Sunday, June 4, 2017

We Were New. Wet Behind The Ears. An Easy Target.

Last month, while Lisa and I were running a couple of errands and checking out a few yard sales, a couple approached our vehicle. They saw the decals on our back window and inquired if we were a rescue. No, we're not. We briefly explained our mission behind Bodacious Biscuit Love. Before we concluded our explanation, the woman interrupted and asked if we gave money to dog parents who couldn't afford their entire veterinary bill.

I explained that we don't, however, on occasion, we've used our biscuits to raise funds to assist with medical costs and to purchase much needed items for our local animal shelters.

Again, the woman interrupted and went on about her story. Their pup had gotten loose and wasn't returned until a few days later...covered in fleas and ticks. The rest of the story was in bits and pieces and most of made very little sense. Lisa and I were both confused. As the story continued, it appeared their pup wasn't up to date on vaccinations. They needed money to get tests done and vaccinated.

Throughout her entire story, the woman seemed desperate for money. She didn't seem interested in the upcoming vaccination clinics we informed her of or giving us her email so I could send her names and numbers of organizations who assist with this sort of thing.

What impaired the validity of this story was that her husband, who was standing beside of her, was drinking a beer and had a pack of cigarettes in his hand.

If you have money for beer and cigarettes, you have money to pay for your visit to the veterinarian. 

We gave her our number and instructed her to call us later that evening. By that time, we'd have lots of information for her including upcoming vaccination clinics and a list of organizations. At that point, she blew us off.

And she never called us.

We've run into situations like this more times than we care to admit. I've lost count how many times we've donated biscuits and supplies to pet parents who cried poverty, but their situation was anything but. We've helped people in need of food and clothing and, a few days later, read about their evenings out, manicures and pedicures, and shopping sprees on Facebook. We've donated biscuit love and care packages to pet parents who saw us as an easy target. On several occasions, we almost fell for those fictitious sob stories, but pulled back when we saw the same people outside, at an event, smoking cigarettes and drinking Dunkin Donuts iced coffee.

Sadly, the list goes on.

It's been a tough pill to swallow with each and every incident. We'd like to think the pet parents who come to us are genuinely in need, but that's not always the case. Sometimes, as mentioned, people see us an easy target. A means of getting stuff for free simply's free. They'll take advantage of our kindness and generosity and mistake it for vulnerability.

Almost 4 years ago, when we launched Bodacious Biscuit Love, that may have been the case. We were new. We were wet behind the ears. However, long story short, you live you learn. We've endured a considerable amount of growing pains over the years. A lot of that has been encountering people who's motive was just to simply take advantage of us.

With experience comes wisdom. We're older. Wiser. Heading into our 4th year. We've made a considerable amount of changes. Some of those changes were necessary because people were pulling the wool over our eyes. Not following through with their end of the deal. Stiffing us when it came time to pay for the biscuits they ordered. Etc.

We had to make those changes because to this day, we're still running out of pocket. Every month we budget a certain amount of "out of pocket" that we're able to put towards what we do.

As our family has gotten bigger, that amount of budgeted money has gotten smaller. This is part of the reason why we've expanded to offering handcrafted quilts and other cool DIY Dog Mom Projects.

It's helped out. A lot. 

What continues to dampen our efforts is when people who are not genuinely in need take away from our supply of pet food, biscuit love, and other pet items.

Sure, we've tightened the reigns, but people go to great lengths to acquire free stuff simply because it's free.

It's frustrating.

There are many moments when I have to refrain myself from shooting off at the mouth.

"If you didn't buy beer, cigarettes, and Dunkin' Donuts coffee for a week, you'd be able to save at least $50. That alone would pay for an exam for your pup or flea and heartworm preventative."

But, I bite my tongue.

Maybe I need to stop doing that...

No comments:

Post a Comment