No shelter or rescue organization can save all the dogs and cats that need a rescue – in their area. And, when people call from another county, town or state - - the answer has is “no” because there are too many homeless dogs and cats within a 10 mile radius of any town or home in rural Oklahoma.
One of the most difficult decisions I made had its beginning at another shelter. As you read this, please understand ….. this doesn’t work for everyone in rescue …. it shouldn’t because we need everyone working toward a common goal.
Attending the Collective Impact Convening Conference in Austin last year was a game changer for me. I saw, first hand, the progress that can be made when everyone (with different values and goals) works together for a common goal.
For northeast Oklahoma, there are no simple answers when someone has found a dumped dog or needs to rehome a dog. And cats present an even larger challenge for two reasons. #1) There are thousands of unwanted cats and kittens roaming everywhere and most municipal shelters are set up to accept a few, if any. If you talk to anyone in rescue, in this area, they will validate these statements.
Four years ago, we had just unlocked the door to the Peaceful Animal Adoption Shelter a few months earlier. A beautiful building, a mission statement that said, in part, PAAS would save thousands of homeless pets in Northeast Oklahoma.
True statement: In the early days of rescue I didn’t want to “know” how bad over population is for Oklahoma dogs and cats. Even today, it still gives me an awful feeling in the pit of my stomach, but I’m determined to ferret out a realistic count for rural rescues and municipal shelters.