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Cathedral City Resident Asked for Help

Riverside County Animal Services officers impounded 37 dogs today after a man requested assistance.

About one week ago, the Cathedral City resident came to the county’s Coachella Valley Animal Campus and asked for help when he learned he would likely be evicted if he didn’t reduce the number of dogs at his home.

The officers transported 37 dogs – all small and mostly Chihuahuas – to the shelter where their veterinary colleagues provided each one an examinations and vaccinations.

Of the 37 dogs, 31 are heading to an Animal Services rescue partner organization, Never Forgotten Animal Society, based in Pahrump, Nev. Four dogs will be spayed or neutered, vaccinated and microchipped and returned to the man as his personal pets. Two of the dogs will remain at the shelter for special care.

“This was a situation where someone clearly needed our help, asked for it, and we provided him help,” said Jackie Schart, an animal services chief who oversees operations at the Coachella Valley Animal Campus in Thousand Palms. “This was not an animal cruelty situation. This was a situation where someone clearly was overwhelmed with unaltered dogs that continued to create litter after litter.”

She said specialized grant funds – specifically from a fund known as the Healthy Pet Zone – will assist the man with the spay and neuter surgeries and vaccinations.

“Instead of being punitive, the approach here was to be helpful,” Schart aid. “People need to have faith in us to help when they reach out to us. We do really want to help people. They just need to ask.”

Animal Services Deputy Director Kim Youngberg said this activity illustrates how fortunate the department is to have so many rescue organizations willing to help in such a quick manner.

“This man needed urgent help,” Youngberg said. “He was worried about losing his home. We needed help, too. Since the man surrendered ownership of the dogs to us, we were immediately able to get a rescue organization lined up for rehoming. We are grateful to have such a great network of rescue partners.”

Contact a Shelter

Western Riverside: (951) 358-7387 (PETS)
San Jacinto: (951) 358-7387
Coachella Valley: (760) 343-3644
Blythe: (760) 921-7857
Toll Free: 1-888-636-7387 (PETS)

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