Last Thursday, Chicago’s Animal Care and Control shelter realized it had hit its capacity rate of 300 dogs —prompting city officials to consider euthanizing some of its animals. But thanks to a determined team of volunteers, the shelter is on its way to giving each and every pup a forever home.
“We do have to make a decision this evening if we can’t get the population down. We simply have no place to put them; 300 is a big problem,” executive director Susan Russell told the Chicago Tribune on Thursday, January 11.
Once word got out that the shelter needed help, the community was quick to step in. According to the Chicago Tribune, a total of 59 dogs were adopted from Friday through Tuesday.
“While there is more work to be done and new dogs and cats arrive at the shelter daily, many kind, compassionate people shared information about (Chicago Animal Care and Control) animals with their communities, dropped off donations, and best of all, came to adopt a dog!” the shelter said in a statement late Monday.
Within the first two weeks of January, more than 61 dogs had found a new home — a 154 percent increase over 2017. Even better, animals who have yet to be adopted were sent to no-kill rescue groups, ultimately reducing the dog population and avoiding the need to euthanize any of the pups.
Non-profit organization Friends of Animal Care and Control also lent a helping hand by offering to board dogs at the PetSmart PetsHotel downtown, while rescue groups rounded up the additional pups to stay in foster homes until they could find them welcoming, permanent homes.
One of the shelter’s longest residents — Miley, a bully breed —was among the 11 dogs staying at the pet hotel. On Sunday she was rescued by Players for Pits, a non-profit no-kill rescue dedicated to saving pit bulls and pit mixes.
“It’s only been a few days since joining our rescue, but Miley is loving her foster home,” the rescue group posted on Facebook. “To imagine that this girl endured 187 nights at animal control saddens us, but it also encourages us… it encourages us to never give up.”
We’re so happy for Miley and all of the other pups who were rescued. Thanks to the kindness of a community, they can now start a new chapter in their lives.