• Report: #894136

Complaint Review: Wasatch Animal Rescue

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  • Submitted: Thu, June 07, 2012
  • Updated: Sat, September 22, 2012

  • Reported By: Bonnie — Delta Colorado United States of America
Wasatch Animal Rescue
Salt Lake City, Utah United States of America

Wasatch Animal Rescue Animal Rescue/Adoption Scammers!! Salt Lake City Utah

*Consumer Comment: From an Actual Adopter--Wasatch Animal Rescue is Great

*Consumer Comment: Wasatch Animal Rescue - Deal Fair

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I believe Wasatch Animal Rescue is a phony/disreputable scam.  I found a mini-aussie on PetFinder.com that was listed at their facility.  I contacted them immediately to see if Thumper was still available for adoption.  They only way to contact them is via email.  I requested an adoption application 3 times which Heather never sent to me and she wouldn't answer my questions about Thumper, although she did respond that the adoption fee was $125 and he was available.  Since she didn't send me an application,  I sent her a copy of the application I filled out for our local shelter, in hopes that they might have a mini or toy aussie come through for adoption.

My personal reference is my veterinarian, and I was willing to drive 6 hrs (one way) to pick up Thumper, so I was really diligent about continuing to try and get through their adoption process.  I sent several emails to Heather trying to make arrangements to come to Salt Lake to pick up Thumper, and she refuses to answer my emails although Thumper is still listed on their website as up for adoption.

Why would a rescue facility fail to work with an applicant that has stellar references and an easily verifiable background? 

So, I did a quick internet search for reviews of Wasatch Animal Rescue, and found several negative things.  One report has already been filed against them on RipOffReport.com because they stole pictures from an Australian Terrier breeders website.  Additionally, Yuppie Puppy documents a bad transaction with Wasatch Animal Rescue, and another potential adopter couldn't find out anyone that had heard of this rescue and reported that that were not a registered not-for-profit, even though their web page states that they are.

I think it is suspect, that they don't provide an address or phone number on their webpage.  Our local animal shelter is run by volunteers, and is on an appointment basis, but you can still call them.  The only thing that seems to work on the Wasatch Animal Rescue website is their donation button.

There website describes a terrible case of abuse for a little dog named Hope.  It sounds to me like the kindest thing to do would be to euthanize Hope because of her severe and debilitating injuries, but they are using her as a fundraising mechanism.   But wait......there's more.....even though they can load pictures of everything else on their website, the picture of Hope doesn't actually appear.

I also find their puppy mill story suspect....Supposedly, they travel to the midwest to rescue dogs from puppy mills.  Unfortunately, there are a lot of abused/needy dogs a lot closer to Salt Lake than the  "mid-west."  Wouldn't it be a better expenditure of funds, to take care of local dogs, instead of spending all that money on travel??  I think they use the "mid-west puppy mill story" as a smoke screen, and excuse as to when local people aren't familar with them.

Unfortunately, my husband and I have invested a lot of emotion in this situation, because we were so excited to find the breed of dog that we wanted, and then to be able to provide a fantastic home for an abused animal was really going to be fulfilling for us.  I now believe that Thumper is a complete fabrication, and that Wasatch Animal Rescue has created a shell of an organization to trick people into donating to their website.


This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 06/07/2012 08:14 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Wasatch-Animal-Rescue/Salt-Lake-City-Utah-/Wasatch-Animal-Rescue-Animal-RescueAdoption-Scammers-Salt-Lake-City-Utah-894136. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Comment

From an Actual Adopter--Wasatch Animal Rescue is Great

AUTHOR: Mixtape - (United States of America)

Note to any potential Wasatch Animal Rescue adopters: the above report was filed by someone who never adopted a pet from Wasatch. Rather, they are frustrated that they were rejected for adoption and have decided to voice their "suspicions" as fact.

I actually adopted a dog from Wasatch almost two years ago and he is the love of my life. He is a French Bulldog and was a baby at the time I got him. I contacted Wasatch and was sent an application. I was surprised how easily I was approved given that I was out of state. The fee was a bit high for an adoption, but was still far FAR less than buying a Frenchie puppy, and I was willing to sacrifice kennel club papers for the chance to adopt a puppy mill rescue. Like most private adoption agencies, Wasatch charges more for puppies and directs the excess funds to help their senior and special needs dogs.

During the few weeks between when I paid my adoption fee and traveled to SLC to pick up my puppy, I read a few reviews like the one above and got worried that Wasatch was a scam. I am a lawyer who litigates internet scams and, needless to say, am a bit of a cynic. At the same time I was buying all my new dog stuff (crate, food bowls, etc.) I was hoarding the receipts because I was mentally preparing myself for the possibility of not actually getting the dog.

Well, all of that worry was for nothing. I got my dog, I met Heather (she even brought him to the airport for the handoff), 2 years later my dog is still fabulous and my vet has commented he's the healthiest Frenchie she's ever seen. In retrospect, I realize that Wasatch is just a small operation. It has no physical address, which is why none is provided. Instead, it relies on foster families in SLC to care for dogs until they are adopted out, and Heather coordinates the whole effort from her home. She is a busy mom and small businesswoman, and I don't have a problem with the fact that she refuses to supply her home address or phone number, and instead conducts everything related to Wasatch via email. Yes, you might not get an immediate response to your email as Wasatch is not a full-time gig for anyone, but you will eventually get a response and a helpful one at that.

Note that the reviewer above complains about the emotional investment in the puppy they hoped to adopt. I'm having a hard time believing this as these days, thanks to the Internet and, unfortunately, puppy mills, you can always find an available puppy in any breed you want. What these people were upset about, however, is that they were not able to get the puppy they wanted at the much lower price charged by Wasatch as an adoption fee. From what I can tell, they were totally unsuccessful in dealing with Wasatch at all. Well, take it from someone who HAS dealt with them, it may not be like working with a large-scale operation, or a breeder who is looking to make a quick buck before the puppy gets to old, but working with Wasatch is a worthwhile experience.
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#2 Consumer Comment

Wasatch Animal Rescue - Deal Fair

AUTHOR: Valerie - (United States of America)

I found my little tea cup poodle at Wasatch Animal Rescue, (August 30, 2011) and they were very responsive to my emails and requests. Even after the adoption when I had questions they were very quick to respond!

I have donated little fleece blankets and they were very appreciative. It is a very small operation with few volunteers (as far as I could see).

I live in Salt Lake City and prior to finding my little girl I checked other agencies out of State and was told I would not be able to adopt since I didn't live in the same State as that particular agency. I would highly recommend Wasatch Animal Rescue to anyone.

I do respect your opinion, but having dealt with them more than once and I feel they are honest! I even offered to make a cash donation, but Heather refused to take the cash and suggested I make the donation via their website.

I also inquired about Hope (seeing her picture) and she was living with a foster family.

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