Help a Shelter Near You

I have 10 things I want you to know about adopting an animal.

I’m proud of the fact that I was adopted. And lucky as well.

1. I was adopted as an infant. That’s why I decided to feature adoptable dogs on my radio program beginning 40 years ago. I figured the SPCA of Texas could use a little extra help, and I’ve been proud of that association ever since.

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2. We live in the country. People think nothing of dumping out old sofas and mattresses, tree limbs and trash – and dogs and cats they no longer want.

3. There is little to no food or water available for these little animals. Wild animals seek it and eat and drink it themselves.

4. In fact, these dogs and cats become prey themselves for coyotes, bobcats and other wild animals.

5. Please do the right thing. Spay or neuter your pets. If there are strays, take them to a rescue shelter, not out into the country. If the shelter is full for the moment, consider if you could become a short-term foster until your local shelter has space.

It’s hard to figure how someone could drive off and abandon these beautiful little animals on a remote county road. But that’s exactly what happened when some heartless person left them about a quarter-mile from our house earlier this week. (This is a screen capture from a tail-wagging video taken by our neighbor Ingrid.)

Help a Shelter Near You
6. If you’re looking for a dog or a cat, visit a shelter. We’ve heard it on the news, but my friend Maura Davies with the SPCA of Texas put numbers to it. They are full. They’ve gone from housing an average of 500-600 animals regularly pre-pandemic to 800-1,000 now. Those numbers include their foster care helpers. That’s where the dogs from our road are staying right now. The foster care people are saints.

Crazy Zeus is a shelter dog. A friend who was moving far away and into an apartment asked if he could live with us and roam our 11 acres. His smile says it all.

7. The best way you can help a shelter is to adopt your next pet there.

8. The next best ways you can help would be to donate and volunteer.

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9. Our animal shelters across Texas make our lives so much better. Do whatever you can to help.

10. And be watching for these dogs from the Sperry neighborhood in the first photo above to appear here in e-gardens sometime in the upcoming months. They’ll be showing up in the SPCA of Texas web pages as well.

(All credit for the rescue of the 7 dogs earlier this week go to our neighbors Ingrid and Cathy who coaxed the pups in with the food and water and who got them penned up during the rainstorm. I sat indoors warm and dry typing my story while they did the hard work.)

Posted by Neil Sperry
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