NORFOLK – When Animal Care Supervisor Shane Hoadley found out about a pregnant dog set to be euthanized at a high-kill shelter in Tyler, Texas, he knew he had to act.
“I have a friend who lives in the Fort Worth area that I was going to go see anyway,” Hoadley told News Channel Nebraska. “It just so happened I saw Rooby on an urgent list of dogs that were getting near their time being up. They had also just found out that she was pregnant.”
“He had cautiously said, ‘I’m going to Texas…I might want to bring back a couple dogs.’ and I said sure,” said Animal Shelter Manager Lisa Doescher. “He said ‘Really?’ and I said of course! So soon it went from a couple of dogs to about 15.”
Not only had Hoadley’s rescue mission increased almost eight-fold…another of the new dogs that he hoped to bring back was also pregnant. So how does one transport all those dogs comfortably? Hoadley improvised, hand-making kennels that were permanently affixed to the inside of one of the Animal Shelter’s vans, meaning he could transport more dogs, more comfortably than before.
“With that big of a trip we had to get as many in as we could,” Hoadley said. “We did spend quite a bit of time making custom kennels for the van.”
When Hoadley arrived in Texas, another surprise…Ruby had already given birth…to a litter of ten. So what started as a mission to save one dog, now had ballooned to over two-dozen.
“We had left over space in the van that wasn’t big enough to get a kennel in, but we could fit a couple of dogs loosely,” Hoadley said. “Eventually we ended up having to put her in a kennel that I said saved for our biggest dog. We actually brought back a St. Bernard, and he got to run loosely while she got his kennel.”
The dogs made it back without a hitch, and are all doing well. Doescher says the pups will be ready for adoption within weeks, and can count themselves lucky. She says a lot of shelter animals don’t get the rescue they got.
“Two-thousand dogs a day get euthanized in the United State alone for lack of space,” said Doescher. “These dogs aren’t necessarily ill, or ill-tempered. There’s just no room.”
Small but mighty. You can say that about the animal shelter, their dozens of new pups and the one man who made their rescue possible.
“This is definitely something I’m passionate about,” Hoadley said. “I’m very grateful to be able to work in place that allows me to pursue that passion.”