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#63553 - 12/05/03 06:24 PM Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  
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rivercrow Offline
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I have a question.

Several months ago my hubby & I visited a *bird* shop 4 hours away. We were there to visit a 'too, and we spent 2-4 hours each weekend for 3 weeks at this shop, assessing the shop, staff, and bird. And letting the bird assess us. The shop staff knew we were interested, and told us they would call if anyone showed any interest.

We decided during the 4th week, after much discussion and soul-searching, and called, only to be told the bird had been sold. :-(

There were also some comments by the clerks and management that made us uncomfortable, but that is all subjective and I won't go into it. They did seem to make an effort to discuss 'too negatives and space requirements.

Several months later (now), I get a phone call that the purchaser of the bird needs to adopt it out since the purchase was made w/o spousal input and/or committment. And, since we were interested, are we still interested? ("We were so good with the bird, etc, etc.") confused

We're torn. One the one hand, we were very interested in the bird at the time, and have wondered about it's well-being since. Hate to see a 'too in distress b/c of some human foolishness. On the other hand, we have a baby CAG and a 'tiel. Can we handle another bird -- esp a prepubescent 'too? How do 2 people feel oatmeal to 3 birds at bedtime? How will the new CAG and and the older 'tiel feel about a new addition?

I really feel like the *bird* shop clerks & management missed the boat on this one, and it makes me mad. angry That's probably the biggest negative for our accepting the bird. But that's not fair to the bird. I would have expected them to do better education and screening (considering the things they said to us!), and I expected them to honor their commitment to contact us if someone was interested--esp after making such a show of "for the bird's best interest"! angry angry

I feel like we're being taken advantage of! angry (on the other hand, it's flattering to be remembered as concerned parrot keepers.)

Comments? Flames? Suggestions? Should we consider this another contribution to birdie rescue?

Thanks in advance for any crumbs you throw. Happy Holidays!

#63554 - 12/05/03 07:04 PM Re: Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  
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Mona Offline
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Unless they are offering the bird to you as an adoption (and that means at no cost to you), I would walk away. Its painful and its hard but you cant save every bird by buying them when things don't work out for the previous owners.
Don't be flattered that the store came to you, they know you wanted that bird badly, and playing the "pity" card on you.

#63555 - 12/05/03 07:15 PM Re: Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  
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You ARE being taken advantage of. I assume "adopt it out" means "purchase for nearly full price". I think the shop staff are morons and I agree with everything in your paragraph w/ 3 angry . Don't feel too flattered. They probably see you as walking "dollar signs" $$$! Ka-ching! I smell "consignment sale." You can solve their problems. Let me know if the owner really intends to GIVE you the bird...

Only you know if you can handle 3 birds at one time. I think the CAG & the 'too could "go with the flow" if you decide to do this. Are the 'teil or Grey jealous now? You must be sure everyone gets the attention they need and no birdie becomes "royalty."
How old is your Grey? What kind of 'too are we talking about?

#63556 - 12/05/03 07:44 PM Re: Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  
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The CAG is 11 months old, we've had her for 4.5 months. And she's a sweetie! She's a very social loony-bird, but not as hands-on as our late beloved wild imported G2 (necropsy suggested death was probably age-related). Loves head-scritches and playing games, very happy on the knee with a foot-toy.

The 'tiel is beyond sweet, and is a cuddle-monster.

Both current birds want to be in on the action if someone else is getting attention. So does the dog. I don't think it's full-fledged jealousy from anyone, but I am careful since the CAG is young and still an "unknown".

"Adoption" I'm sorry, I should have clarified that in my first post! I did specifically ask about the use of the word "adoption", and was told it did mean "free with cage". Specifically, no money involved. Yes, I got *very* suspicious when "adoption" was used, thanks to what I've read on this message board! (Needless to say, this does not make our decision easier! It does suggest they are truly sincere about the 'too's welfare....)

The 'too is a BE2, maybe a little over 2 yo, and was at the shop for most of that time.

#63557 - 12/05/03 07:53 PM Re: Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  
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Mona Offline
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oooh so they are willing to give you the bird..well good for them, thats at least an effort on their part to do the right thing. Now all you have to decide is if this bird will fit in with the rest of your flock. I will say that I find my Grey's to be very jealous of new birds and it may take while for yours to adjust, and also the fact that you only recently acquired the grey and its still a baby should factor into your decision. Are you sure you're ready to take on another bird while still bonding and raising a baby? Its a tough choice but I'm sure you'll do whats best for your flock and the other bird..let us know how it goes and what you decide :-)

#63558 - 12/08/03 04:02 PM Re: Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  
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rivercrow Offline
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The plot thickens.

We visited the bird again yesterday. This is a 4-hr one way trip for us. We wanted to see if s/he remembered us, and was still the birdie we had been interested in.

S/he is nippier, and more skiddish, 'tho her/his first contact with my husband's hand was a gentle nibble. The previous owner's wife and the bird did not get along well, and the bird was nippier with me than with my husband. Her experience with people has not been the best. S/he will take toys and pellets from the hand, but is a booger to remove from the cage. Once out of the cage and in a quiet place, she settles down and relaxes for both of us. We remembered why we were attracted to the bird.

Then the clerk -- the same one as before -- tells us the previous owner wanted them to sell the bird for him at first. When she challenged him, he backed down to giving up bird and accessories. Apparently, the fellow dropped the bird off to board, and did not return any phone calls for over a month, not until his wife was contacted. First contact with the owner was last Wednesday.

Here's the good part. We had been told on the phone "free, bird and cage and toys". Now the clerk tells us the shop owner wants an adoption fee and the boarding costs have to be settled--all this will be passed along to us, if we take the bird.

Anyone say "bait & switch"?

The shop owner won't make eye contact.

Oh, and they have at least one other bird in a similar state.

I can see that the boarding bill should be paid, but I don't think the prospective repurchaser should be responsible for that. Sounds like small claims court to me. I really have a problem with an adoption fee at all. They made their money once. This is a reselling situation. Phooey with all the hoitie-toitie "don't barter around the bird" New-Ageism.

Okay, let's say they want to make sure the new buyer cares. Is money going to prove that? Did it prove it before? We were interested months back, does that prove anything? I have *responsible* local bird shop staff and 3 vets (2 are avian vet assoc. members, one is board certed) who can vouch for the care I give birds and dog.

And this isn't Gabriel Foundation or any other rescue (where I wouldn't have a qualm about the fee--I have contributed hundreds of $ and supplies annually to rescues and refuges for parrots and raptors for years). This is a shop. Says so on their website, on their front door, on their letterhead.

We'll call back and see what this "adoption fee" is, since we're curious now. I don't care if I am Dr Doolittle with birds, and I'm sticking to my guns on this, even if it means condemning an innocent.

Besides, since we "worked our magic" yesterday, I betcha they'll find another buyer in a week. Just like before.

Thanks, and Happy Holidays. You all are great!

#63559 - 12/08/03 05:37 PM Re: Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  
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Mona Offline
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Wow what a load of crap they've handed you.
I think that you've thought it out, and come up with all the right answers. You are being taken advantage of after all and good for you for NOT falling for it. Its sad and its hard I know, but they have a lot of nerve trying to sell this bird to you by pretending its to cover "boarding" costs and expenses.
You are smart to walk away on this, as hard as I know it must be to do.

#63560 - 12/08/03 05:42 PM Re: Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  
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Poor bird. No wonder it's gotten nippier. Poor thing has probably been through hell.

#63561 - 12/08/03 06:24 PM Re: Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  
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Id be interested in hearing what the fee is....just as courious as you are now. I think you have made the right decision also, and Im so sorry you had four hours home to think about it. Shame on them.

#63562 - 12/09/03 01:20 AM Re: Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  
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This is becoming a common practice at bird shops. They add up the "boarding costs" until they equal the price of the bird if it was "new." That is what they now charge to "rehome" the bird. (It's really hard to get more than market value).
This is a "human nature" thing. Humans rationalize their behavior. No one likes to admit they are being a sleeze-ball...so they change the wording and they can pretend they are not scum-bags. They make their behavior sound more palatable...but it changes nothing.
A shop will take a bird (and cage and toys) from a concerned owner, promising to "find it a good home." They tell the owner they will "adopt it out." I have even seen birds that were found outside and turned in to the store....sold for full price. The store usually gets to sell a new cage (and toys, food, etc.) as well. The stores do not spend anything on vet bills for these birds, but they will tell you they did. No matter how they justify their behavior it is all the same. All of these recent threads have just been discussing how people justify their bad behavior. (ie: are they a sanctuary or a breeder? etc.).
Make no mistake. It is costing the store PENNIES to give that bird food every day. The lights would be on and the staff would be there regardless. Newspaper for the bottom of the cage? There are no costs they have to recoup. They will invent any story they have to to justify charging a good price for that bird. I especially dislike the delusion that they will use the money to help other birds in this situation in the future (yah, right). Every time they lie to themselves and the public it becomes easier.

#63563 - 12/09/03 04:33 AM Re: Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  
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Man, I gotta tell you. What a mess! Can't trust the pawn shops, can't trust the pet shops, can't even trust the **board certified vets**!!

One of the owners of the shop where the 'too is is a board certified avian vet named Richard Gregory Burkett. In the past he has had his license suspended and has been fined for operating in unlicensed facilities.

All this is public record, folks.

http://www.aligus.com/Disparity.html
"The Conclusions of Law in Dr. Burkett's Consent Order include of G.S. 90.187.8(c)(6), "incompetence and gross negligence in the practice of veterinary medicine for practicing veterinary medicine in two locations in uninspected practice facilities not approved for practice (Item #5).
...
6. In 1994 and in 1995, Dr. Burkett also practiced veterinary medicine at his business premises known the XXXX XXXXXXX, located at XXXXX XXXXXXXXXXXXX XX, Durham, NC.

7. The XXXXXXX XXXXXXXXX was a bird pet store and Dr. Burkett did not obtain a facility inspection from the Board prior to practicing veterinary medicine at this location.
...
Documents and portions thereof contained within this web site are from public record files of the North Carolina Veterinary Medical Board, a regulatory agency of the State of North Carolina and the North Carolina Office of Administrative Hearings."

From the birs shop website "Dr. Burkett has relocated his practice to the [bird shop]." Who knows--maybe it's been licensed!

More: http://www.aoc.state.nc.us/www/public/coa/opinions/2001/000977-1.htm

http://www.diamondavian.com/benofbuyfrom.html

#63564 - 12/09/03 05:29 AM Re: Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  
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hi

I dont know about you but if I fall in love with an animal I find it really hard to walk away! I would be mad about paying any money for boarding but if I wanted that poor too that much I would go get him!!!sounds like he just needs a loving home and tlc his nipping will stop when he trust you if he was not like that before the new owner got him it was cause by them!but of coare you want to be sure you can handle another pet. Did you get your grey after they sold the too?

cookie smile

#63565 - 12/09/03 11:48 PM Re: Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  

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That is such a low thing for them to do. Passed the dirt and then some. What you're saying is they've made money off the original purchase of the bird, it needs a home and you were offered it and everything for free, and now they're charging you for boarding and such? What a way to squeeze money out of you. That poor bird.

#63566 - 12/10/03 02:58 PM Re: Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  
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rivercrow Offline
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FWIW, they're asking a $950 "adoption fee", no word on the outstanding boarding fee (which we understood would need paying, and would be extra).

What bull. This is not the only bird they have that someone bought and "returned" soon after. The shop refuses to refund the money, but they sure want another cut out of the bird. I feel sorry for the previous owners.

Also, they keep the boarding birds right in the same room as the "for sale" birds, some of whom are still being handfed. They asked me to bring my grey in to the store as long as it had been vaccinated. The only vaccine I know is for polynoma (sp). What about PBFD and PDD?

I would expect this from a pet shop. Maybe even from a bird shop. But I would think a shop co-owned by an avian board certified vet would be run better. He mustn't have much to lose--he did have his license revoked for a few months and was under probation in 1998. I guess he figures what's the worst that can happen to him?

Thanks for listening. We keep relearning the same lesson.

#63567 - 12/10/03 11:03 PM Re: Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  
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maybe you can report this to the better business bureau

#63568 - 12/10/03 11:09 PM Re: Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  

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The want that much and they wouldn't even refund the original money the people who bought him first? I wouldn't even take another glance towards that shop. I know you probably want the bird, but that price and everything else is outrageous. Tell them like it is. The fact that they didn't refund the other people is downright rude, and the fact that they want to squeeze more money out of the bird is out there and beyond.

#63569 - 12/11/03 07:07 AM Re: Oh, no -- another "shops & ethics" question -- sorry  
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As much as it may pain you to hear this, walk away. If you are going to pay $950 "adoption fee", please consider adopting from a rescue org that is on the up and up and not pad the pockets of a greedy shop owner. You could always walk in there with cash and offer X amount and walk away when they don't accept it. Its a tough call when your heart is breaking over the poor soul that is caught in the middle. You and the TOO are in my thoughts.

Lei


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