Rescue Road: Read About The “Village” it Takes to Save Dogs in America

Diesel recently got adopted. Lucky dog! Photo credit: Rescue Road Trips Facebook page

Diesel recently got adopted. Lucky dog! Photo credit: Rescue Road Trips Facebook page

People all over the country are learning about rescue dogs and what great pets they can be. More than seven million cats and dogs enter animal shelters each year and approximately 1.2 million dogs are killed according to the ASPCA. The worse geographical area for a dog to make it out of a shelter alive is in the south. Greg Mahle, who runs an animal rescue transport business called Rescue Road Trips Inc. is trying to make a difference. On his website, he describes his business as providing loving, humane road trips for homeless, unwanted, unloved dogs facing assured immediate death from southern kill shelters. They help move dogs to loving “forever homes” and a second chance at life in New England and surrounding areas.

There are many challenges in the south that lead to 80 to 90% of their dogs being killed in shelters and two of those things are  overcrowding and a lack of resources. Other challenges include southerners not believing in spay/neuter and also treating their dogs as property and not pets. Their dogs live outside and serve a “purpose” such as being a hunting dog or a breeder in a backyard breeding operation. They are treated more like livestock and when their purpose ends or when the owner can’t sell them, they are abandoned. The dogs that make it to an animal shelter often stay there in unsanitary and disease-ridden conditions while they are awaiting their death. Many shelters have no inside kennels or on-site staff to watch them. If the dogs are owner-surrendered, they can be killed immediately. The stray dogs are held longer to give their owners a chance to find them, but many are unclaimed. Most don’t even get the luxury of a blanket or a toy in the shelter during their short time there. Many animal rescuers feel that conditions in the south could change with education about responsible pet ownership but they are so busy saving lives, there is often little time to do this important task. Continue reading

Part-Time Afternoon Hours Currently Offered by the Grand Traverse County Animal Control Division


The current Animal Control Officer, Deb Zerafa, was hired as a Grand Traverse County Animal Control Officer in October of this year. he position is part-time and she works 25 hours a week, five hours a day, Monday through Friday. The service time for this position is 1 to 6 pm. If the public needs to talk with the officer, they can leave a message any time of day on the Animal Control telephone at 231-995-6080 and their call will be returned when the officer is on duty. The County’s website is now updated to reflect this new information here.

In emergency situations, the public should call 911 or Central Dispatch telephone number of 231-922-4450. The County will continue to track and monitor calls for Animal Control and shift hours if needed to accommodate the highest call volume times, particularly when the season Animal Control Specialist works in the late spring to summer months. 

Take a Look at Michigan’s Save Rate Progression on the Road to be a No-Kill State

Michigan Pet Fund Alliance creates an annual Michigan Shelters by Save and Live Release Rate report and corresponding Live Release Rate by County map using the annual shelter reports submitted by licensed shelters to Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD). More detail is here.

View Michigan’s year-by-year progression toward a No Kill state here.

Wexford County K9 Retires, Rewarded for ‘Outstanding Service’

A K9 officer is getting time to just be a dog. The Wexford County Sheriff’s Office is retiring 9-year-old K9 officer Dzeki. Dzeski served alongside his handler Deputy Paul Fowler from March of 2009 to December of 2016. Click here for more on the story.

Kalkaska Pet Pantry Needs Holiday Donations

A local pet pantry that helps animals in need is looking for help as the holidays creep closer. The Northwoods Pet Pantry in Kalkaska helps rescue animals in need of love, and helps pet owners who are having trouble making ends meet get pet food. That’s why they’re asking the community to pitch in and help out with purchasing animal food over the holidays. Click here for the rest of the story.

Cats Rescued from Traverse City Home Up for Adoption

Nine cats rescued from dangerous living conditions in Traverse City are now looking for loving, new families. Cherryland Humane Society found out about the situation when they were called to the house earlier this month. Inside they found the nine neglected cats, took them in, and nursed them back to health.

Days later the owner of the home passed away. 9&10’s Caroline Powers and photojournalist John Harrington have more details on the role you can play in what comes next for these furry friends. Click here for the rest of the story.

Why Are Detroit Cops Killing So Many Dogs?

A Reason investigation reveals widespread, unchecked violence against pets during drug raids—including two officers who have shot more than 100.

A group of Detroit police officers executing a narcotics search warrant knocked on Nikita Smith’s door on January 14, 2016. The only fact that both Smith and the officers agree on after that point is that, a short while later, Smith’s three dogs were all shot dead. What really happened in the moments between could be a costly question for the city of Detroit. In a federal civil rights lawsuit filed in May, Smith says the Detroit police executed her three pit bulls, Debo, Mama, and Smoke, without provocation. Essentially, they acted as a “dog death squad.”

According the lawsuit, Smith tried to tell the officers she was putting her dogs away, and placed two in the basement and one in the bathroom. As the officers burst into the house, Debo slipped back upstairs. The officers shot it as it sat down by Smith. Next, they charged into the basement and shot Mama, who was pregnant and backed into a corner. Finally, they moved onto the bathroom, where Smoke was closed in. Click here for the rest of the story.

Ask Your State Representative to Support SB 239 to Stop Breed Discrimination

from Make Michigan Next

MICHIGAN VOTERS: Your state rep needs to hear from you now! Please contact your state representative to urge him or her to support SB 239 to eliminate breed discrimination in our state. If you’ve previously emailed them, then please call them. We’ve been working on this bill for more than 2 years and we are SO CLOSE, but we need everyone to take action NOW.

Please assure your representative that you are a Michigan resident and you vote. Our legislators are being inundated by anti-dog people who do not live in Michigan, but who are fraudulently posing as residents.

Use this link to send an email or find the phone number for your rep today. And please SHARE.

Cherryland Humane Society Wins Thanksgiving Feast for Shelter Pets

from the Merrick Pet Care Facebook page

The Best Thanksgiving Ever goes to Cherryland Humane Society in Traverse City, Michigan! Their cats & dogs will get a healthy, nutritious Merrick Thanksgiving feast to enjoy this season. Our winning nomination came from Rebekah T. of Traverse City:

“Cherryland Humane Society is a great shelter with wonderful and dedicated volunteers who have the animal’s well-being first in their minds. From the dog walkers to the volunteers who clean the cat kennels, they are great people and the animals are 100% deserving of this prize.”


Special thanks to Cherryland for sharing these photos of their shelter pets! See all the nominations & learn more about shelters & rescues in your area:

Leelanau County K-9 Donation Program Back Up and Running

The Leelanau County Sheriff’s Office K-9 donation fund is back accepting funds to be used in supporting their K-9 program. Any funds collected will be used for routine maintenance cost for their current K-9 “Nico” and for expenses in the future when “Nico” retires and the need for a new K-9 arises. The routine maintenance costs running a K-9 program include veterinary care for “Nico” and occasional boarding costs along with small equipment needs for the dog and the K-9 vehicle. When bringing on a new K-9 the costs are roughly $10,000-$12,000 for the dog and the associated training of the animal and handler.

The Leelanau County Sheriff’s Office is also pleased to announce that a citizen has come forward to pledge matching funds for any money they raise to support their K-9 program up to a $10,000 limit. This was an amazing pledge and one that they hope will help them fund their current program and keep the Agency’s ability to have this great asset in the future.

The Leelanau County Sheriff’s Office would like to thank the support of the Board of Commissioners and the citizens of the County.

Anyone wishing to donate to our K-9 program can follow the attached links to the Leelanau County K-9 Facebook Page or to their “Go Fund Me” page, or donations may also be mailed or dropped off in person to the Sheriff’s Office.

Soldier Feels at Home with Kitten’s Calming Presence

This story is one of 54 finalists for the 2016 Petco Foundation Holiday Wishes campaign. The organization where this pet was adopted will receive a grant award ranging from $5,000 to $100,000. Want to help this organization win big? Head over to the Petco Foundation Facebook page to vote for the People’s Choice Award. By voting, you give the finalist organizations the opportunity to win an additional grant of up to $25,000 to support their lifesaving work! The People’s Choice voting round ends Saturday, December 31 at 11:59 PM CT.

Submitted by: Cory Evans, Little Traverse Bay Humane Society – Harbor Springs, Michigan.

Click here to read the story and vote.

Two Dozen Rescued Shetland Sheepdogs to be Available for Adoption

Two dozen Shetland Sheepdogs will soon be available for adoption after they were rescued from a northern Michigan home in Lake City. Around 26 dogs were rescued from an Ellsworth Township home Sunday afternoon and were taken to The Well-Mannered Dog Center in Grand Rapids. The center says the dogs have been transferred out of state where they will remain in foster care homes for around five weeks. Click here for the rest of the story.