Walks and Wags wants dogs to find homes and reduce the need to euthanize. We recently found an excellent book chock full of ideas and ways to empty the shelters by connecting the right dog with the right home. Selling Used Dogs by Robert Cabral takes the emotional element out of the equation. The book aims at getting shelters to turn “emotion into strategy.”
The title may throw you off…we found it intriguing. It begs the question, “why did the author choose this title? Why would it call shelter dogs “used”? Look at it this way. You are looking for a used car. Car lots do not call them “used.” They call them “previously owned”. Why? Because it sounds better! Our society is all about what sounds good.
Cabral outlines how shelters can decrease the numbers they have to euthanize by getting more dogs adopted. These simple steps can be taken by any shelter and rescue groups can find ways to improve their adoption rates too.
One of Cabral’s suggestions is as simple as the naming the dogs. Let’s face it. Word association happens all the time without a thought! This is why the names given to Shelter or Rescue dogs is so important. Sure, once the dog is adopted the owner can change it’s name, but we have to allow dogs the opportunity to get there. Naming a dog Beast instead of Bella may hurt that dog’s chances of being adopted.
Another important point is connecting the right dog with the right home. By using the techniques in this book, shelters can make good matches. A good match between dog and owner cuts down on the return-to-shelter rate.
Take the time to read this short—155 page—book. There is something for everyone, even volunteers.