Busan Abandoned Pet Sanctuary usually gets 10-20 messages per month from people who want us to take in dogs they find. We’d love to take them all, but it is simply impossible for us. Our funding and infrastructure support maximum 30 dogs on site, and we have to keep those numbers if we want to survive financially.
So, the first thing you should NOT think when you want to rescue a dog is “I can send it to BAPS”. We do not take dogs from people, for a variety of complex reasons related to medical quarantine. (we take dogs from a pound that provides quarantine observation/treatment for dogs pre-selected)
What about other shelters? Well, basically, there are no other shelters in the area that take in dogs and do not euthanize them. This is the sad reality. The only option is for you to follow the procedures below in order to give the dog a chance.
You see a stray dog on the street; here’s the questions you need to ask yourself:
1- Are you able to keep the dog in your house for 2-6 months? If not, do you have a person who could do it?
2- Are you able to afford minimum 100,000 up to 300,000 for basic medical treatment/assessment assuming the dog is not critically ill?
If you answer “no” to either of those questions, we recommend you do not pick up the dog until you have secured both those options.
If you answered yes, go on…
3- Do you have a pet in your house?
If you answered “yes”, do NOT take the dog home. It could present a serious health risk to your pet.
If you touch the dog, thoroughly disinfect yourself and your clothing. Secure a home for the dog, and go on…
If you’ve solved questions 1-3, these are the steps you need to take:
1. Go to a vet with the dog, check for a microchip, and ask for the following procedures:
a) Distemper and Parvovirus ANTIBODIES test. (Note: this is not a negative/positive test). The test should be assessed in a scale of 1-6. If the result is 4 or below for either level, ask the vet to give booster shots.
NOTE that if the result is under 4, the dog could already be infected with either of these deadly diseases. It will take up to 3 weeks for incubation, and if one develops, death is nearly certain, and you will spend up to 600,000 thousand trying to treat it.
b) Heartworm test (positive/negative)
c) Age assessment
d) Skeletal assessment
e) General health checkup.
The vet assessment may reveal a multitude of potential mild to serious issues, some which could cost hundreds of thousands to treat. We recommend that after the assessment you consider your finances, and then make a responsible decision about if you will continue to be responsible for the dog,or ask the vet to call the pound.
If you decide to continue, go on…
1. You should know that the vast majority of stray dogs in Korea will not have someone looking for them, so don’t get your hopes up that the owner will be found. However, you should create a flyer in Korean that gives a general description of the dog (size, color, breed, temperament), and a Korean speaker’s phone number. Do NOT include a picture of the dog, or identifying mark information. This is to prevent dog meat traders from posing as the owner. If someone does come forward, ask for photographic proof of ownership.
Post the flyer at local vets, pet shops, police stations,and community bulletin boards.
2. For finding a permanent adopter, take many high quality pictures of the dog, from different angles, and create a profile for the dog on www.rescuekorea.org
3. Be patient. It can take months to find an adopter…
Picking up a dog off the street is a much more complicated issue than people think at first. We have seen countless heartbreak and frustration from people who get into a situation they are not able to deal with.
Of course we also have seen many dogs go on to beautiful long lives, and give years of love and joy to their new family.
We ask that everyone who takes a dog do so responsibly, and we are here to provide advice and any assistance within our means.