Just in case you missed the thread about adoption from pet stores, thanks Jeff and Sue http://www.havaneseforum.com/showthread.php?t=97034
I thought I would post this important topic response I received from an IAABC member when queried about this. I think we will see a lot more of this down the road, and locations can vary greatly on how this is implemented. Here is Emily's response.
"I have been volunteering and working in shelters and rescue groups for 25 years. Concurrently, I was also a vet tech for 17 years, and a vet tech assistant for 7 years before that. I have also been a behavior consultant for 5 years. I currently work as a "trainer" (that's my title, although technically we are behavior consultants, writers, public speakers, and community educators) at Best Friends Animal Society, which is the largest no-kill animal sanctuary in the country. We have over 1200 network partners across the country, which includes municipal shelters, private shelters, and rescue groups. As a result, I have interacted and dealt with hundreds of shelters and rescue groups all over the country. There are certainly some who are hoarders, some who create impossible standards by which they measure adopters, and some who charge ludicrous adoption fees. Not everyone operates with equal integrity. The same can be said for breeders as well, or any field, for that matter. However, what I have never seen is dogs and cats from a rescue being sold at pet stores for hundreds of dollars, where the pet store keeps the profits. Many pet stores where I'm from (Austin, TX) and where I'm currently based (Utah) house pets on behalf of rescues and shelters, who charge a reasonable adoption free ($20-100), which goes back to the rescue or shelter where the animals came from. In exchange, the shelters or rescue groups are required to clean the housing areas and provide food, water, bedding, and toys, but they don't pay the pet store a fee, nor does the pet store keep any of the profit. Where they profit is from the pet supplies people purchase when they adopt the pet. To me, it has seemed like a wonderful solution: stop supporting puppy mills, provide more exposure for adoptable animals, relieve numbers in shelters and rescues that are overflowing... it seems like a win-win, from my point of view.
Best Friends has a program similar to what you describe called "Pup My Ride," where shelters or rescues who have a surplus of one type of animal (e.g. little dogs, puppies, etc.) send the dogs - for free, through the Pup My Ride program - to parts of the country that has a deficit of those types of animals (and don't worry; we make sure our animals are transported safely and humanely!). This has also always seemed like an elegant solution to increasing adoption numbers and reducing euthanasias which occur as a result of overflow.
Of course, I completely agree with you that if those were the only measures taken, it would be a poor solution. We must stop the hemorrhaging in addition to siphoning off the blood. This is why our organization, in addition to many others, are taking a multi-faceted approach. In addition to Pup My Ride and collaborating with pet stores, we also have the following programs:
Increased behavior support in order to address behavior issues and increase adoptability of the animals in shelters and rescues, as well as provide pre- and post-adoption support.
We are making huge strides to reduce the homeless pet population, and many of our partner cities are already at or very near No-Kill status. We, too, work with local reservations, as well as hoarding and pet mill (not just dogs; all species) court cases. Our network partners take the more easily "fixable" animals, and we take the ones with more severe behavior issues so that we can address their behaviors, increase their adoptability, and find homes for them as well. This system is working extremely well for us; we rehabilitate and adopt out formerly feral dogs (and other species) all the time.
So, in my experience, even though they are not in and of themselves the solution, Pup My Ride and collaboration with pet stores to reduce support of puppy mills and increase the exposure of shelter pets are hugely important facets to the success of our overall mission."
Emily Strong, CPBC, CPBT-KA
Dog Trainer, Best Friends Animal Society
Animal Behavior Consultant, From Beaks To Barks
Yoga Teacher, Kanab Yoga