KFOR Report in OKC
Updated: November 5, 2002 at 4:37 PM
-- Dozens of dogs were rescued from near starvation this
past weekend after
they were abandoned.
The dogs were discovered after their owner, who had
been collecting stray
dogs, died several months before.
originally reported to be about 75 dogs abandoned, some in pens,
wandering around in rural Oklahoma. More than 50 were rescued,
now at the Oklahoma City Animal Shelter, where they could use
To these dogs the cages at the Oklahoma City Animal Shelter must
heaven. They were left to fend for themselves for possibly several
"All of them were in varying stages of starvation and some of
emaciated and some of them were just really poor shape," said
spokesman for the Oklahoma City Animal Shelter.
the lucky ones. They're already in the stray area where potential
can view them. About five of the dogs had to be put down.
"We had one
that couldn't use his back legs and was like buried knee deep in
probably hadn't moved for days, you know, with all the rain we had
weekend," Putnam said.
Neighbors in the area had called the Adair County
Sheriff's department to
put the dogs down, but some kind souls there couldn't
do it, and finally a
rescue group from Lawton made the long trek to bring the
animals to the
There are no signs of abuse, but the animals
are suffering from mange, some
have to be quarantined because they were so
frightened they bit the rescue
workers. But shelter officials say most will
make great pets.
"Almost all of the dogs, once they got used to their
acclimating to humans and coming up an having eye contact
with us and
sniffing us and all that," Putnam said.
Dozens of dogs
that were left for dead are now on the road to recovery
their second chance at life.
Obviously, it's hard on the Oklahoma City
animal shelter to get a large
number of dogs in at one time. They're in need
of cash donations, also food,
blankets, toys and grooming supplies.
you're interested in adopting one of the dogs you can head over to the
shelter to find one. If it's not ready to be adopted they'll hold it
If you'd like to call the shelter and offer your help or inquire
adopting call 297-3118.
Rescuers save starving dogs after their owner dies
STILWELL -- More than 50 starving dogs that had
been caged without food or water for weeks at a rural home south of Stilwell
after their owner died were rescued last week.
Faith Orlowski of the
Tulsa Bar Association's Animal Law Committee said Monday that Cherokee Nation
spokeswoman Diane Hammons notified her about the dogs Wednesday.
Orlowski, in turn, called Robin Pressnall of Small Paws® Rescue in
Tulsa. The group delivered about 400 pounds of food that had been donated by
PetsMart of Tulsa to the dogs about midnight Wednesday.
volunteers with Lawton's Sheltering Tree Animal Rescue Society took the dogs
Saturday to the Oklahoma City Municipal Shelter, where they are being nursed
back to health.
"It cost approximately $300 per dog for treatment,"
Orlowski said. "Several veterinarians were waiting at the shelter in Oklahoma
City to treat the animals."
She said the Animal Law Committee was formed
two years ago to deal with just this type of situation. Orlowski said that if it
hadn't been for the Cherokee Nation marshals, the dogs would have perished.
Catherine English of the Oklahoma City Municipal Shelter said Monday
that the animals were emaciated when they arrived and were being treated for a
variety of illnesses in preparation for adoption.
Of the 54 animals
recovered from the home near Bunch, southeast of Stilwell, English said eight
were euthanized because of illness and unsociable behavior.
a spokeswoman for the Cherokee Nation, said Monday that 62 dogs originally had
been kept at the home of Robert Swanke, who died a short time ago.
said friends and relatives had been trying to feed the animals as best they
Before Swanke died, he was known for taking in stray animals,
English said the good news is that most of the dogs
retrieved will be available for adoption.
She said the ASPCA has pledged
funding for the dogs' care, and Southern Agriculture in Tulsa donated 1,400
pounds of food to the rescue mission.
To make a donation for the dogs'
care or adopt a dog, contact Small Paws® Rescue in Tulsa. >
Starving Dogs Found Alive in Stillwell Oklahoma
gave great updated news! The starving Cherokee dogs
from last week were rescued Saturday. November 2, 2002! 62 rescued dogs were
taken to a division of the Oklahoma City Animal Welfare Division. They were
transported by a wonderful volunteer rescue group called the Sheltering
Tree Animal Rescue Society (STARS) ,thanks to Lynn Ramos, her son Sam, and
sixteen of their other volunteers from Lawton, Oklahoma! Lynn's account is
A truly wonderful lady, Cathrine English, (Catherine English
Superintendent, Animal Welfare Division email@example.com) is now
in charge of this rescue in OKC, through the OKC Animal Welfare Division.
Catherine told us that they had vets and vet techs waiting there for the dog's
arrival on Saturday. These dogs were triaged, treated, (they will even be even
treated for heartworm and lymes disease if necessary) and then the dogs that are
placeable will be placed into loving homes!
These dogs have come into some
incredible luck. Their bill is being paid by the ASPCA in New York
Again, thank you all so very much to everyone who prayed and sent this
story out to the Internet! These dogs received prayers and concern from as far
as Tokyo and Australia.
They tell us that we should be seeing some media
accounts about this huge rescue soon. The dogs are now in safety!:) Here are
some updates as we all saw them happening both from the shelter and from the
<Subj: 9 PM:Stillwell
update from Catherine...
Date: 11/2/2002 9:02:37 PM Central Standard
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (English, Catherine
The dogs are here. The transporters are wet, cold and tired and
so is our staff, who worked all day as well. Eighteen dogs were left behind in
Adair County because the people who live there wouldn't let the rescuers take
them (I guess the dogs are theirs). We have 62. Unfortunately, there were 9
bites to rescuers, but none of them were severe. Most of the dogs are in really
bad shape and many are aggressive. We're going to hang onto them for a couple of
days anyway to see if the aggression is from fear/strangers/travelling, or if
they just aren't suitable for adoption. We cannot save the biters. The rescuers
and our Officers, vet techs, vet, supervisors and animal welfare representatives
are all still there and will be until all of the dogs are processed (at least
another 1.5-2 hours).
After reviewing the situation, the transporters
decided that none of the dogs had to be euthanized before arrival. They
originally thought some of the dogs wouldn't make the trip alive. They were most
worried about a guy with a gashed head, but our vet will suture and clean him
up, and will assess him later. He made the trip okay.
The Sheltering Tree
Animal Rescue Society people started really early this a.m. and still have a
couple of hours here before they can leave. They then face a 2 hour drive before
they get home. I ordered in pizza for everyone (my treat--nothing but animal
care/rescue will come out of the donation from ASPCA or anyone else) so that
will set them back another hour or so for dinner. In short, please keep them
close to your heart for a safe drive home in what is rainy, icky weather,
because by the time they get home they will have been driving, loading, driving,
unloading and driving some more, for about 16 hours.
I've received tons
of emails--thanks to all for your words of encouragement and for your offers of
help. I'm not sure how many of these dogs, after they settle in for a couple of
days, will really be savable, because right now they all look awfully rough, but
I'll let y'all know something the first of the week. The preliminary assessment
is pretty grim.
Thanks to Robin Pressnall and Faith Orlowsky, who sent up
the alarm and coordinated everyone, and to everyone at STARS for being so brave
and committed. A thanks and big hugs all around, also, for our local volunteers,
activists and staff who are taking part in every way. I'm proud to know and work
with all of you!!!>
Subj: The Stillwell Adventure
Date: 11/2/2002 11:35:45
PM Central Standard Time
From: WRamos3126@aol.com (Lynn, Sheltering Tree
I am not very good with the computer so I
am going to tell you my story and let you e-mail the people that you think need
to read this.
I received a phone call around 4-4:30 PM on Friday asking
if the STARS
organization could help transport animals from Stillwell. I
called you and you know what transpired from there. it took me roughly two hours
on Friday to locate 16 people, seven trucks, two horse trailers and a dog
trailer to go to Stillwell on Saturday morning. All of the stars group met at my
shop at 4-4:30 am. It was certainly a dreary day, and we were all hoping that we
would get a break in the weather (no such luck).
Our little caravan
arrived in Stillwell at 10:45 am. We were met by two very nice Cherokee Nation
marshals, L. D and Sharon, who took us out to the site where the dogs were
located. We immediately got out and starting assessing the situation.
The left side of the property where part of the dogs were was the
worst. The cages on the left were almost solid mud up to our knees. The
side had more grassy area and the dogs were not as bogged down. We
immediately set to work deciding which animals needed to be put in cages
first. We found one dog buried to his waist in mud. He was definitely the
worst case scenario (he was suffering from hypothermia and had no feeling in
the lower half of his body). We divided into two groups of eight and began
work. Most of the dogs were completely non-aggressive. There were
approximately 15 that did not want to cooperate.
We did not get
bitten because the dogs were aggressive or mean spirited; they bit us out of
They were all cold, hungry and very scared. It took us right
hour to load all of these dogs into our trucks for transportation.
approximately 15 dogs that had a skin fungus of some kind. We had
that had a serious bacterial infection; one dog that tried to rip
his ear off
to get away from us, and one that was completely blind due to a
There were at least two more dogs that seemed
to have eye problems,
several very malnourished dogs, several that were
pregnant or had recently
given birth. We found no puppies under the age of 6
months. Most of the dogs
were estimated to be roughly six years old. There
are severe dental problems
with all of them. They all needed baths and
warmth. Also plenty of good food,
kindness and most important a loving
compassionate person to care for them. I personally tried to handle or be around
every single dog that we rescued to
see how they were reacting to this very
stressful situation. Every single one
of us carried at least one dog inside
our truck cabs with us. Every dog we
had inside the cabs with us behaved
like any normal dog. Most of them slept
all or almost all of the way into
The animal shelter people in the city were very nice to us.
they met us at Choctaw Road and escorted us to the shelter with flashing lights.
We had one shelter van in front of us and one in back with one leading the way
and stopping the traffic at every light to get us thru. A great many thanks to
By the time we actually got into the city, all of us were
very weary. The shelter staff were all very nice. We all worked very well
together. Each and every one of us had at least one favorite that we would like
to have taken home with us. I know that this rescue put a severe strain on the
shelter, however I hope that they will try
to give these animals a chance.
If we had a shelter, believe me we would have taken them home.
the STARS group feel that out of all of the dogs that we rescued today there
might be 10 at the most that would not do good in the right home environment.
Even though we were all very wet, cold, tired and hungry when we got to OKC,
there was not one of our group that had any regrets about being out there
rescuing those poor dogs. And we would all do it again tomorrow. Thanks for
being there to get the word out.
If you have any more questions or I
need to write more please let me know.
Thanks again and I hope that we
will meet soon.