I don't typically post about controversial topics. However, I was recently contacted about two lost dogs involved in a practice that is becoming more common among individuals acting in the name of "rescuing". I feel the need to address the issue because while actions are justified as in the best interest of the dogs and concern for their well being the reality is they are placing both the dogs involved and other dogs at risk with what they are doing.
There are individuals going across the border picking up strays or purchasing dogs they believe to be at risk and in poor condition. They are cossing them into the US and then relinquishing them to our local shelter system as reported Strays found here in the US.
This is wrong on multiple levels but most significantly places the dogs crossed here and the dogs already in our system at severe risk for medical issues. What these individuals are not taking into account is the fact that there are different diseases across the border that are not screened for nor on the medical radar when a dog gets sick here in the US. The failure to disclose the true origin of these animals leaves the dogs at risk of undiagnosed disease, lack of appropriate treatment early enough to make a difference and in some cases could result in death. Additionally dogs already in the system or being exposed to contagious disease that may or may not be clinically present at the time they are admitted and placed in general housing. This last situation the individual even referenced going to a specific facility based on the Assumption of it being a no-kill institution. None of our shelters are absolutely no kill. Every time a dog is crossed and placed in our shelter system it places a dog off our streets at risk as well.
There are a large number of rescues who specifically Focus their efforts and time helping those dogs in a manner that is appropriate. Those rescues know what to look for with disease, know how to manage the appropriate introduction of the animal into our communities and do great work undermined by the actions of these other individuals who put their efforts at risk.
If you are one of those individuals here are the things you need to know and consider the next time you take that action. Multiple tick-borne diseases are prevalent and common in Mexico but seen less often in the US. When you dump these animals off at the shelter and they go under anesthesia and surgery to be altered they can bleed out as a direct result of those diseases and inability to clot. Some of those diseases have prolonged and delayed effects on joints and overall immune system. Some family who adopts that dog thinking don't have a lifetime partner may very well dump that dog right back at the shelter because it was sick and nobody knew it. Distemper is a huge problem in Mexico and passed through the air. That great little dog you think you're helping that was Walzed through the shelter, into admissions and then anywhere else has just spread that disease placing others at risk. Parvo, also prevalent in Mexico stays in the soil for a year, will linger in your car for just as long and now highly contagious will contaminate every other unvaccinated or compromised dog or puppy the individuals you use for your ploys come in contact with.
If you are one of the people partaking in this practice please remove yourself from my friend list now. I am always happy to network a dog in need of help getting across the border and getting better care in the US. My rescue work started with Mexican Street dogs and I continue to have a strong passion for those needing help that don't get it there. However, blatant disregard for the health and well-being of other animals in the name of doing good is not okay in my book.