PETstock has 8 stores in South Australia; Parafield, Prospect, Allenby Gardens, Munno Para (Smithfield), Melrose Park, Noarlunga & Burnside (Glenside) and Port Lincoln.
According to a presentation given at last September's G2Z conference a relationship was developing between PETstock and the Animal Welfare League South Australia;
Early this year PETstock owners and managers visited our Port Adelaide Adoption Centre and were very impressed with the concept and the set up. In May this year we entered into a partnership with PETstock where they adopt out AWL shelter animals on our behalf. At this stage we are offering this at two of the PETstock stores but there are plans to increase this over the coming months.
This program has now been rolled out to all of the state's stores, with smaller rescue groups asked to no longer bring pets to the stores.
Of course this makes a lot of sense to PETstock; potentially one contact for the whole state who coordinates the shelters to do drop offs. A single adoption form for all transactions. All stores have to do is offer enclosures.
But this is a huge blow to rescue groups who rely on in-store adoption programs, and could be a disaster for rescue if other national AWL's start courting PETstock stores too.
'National Adoption Day' - the annual event hosted by PETstock in partnership with PetRescue, is supposed to be a big benefit offered to PetRescue members, but if the AWL can swoop in and take an entire state, then PetRescue has dropped the ball in protecting that asset for their 'rescue member groups'. Last year's National Adoption Day was awash with AWL branches in SA...
National Pet Adoption Day has no value to community rescue and foster groups, and PetRescue members if they aren't invited to even attend.
The Animal Welfare League in SA (and QLD) don't use PetRescue - they don't have to. They have enormous resources and their own web presence and social media channels. Yet, despite not being an active member of PetRescue - PETstock's major charity partner - the AWL SA is now the go-to organsation for in-store adoptions in the state. A non-member is evicting genuine PetRescue members from PETstock stores.
Rescue groups being evicted from PETstock stores in SA might seem like a small deal, especially to groups not in SA. However, it is a symptom of a larger crisis looming for rescue nationally. Tail Piece wrote an extremely insightful commentary on climate rescue groups are facing in 2018.
Rescue groups are under more pressure than ever. It's disappointing that a foundation program which literally launched in-store adoption in this country, seems to have abandoned community rescue and foster groups, after those same groups have supported PETstock to grow their brand for more than a decade. I hope they'll reconsider.