I was driving in mid-town one day when I passed a house with a black and white momma pit bull tied up in the front. I saw one little pit puppy, trying to play with his momma. I could see a wire crate on the front porch, but couldn’t see what was in it. There was a lot of stuff on the porch and it was hard to see. (The pic below is from a different day). I kind of caught them out of the corner of my eye as I was driving down the street and I had someone right on my tail. I went on down the street with the intention of coming back around to check out the momma pit and baby.
As I was going back around, the next street was one way, then I turned down a street to check on a dog I could see that didn’t look good. and then I was a little turned around at that point. I was driving up and down the streets looking for momma pit and baby when I saw a couple of tiny black puppies in a front yard near here. At first I thought someone had gotten 2 new puppies. They were loose in the front fenced yard. As I came back around in front of that house a 2nd time, I saw about 6 little ones. Obviously these people had a litter of puppies there. Someone was sitting in a truck in front of the house. I got out and went over to talk to them. It turns out that they had taken in the momma dog last winter when she was a stray. They said it was freezing cold out and she was hungry and wandering. These people already had 2 female Boxers and a male Boxer. Over the winter, the male Boxer got to this female stray they’d taken in and she got pregnant. They really didn’t want the puppies and were trying to give them away.
The momma was about a 50 lb. dog and she had had 11 puppies! They told me that one of them died at birth, one of them “got caught in something in the yard” and died and they had already given away another one. I told her that I could take the litter from her. She asked me when I could take them and I said, ” Right now!” We loaded them up in my car. They were skinny and hungry, so I just opened a bag of food in the back of my car and let them eat all the way back to Chain of Hope!
The runt of the litter had a couple of sores on his head. We don’t know what from. His skull had a funky dip in it. We suspect that this little one was hit in the head or something fell on him. There was a lot of stuff in the yard behind all the cars. Who knows what happened to him? All of the puppies were hungry and dehydrated, but they would be fine. The people didn’t want the momma dog either. I told them I didn’t have room for another big adult dog right now, but I took some pictures of her and told them that I would try and network and find her something. I left food for everyone and told them I’d be in touch about momma, but that in the very least we would be spaying her for free for them.
I got the puppies back to Chain of Hope and then began networking to find some help with them. We reached out to The Animal Rescue Alliance (TARA), another wonderful rescue group that helps out Chain of Hope when they can. We also reached out to Heart of America Humane Society, who have helped us as well. They were both attempting to line up some foster homes. We had 8 of these little ones and they were adorable. It’s important that we try and keep as much space open as we can at Chain of Hope because we are on the front lines and we need to be able to act immediately when something like this comes up and be able to take animals, especially that are in crisis and need to removed right away. Thankfully, we had our isolation room open the day that I got these guys. We know that something else will come up again very soon and we’ll need the emergency space available so we try and reach out to other groups when we can.
Thankfully, TARA was able to take 3 puppies initially. The best part is-they were able to take momma into their program as well!!! Thank you, TARA!!! I went over the next day and got momma and a volunteer from TARA picked her up from us. We are so grateful.
Heart of America Humane Society works with the Lee’s Summit Animal Shelter, which is a very nice shelter. When the president of Heart of America Humane Society was at the Lee’s Summit shelter one day, he was telling them about our litter of Boxer mix puppies. Their group had tried to find foster homes to help us out, but they weren’t able to come up with any. The Lee’s Summit shelter at the time had very few adult dogs and no puppies at all. They said that they could take the rest of our litter. Mark called us and a couple of days later, we took the rest of the puppies except for the little runt over to the Lee’s Summit shelter. Many of you are probably not familiar with the LS shelter, but it is awesome! It’s a pretty new facility. They have a special quarantine room that they could keep the puppies in. It is extremely clean and very well kept.The staff was crazy about them and they would soon find good homes in the Lee’s Summit area, I was sure.
We kept the runt just to make sure that he was on his feet and growing and doing well. We named him Rudy and he began flourishing! We had another single puppy, so we put those two together and they became best of friends! All 3 of the puppies that went to the Lee’s Summit shelter were adopted. TARA contacted us after about a week and all 3 of their puppies were either adopted or in the process of getting adopted as well. They offered to take Rudy. He was actually doing awesome. He received a clean bill of health from the vet and so we moved him on to TARA as well. Thank you, TARA, and thank you Lee’s Summit Animal Shelter. We appreciate your help!
I did not forget about looking for the other mom and puppies. It was on my list to get back over there and find them but then we happened to get a call about them. Someone called just a day or so after I found the Boxer puppies and said that there were several pit bull puppies in a wire crate outside and gave us the address. That is the exact area I’d been in! This had to be them!
I headed over there and the wire crate was sitting in the front yard, full of tiny pit bull puppies. It was raining off and on Friday. Momma was tied up to the railing in front and she was very protective of her puppies, of course. We could not get up to them or to the front door because of the protective momma dog. We could tell that the puppies were skinny, though.
As much as momma was barking, no one came out of the house. There were no cars there. Then the neighbor came out and I introduced myself and asked him about the puppies. He said, “Oh yes, they’re scrawny. They need help.” He said no one was home right now, so I gave him our info and wrote a note and my cell number on it and asked him to give it to the people when they got home. I asked him when someone was usually there and he told me that someone was usually there by the time the kids got out of school. I told him I’d be back at 3:00 pm. We had to talk to these people about these poor puppies.
About 3:00 pm. Judy met me over there and we sat and waited. Pretty soon, the guy pulled up. We got out and I went over to talk to him. Well, of course, he had almost all of the puppies promised to family members (they always do that!). He was adamant about his family getting them.He said when it was all said and done that he’d probably only have one or two left over. I told him that we would take whatever he didn’t have homes for and asked him to call me. I told him we would come by on Sunday and check in and he said, “what about Saturday?”. I told him that of course I’d come over Saturday and get them, just call my cell and I’d be there. He told me that they had to be gone by Sunday because he was having a “shin dig” on Mother’s Day. I told him that we would spay momma for free and he replied that she was already spayed. The puppies were only 8 weeks old and I found that odd that momma was already spayed. But, she did not have any milk-her teats appeared to be empty. He told me that she wasn’t nursing them anymore. Who knows if momma had gotten spayed or not. I offered him some dog food and puppy food and he replied that he “had it handled”-he was feeding momma Gravy Train and the puppies Kibbles and Bits. He was pretty cocky about everything and there was no more talking to him. We left. I prayed that he would call Saturday, but I never heard from him.
I drove over Sunday morning and these poor puppies were in the crate, but he had moved it up onto the porch again. It looked like they were all there. This guy hadn’t done a damn thing. I saw him putting stuff in his car and then he left. Apparently the shin dig was at someone else’s house.No one was home now and this situation had to be resolved. We called this into animal control. I didn’t know what they’d do.
I’d had a litter on New Year’s Eve a year ago that was out in the cold with their momma. They were 8 weeks old and the owner had tied momma up to the front porch and all of the puppies were staying right there with her trying to stay warm. Momma was protecting her puppies so we couldn’t get up to the door. There was a old wooden dog house in the far corner of the yard, which momma couldn’t reach and the puppies weren’t going to get in-they were going to stay right there with their momma on the porch. It was freezing cold out so we called animal control. We sat up the street as an officer came over, got the owner to come out and talked with him for a minute and left. Yes-he left those little puppies and their poor momma outside on a freezing New Year’s Eve. When I called the next day, I was told it was because there was a dog house on the property. No matter that mom was tied up on the porch and couldn’t reach it and the puppies wanted to be where mom was.
We ended up resolving this ourselves the next day, as we often do. The owner signed the puppies over to us. We also spayed the momma dog for free.
So, this is why I didn’t have much confidence in animal control, but there really weren’t any other options here. Momma was not going to let us anywhere near her puppies or the front porch or anything. I sat for 2 hours in front of this house and waited for animal control, but had to eventually get back to Chain of Hope to take care of our dogs.
After work, I drove by the house again and all of them were gone!!! The cage door was open, the puppies were gone and the momma was gone. Animal control had impounded them and we thank them for that! They went to Kansas City Pet Project, where arrangements were made for foster homes. They were starving, dirty, and scrawny. I don’t know how they survived after what this man had done to them. Poor little things. Here they are finally getting their tummies full at the shelter.
Chain of Hope is responsible for getting 2 litters of puppies, one block away from each other, off of the streets. Imagine if we hadn’t found these 17 puppies! They all would’ve been given away-many right there in the neighborhood, no doubt. That area would be saturated with puppies, most would likely grow up on a chain, just like their mommas. They would be reproducing, creating even more of a problem. Chain of Hope would be providing assistance to them and animal control would probably encounter some as well that would eventually end up at the shelter.
The benefits to Kansas City of having Chain of Hope on the streets are great. Just imagine if we weren’t out there. Chain of Hope spayed and neutered over 500 animals last year. These were animals from the inner city, most living on chains. We prioritized with pit bulls and female dogs on chains, who are easily impregnated. Spaying and neutering, along with our outreach program, is what’s making a difference out there. We sincerely appreciate your support that keeps us on the streets and in the community rescuing these babies and changing lives! We really couldn’t carry out this difficult work without you!