Today more people in the UK get pets from animal rescue centres than other sources and this is a good thing for the animals that have been removed from cruelty or neglect and the various organisations doing the rescuing do a great job. Battersea Dogs and Cats Home even say in their adverts “rescue is our favourite breed”, to encourage people to look beyond pedigree and perfection to choose a pet.
Why though do so many people who obtain their pet this way emphasise the fact whenever they mention their dog or cat – for example someone writes in to a radio show saying “From Ellie, Tom and Boris, our Rescue Dog”? Is it now a fashion tag – along the lines of “shabby chic”, or a badge of honour – a way to look good in other people’s eyes, to show how caring you are?
Personally whenever I hear the words “our rescue dog” I imagine that at any moment a beeper will go off and the dog will grab a rucksack and head off out the door and up a mountain clutching a Kendal Mint Cake.