HARLINGEN, Texas (ValleyCentral) – The Humane Society of Harlingen (HSH) is hoping a heartbreaking abandonment case will help the community understand the importance of fostering as well as spaying and neutering their own pets.
Throughout the year, the HSH has dealt with an alarming number of animals being abandoned outside their shelter. Despite several efforts to educate the public on why this is not the appropriate way to surrender animals, it continues to happen.
Abandoning animals outside the shelter leaves them to fights with other animals, heat and dehydration, and getting lost. The HSH website has several resources to help the public and offers alternatives to abandoning animals outside the shelter.
The shelter frequently experiences influxes of animals that leave them at full capacity, incapable of taking in more. They rely on fosters and adoptions to make more room at the shelter for animals that need extra care. Because of this, the shelter does provide people with the supplies to care for the animal rather than leave them at the shelter.
On Monday, the HSH staff found yet another abandoned animal outside the shelter. This animal was a particularly heartbreaking case as pregnant and close to going into labor.
The vulnerable terrier-pit bull mix, who is now named Beth, is estimated to be 5-years-old and had an orange collar.
“You can tell that she’s used to people,” said Director of Community Engagement, Elizabeth Patino, as she explained that Beth displayed a gentle and friendly personality.
Beth went into labor Tuesday night and has so far delivered eight puppies.
Because newborn puppies are susceptible to diseases and cannot be vaccinated, Beth and her puppies are isolating in a staff office, however, the staff is asking the public for help in finding a foster home where they will be safer.
To become a foster, you will have to fill out the foster application on the HSH website and are encouraged to keep the family for six weeks or until the puppies are able to be separated from the mother.
If a long-term commitment is not possible at the moment, the shelter is also encouraging the community to foster a dog for a day to give the animal a day to decompress from the stressors of being a the shelter.
“When you take them out of the shelter for a couple of hours, it helps them with their socialization and their surroundings,” said Patino.
The shelter is also offering a promotion where the community can earn a voucher for a free spay or neuter if you foster an animal for three weeks or more. If the foster parent finds someone to adopt the animal, both the foster parent and adopter will earn one year of free vaccines for their own pets.
Additionally, every person who adopts from now through Sept. 19, will receive one year of free vaccines for their newly adopted pets and will be entered into a raffle to win one year of flea and tick prevention.
While the shelter continues in its efforts to maintain its no-kill status, they thank the community for their support during this time.
“We’re always at capacity so when you find a vulnerable pet on the road, its best to let us know and we will supply you with all the resources to find them a home,” said Patino.