thus hopefully mitigate the spread of such mental illness as caring more about animals than people. Right?
0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Sep, 2009 06:38 am
@patiodog,
Good points there.
0 Replies
 
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Sep, 2009 06:51 am
@sozobe,
Quote:
..I do think it's a shame that so many older cats languish, and would welcome some sort of action to remedy that.


I couldn't agree more, soz. And they are often such beautiful cats, whose owners have possibly died, or are unable to continue looking after them. (patio dog has a point there.) All my cats have been from shelters, or else have been other peoples "rejects". I can't recall the last time I chose (or was chosen by) a kitten. My last cat was 3 years old (an "educated guess" by the shelter folk) when I adopted her & she's a treasure. I wish more people would consider an older cat!
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Sep, 2009 06:54 am
@Reyn,
Reyn wrote:
she really is not thinking of the animal's best welfare, but rather of her own needs. What would have been so wrong in adopting a 5 year old cat?

How do you feel about this issue? Is the agency's policy right or wrong?


I think the agency's right.
0 Replies
 
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Sep, 2009 09:22 am
Grandma could volunteer at the shelter to be a foster mom, and that way she could have all the kitties that she could handle.
0 Replies
 
 

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