Of Returned Adoptions and Tough Choices​​​​​​​



Daisy was transferred to BDAR in 2015 from an overcrowded New Mexico shelter. The young female pit bull was lucky - very few identified as bully breeds in this shelter make it out, due to the overwhelming number of them. Daisy stayed in a very experienced foster home with other dogs and small children until she was adopted  30 days later.

A year later, Daisy, now well into the rough adolescent phase of life, was returned to us. She had snapped at a small child in her home after her owners admitted they hadn’t been able to provide appropriate supervision and had allowed the child to interact inappropriately with the dog. Daisy went to a new foster home with other dogs and grandchildren and again did very well. Once more, she was adopted within the month.

Now, another year later, Daisy is back in our care again. This time her family moved out of state and in the chaos of the move, Daisy had an unremarkable altercation with the other dog in the home. Her adopters attempted to take her to a vet to be euthanized, but the vet refused. Since they were out of state, the adopters called to tell us they were taking her to be relinquished to an open admission shelter there.

It is always our hope that adoptions will be permanent - but we know it is not possible to expect 100% of them will work out. This is why we offer a returned adoption guarantee for all of the animals adopted from our organization. Every shelter and rescue group in the country is nearly always operating at full capacity. We feel we can do our small part to help by ensuring animals we place do not end up in those shelters down the line.

Our team immediately sprang to action to come again to Daisy’s rescue. It so happened that a long-time volunteer had recently moved as well and was only 4 hours from Daisy. She immediately jumped into her car and made the eight hour round trip to bring Daisy to safety. Daisy spent a week there in foster care before catching a caravan transport back to Cheyenne. Her previous foster home then welcomed her back with open arms.

We understand that when you adopt a rescued pet, it feels good to play a part in that pet’s story, and to be the lucky one to finally give them that forever home. But, Daisy’s story is just one example of the time, effort, heartache, and commitment our team here has to these animals. And we know we are not alone in the rescue field when we express these sentiments. When you adopt from BDAR, you are most likely completing a long and complicated rescue process. You have not rescued pets from our organization, but rather, in partnership with us. When adopters don't honor the return guarantee and opt instead for an anonymous re-homing or private surrender to another organization, we feel betrayed and hurt. The foster families forever wonder what may have happened, and not infrequently, the pet eventually finds its way back to us through microchip registration anyway. Though often by that time they are physically and emotionally traumatized, making our jobs so much harder.

When you adopt, please consider the role we and our volunteers, and the many donors who support our work have played in making that adoption possible for you and your new family member. We pledge to be here for them before and after adoption. But only if you let us.