People Can't Believe Who They Find Outside In Freezing Cold Tent
"It is not safe for these dogs."
When one border collie escaped the makeshift outdoor enclosure where she and 15 others were being kept, she started running, doing what she was trained to do.
These border collies had been bred to be working dogs who herd cattle. But when this dog tried to do that to a group of cows nearby, tragedy struck.
"Apparently she escaped from his makeshift enclosure and ran onto the neighbors cattle farm," Debbie Lazaro, president of East Coast Herding Dog Organization (ECHO) Rescue, told The Dodo. "The farmer shot her in order to protect his livestock ... [the cows] did sustain some unfortunate injuries."
Such a loss never would have happened if the 16 dogs had not been left in a backyard shed in Kansas after a backyard breeder decided to shut down his operation.
"He moved away from the property and the dogs were left behind," Lazaro said. "He visits approximately once a day to 'take care of them.'"
It was obvious to rescuers that the breeder's care couldn't be sufficient.
"It's cold in Kansas. These dogs are outside ... It is not safe for these dogs," ECHO Rescue wrote in a plea on Facebook earlier this week.
Temperatures in Kansas are dropping, and rescue organizations, once they discovered what was under the tent, realized they urgently needed to find a place for the remaining 15 border collies to go.
For rescue organizations who operate on donated resources and volunteered time, this can be a tall order.
"This has been a massive undertaking by several small rescue groups," Lazaro said.
Working quickly, rescuers found committed foster homes spread out across several states, from Kansas to New Jersey and Virginia, where the dogs could go. Heart of a Border Collie Rescue, Hull's Haven Border Collie Rescue, Bimmer's Border Collie Rescue, as well as ECHO Rescue, all helped arrange the foster homes.
Now all of the dogs need to get veterinary care — shots, heartworm tests and spaying and neutering.
Rescuers also have to get to know the dogs' personalities so that they can figure out how to place them in the most perfectly suited homes.
What would be most appreciated at this stage of the rescue of these 15 abandoned dogs? "Anything that can help with these dogs finding a good, loving home," Lazaro said.