Last week outrage over this drenched dog family on a Facebook post attracted thousands of social media users. Sinton's Director of Public Works, Hilario Chavez, says, the dog's owner, who surrendered the mother and her pups to the shelter, is responsible for the situation. "When he dropped them off, he was bringing them into the kennel and wanted a minute with them, he took the hose and sprayed them down," Chavez said.
After a bit of coaxing, Chavez gave the mother and pups a bit more time before putting them to sleep, so this author reached out to Peewee's Pet Adoption World and Sanctuary in nearby Corpus Christi, Texas. When the head of the shelter, Ernestina Cochran got the request, she didn't hesitate. "I can help with the mother and pups, I'll go get them!" Those words rolled right out of Cochran's mouth.
Peewee's Pet Adoption World and Sanctuary
Though the shelter is named Peewee's it's no peewee sized operation. Cochran takes in roughly 1500 dogs a year and adopts out as many. They're a no kill facility that's filled to the brim, and they're not just limited to dogs. In 2013 they also rescued and adopted out 266 cats, 2 horses, 8 rabbits, 7 guinea pigs, 1 gerbil and 1 bird.
Cochran, who immigrated to the US from Mexico years ago, worked at one time as a nurse and operated small businesses in the area. Then in 1995 at the age of 50, she wanted to help the large numbers of stray, abused, neglected and unwanted dogs in the Corpus Christi area so they opened Peewee's, named after the first dog she ever rescued, a little terrier mix. Cochran says there's a crisis locally with the amount of animals that need homes. "Taking in strays is not the answer, spaying and neutering is. It's an upside down situation. There's strays everywhere. It's a big mess. People say they can't afford fences so they leave their dogs on chains and the local government says it's okay. It's like fighting uphill battle."
Peewee's facility is immense and the organization depends on donations to keep saving lives. Cochran says she would be thrilled to work and network with other rescue groups, including out of state organizations which would be interested in taking some of the dogs she gets in. Most of the pooches are under 25 pounds, but there are also some larger sized dogs. There are transport services which can safely bring dogs to all areas of the country.
The mother dog and pups from Sinton
The mother dog from Sinton and her pups are all up for adoption, they don't need to go to the same home together, and out of state adopters will be considered. Cochran took this video of the dogs coming in on their transport van, and hopes someone will be attracted to a spark in a pup's eye or a cute face. If you are interested in adopting please contact Peewee's. Here's a slideshow with more pictures of the pups and other animals at Peewee's.
Update July 8, 2014: The mother dog just got adopted but all the pups still need homes.
City of Sinton does not advertise or market dogs in its pound to get new homes; assistance needed
This author also learned that the City of Sinton does not market or advertise dogs that end up in its pound so the animals have a chance to get a new home. That makes it tough for the public or rescue groups to know adoptable pooches are there. There's no public notification system for dogs that get picked up, there's no website mentioning the dogs with pictures and descriptions, nor is there any social media out reach.
Cochran says she is going to make weekly calls to the city to see if there's any smaller sized dogs she can save from the Sinton shelter.
The president of People Assisting Animal Control (PAAC), Cheryl Martinez, saw this author's original article about the Sinton situation and she's also offered to help. PAAC is a nonprofit organization that tries to help network and market dogs in city and town animal control facilities. Dogs would be stuck at a literal dead end without their assistance. Martinez says, "We want to promote animals from municipal shelters. We were able to increase the adoptions from Corpus Animal Control from about 300 a year to over 2,000. We also saw that the pet overpopulation is very overwhelming and for every adoption we were successful in, 10 more animals were coming in the door. So in 30 days we will be opening up our high volume spay/neuter clinic and our low cost wellness clinic. Our goal is to have 10,000 surgeries performed each year to see a decline in the overpopulation."
Sinton's DPW manager tells this author he will welcome the help and assistance but so far nothing has been formalized. If you can help please email this author.