The American Humane Association awarded a $20,000 Second Chance® grant to the Dublin-Laurens County Humane Society in Dublin, Ga., to help care for 71 dogs that were rescued from an animal “refuge” in southern Mississippi.
The Dublin-Laurens shelter is providing medical treatment and care for the mixed-breed dogs ranging from 6 months to 7 years old, which are being housed both at the shelter’s facility and a local boarding kennel. With help from the grant, the shelter has begun the long process of treating the dogs’ many medical conditions -- including heartworm, mange, broken bones, ringworm, ear infections, eye problems and advanced dental disease -- before they are put up for adoption.
The dogs came to the shelter as the result of an investigation and seizure of an animal “refuge” in southern Mississippi, after a volunteer told authorities that conditions there were inhumane and the animals were receiving no food, water or medicine. The Harrison County Sheriff’s Department discovered almost 300 animals that had been living in horribly cramped, dirty conditions for two years, including 205 dogs in small wire cages (sometimes two or three to a cage) strewn across a dirt pit with no shelter from the elements, and 75 cats stacked in crates inside an old moving van. The owner of the refuge was charged with multiple counts of animal cruelty, and all the animals were seized and taken to the Humane Society of South Mississippi. Some remained there for treatment and adoption, while others were transported to shelters in neighboring states, including the Dublin-Laurens shelter.
Since the dogs arrived at Dublin-Laurens, the change in their behavior has been remarkable, says Irene Sumner, the shelter’s director. “When we first got these dogs, some would cower to people, and now they come running when they hear someone coming to them. To see them jumping and playing and enjoying the life that they might never have had if we hadn’t taken them is wonderful.”
“This is a perfect example of how a single grant can help so many animals in need -- 71 dogs have been given a second chance at life,” said Debrah Schnackenberg, vice president of Animal Programs for American Humane. “In many cases, when organizations can’t afford the medical costs for severely abused, neglected or injured animals, the animals are euthanized. These Second Chance® grants allow the organizations that provide urgent medical services and care in these types of situations to be reimbursed for at least part of their expenses. We rely on community support to give these grants, and we thank the individuals, sponsors and organizations -- like CauseWorld, in this case -- that allow us to continue this important program.”
This large grant was made possible by donations made through “shopkick, makers of CauseWorld,” a mobile application available on the iPhone and Android phones. Participants only need to open the app on their phone and check in after entering one of the many stores people most frequent -- including grocery stores, hardware stores and department stores. No purchase is required. By checking in, they earn “karmas” from the CauseWorld sponsors. Participants then donate those karmas for specific actions to improve the world, such as helping abused and neglected animals through American Humane’s Second Chance® Fund.
American Humane is currently seeking additional funds for this vital grant program, and will continue to make Second Chance® grants available based on resources and the generosity of its donors. Learn more about how to donate directly to the Second Chance® Fund online at www.americanhumane.org/donate, and help animals like these 71 dogs receive a second chance at life.
About American Humane Association
Since 1877, the historic American Humane Association has been at the forefront of every major advancement in protecting children, pets and farm animals from cruelty and abuse and neglect. Today we’re also leading the way in understanding human-animal interaction and its role in society. As the nation’s voice for the protection of children and animals, American Humane Association reaches millions of people every day through groundbreaking research, education, training and services that span a wide network of organizations, agencies and businesses. You can help make a difference, too. Visit American Humane Association at www.americanhumane.org today.