Nine months ago, my wife and I adopted a pit bull from a local Brooklyn rescue organization doing amazing work. The shelter, Sean Casey Animal Rescue places over 100 dogs a month in homes and is widely considered the best operation of it’s type in New York City. They’re a no kill facility and only take-in animals that they believe can be re-homed. When we first went to visit the shelter and look at the available dogs, we were immediately drawn to a rather large pit bull named Judson. He eventually came home with us, and with a quick name change to Jax, he became a member of our family. At just 9 months old, he was already one of the largest dogs there. He looked so big in his crate that I didn’t even realize that he was puppy. While most of the dogs barked in a chorus begging to be chosen for the chance to have a walk and stretch their legs, Jax was calm. He licked our fingers over and over through the metal grid that separated us. But the thing that most attracted us to him was his stunning appearance - all white with brown pinto spots, yellow eyes and a pink nose. Suddenly, our plan to adopt a dog closer to 2 years old was awry. We took him for a walk around the block. He had no idea how to walk on a leash. He bounced around springing high in the air. It was evident that (like all dogs) this was going to be serious work.
We thought that we should take a few dogs out in hopes of discovering some unknown detail that might help us figure out which one to take home. When the decision came down to two dogs (both pit bulls), we were finding it quite hard to decide which one was right for us. Pak was a slightly older, very mellow dog who was all black with a white chest and feet. I went back to the shelter every day for a week and spent an hour with each dog with the hopes that I might learn something about them, that one would give me the signal that I needed. The workers at the shelter could see that I was determined to rescue one of them, but was struggling with how to decide. Without pressuring, they gave their opinion that Pak was the right one. I asked question after question. Did they think Pak would be rescued soon, as he had already been there a few months longer than Jax? The answer - “It’s hard to say. Black dogs are much harder to place.”
My reason for posting this is simple. Even when deciding which dog to rescue, appearance, color of the fur is a major determining factor in which dogs will find a new home. As I mentioned, Sean Casey places over a hundred dogs a month. Nine months later, Pak (a sweet and very well behaved dog) has yet to find a home.
Today, I discovered LaNola Stone’s photo project Least Likely To Be Adopted. The idea was to take “fashionesque images” of the longest running residents of her local shelter. She photographed portraits of the dogs which were believed to be least likely to be adopted. After these images which display a sense of personality were taken, each dog was adopted.
(via Design Observer)