Posted on May 4, 2014
Fundraising With Puppies: A Smart or a Stupid Idea?
A friend recently brought a story to my attention concerning Jesuit High School in Portland, Oregon. The school held their annual fundraising auction earlier this month. Left to their own devices, one of their big-ticket auction items would have been a Bernese Mountain Dog puppy. Auctioning puppies (last year a Labradoodle) has proven to be popular and lucrative. This year, in response to public outrage, Jesuit High School officials removed the Berner pup from the list of auction items. I suspect there were voices of protest in years past, but they likely paled in comparison to what Jesuit High School squared off with this time around. Leave it to those Bernese Mountain Dog lovers- they are one well organized, focused, and unified bunch of people.
After “throwing in the towel” on this controversial matter, Jesuit High School Communications Director Erika Tuenge stated:
Jesuit High School has always carefully and thoughtfully considered the choice of breeds and placement of puppies in its annual auction and has provided suitable loving environments for each dog which is placed in the homes of Jesuit families. Certain animal rights protesters, who apparently do not believe a suitable home for a dog can ever be found at an auction event, have criticized JHS for its plan to auction a puppy at an upcoming school auction. We adamantly disagree with the opinions of these protesters (and the means by which they chose to express these opinions), but out of concern for the Jesuit community and the privacy of the responsible dog owners and reputable breeders it has worked with in years past, the school has decided not to include a puppy in this year’s auction, an event which supports need-based financial aid and other vital programs benefiting Jesuit students and families.
Before I weigh in on this topic, I would love to hear what you have to say. Do you agree or disagree with Jesuit High School’s position (by the way, there are plenty of other organizations who auction puppies at their fundraising events)? Please fill me in on your thoughts and I will reciprocate in my next blog post.
Nancy Kay, DVM
Diplomate, American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine
Author of Speaking for Spot: Be the Advocate Your Dog Needs to Live a Happy, Healthy, Longer Life
Author of Your Dog’s Best Health: A Dozen Reasonable Things to Expect From Your Vet
Recipient, Leo K. Bustad Companion Animal Veterinarian of the Year Award
Recipient, American Animal Hospital Association Animal Welfare and Humane Ethics Award
Recipient, Dog Writers Association of America Award for Best Blog
Recipient, Eukanuba Canine Health Award
Recipient, AKC Club Publication Excellence Award
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Please visit http://www.speakingforspot.com to read excerpts from Speaking for Spot and Your Dog’s Best Health. There you will also find “Advocacy Aids”- helpful health forms you can download and use for your own dog, and a collection of published articles on advocating for your pet’s health. Speaking for Spot and Your Dog’s Best Health are available at www.speakingforspot.com, Amazon.com, local bookstores, and your favorite online book seller.