March 5th, 2011
Submitted by EARS volunteer Tereza Marks of Bonita Springs, Florida
|A volunteer loads cats onto the truck|
Today was a long and bittersweet day for the EARS volunteers here in Alabama. We arrived at the temporary shelter at 6 a.m. to help load animals for their trip to find new homes in Florida. The HSUS trailer backed up to the loading door of the barn we are using as a shelter, then the EARS volunteers got to work loading 77 dogs and 23 cats for their trip.
|This big boy didn’t want to walk on a
leash so EARS volunteers carried him.
First on the trailer were the remaining 23 cats at the shelter. Each was placed into a carrier and put into the trailer. Next were the dogs. EARS volunteers had their work cut out for them, as many of the dogs didn’t know how to walk on a leash or were too skittish to walk through the crowded shelter and had to be carried. Once secured in a carrier, their paperwork was checked and each dog was put on the trailer.
|The litter of six puppies is headed
to Florida for adoption
Many volunteers saw their favorites leave today– including the litter of puppies. My favorite left today for her new life in Palm Beach — what a lucky dog! The dogs were being transported to shelters in Naples, Tampa and Palm Beach for adoption. A pit bull rescue organization in Florida took many of the pit mixes. Every volunteer was glad to know that the dogs are on the way to their forever homes, but at the same time felt a sense of loss for the dogs they had grown to know and love over the past few days.
|EARS volunteers are spending quality
time with the 55 remaining dogs
After the truck left, only 55 dogs remained in the temporary shelter. The shelter felt eeerily quiet and empty. However, this also meant many of the dogs who had been in smaller enclosures got to move to the larger, more luxurious kennels and volunteers had more time to work with and socialize them. After spending much of the day clearing out crates and cleaning up, EARS volunteers spent some one-on-one time with the dogs who are a little scared or skittish. The dogs seemed to really appreciate all the extra attention and many seemed to have smiles on their faces.
In addition to the loss of the dogs, many volunteers who had been with the rescue since the beginning left to return to their real lives. Friendships recently made will be lost, but who knows — maybe we will meet again.
Tomorrow will be more cleaning up and tearing down … but we will have time for treats, playing, walks and some fun with the remaining dogs.