So you think each volunteer must have a background check done, but the rescue should not ask to see some form of identification from the prospective adopter? You think the volunteers should have to disclose their entire name to a potential adopter? Have you ever worked with a rescue? While I am the first person to side with the potential adopter, because I am a well known perpetual optimist, let me tell you, there are some whack jobs out there and I know that from personal experience. I don't want some of those folks knowing where I live. Also, if your name/address gets out there, you will end up with having abandoned dogs tied to your doorknob one morning.
Our rescue, which has been in business for ten years and has sucessfully placed over 3000 dogs, does charge a $10.00 adoption application fee. I was against it at first, but have since changed my mind.
We have fairly rigid conditions that we have to comply with via instruction from the Commonwealth of Virginia. We have to account for each and every dog that passes through our rescue on an annual basis. If we do not file the required state forms/paperwork, shelters will not release dogs to us. We have to keep records of where the dog came from, surrender information, shelter information, vet records, and adoption contract records. The amount of paperwork is hideous.
Background check for people involved in rescue groups? In the age of internet anonomity? Absolutely. Why not? What convinced me is an hour of just reading notes here about all of the "rescue" groups which turn out to be bogus or worse and all of the "insider" machinations which end up deceiving other rescue groups and adoptors. An adoptor is entitled to know that the people he is dealing with can prove that they have fully investigated the background of people in their own group.
I can't see where I said or even suggested that the adoptor should not be required to produce identification. If production of legitimate identification is a requirement imposed upon the adoptor by the rescue group or the volunteer working for it, then the adoptor should demand the same from the group and anyone claiming to represent the rescue group.
Yes, entire name and address and phone number. Why not? Same information which is demanded of the adoptor. Rescue group of total strangers has my full name, address and phone number. Can find me any day of the week. I don't know why the standard of transparency should be unequal and strangers who claim to be associated with a rescue group should have an advantage over the adoptor.
If the rescue group people are unwilling to be who they claim to be and have proof of it, an adoptor has no reason to trust them. Is a total stranger, who doesn't have or isn't willing to produce government issued picture identification, coming into my home to do a home visit? Absolutely not. An adopter should run away from any rescue group which will not deal with him on the very same basis as it expects him to deal with them. It's the only way the relationship is balanced.
As stated: there are strange people out in the world. Agree with that. As much as the rescue group thinks it is important to protect itself from them, the adopter has the very same problem: some of the strange and dangerous people inhabit or run rescue groups and that's a fact easily derived from doing nothing but reading notes here about all of the people who do terrible things to animals in the name of "rescuing" them.
If the rescue group is not willing to allow the adopter to see the dog in the home where it supposedly lives, the adoptor should walk away. A home visit to the adoptor's home is mandatory for the rescue group's purposes. A home visit to the foster home is mandatory for the adoptor's purposes too. No reason for the adoptor to trust a rescue group's claim that a dog is in foster care unless the group is willing to prove that. Meet the dog in a park while claiming that the dog is in foster care but refuse to allow the adoptor to see the dog in that setting? No way!
As for legally required paperwork, I don't know of any endeavor that doesn't have mandatory paperwork. Goes with the territory. Everybody has to do it.
I'm glad the point of compliance with state rules and regulations was brought up. It's a point not on my list specifically. A rescue group should be prepared to prove to any adoptor who asks for proof that it is in full compliance with all state and any federal laws for business registration, not-for-profit tax status, interstate animal transportation and the like.
If adoptors would impose, without exception, the very same stringent standards and requirements of bona fides and in depth of investigation upon the rescue groups as the rescue groups impose upon potential adoptors, perhaps a significant number of the bogus and illegal rescue group operations would be shut down.
If the rescue groups and the people in them are not willing to undergo and tolerate and agree to the very same scrutiny and level of personal disclosure as they impose upon the adoptor, the adoptor has no reason for trust or confidence. Best thing for the adoptor to do: run away.