A dog that has been living in a shelter since she was two has finally been adopted after a social media post she featured in went viral. Ginger had been living in the Dogwood Animal Shelter in Osage Beach, Missouri for more than seven years. She first came to the shelter after being rescued from an abusive situation. Ginger is a Labrador retriever mix and she had a difficult life before she came to the shelter. She was not able to be put up for adoption for some time because she had emotional and behavioral issues. The abuse that she had suffered meant that it was hard for her to trust people for a long time. These issues took a while to work through, but the dedication of the staff at the center did mean that there did come a point when adoption would have been possible. Even though Ginger had been at the shelter for such a long period of time, the staff there never gave up hope that one day she would find the right person to take her home.
However, this adoption would have had to have met certain requirements, and this is one of the reasons why it just never seemed to happen for Ginger. She would have not been able to live in a home that had children or any other pets. She would also need someone who understood the issues that she had. According to Metro, she also sometimes became nervous in a kennel environment. This meant that it would probably take her some time to bond with her new owner. The fact that she would struggle to make an instant connection with anyone who was thinking of adopting her may have also contributed to the fact that she was never adopted. When people adopt from shelters they often make their choice based on which dog they feel they connect with the most.
Staff at the Dogwood Animal Shelter took a photo of Ginger in her kennel alongside a sign stating how long she had been at the shelter. The photo was shared on their Facebook page in the hope that it might generate a bitof interest among people who would be willing to adopt Ginger. This is something that they have done before for other dogs in their care, but Ginger’s situation was a little different because of the amount of time that she had spent at the shelter. There were also her additional needs that needed to be taken into account.
The shelter could never have guessed when they made the post that it would end up going viral. The post was shared from Facebook to Instagram by Mission Driven Goods. This is an organization that was set up by Scott Poore, as explained on their website. One of his main areas of focus is to help veteran animals find their forever homes. When he saw the post about Ginger he just knew that it needed to be shared. He has been able to help many dogs that have been in a similar situation over the years, and he has many followers on social media that he knew would also share the post.
The post was also noticed by the organization Paws Up. This is an Instagram account that was founded by Ellen Degeneres which shares content related to animals. This is another account that has a lot of followers. The people that follow these accounts tend to share their posts even if they are not in a position to help themselves. It is estimated that between all of these posts the photo of Ginger was ultimately shared more than 32,000 times. The attention that the photo of Ginger got on social media meant that the shelter received more than thirty applications to adopt Ginger. Staff at the shelter knew that she was close to being able to find her forever home but they still needed to go through all the applications to find ones that were suitable. This is a standard procedure for any animal that is in a shelter because they obviously want to make sure that the animal is going to have a better life than the one they had before they came to the shelter.
Thankfully, they found that one of the applications offered everything that Ginger was looking for. The Dogwood Animal Shelter were able to make another Facebook post that confirmed that Ginger had been adopted and this included a photo of her with her new owner. The lady that adopted Ginger has no children and there are no other pets in the home. There is a yard that Ginger can play in and this is completely closed in so there is no risk of her getting out. One of the key reasons why this application was accepted was that Ginger’s new owner has experience of owning dogs with a similar disposition. The shelter were confident that all of Ginger’s needs would be met by her new owner, and that she would continue to thrive in her new home.
Using social media to find forever homes for pets is something that most shelters around the world are getting involved in. Anyone who is interested in adopting a pet will still have to go through the application process but it is a very useful tool in raising awareness of just how many pets there are in shelters that are just waiting to be adopted. When people share these types of posts, then it has the potential to reach even more people.
In Ginger’s case the fact that her post was shared by two high profile social media accounts, definitely made a real difference to the success of the post. When Dogwood Animal Shelter made their post about Ginger finding a home, they made sure that they gave thanks to everyone who had shared their original post. This included special thanks for Scott Poore, both for sharing Ginger’s story and for the work he does for so many shelters across the United States.