Rescued Dogs from Puerto Rico
Last week I went to Puerto Rico with a group of concerned animal rescuers to assess the situation there. It was an eye opening experience on many levels. First it reminded me of how helpless I felt during my early visits to Isla Mujeres; seeing so many sad dogs and cats and not knowing how to help.
I also came home with a better appreciation for the affordable animal care we have here. One of the big issues in Puerto Rico is the powerful veterinary association that blocks outside volunteers who want to provide free spay and neuter clinics. Consequently the animal population is out of control.
I’ve seen this attitude in other locations and from my experience the animals that we spay and neuter during our campaigns would not otherwise be taken to a local vet where there would be a charge. The local vets, who are worried about losing business, should volunteer at the clinics, giving them the opportunity to find new customers.
Our group did manage to take three puppies and three older dogs to rescue facilities in the US and Canada. Sadly the number of puppies living on the beaches and in the woods is staggering. There is a big job ahead for the many rescue groups in the area who are already working hard to make a difference.
The trip also reminded me that, even though the challenges differ everywhere you go, the one constant is that the animals need our help.
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