Looking at Dome's Beach from El Faro Park

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Puerto Rico Street Dogs - Satos

Today was the annual ARF (Animal Rescue Foundation) Rincon Dog Health Day.  For those of you not aware, ARF is Rincon's non-profit Animal Rescue and Education Organization, they have an office in the Balneario park that is open MWF 9-12pm.  Their office does great work such as these dog and cat health days offering low cost vaccinactions and neutering services for Rincon residents, as well as creating a network of fostering dogs and cats for adoption.  We adopted our dog, Uno after first fostering him in the ARF program.

It's important to know that ARF doesn't have facilities to house any animals, so it's fostering program is key and they could always use more foster volunteers.  We have 3 dogs and do no/cannot have any more, but we are willing to foster puppies that get in the ARF program because they will get adopted, either here or sent off the island for adoption.
My wife, CC has worked with so many great people outside the ARF organization to do things that ARF cannot, including fundraising to send dogs off the island to new homes and gaining access to donated food and supplies for the fostering families to reduce the burden of fostering homeless pets. 

The animal population problem in Rincon is relatively minimal relative to the rest of Puerto Rico and its because of ARF and many other folks around toen who have worked to keep puppies off the streets and to get them neutered and adopted into good homes,  Calypso Cafe, Mango Beach Shop, Green Room Surfboards, Pools Beach Cabanas are just a few of the local businesses that have taken in strays (satos) and either found homes for them or adopted them themselves. 
The amount of dogs and cats run down that you encounter while driving is disturbing.  On a recent rip 10 miles away to Aguada I saw 2 dead dogs and a dead cat dead in the road.  It may be one way to control the animal population but it certainly isn't a humane one.  Laws protecting animals have recently been enacted and they are enforced where possible, but it still is a society as a whole where cockfighting is celebrated and animals are seen more as working tools than as parts of the family.  So it was rewarding to see so many local Puerto Ricans at the Dog Health Day today, spaying and neutering their pets, doing the right thing to keep the animal population down and keeping satos off the streets.  Gracias ARF and all those who volunteer!
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