To the Editor:

My good friend thought of a good idea today.  Can we do this?  I think it might help with the costs of housing abandoned pets in rescue animal shelters and help prevent the deaths of great animals.  We could set up a pet rental service from the many dogs and cats that are in shelters for people who are snow birds.

 Even if people get a dog or cat that can go with them on the plane, or in baggage, and they can only be very small dogs now, it costs the same as another person on the plane, to bring them. When they are in their vacation homes people need to rent a pet for companionship.  Even people who do not go on vacation to another location without their usual pet in tow, may feel that they want to have a dog or cat for a short period from time to time, without having a pet on a permanent basis until and unless they are ready to do that.

Maybe the cost to rent the pet could be about $5 to $7 a day. If a person rents the pet for a longer period such as a week or so, or for a month, it could be cheaper, even less expensive for six months. Then when people go to their vacation home and rent a different one while they are there. I figure it costs me over $500 a year to take care of my dog with medicine and the doctor visit for inoculations. This amount does not include food costs. The renters could provide food and pay for the flea and tick preventive and internal parasite preventive for the months they keep the dog or cat. This way, the pets get a home at least temporarily, and the costs are taken care of until a permanent home can be found for the dogs. Some profit might be made as well.

It has been done already with Rent-A-Pet in California and another company; possibly more.  I think the little bit of trouble to arrange the rentals would more than be offset by the better care the animals could receive and benefit by and the profit that could be realized by the organization who undertakes implementing this system. 

Susan Brachfeld Washburn

4 Sky Top Drive, Sandy Hook               February 27, 2013

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