You were cold and lonely, roaming the streets, dodging cars, hiding in the woods, and trying to find your way back to where you came from, but you couldn’t remember how. You were confused and didn’t understand why someone left you, dumped you, ignored you. You were picked up by a nice man wearing brown, who picked you up and put you in a big truck. You were scared, but it was warm in there and you were happy to see someone. They brought you to a building with all different abandoned animals, just like you. They got you cleaned up, got you healthy, gave you food, and put you in your own cage. It wasn’t so bad at first. You got to make new friends with the dogs next to you. You got some lovin’ from the humans who fed and cared for you. Volunteers would take you out to play sometimes. But over time, you watched all your dog friends leave their cage. And they wagged their tails as they met their new family, and then you never saw them again. They got to go home. And you watched hundreds of dogs go home. But not you. You’re still in your cage, and even though it’s warm and safe in there, you want a home and a family to be with. You’re bored of being in a cage. You want it to be your turn. You’ve waited long enough.
Welcome to the life of an animal shelter long-timer.
I did a segment on shelter long-timers in the past, and someone suggested changing the term “Long-timer” because it has a negative connotation. But I don’t think I will change it, because in all honesty, it is a very negative situation, and people should realize that. We consider any pet that’s been waiting for 6 months or longer a long-timer. Some of these animals though have been waiting for their home for years. Every day they get their hopes up to get out, but instead are passed by and ignored by the public. It’s no fault of their own, it’s just the sad reality of it. Some pets just aren’t as desirable to the general public as others are. I’m sad to say that a bunch of the dogs we featured as long-timers last year, made the list again this year.
Although I’m always thrilled to see any animal get adopted, it still breaks my heart a little when an animal who has only been waiting a week goes home before the one who has been waiting nearly two years. And it seems that no matter what we do, we can’t get people to focus on these long-timers. We try new photos, videos, flyers, free adoptions, and for whatever reason, they still get overlooked. I hope this post won’t get over-looked the way they have been in the past, and I hope this encourages people to pick the animals who need it the most. Below is a list of the dogs that have been waiting for more than 300 days. Adopt one today for free.
My name is Desi and I’ve been waiting 304 days.
I was only a puppy when I got to the shelter. I was about 6 months old and really scared and confused. No one ever socialized me, so I didn’t know how to act around people. I just get so excited to see people, I can’t contain myself! I’m working on it though!
I’ve been waiting for 304 days. In that time, I’ve grown up quite a bit. I even grew into my ears, kinda. I still have lots of energy, but the shelter volunteers get me out every week so I can run it off. They’re also teaching me commands! I know what the “sit” and “come” words means, and when I do it right, I get a treat! If you see me out of the cage, you’ll see me running around, playing, and having fun. But when I have to go back in the cage, I’m usually sad and quiet. I wish I could stay out of the cage forever.
My name is Ivy and I’ve been waiting 310 days.
People pass me by because I’m older and that’s not fair! I used to have a home, I lived there for almost 8 years, but they didn’t really care about me. I used to live with my friend Gabana, she was a nice brown dog I shared the yard with. Our owners never paid attention to us. Sometimes when the gate opened, we’d go for a walk. The shelter would pick us up and call our owner to come get us. They’d tell my owner to take better care of us and to keep an eye on us, get us microchipped, and put some tags on our collars. They didn’t though. So, after a few times of visiting the shelter, they didn’t want to be bothered with coming to get us. We both waited a while, hoping someone else would take us home instead. Gabana got lucky and found a new family. I had to say goodbye to her and I thought for sure, I’d be next. But I wasn’t. I’m still here.
Now I’m about 9 or 10 years old (you lose track of birthdays at my age) and I’ve been waiting 310 days for a new home. The shelter employees love me and treat me right, and the volunteers take me out a lot to play and meet new people – I even met the Senator last month! He said I was the sweetest, so I gave him and his friends some extra kisses. The volunteers also help me learn my commands. This old dog learned new tricks! I know sit, down, come, and I’m working on stay. They also taught me to walk nicely on a leash. I love getting treats and learning commands, but really, I just love to cuddle and snuggle with them. I wish I had a human of my own to snuggle all the time.
After Gabana left, I decided I didn’t want to be friends with other doggies anymore. (I don’t mind cats though!) The staff says since I don’t like dogs, and I’m kinda older, I’m a “hard adoption,” whatever that is. Please someone come adopt me so I can live my golden years on a bed instead of in a cage.
My name is Momma and I’ve been waiting 330 days.
I came to the shelter very pregnant and gave birth to a litter of 10 puppies. I got so much attention when they were born, that I thought for sure someone would want to take me home. I even walked the red carpet and showed off in front of a big crowd of people, but instead, everyone wanted my puppies. No one wanted the mommy. One by one all my puppies got adopted, and there I was, still waiting. I’ve been waiting 330 days in my cage. And I’ll be honest, I’m getting really tired of it.
I love when the volunteers come and take me out. They let me run around and have fun. But they also make me work to learn commands. They say it might help get me adopted – I hope so, I’m trying my hardest! I know sit and come, and I’m learning down and stay. I know I can do it! I’m willing to try anything to get adopted. I know I’m not young like a puppy anymore, and I know someone was mean to me and cut my ears off, so maybe I look a little funny, so I try extra hard to get people’s attention. When people walk by I bark so they notice me, then when they stop I smush into the door hoping they reach in and pet me. (The shelter employees tell people not to do that, though. Shux.) I’d do anything to have a home and human to myself. I’m worth it!
My name is Angus and I’ve been waiting 380 days.
I just don’t get it. I’m such a good boy. I’m easy going. I’m handsome, or at least the shelter employees and volunteers tell me I am. Why doesn’t anyone ever want to see me? I just celebrated my one year anniversary at the shelter. In that one year, not one person ever asked to see me out of the cage. Not even one! I’m pretty well behaved in my cage and if I’m barking it’s just so that you notice me.
I can even show off with my commands. I know sit, and I’m getting pretty good at down, and I know come, and if you have a treat, I’ll even stay still! Ask the volunteers, they dressed me up for St. Patrick’s Day and took tons of photos while I sat there with a headband and bowtie on. I’ve got so much patience! I’m not overly clingy, and don’t need constant supervision. I kinda like to just hang out when I’m out of my cage. You learn to appreciate being able to walk around and breathe the fresh air when you spend over a year in a cage. I’d be fine with sharing a home with adults of any age, and dogs are fine too! I just don’t wanna hang out with cats. Please someone notice me! I’m the first cage on the right when you walk in, and yet no one ever seems to see me!
My name is Scrabble and I’ve been waiting 439 days.
I’m almost two years old now and trust me, I’ve come a long way in the 439 days I’ve been at the shelter. I’ll admit, when I first got there, I was an annoying puppy. I wasn’t socialized at all, and just wouldn’t behave. But it wasn’t my fault. No one ever shown me what was right and what was wrong. Thankfully the shelter’s vet tech took me under her wing. It wasn’t easy, but together we learned a lot! She taught me how to behave in public, how to walk nicely on a gentle leader, and then on a regular leash, and she taught me commands. I’m so impressive now!
I can be a really good boy, and I love spending time with dogs, cats, and kids. But, after spending more than 400 days in a cage, it can really get to you. I HATE my cage. I need space, like enough space to sprawl out on the couch for example. Maybe we could even share a bed? Please don’t judge me by my cage behavior, see me out and you’ll see what a good boy I’ve become! I just can’t help myself in there, it’s so stressful!
My name is Sandy and I’ve been waiting 506 days.
I was brought to the shelter on 11-11, and ever since I’ve been wishing someone would take me home. But my wish doesn’t ever come true. I’m a good girl, but the shelter environment can really stress a dog out. I’m always eager to get out of the building, but you’ll notice as soon as I’m out the door I calm right down and behave very well!
The volunteers take me out every week and we learn commands. So far I know sit, down and come. I’m working on stay. I also know how to walk nicely on a leash, but like I said, only when I’m out of the shelter, otherwise, I’ll admit, I pull to get out of there quicker! But you would too after 500 days in a cage! I keep watching everyone around me leave and I wonder when it will be my turn. I’m a good girl and I know I deserve a human that I can have all to my own!
My name is Ranger and I’ve been waiting 567 days.
I can’t believe I’m still waiting here! I grew up with my sister Lucy at someone’s house. They didn’t do the best job of caring for us. We got out a lot and ended up hanging out at the shelter. Eventually our owner decided two was too many. They kept me and gave up Lucy. I couldn’t believe it. Three years later, I ended up back at the shelter and that was the last straw. They left me there. Only a week or so after that, Lucy was adopted! I was happy for her, and hopeful I would be next.
It took Lucy a long time to get adopted because she wasn’t used to people and would get too excited. Well, here I am, with the same problem! Thankfully the volunteers that helped Lucy are helping me too. I’m learning to be calm in a group setting, I know some commands now too, like sit, come and stay. I just can’t seem to figure out what that word down means…but I will! During my 567 days at the shelter, I discovered I really like other dogs and love to be with them. Cats, however, not so much. I really hate cats. But, I love dogs, and people! Since it took Lucy 3 years to go home, I’m not giving up, but I sure hope it doesn’t take me that long. I’m not getting any younger!
My name is Keller and I’ve been waiting 617 days.
I don’t hear anything anyone says about me, but I know the reason I’m overlooked is because I’m deaf. I’ve spent over 600 days in my cage waiting for someone to come along and take me home. The shelter staff seems to really love me, and the volunteers too, so I don’t get why other people don’t.
One of the volunteers that takes me out is my favorite! She taught me all kinds of tricks without me being able to hear her! We do sign language and now I know how to sit, lay down, come, stay, and place. I also know how to walk nicely on a leash. I’m pretty much a professional. When we’re done practicing, all the volunteers come cuddle me. I love it. I’d really love a comfy home with a comfy bed to curl up in. (I’m secretly holding out for my favorite volunteer to take me) but I’d be happy with anyone who could love me just as much!
My name is Hazel and I’ve been waiting 656 Days!!!!
Can I go home now? I’ve been waiting for forever! I came to the shelter as a puppy and got passed by for so long. I’m about 2 years old now and just want someone to play with, a place and human to call my own. I’ve been practicing my commands and I’m ready to show off. I know sit, down, come and stay. I can walk nicely on a leash and I’m eager to please – especially if it means I get some treats!
The volunteers take me out every week and I love to play with as many toys as I can while I’m out. When I’m done playing, I get lots of love from them and it makes me really wish someone would take me home and give me that love all the time! I’ve watched a lot of dogs leave, a lot of them grow up and go home. When will it ever be my turn?
If you’re interested in adopting one of these dogs, please contact the shelter at 631-224-5660 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. We will be happy to answer any questions you may have, and be more than happy to show any of these dogs out of their cages.