Thursday, December 2, 2010

Puppy mill dogs get second chance

We received the following update from EARS volunteer Debbie Ferguson of Kildeer, Illinois, who is at the temporary shelter UAN is running for 100 dogs rescued from a puppy mill in Greene County, Indiana yesterday:

Ten UAN volunteers from five states made the trek here to provide emergency sheltering for approximately 100 small-breed dogs seized from a local puppy mill. 
A rescued pup poses for the camera
We met at the Pets Alive Spay/Neuter Clinic in Bloomington early Thursday morning and began preparing the facility for the arrival of the dogs. Though much smaller than the usual emergency shelter facility,  it was more than enough to accommodate the small dogs who would arrive later in the day. The clinic staff made us feel very welcome; in fact, one employee even gave up his office so we could create an emergency triage station for the veterinarians! 
Kelly McKinney of Indianapolis carries
a rescued Chihuahua to his new "digs."
We spent the morning and early afternoon unloading, sterilizing and putting together crates (donated by PetSmart Charities Emergency Relief Waggin’); laying down puppy pads and bowls; and setting up special sections like maternity wards, veterinary stations and caution areas (for more hard-to-handle dogs). While we awaited the dogs’ arrival, we attended information sessions with UAN Emergency Services Manager Janell Matthies. Though a regular part of a UAN deployment, this session was especially pertinent as 70 percent of the volunteers were deploying with UAN the first time. 
UAN volunteer Janet Hare carries a
rescued dog into the temporary shelter
The sessions appeared to be quite effective. When the truck arrived with the dogs, the transfer was smooth and efficient. Despite the tight quarters and the large amount of people congregating to watch, photograph and film, the dogs were quickly placed into comfortable units. And very soon we all discovered our personal favorites, sitting with them, talking with them, sometimes holding them, but mostly assuring them that they were in a very good place and their lives were now going to be better than any dog could have hoped for.  
Yorkie pups were among the 100 dogs
rescued from the puppy mill December 1.
It was really amazing watching the faces of the first-time UAN volunteers as they received the dogs from the truck and carried them to their kennel. The satisfaction of knowing that what they were doing was vitally important to each little life was evident in the huge smiles on their faces. 
So, at the end of the day, approximately 100 small breed dogs, mostly Yorkies, poodles, pugs, Chihuahuas, Maltese and Shih Tzus were on their way to better lives, and ten UAN volunteers had a part in that. Not a bad days’ work!

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