Monthly Archives: March 2016

Costa Rica’s “Land Of The Strays” Is Pretty Much Paradise For Dog Lovers

Costa Rica’s “Land Of The Strays” Is Pretty Much Paradise For Dog Lovers by Dina Fantegrossi, writer at BarkPost

Imagine a place where the sun shines year-round, the average annual temperature is 73°, and more than 900 dogs with breed names like “Chubby-Tailed German Dobernauzer” and “Fire-Tailed Border Cocker” roam free across the lush landscape.

Sound like Heaven? Well believe it or not, it exists right here on earth! Territorio de Zaguates, or “Land of the Strays” is a privately funded, volunteer-run organization in Costa Rica.

tdz2

Source: Andrew George/Facebook

Every single dog at this unique shelter is available for adoption. Each is given a name as well as assigned their own personal “breed” based on their unique characteristics.

At Territorio de Zaguates mutts are celebrated for their one-of-a-kind traits in an effort to dispel the myth that purebreds are somehow more valuable. Experts believe putting a positive spin on their mixed status helps these special dogs find homes.

After a popular Costa Rican television show featured several artist renderings of Territorio de Zaguates’ “new breeds” the public response was explosive! The Alaskan Collie Fluffyterrier became a Facebook sensation. Billboards and advertisements depicting the dogs appeared in urban areas bearing the message “When you adopt a mutt, you adopt a unique breed.” Soon, interest in visiting and adopting the pups was higher than ever before.

Screenshot (718)

Source: Vimeo

When a potential adopter is interested in rescuing from Land of the Strays, they aren’t limited to searching through thousands of online photos. The public is welcome to come out to the gorgeous, sprawling property and meet the dogs in person!

Volunteers exercise the pups by leading frequent scenic hikes, and prospective pawrents are invited to participate. The opportunity to interact with the dogs in an open, stress-free environment allows adopters to truly get to know and bond with their new pet.

tdz5

Source: Territorio de Zaguates

The dogs of Territorio de Zaguates spend most of their time basking in the sun and enjoying the cool Costa Rican breezes, but they also have access to a modern indoor facility. The housing area features cozy bedding for all the pups plus feeding and bathing stations. Troughs with fresh flowing water are located all over the property to keep active dogs hydrated.

tdz4

Source: Territorio de Zaguates/Facebook

When you visit the Land of the Strays there is no pressure to adopt. It is a no-kill shelter, and the dogs are extremely well cared for and happy. However, I imagine it’s hard not to fall in love while hiking with these gorgeous, friendly pups through their free-range paradise!

Before you book your flight to this Costa Rican doggy wonderland, be sure to check their Facebook page for upcoming public hikes plus tons of photos of the one-of-a-kind adoptable cuties.

H/T to ticobull.com

Featured Image via Andrew George/Facebook

Four Boys Drop Everything To Save Abandoned Dog Tied With Bungee Cord

Four Boys Drop Everything To Save Abandoned Dog Tied With Bungee Cord by Samantha Erb, writer at BarkPost

It is my sincerest pleasure to introduce to you four awesome kids, Kenny, Kenneth, Kevin, and Andrew. These boys were helping a woman in their neighborhood move when they discovered something shocking: a lone brown dog, abandoned and tied to an empty nearby house with bungee cords.

With the help of some bologna slices, the little rescue crew brought the dog—whom they named Sparkle—back to their home. One of the boys even wrapped her in his jacket to keep her warm.

sparkle rescued

Source: Detroit Pit Crew Dog Rescue/Facebook

Though Sparkle was underweight and had some hair loss on her hind end, she was more than happy to accept their food offerings and later go outside to play.

When the Detroit Pit Crew Dog Rescue happened to drive by and see the group, they quickly discovered what the boys had done. The rescue’s founder Theresa Sumpter tells WDIV:

You could tell they really love this dog. They really were protective of the dog and wanted to make sure the dog was going to a good place.

sparkles2

Sumpter and the other rescuers explained to the boys that they could help the dog, if they would let them. Sparkle would go right to the vet to get checked out before eventually being listed for adoption. The kids were quick to comply, and WDIV got each boy’s harrowing side of the story on camera.

Sumpter tells us that Sparkle will be transferred to Pet Tales Rescue in Grand Rapids, Michigan with the help of Detroit Pit Crew’s Straight Outta Detroit Project. She will then be put up for adoption. This pup is clearly affectionate and fantastic with kids—oh, and she loves bologne. We have no doubt she’ll blossom into an amazing dog and companion, all thanks to these four young heroes.

h/t WDIV, featured image via Detroit Pit Crew Dog Rescue/Facebook

Kids Explain The Mysteries That Make Our Mutts Tick

H/t to DreamWorksTV /YouTube

Thief Stole Shelter’s Donated Food, But No One Anticipated The Town’s Reaction

Thief Stole Shelter’s Donated Food, But No One Anticipated The Town’s Reaction by Dina Fantegrossi, a writer at BarkPost.

Citizens of a small New Hampshire community rallied around their local shelter this week in the wake of a shocking crime. Security cameras at the Animal Rescue League of New Hampshire caught fuzzy images of a burglar looting more than 500 pounds of dog and cat food from the shelter’s pantry.

He left only a single small bag of kitten food behind.

One stroke of luck is that the shelter stores their canned food supply inside during the winter months, so it was not stolen. However, the outdoor pantry serves more than just the shelter. The donations of food they collect are distributed back into the community to assist needy residents in caring for their pets.

adoptable dog pete

Source: Animal Rescue League of NH/Facebook

In a touching display of support, the local community purchased and donated more than four times the amount of food that had been stolen by 4 P.M. the next day! That’s more than 2,000 pounds of kibble!

donation overflow

Source: Animal Rescue League of NH/Facebook

The rescue wrote on Facebook:

A day that began with sadness and shock, ended up filling our hearts over-the-top! We were confident we would replace the stolen food, but your support—the support from our community—far exceeded our wildest expectations! We are overwhelmed by the generosity of hundreds of people.

Maureen Prendergast, director of outreach and investigations for the Animal Rescue League, states that about 20 to 30 families receive food from the pantry at any given time. Some just need brief support through a difficult time, while others require long-term aid.

pittie smile

Source: Animal Rescue League of NH/Facebook

Prendergast says that the service also helps prevent animal cruelty, neglect, and abandonment in the community. Shelter President and CEO Monica Zulauf told the New Hampshire Union Leader:

These are animals that if this program wasn’t here, they would be being surrendered to shelters or eating food they shouldn’t be eating.

The thief has not been caught, and his motive is still unknown. The staff suspects that he may intend to sell the food and treats, according to Prendergast. The blurry video captured by security cameras does not allow for a facial identification of the suspect, but he was wearing jeans and a blue hoodie, and driving a dark blue sedan.

Zulauf and Prendergast are asking the public to keep an eye out and contact the Bedford police at 603-472-5113 with any information.

h/t New Hampshire Union Leader, featured image via Animal Rescue League of NH/Facebook + Kelly Chausovsky/Facebook

These Humans Created A “Summer” Camp For Homeless Special Needs Dogs

These Humans Created A “Summer” Camp For Homeless Special Needs Dogs by Kellie Stevens, writer at BarkPost.

With spring finally upon us, many hoomans are already looking forward to summer… which makes some of us think: SUMMER CAMP!! And there’s a special camp just for dogs that really needs our help right now.

Second Chance Rescue launched Camp SCR last summer to create a sanctuary where many of the special needs cases that they take in can heal and rehabilitate. Though they typically take in 8-10 dogs at a time (and up to 15 during the summer months when they have more volunteers), Camp SCR has helped over 120 dogs so far.

We spoke with camp director Regina Mendoza, who told us:

“At some point you just can’t keep track of the count anymore.”

Camp SCR Dog Cart

Source: Second Chance Rescue

Mendoza told BarkPost the story of how she got involved with Second Chance Rescue, her first experience with volunteering, and what would eventually become Camp SCR.

“It was a few years ago that I was sitting in my kitchen, reading through story after story about these poor dogs that needed homes, and I came across a story about pregnant moms being given heart stick euthanasiain shelters. I sat there and I thought about those little puppies in their mom’s belly, and the mom trying to protect her babies, and the slow death, and I just cried for three days straight. That’s when I knew I had to do something.”

And that’s exactly what she did. Regina started volunteering, doing things like transporting dogs and home visits, but that wasn’t enough. She wanted more hands-on work, so she started visiting the vet partners where they had SCR dogs recovering and did walks with them. A little Terrier really sunk into her heart and she thought to herself, “Why is this dog here in a crate when he can be at my home?” And sure enough, she took him home and fostered him for the next six weeks until he was adopted into his forever family.

Regina Mendoza dog

Source: Regina Mendoza/Second Chance Rescue

Regina Mendoza, the director of Camp SCR, with Abbott – a pup saved from being euthanized because he had a spinal injury

Then there was a Chihuahua that she fostered. And another dog, and another. One turned into two, two turned into four, and before she knew it, Regina was running a rehabilitation center right out of her home in Flushing, Queens. This all started in November of 2014, and by the summer of 2015 it had been dubbed Camp SCR.

It started as a place where litters of puppies so young that they needed to be bottle-fed were cared for as they grew – which is around the clock care and a lot to take on. Mendoza told us that she would feed each one, clean them up, and have twenty minutes to wash bottles and prepare formula before it was time to do it all over again.

Camp SCR Bottle

Source: Second Chance Rescue

More recently, Camp SCR has been a haven for severely abused or injured dogs that require intensive healing. Some of these dogs currently include Bodhi, a tri-pod pup with a broken front leg, and Carmella, who is fresh out of a hip surgery.

In December of 2014, when California shelters had a major overcrowding problem and they had to send 90 dogs out to shelters across the country, Second Chance Rescue and Camp SCR took in nine. They frequently get transports of 8-10 dogs at a time from shelters in the south that had them on the euthanasia list.

Camp SCR Bohdi

Source: Second Chance Rescue

Bodhi needs safe, even ground to play on since one of his legs was amputated and another is healing from a break

Regina, a single mom and licensed massage therapist, hasn’t been doing this all on her own. Since the success of Camp SCR and the growth of going from one or two dogs to 10 or 15, volunteers have created shifts to help with daily care of the pups, including everything from training to play breaks to cleaning and dressing wounds. These wonderful folks do it all.

Mendoza told BarkPost:

“We really are Ground Zero for rescue dogs. We get these dogs who have had very little exposure to people and basically have to learn how to be around them. They wouldn’t have the same chance at adoption success if they went straight from where they came from to a home without the transition that we provide at Camp SCR.”

But there’s one major problem that Camp SCR is facing and that is the state of their outdoor play area.

The backyard is devoid of grass and any amount of precipitation turns it into such a mess that it’s unusable for days. There any many uneven surfaces and holes that make it dangerous for some of the recovering pups to use. Even the healthy pups are at risk for falling and injuring themselves, and worse, the soil is loaded with all kinds of bacteria that can potentially make the dogs sick. What was once a backyard full of grass has now deteriorated due to the natural conditions of having hundreds of dogs do what dogs do over time.

Bohdi the tri-pod pup with a broken leg and Carmella are at risk for falling into these holes and re-injuring themselves. Baby Joey, a puppy who came to Second Chance with his two back paws completely severed, has to wait for his specially-fitted orthopedic shoes before he can enjoy romping around in some fresh air back there. A lot of the Camp SCR pups are at a high risk for flight and need that fenced in area to be free to run and play while they’re learning to walk on a leash outside of the facility.

Camp SCR Baby Joey Paws Missing

Source: Second Chance Rescue

Baby Joey wants to play outside too!

Carmella Camp SCR

Source: Regina Menzoda/Second Chance Rescue

And so does Carmella!

Second Chance Rescue has set up a fundraiser to fix this situation and have calculated they will need around $25,000 to complete their vision.

This will include putting down K9 Grass, which is a “safe, drainable, cleanable, and durable” type of synthetic grass made specially for dogs. They dream of having a large, grassy space with play equipment where all these dogs that have suffered so much hardship and abuse in their life can just be, well… DOGS!

Camp SCR Dream Backyard

Source: Second Chance Rescue

Second Chance Rescue’s vision for their backyard renovations is pretty great, right?!

Since starting the fund a few weeks ago, their many supporters have already raised over $21,000 and they’re so close to their goal! Imagine if we can meet that and beyond, there are so many more dogs that can be rescued and rehabilitated. These dogs deserve a taste of the good life that extends beyond this amazing couch cuddling session.

Money can be donated to the cause here, and of course Second Chance is always in need of additional funds to continue doing the wonderful work that they do.

Camp SCR Dogs Backyard

Source: Second Chance Rescue

As always, if you are considering adding a furry friend to your family, please check out the many dogs and cats Second Chance Rescue has waiting to find a warm, loving home. Follow Second Chance Rescue on Facebook for more updates and hopefully some videos of the new backyard once it’s completed!

Featured Image via Second Chance Rescue