Friday, August 17, 2012

From No Hope to a Bright Future

Just days ago, nearly 300 dogs were in a building in the middle of cornfields. They were living their lives in rusty wire cages stacked two cages high, three dogs to a cage. They had no hope of anything changing for them.

How quickly the world has changed for these dogs! An army of people have descended upon them to give them clean water, clean food, clean air to breathe... And they're getting veterinary care and attention. But most importantly, the dogs will leave, bound for a bright future in homes with people who will care about them and treasure them.

RedRover Responders volunteers arrived on site this morning and hit the ground running. There was no time for an extended briefing. Volunteers jumped right in and began caring for the dogs, and one by one, gently taking them from the cages where they have spent most of their lives to get vet checks and treatments. Many of the dogs have heart-breaking eye conditions, skin infections, and other illnesses and injuries commonly encountered in puppy mill and hoarding situations.

Volunteer Katie works alongside a community volunteer to get the dogs' paperwork ready so they can go to approved rescue groups.

The best part was that nearly as fast as the volunteers could get the dogs tagged and their paperwork readied, they were going out the door to the wonderful approved placement groups that are taking them to continue their rehabilitation and find their forever homes. By 1 p.m., 76 dogs had already left the buildings.

This beautiful Shar-pei poses for a media camera on her way out to a rescue group.
By the end of the day, there were only 94 dogs left! Out of an operation that started with 240 Chihuahuas, 174 have made it out; and out of the original 40 Shar-pei, 12 are on their way to better lives. The remaining animals will have similarly bright futures as other groups come to pick them up over the next few days.

We are so grateful to have the opportunity to serve these dogs and this community. Volunteers from the community worked long and hard as soon as word got out that there were animals in need and before RedRover arrived, and their efforts are a large reason of why this first day of RedRover's deployment was so fruitful in moving animals off the property and onto better lives. Thank you to The Humane Society of Richland County for all their support and coordination, and to The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) for their tremendous effort to provide vital veterinary care and placement coordination. The HSUS and PetSmart Charities are funding the medical care for these dogs to alleviate the burden on the rescue groups and shelters that are taking them.

For those interested in adopting or fostering these dogs, some of the groups who received animals are listed below:

Please keep in mind that all these groups had animals in need of foster/adoption before this emergency happened, so please consider helping one of those animals, too. 

As always, we are in awe of the RedRover Responders volunteers who dropped everything in their lives to travel to this deployment and give so much of themselves to the animals and to this community. Thank you also to the RedRover donors and supporters who make this effort possible.


  1. I'm so impressed by all of the local volunteers and national non-profits that are helping the dogs at the Windsong Acres Kennels. Once the rescue efforts are complete, I hope this unfortunate situation will be a wake-up call for Ohioan to why we need reasonable regulations when it comes to breeding companion pets in Ohio.

    Despite the hardship and recent heartache that the kennel owner has faced, she still had a history of legal charges for animal cruelty and neglect in New Jersey. She deliberately relocated to Ohio, due to our lack of regulations when it comes to breeding companion pets. I hope this event will be the catalyst for reform in Ohio when comes to breeders and puppy mills.

    1. Dawn, thank you for that thoughtful comment. We hope this situation will be a catalyst for change, too.

  2. Such a well written article.

  3. I loved seeing Redrover at it again. They always seem to hit the ground running and do everything they can for all the animals involved. I was a little supprised, but very happy that so many groups stepped up so fast for these sweet babies. So happy they will have a chance at a good life the kind of life they deserve Thanks to the RedRover Responders.


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