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Rescuing: Some important clarifications
  • I have been reading some statements on this forum that concern me deeply, and I think it is important that it is addressed.

    Having worked nearly 20 years in dog rescue I really must express, BUYING a dog from a less than ethical breeder or pet store is in no way rescuing or helping the homeless dog issue. It is in fact one of the primary factors in CAUSING the homeless dog problem. Every time someone purchases a dog from a backyard breeder/pet store (any pet store)/or puppy mill it conveys to that business that there is a demand for their merchandise (I.E. puppies). They now have added incentive to continue producing more puppies.

    All the while millions of dogs are killed daily because suitable homes cannot be found; MILLIONS, more than 80% pure bred, many of them puppies (admin Pam "Ryu" adopted Roxy at 9 weeks old from a rescue group, my friend Mitch rescued a 9 week old shiba from another group, my Moto was 6 months old when I got him, they are out their for the patient).

    Now I have nothing against people getting dogs from responsible breeders. I do believe that there is a place for them in this world. A responsible breeder cares about the welfare of the breed, not just their dogs. They are trying to maintain the health and stability of the breed and are trying to keep it from going the way of so many other breeds (look at GSDs and their hips, or these mammoth labs with so many health and temperament issues). Most are active in rescue. A reputable breeder does not over breed their bitches, or breed hundreds of puppies. It is a labor of love.

    I also cannot tell anyone what to do for themselves. If you are unwilling to wait on a reputable breeders wait list, and are unwilling to pay a reputable breeders prices, and do not want to go to an actual rescue group and save a homeless dog or puppy, that is absolutely your right and your choice. But as someone who has had to make the list of dogs to get put down, not because they were sick, not because they had issues, but because there was no room at the shelter, please do not try to justify that you are saving a future homeless dog.

    The following links are excellent rescue groups that are always desperately looking for people who are willing to open their homes to a shiba in need.
    Post edited by Calia at 2012-01-01 22:41:39
  • ljowen123ljowen123
    Posts: 3105
    well said!
    LJ - owned by Queen Jazz, a Shiba Inu, Atlanta, GA
  • sailfloesailfloe
    Posts: 119
    Well said indeed. "Rescuing" a dog from an irresponsible breeder just means they can go on to create more dogs that need to be "rescued".
  • sjp051993sjp051993
    Posts: 249
    I agree 100%. As a person who helps with rescue and has 2 rescue myself, some of these statements are frustrating.
  • SangmortSangmort
    Posts: 1361
    Hear hear!!!! ~
  • CaliaCalia
    Posts: 3664
    Great post Jessica!
  • Thanks for the links for the rescue groups. Hopefully people who are thinking of adopting a shiba or a 2nd shiba will check them out.
  • tjbart17tjbart17
    Posts: 437
    I'm going to add one more for those in California

    I have a rescued Kai right now that was accidentally mistaken for a Shiba, well not so much mistaked as there are no Kai rescues, and I got her from Red at the No. California Shiba Inu Rescue. He has I believe 6 foster Shibas right now looking for homes and dogs always coming in.
    Post edited by tjbart17 at 2010-05-13 19:14:43
  • curlytailscurlytails
    Posts: 2779
    Great post that needed to be said. My first dog/shiba came from an irresponsible breeder when I was young and naive and didn't know better -- never had anyone spell it out for me. We love him all the same, but now that I know better and have also put some time in with animal rescue groups, I know there is so much more to be said and done.

    I want to echo the sentiment about being patient. My partner and looked for over a year and a half (checking various listings just about every day) to find the second dog that we eventually did adopt. It's just as possible to spend more time or less time waiting for the "perfect" pet to come along through rescues/shelters. But if you truly love animals and keep your heart open, the right one WILL come along, and when it happens and everything seems to work out, it will be that much more magical and rewarding.
    Bowdu 寶肚 (Shiba) and Bowpi 寶媲 (Basenji) with M.C.
  • Other Shiba rescues:

    Northern Nevada Shiba Rescue, run by Jack Owens, email:, web:

    Southern California, contact Michelle Balestrieri,
  • For those in the Illinois/Wisconsin area, our two shiba puppies came from a rescue called Tiny Paws Small Dog Rescue in Union Grove, WI. They are on and get shiba puppies in every once in a while so just watch for them and be patient until the right dog(s) for you are posted and ready for your loving home!
  • Can we post this thread as a sticky please? I think that it would be useful and informative. Not only does it state in a clear, precise, and in my opinion, non-inflammatory way why so many object to non-ethical breeders, puppy mills, etc. but it's also a great resource for a number of good rescues across the country.
  • Great! This is really important, and well said. Good idea to make it a sticky!
  • BradA1878BradA1878
    Posts: 2242
    Great post Jess!
  • hanaluluhanalulu
    Posts: 195
    Another rescue: Colorado -
    Post edited by hanalulu at 2010-05-06 20:27:10
  • Uki-buttUki-butt
    Posts: 25
    This is all good information but I still have a hard time with it... just my opinion
  • curlytailscurlytails
    Posts: 2779
    Just wondering if we could re-organize the list to indicate which groups have designated 501(c)3 status, and which ones do not or are in the process of obtaining one. Such information could make this sticky more useful, especially when one would like to choose a group to send tax-deductible donations...
    Bowdu 寶肚 (Shiba) and Bowpi 寶媲 (Basenji) with M.C.
  • JessicaRabbitJessicaRabbit
    Posts: 2217
    If someone is interested in doing the research by all means feel free. When I created this thread it was not created as a rescue resource but more an opportunity to clarify that BUYING a dog is not rescuing or adopting and calling it that is in poor taste.

    I personally don't gauge my monetary donations by their tax deductibility but by the work the organization does for the cause. If I can write it off I see that as a nice bonus.
  • JessicaRabbitJessicaRabbit
    Posts: 2217
    If someone is interested in doing the research by all means feel free. When I created this thread it was not created as a rescue resource but more an opportunity to clarify that BUYING a dog is not rescuing or adopting and calling it that is in poor taste.

    I personally don't gauge my monetary donations by their tax deductibility but by the work the organization does for the cause. If I can write it off I see that as a nice bonus.
  • curlytailscurlytails
    Posts: 2779
    Heh... At this point in my life, I hardly earn nor am able to donate enough where a tax deduction would benefit me very much. But having worked on the development side of a 501(c)e before, and seeing the flood of sizable donations that come in right before the end of the calendar year from folks asking them to be cashed immediately for proper tax credit, I know that it does matter to some people.

    I don't mean to hijack the thread or anything. It seemed that discussion was starting to move towards a listings of good rescue groups, and as this is the only sticky related to rescue, this seemed like a good place to add the information. I got to thinking about this when I was trying to figure out all the regional shiba-specific rescues and how they may (or may not) be related. For example, there's the "National Shiba Inu Rescue" resource online, of course, and they seem very comprehensive and great and well-networked with MSIR, but I was stumbling across all these other smaller groups in Central Florida, Colorado, the ones listed above, etc. that seemed to fall through their cracks. It just got confusing to me.

    Anyway, I would be interested in pulling together such a list/spreadsheet. Give me a few days, and I'll post my findings for feedback. I got something rough, but haven't posted it because it's not complete and keep getting sidetracked with other project... Please keep adding to the list here!
    Bowdu 寶肚 (Shiba) and Bowpi 寶媲 (Basenji) with M.C.
    Post edited by curlytails at 2011-03-19 19:31:31
  • JudyJudy
    Posts: 183
    This is where I've been courtesy listing shibas ( & jindos) looking for a new home. Applications to adopt can also be filled out and Itry to match apps up with the shibas.

    There is also SIRRA:
    They help foster shibas who require vet care over and above the normal routine care. They helped me in the past with a foster who had to go through HW treatment.
  • For those is Canada there is rescue in Toronto
    Toronto was too far for me to go so I headed south and found my Shiba through Dogs Deserve Better and a Humane Society in Southern MN.
  • inubakainubaka
    Posts: 174
    Last Chance Ranch in Quakertown PA pulls a lot of shibas

    and I didn't see this listed yet - the Shiba Rescue of Ocean County NJ (Toms River, NJ)
  • SayaSaya
    Posts: 6678
    Just want to post saying new shiba inu owners or or soon to be shiba owners please read this sticky! It's important.
    Nicole, 5year old Bella(Boxer), and 4year old Saya(Shiba inu)
  • LovingLolaLovingLola
    Posts: 31
    In addition to the dedicated shiba rescue organizations, there are plenty of adoptable shibas in shelters. I adopted my Lola from the SPCA. I had to be patient, but I created a search for shiba inus on and would check every couple of days over the period of a few months before finding her. 6 months later - I know that she was the one that rescued me! I love my Lola!

    Petfinder is a great resource - you can tailor your search by breed, location, sex, size, color, age, house training, special needs, good with cats ect.
  • Many shelters/SPCAs maintain lists of people looking for a particular breed and will notify folks if the desired breed comes into the shelter. So if you're looking for a Shiba, contact your local shelters and leave your name with them!
  • zoezoezoezoe
    Posts: 110
    Has anyone rescued through NYC Shiba Rescue?

    I've put in an application twice but never received a response. I realize they are busy with their personal lives and have many applications coming in but I never even received a response saying that I'm not eligible, etc.

    If I don't receive a response does that mean they don't approve of something on my application..?
  • sunyatasunyata
    Posts: 8589
    The adoption coordinators at NYCSR have been ridiculously busy lately. I am sure they would love to get with you, but sometimes things get lost in the shuffle. Give them a call when you get a chance and leave a voice message if no one answers with a call back number that you can be reached (such as a cell number, so you are not playing phone tag). Their number is (917) 591-3408.

    The girls at NYCSR are incredibly awesome. Several forum members have worked with them for various things (I have fostered and done transports for them).
    Bella 2Mountains 2Nola 2
    Casey, with Bella and Nola, hanging out in the mountains of Virginia.
    I Wander, I Ride
  • zoezoezoezoe
    Posts: 110
    Thanks Casey. They said the Adoptions Director would call me when they get to my application.... =/ I hope they get to me.
  • inubakainubaka
    Posts: 174
    zoezoe - I'm not sure if you've heard anything yet... but when your application is received, they review all of it (could take a small amount of time - we're all volunteers!) and then they call your references. Depending on how long the references take to respond, they also call your vet reference.

    Then they put a call out to see if they have a volunteer to do a home visit. This also might take some time to find someone.

    Sometimes these things take time but hopefully they at least can communicate the process with you if you had questions in the meantime!
  • zoezoezoezoe
    Posts: 110
    Thanks inubaka! The dog we wanted to adopt is actually getting adopted by his foster so =( However we were recently contacted about fostering instead. We have a volunteer coming in to do a home check this weekend... hopefully all goes well. I'm really looking forward to having a friend around for my girl.
  • cli6cli6cli6cli6
    Posts: 54
    Hi all! I was supposed to get a puppy but the breeder turned out to be shady so it fell through and I was heartbroken. See "sad news no puppy". Then I read through this thread and I'm proud to say that I was just placed with Lucas. A beautiful dog that's being fostered by Mitch at Nj shiba rescue. See "adopted a shiba (spam)". Thanks for opening my eyes to rescues and I'm the most thankful!!
  • sunyatasunyata
    Posts: 8589
    @cli6cli6 - I am so glad that joining the forum has helped educated you on good breeders. I am also glad that it opened your eyes to rescue and that you have a wonderful new addition coming to your life! Thank you so much for sharing your success story! And keep us updated on Lucas and make sure you post MANY photos when you bring him home. :)
    Bella 2Mountains 2Nola 2
    Casey, with Bella and Nola, hanging out in the mountains of Virginia.
    I Wander, I Ride
  • RyanRyan
    Posts: 293

    If anyone knows of a rescue program in Western Australia please PM me. I am willing to spend some time helping out with placements and potentially fostering.

    Bella (Sherae Aka Akicho) | F | Born 27/1/2012
    Suki (Aust. Ch. Betlin Takaisuki) | M | Born 03/02/2005, adopted 10/09/2012
  • jennajenna
    Posts: 154
    Thought I'd add a note here... National has a new website which includes a list of Shiba rescue organizations, including which are 501(c)(3)
    jenna -> founder of nyc shiba rescue, inc.
    snickers -> master of shiba mind control
  • @jenna Thumbs up!!!
    That revamped site looks great too.
    Bowdu 寶肚 (Shiba) and Bowpi 寶媲 (Basenji) with M.C.
  • That does look great! I applaud those who manage to go the 501 c route, though it is super tedious to do and has a lot of regulations attached, so I totally understand why some groups don't have the time or resources to do this.

    Some of the other groups are basically just people doing the hard work of rescue. I know that the Northern NV one, for example, is pretty much a person who owns a boarding kennel and takes in Shibas in need.

    But overall, big props and thanks to everyone who works in rescue--it's a really hard, often thankless task, and esp. now when Shibas are being churned out at the mills, there are so many in need.
  • jennajenna
    Posts: 154
    @shibamistress - Yes, the "other groups and independent rescuers" portion of the list does include some small groups and individuals and they are listed as such - like Jack Owens in NV.
    jenna -> founder of nyc shiba rescue, inc.
    snickers -> master of shiba mind control
  • Oh, yeah, I saw that--I was just sort of musing on all the good rescue groups period, and it was why I thought of Jack Owens, for example, when I saw his name, and Red Young, and all the good rescue people, either in 501 c rescues or not! :)
    Post edited by shibamistress at 2012-12-27 21:16:47
  • Bumped for awesomeness!

    I miss you @jessicarabbit.
  • Koji's momKoji's mom
    Posts: 632
    Miss her too...
  • KikkiKikki
    Posts: 73
    Very well said, Jessica!
    photo 09add2ab-be4c-4b53-98a7-1a6bc4311b43_zps71ebc933.jpg
  • redcattooredcattoo
    Posts: 1960
    I agree that the OP said it well in regards to those who knowingly use BYB's, puppy mills, pet stores, ect and try to justify it.
  • RAM25RAM25
    Posts: 317
    I bet this is a really stupid question, but do we have a lot of big puppy mills in the UK? I know we got our puppy from a responsible breeder (we did a lot of research, they're Kennel Club approved, we visited lots, they only bred the one litter to improve the breed, they held one back for showing etc. they had hundreds of awards for their Shiba, all the health tests showed to us of both parents and lineage etc.etc)
    I've never seen anything larger than a rabbit in a pet shop, I would be really shocked to see puppies or even kittens there (seems so wrong!) I'm sure we must have puppy mills but I think we have more backyard breeders than anything. I've never stumbled across a UK website that looks like a puppy mill either, just obviously irresponsible people.
    I'm just wondering if there are any known ones in the UK?
  • RAM25RAM25
    Posts: 317
    Update - after googling more I can sadly confirm they are a problem here too, I didn't find anything initially because we call them puppy farms!
  • It is important to remember that education is everything. I know all of us were once ignorant to the trickery of dishonest bybs and the inhumane corporate scum that is a puppy mill. I think it is so great that more and more people are becoming aware of irresponsible breeding and staying away from it. And more people are rescuing. Its the beginning of the end for mills. I hope we continue to go down this road in the right direction.

    I'm always subconsciously on the offense once someone tells me about the puppy or kitten they got from a Craigslist breeder, or a pet store because they didn't want to go through the trouble of finding a good "cheap" breeder, or because they were turned off by the idea of a "broken" rescue pet. But I make myself remember that not everyone's intentions are selfish or ill-willed. That some people are not educated or don't have the same resources I do. There was a period where I was repeatedly rejected by rescues when I was trying to get my cat. My age, income, work schedule and the fact that I rent were all not ideal to them. So instead I searched and found a good breeder whom I corresponded with for over a month prior to and almost a year after getting my girl.

    While I personally cannot see why one would knowingly buy from a mill, store, or byb, I know not to pass judgement. Like the OP stated, I have no right to judge someone I don't know, no matter how wrong it seems. I do hope this thread helps to further educate people of the difference between rescuing and enabling. And also to discourage people from making that mistake in the future.

    GREAT thread!
  • Bump, bump, bump
  • Kobe1468Kobe1468
    Posts: 1590
    Nice bump!!
    "Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened."
  • Might as well bump it again.
  • I posted this in another thread, but it belongs here. Specifically on communicating what it means to rescue a dog vs get a rescue dog:

    I think part of the "fights" that break out stem from the meaning of the word rescue:

    I interpret the word rescue to mean "to save from something bad"

    Animal people interpret it to mean "to take in an animal from a rescue organization".

    Using the former definition, I consider my dog to be rescued, but not a rescue (if that makes sense).

    Put another way.... my guy came from a mini-mill. He was past his "cute" stage and would probably have been a breeder stud, spent his life in a crate, or been put down. I rescued him from a life he most certainly didn't deserve and brought him to a life where he is pampered and loved on his worst days (even if I did pay money for him).

    He is not a rescue in that he didn't come from a rescue organization. Did I rescue my dog from a bad fate? Yes. Is he a rescue? No.

    I think many people confuse the two words and the confusion is where the "hostility" arises.

    There is rescue (the verb) and a rescue (the noun). I wouldn't buy another dog the way I did this one, but if I saw a dog at a mill that I could purchase for $200 because he wasn't cute enough anymore, you better believe I would consider my act a "rescue" from his awaiting fate. (lets assume my dog would be tolerant of him, etc.).

    Does that make sense?

    So to answer your question on how to phrase it.....

    "While it is commendable that you knowingly took in a dog who may have problems with the promise he will be treated right and loved and cared for, you should understand that rescuing a dog from a bad situation is not the same as a rescue dog. Your act perpetuated the puppy mill's economic cycle and as such is worse for dogs as a whole, even if it helped your dog. While your heart was in the right place (assuming in fact you won't abandon your bundle of fur if something becomes tough to handle), you can rescue an animal from the shelter and actually help another animal (the one who takes his place in the shelter) instead of hurting another animal (the one who the mill breeder will breed in hopes of profiting). That being said, what's done is done. Let's figure out how we can make your existing dog's life great for you, but more importantly, great for him"

    Or something else my girlfriend would say to remind me to be nice =)

  • zandramezandrame
    Posts: 1106

    I think many people confuse the two words and the confusion is where the "hostility" arises.

    There is rescue (the verb) and a rescue (the noun). I wouldn't buy another dog the way I did this one, but if I saw a dog at a mill that I could purchase for $200 because he wasn't cute enough anymore, you better believe I would consider my act a "rescue" from his awaiting fate. (lets assume my dog would be tolerant of him, etc.).

    Does that make sense?

    No, that doesn't make sense... it's not simply the noun vs the verb. And you'll have to include all uses of words like "saving" and "adopting" too. While it may seem altruistic to take a pup home from a pet shop, the fact is they were produced as merchandise to be sold in this manner. You have to look past the cute puppy faces and think of their parents who really need the rescue. When a space on the shelf is opened, another product will be ordered to fill the space. Products that don't sell will be reduced in price until they do. And a cheap price should never sway your morals! As long as someone will buy, this is what fuels the puppy mill engine. We can only stop them by eliminating the demand. If you can't think of petshop puppies as a product in this way, you should never set foot in one that sells them, or you risk supporting them with an impulsive purchase. There are more ethical stores for buying food and supplies who don't also sell animals. And I've never seen quality supplies in these kind of shops anyway.

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