Monday, August 22, 2005

ASAP and spoilt children (and adults too!)

What is it with people wanting things done ASAP? It used to be that when you needed something urgently, you asked that it be done ASAP - now it seems everything has to be done ASAP. When people write in an email, they want a reply ASAP, they want a sterilisation slot ASAP and they want to adopt a cat ASAP.

One of the fosters had a 14 year old boy calling her on Friday. He called 20 times while she was at work and in despair she gave my number to him. Now of course the boy wanted the cat ASAP because he was free on Friday. I explained to him that cats aren't just given out like toys - the fosters have to contact them, there's an interview and viewing and then the decision is made. The boy calls me again on Friday (wanting a Persian or Siamese kitten), then calls several times again today. I am kind of surprised that a child of that age (he sounds more like 12 to me - which is what he told the foster) would be so rude. He said that since people had so many cats to give away, he wanted one NOW. When I asked him to stop calling the foster at work, he said he wouldn't have to call so many times if she had just given him the cat when he wanted one. He says everyone is just keeping him from having a cat and he wants it delivered today. He said that other fosters have no right to judge how he keeps his cats because he is an excellent owner with a cat he has owned for a month.

I spoke to his mother who apologised and said that they used to have three cats which they left in the corridor. Since then they were stolen one by one. She said she had told her son to be patient, but he ignored her. I have heard him yelling at her over the phone.

This other woman has also written in over the weekend and said she needed a cat and of course wanted a 'quick reply' because she was free that particular day. She has since written in to say her son wants a cat- they went to the pet shop because her darling son needed one so urgently yesterday but the pet shop was closed. The poor boy cannot concentrate on his studies until he is given a cat.

What these people don't seem to understand is that adoption is not about them! Sure, you have to want a cat, but the most important thing is the welfare of the cat, not you, the adopter. It amazes me how people write in and say that they are free so they want a cat that day even though I explain the fosters are working and may not be free to see them. If their attitude is so selfish and me, me, me, then how are they going to put the cat's welfare first?


Anonymous mrs budak said...

Not a good sign. I wouldn't want to give any cat if the potential owner puts only himself/herself in the centre of everything. When you adopt a pet, you must be prepared to put your needs aside for the pet's sake. Looks like the boy and the woman haven't learnt this.

Too self-centred. Immediate disqualification :)

22/8/05 1:40 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

Yep - immediate disqualification indeed! It's worrying how for some people everything is about them.

22/8/05 1:50 PM  
Anonymous geraldine said...

with such selfish attitude, they do not deserve nor qualify to adopt a cat at all. 3 cats 'stolen' one by one ..? or were they being abandoned ..?? The boy probably does not view a cat as a living being but just an object to be purchased. That's unacceptable and the way he shouted at his mother, will he shower the cat with love or abuse?

22/8/05 2:20 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

Yes exactly. Some parents really pander to their kid's every whim.

22/8/05 2:31 PM  
Anonymous the letter b said...

Isn't an owner register like what they have in the US long overdue? It will give them a sense of awareness that their being selfish and rude will not take them far. Apart from inculcating in them the responsibility towards another life.

22/8/05 2:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It brings back a case of an adoption in January through the CWS adoption bulletin board, a mother wrote me an e-mail that her son was very keen on the kitten & demanded that I replied her FAST, or she will look for other cats on the lists. The 'demanding' tone of the message was unpleasant & I wrote her off as a potential. The kitten deserves better - a patient loving owner.

22/8/05 3:01 PM  
Blogger The Imp said...

what a brat.

sure,cat given.

then what happens when he wakes up one morning and decided that "i don't want a cat anymore TODAY"?

poof. the cat goes out of the window. could be literal.

22/8/05 3:19 PM  
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22/8/05 3:38 PM  
Blogger vegancat said...

This self-absorption trait seems to the most prevalent dis-ease of modern time, not confined to Singaporean.
A lady who fosters cats had an encounter with an expat lady who visted with a young daughter. They couldn't confirm the adoption of one kitten and left,saying they would call. The call didn't come until the kitten was adopted by another person. On the phone, the mother was heard telling the daughter of the news and not unexpectedly, the daughter wailed. The mother then turned her attention on the fosterer and scolded her for causing distress to her daughter - : "See what you have to my poor darling!!"

22/8/05 3:39 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

Sigh - the second mother called me and said that she may be forced to buy a cat if the fosters don't get back to her soon. She wrote in on Saturday for the first time. Do parents really let their children push them around like that?

I've told her that she had to be sure her child REALLY wanted the cat and didn't just get bored after a month.

22/8/05 3:40 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

Exactly Imp - I shudder to think these are the future Singaporeans we are all going to live with.

Vegancat, yes, SIGH.

22/8/05 3:41 PM  
Blogger vegancat said...

When the motivation to have kids is just to "appear normal" "to get tax deduction" "to boast i am fertile" " to be loyal productive citizens" " to have children to bring me honour" , is it a wonder that parents are such bad teachers of morality?

22/8/05 3:52 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

Letter B - what owner registration is this?

22/8/05 3:55 PM  
Anonymous mrs budak said...

You know, when my husband and I were about to adopt our darling Angel from the SPCA, we were told that SPCA would conduct spot checks. We don't know whether they really do, but the adoption forms did mention that SPCA can take the pet back if in its views, the owners are not taking care of the pet properly (I think so, cannot remember). And no, adoption fees not refundable.

And the whole family is supposed to go to the SPCA to be screened by the staff there. And since the animals are all microchipped, the adopting family cannot "escape" the responsibility. Your name is registered with the SPCA!

We had to sign 1,001 forms which made it very clear that adoption is serious business, not just take the pet and cabut. Does the CWS have similar systems?

Also, I strongly believe that you should charge for adoption. Once you give away cats free, people think they're disposable. And all the registration plus microchipping makes it clear you cannot just dump the animal and forget about it. The animal will be linked to you and you have to either take it back or return it to the SPCA. Our Angel has a unique identification number and I believe her microchip is now registered under our address.

Put in some administrative procedures and make the adopting family sign some agreements. If they balk at it, good - you've screened them off. Good potential pet owners wouldn't mind a little bit of hassle like this.

22/8/05 4:29 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

We do for cats that we foster. We charge a fee that includes sterilisation and vaccination and there is an adoption contract. However this is a public board so any one can post. We advise them to sign a contract and sign a sample and our adoption team sends them a list of things to look out for. Unfortunately some fosters just want to shove the cat to the first person interested as well. If we do learn of this, we ban the foster.

We used to make everyone sign a CWS contract and so we would take every single cat back - then our fosters got innundated, because people just gave out cats to anyone and then when these people got tired they just returned them to CWS fosters. Poor fosters ended up with cats they had never seen before which started fighting with their own cats.

We had to change the policy after that so that CWS fosters take back only cats they have fostered.

22/8/05 4:45 PM  
Anonymous mrs budak said...

*shakes head*

Your job is so difficult.
Xing ku ni men le

22/8/05 5:00 PM  
Anonymous Greedy said...

Hey Vegancat, can't blame them to be productive lah cos now 3rd child they will get $18,000 of fat ang pow from our government mah - so produce lor!

22/8/05 5:03 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

I have to speak up in defence of children here - there are some really well behaved ones who really love animals, but it's just suprising people let their children arm twist them. When I see some parents teach their children how to handle an animal gently, it really makes me happy. Unfortuantely, for some parents an animal is just another toy to keep junior quiet for a while.

22/8/05 5:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Will a cloned child from an ideal animal-lover be entitled to governmental reward?

22/8/05 5:16 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

Hmm considering cloning is illegal, I'm guessing no! :)

22/8/05 5:21 PM  
Anonymous mrs budak said...

Dawn, I think you're seeing a number of trolls here.

22/8/05 5:26 PM  
Anonymous the letter b said...

Dawn - sorry if i don't make myself clear, like what Mrs Budak described about SPCA's system, where spot checks are also conducted. And if the owner is deemed to be unsuitable, their names will be recorded down in a nationwide database so that even though they move to a new state, it will be made known to the animal control people.

And to think that they have animal police too, who do regular petrols and armed with guns!

Oh and the parents' indulgence on their spoilt brats is one of the signs of making up to them for not spending "quality" time. But that surely is not correct. Makes you wonder why they were even allowed to breed.

22/8/05 5:46 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

Ah thanks Letter B. Yes we have done spot checks before and have removed cats once or twice. Sad but necessary sometimes - and then sometimes the people and the cats look so happy, it makes everything worth it.

22/8/05 5:52 PM  
Anonymous slushy said...

Parental guidance is very important and with the many children I have seen, it is evident that the attitude of the parents towards animals and animal welfare topics profoundly affects that of the child when he/she grows up. I hope I do right when teaching my baby.

23/8/05 12:00 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

I'm sure you will Slushy - just by the fact that you're aware of it!

23/8/05 3:45 PM  

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