The final part of my series on helping animals in need is about transport.
Missouri, where we live, is a puppy mill state. It's a shameful thing to keep animals in such conditions and overbreed them till they wear out. The state should step in and help, but politics being what it is and greed being the driving force behind business and politics, laws are made that punish thoughtful, caring pet owners and let the millers go on with their disgusting work.
Occasionally a community will raid a puppy mill or an animal hoarder or just someone who is not caring for their animals. The animals will be seized and put into shelters. A shelter in Missouri may not be able to place five Cocker Spaniels, but they know of a shelter in Michigan that can. How do they get the animals from Missouri to Michigan. It's much too costly to fly them so they put out word that they need transporters.
The transport coordinator will contact shelters and clubs along the way and individuals will volunteer to take part. On the day of the transport, each volunteer knows the route they will drive and the time and place to meet.
Our first transport was last November when we helped a sweet Basset get from Oklahoma to Maryland. She had been owned by an elderly lady who had too many dogs and could no longer care for them. A couple of other people brought her to Springfield where we picked her up and drove her to Rolla, MO, a trip of about 100 miles.
In Rolla, her next transporter was waiting to take her on to St Louis, where she spent the night, then traveled on the next day.
In about three days time, with the help of a number of people, each driving about 100 miles, Bessie arrived at House of Puddles, a retirement home for Bassets. She'll live the rest of her life there surrounded by others like her.
No more cages and filth. Now she plays with other dogs in lovely surroundings.
Our second experience was a little different. This time there were six Chihuahuas that had come from several different shelters. They were all on their way to Indiana.
Because one of the drivers had another appointment, there was a delay and we took the little ones home with us for a couple hours. We fed and exercised them and gave out lots of scratches and belly rubs.
Then it was back into their carriers to resume the trip. This time they were going to spend the night in St Louis and be picked up the next day bu a long distance trucker who would take them to their destination.
This batch of pups were heading to Chihuahua Rescue USA, where they would be evaluated, given medical care and then placed in safe homes to live with a forever family.
Transports are a way of helping to move animals to where the homes are waiting. It takes only a little time from your weekend and gives you a tremendous sense of satisfaction. To get involved, call a shelter or dog club in your area. They probably know who to contact to get your name on the volunteer driver list.