Annually in America between six and seven million animals per year are abandoned or lost. About 70% are then euthanized due to lack of space in the shelters they are taken to, or simply because there is no policy by the shelter to keep them alive.

In Southeast Texas each city has an animal control program and city regulations regard in pet ownership. Each city has a program for adoption of the animals they receive in the shelters, either by the animal being picked up by animal control, surrendered by owners, or strays picked up and turned in by private citizens.

State law required that dogs over four months of age be either spayed or neutered and vaccinated for rabies by a licensed veterinarian within 10 days of being adopted. Often these procedures are done by the shelter and the cost included in the adoption fee. At some shelters in addition to the rabies vaccination, the first round of preventative shots is also given.

Sweet Pups is a privately operated rescue program located in Orange County. It has been in operation since July of 2010. The idea for the rescue operation first came to Glenna Tucker when she visited a shelter in October of 2009 to find a cat for her daughter.

“I went to the shelter looking for a cat and instead came home with Jaxon, a Rat Terrier”, said Tucker. “I decided I wanted to try to save some lives, and the idea for Sweet Pups came to me.”

Sweet Pups started as a “dog brokerage”. They would advertise dogs that were in shelters and find people wanting to adopt them. It was a system of dogs being moved from shelters to homes.

Sweet Pups has been incorporated as a 501 c 3 organization, with a board of directors. Donations are fully tax deductible, and are always needed and appreciated.

The adoption process is similar to that of many other rescue organizations. First, an application has to be filled out and reviewed. The prospective adopter has to have a fenced yard, agree to not leave the dog outside for long periods of time unsupervised, submit to a home visit/approval, have a reference from a licensed  veterinarian, and if is renting or leasing have approval from the landlord. Sweet Pups adoption fees are between $150 and $300 dollars, depending on the breed and services provided.

Max, a Sweet Pups rescue, is a full grown Rottweiler mix who was dumped when he and his sister didn't sell after being born to a breeder. To find out more about Max, visit www.sweetpups.org and learn how to bring this sweet boy home to live with you.

Max, a Sweet Pups rescue, is a full grown Rottweiler mix who was dumped when he and his sister didn’t sell after being born to a breeder. To find out more about Max, visit www.sweetpups.org and learn how to bring this sweet boy home to live with you.

  The dogs are checked by a veterinarian to be sure there  are no serious health conditions and that they are suitable for adoption. All necessary shots are given, including rabies vaccination, and a tracking chip inserted. If the dogs is heartworm positive, it will be treated prior to adoption.

The fees may seem high, but compared to purchasing a dog from a breeder and providing all the services, it is very reasonable. The average cost of heartworm treatment by a private vet is about $700.

Sweet Pups information may be obtained by going to their Facebook page, or to the website: www.sweetpups.org. The email address is: swe181@sweetpupsforadoption

Another local rescue organization is Pups in Peril.

The mission statement of Pups in Peril reflects that of other rescuer organizations;

“We are dedicated to save dogs of all ages and breeds by rescuing, rehabilitating and placement into loving forever homes. Pups In Peril is a no kill, volunteer rescue organization serving the Golden Triangle Area of Southeast Texas. It is our mission to rescue dogs left homeless and in danger for whatever reason.

We place dogs in responsible, loving, committed forever homes, following an in depth adoption process which includes finding the best match possible for our rescues as well as educating potential adopters about the responsibilities and costs associated with dog ownership.

Dogs in our rescue receive any veterinary care necessary as well as all vaccinations recommended. All rescues will be spayed or neutered. All rescues are placed in loving foster homes until adoption. We assist dogs of all ages or breeds regardless of ease of placement.

Since we are strictly a volunteer, foster based rescue and depend highly on donations received from the general public, as well as available foster homes, we simply cannot take in an unlimited number of dogs in need, dogs with the greatest need will be our first priority.

Pups In Peril remains interested and committed to the dog well beyond the adoption process.”

Pups in Peril works in cooperation with the City of Pinehurst and West Orange  animal control and by doing this are able to strive to make these shelters no-kill shelters. Such isn’t always the case.

The Record Newspapers features a “Pet of the Week” column each week showing adoptable pets from Pups in Peril. Pups in Peril operates a website, www.pupsinperil.org in addition to a Facebook page. Their email is pupsinperil@gmail.com. They may be contacted by phone at 409-540-0299.

Information about available pets and the adoption procedures for each local city may be obtained by contacting the cities:

City of Bridge City Animal Control, hours 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., 409-735-8898, or n409-735-5028

City of Orange Animal Control, hours 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday thru Friday. Adoption fee, $87 and includes spay/neuter and rabies vaccination. The shelter is located on Simmons Drive.

City of Pinehurst Animal Control, 3000 Gull Street, hours 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday thru Friday. Strays are held for 72 hours then made eligible for adoption. 409-886-0803

City of West Orange Animal Control, contact city hall for information, 409-883-3468. For animals under four months of age there is no adoption fee, over four months there is a $50 deposit that is refundable when proof is given that the animal has been spayed or neutered and given rabies vaccination by a licensed vet within 10 days of being adopted.

City of Vidor Animal Control, 155 Watts Street, 409-769-8718

Petfinder.com is a website for adoptable animals and some of the cities post their available animals on this website. It is a good resource for finding a companion pet. An animal that is rescued and given a “forever home” is a life that is saved. Please consider adopting a pet when you are ready for unconditional love.

Photo – Rebecca, a Pups in Peril pooch, was seen being turned out of a vehicle by her owner in the dark. Fortunately a passer by was behind them and managed to save her. She is about 1 1/2 years old, spayed, up to date on shots, heratworm negative, housebroken and crate trained. She gets along with other dogs, loves people and kids. Unfortunately, Rebecca is not cat friendly. Please consider Rebecca for adoption as your new family member.