RIO GRANDE VALLEY, Texas (KVEO) — A local dog trainer says dog dumping is happening now more than we think, and says there’s little enforcement in place to prevent it.  

Jaime Benitez owns a dog kennel called K9 Consultants who says dogs are considered livestock and have little enforcement in place to prevent animal abuse.  

“Down the street, there’s a historical site, and that’s a well-known area for people to park and dump their dogs,” said Benitez.  

He says some reasons for dumping are “dogs that were gotten from Christmas presents as gifts, and they figured wow it turns out to be a little monster and it’s typical puppy stuff,” said Benitez. “Or the dog will get impregnated and they end up dumping the mother and the puppies.”  

Benitez says that since they are considered livestock there is little enforcement around dumping.  

“If the dogs were abused or dumped in bags or whatnot—then there’s no one to find out who the owners are cause there’s no regulation on this, and it’s a simple class-c misdemeanor—a simple ticket,” said Benitez.  

If someone is struggling to keep their pets, the Harlingen Humane Society says there are other options available before abandoning or giving your pet to a shelter. 

“We found great successes with encouraging people to post on the local rehoming pages that are great for animals because one they don’t have to come into the shelter,” said Harlingen Humane Society’s community engagement coordinator, Sarah Cano. “It can be a stressful place, new noises, new smells, new sounds.”  

Credit: KVEO

She says recently pet-owners struggle to pay for necessities but says there are still other options for resources available. 

“We offer low-cost vaccination clinics once a month, low-cost microchips once a month, and then we have a pet-food pantry that we run every single day,” said Cano.  

Benitez says he wants potential owners to remember a dog is 10–15-year responsibility. 

See below for resources for your pet:  

Alternative to Surrendering Your Pet:

Facebook Group Support

Harlingen Lost & Found Pets

Harlingen/San Benito Lost & Found Pets

RGV Reunite Lost Pets

RGV Kitty lovers

RGV Pets

Contact the Harlingen Humane Society for more information