Monday, January 28, 2013

It's Chihuahua Fiesta Week!

Chula may be part deer chihuahua, because her long legs make her look so elegant. She may be a little timid when you first meet her, but this sweet dog will practically beg you to carry her around like a little baby. You'll feel loved like never before when Chula is in your arms! She's your Rockwall Adoptable Pet for the week of January 28, 2012.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Good boy!

Can you say "Good boy?" Can you say "Great dog?" Archie deserves every bit of your praise. He's everything you'd expect in a black lab: he's handsome, friendly and super intelligent. He's also surprisingly mellow and patient for a dog who's not even a year old. Archie is ready to be the family companion of your dreams. He's your Rockwall Adoptable Pet for the week of January 21, 2013.

Monday, January 14, 2013

A lovable face and personality to match

This young dog is one happy boy. Tucker has a lovable face and a personality to match. His positive attitude is simply inspiring. And to top it all off, he's as smart as a whip. In fact, he's going through obedience training at Ponderosa Pet Resort right now. So he's on his way toward becoming a very well-behaved dog. A handsome pup who's friendly, intelligent and has impeccable manners. That's what we call a great dog! Tucker is your Rockwall Adoptable Pet for the week of January 14, 2013.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Get on the couch!

It's time for "Ask the Psychologist." Are you suffering from the traditional letdown following the holiday season? Do the short winter days make you depressed? Are you suffering from the flu that's going around? Our remedy: It's Cee Lo to the rescue! This exuberant pug wants to put a smile on your face. Watch the bad times disappear when this happy dog enters the room. Cee Lo is always ready for fun and games! He's your Rockwall Adoptable Pet for the week of January 7, 2013.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Looking ahead to 2013

Bear was one of the first pets rescued by Rockwall Pets in 2013.
The heartworm-positive shepherd mix was rescued from the Dallas shelter on January 2.

This interview with Michael Kitkoski of Rockwall Pets appeared in the January 4, 2013 edition of neighborsgo in the Dallas Morning News.

What are the greatest challenges and opportunities you anticipate for animal shelters in 2013?
The most critical concern for any retail-like business is location. That puts most animal shelters at a disadvantage, since they're generally located in out-of-the-way areas. We've proven in Rockwall, Seagoville, Austin and the other 200-plus no-kill cities and towns across the nation that taking the pets to the people - by doing adoption events at places like Petco and PetSmart - increases pet adoptions.

How will 2013 differ from 2012?
Most Americans are now aware that the facilities they thought of as "shelters" kill a lot of healthy and adoptable pets. Shelter killing is the No. 1 cause of death for healthy dogs and cats in America. In a recent AP poll, three-fourths of Americans said they didn't want their tax dollars used to kill healthy pets in shelters. So the mindset is changing. The Dallas shelter, for instance, has been making tremendous progress under the leadership of Jody Jones. If Dallas continues to improve during 2013, it won't be long before it's the largest no-kill city in the nation.

What are some goals for your organization this upcoming year?
We have an ambitious goal: To double the number of adoptions we did this year. Since nearly every pet rescued by Rockwall Pets was in danger of being killed at an area shelter, that means we're doubling the number of lives saved. Our mission is to save every life we possibly can.

What are the main needs your organization will face in 2013, and how can community members help?
Until we can purchase our own facility, we always need more foster homes and volunteers. As we expand, we're also looking for more local businesses that are willing to host adoption events on a regular basis. And donations, of course, are always needed and welcome. If a fundraising expert wanted to volunteer to help us, it would be a festive occasion!

What growth and development would you like to see in the animal shelter community in the coming year?
The old shelter business model, which was based on the killing of healthy pets to make space, is gradually giving way to the more compassionate lifesaving model. It's about time, since the old method has been in place for about 150 years! The Dallas shelter has nearly doubled its save rate in one year; it was 26% in September 2011 and 43% this year. There's still a long way to go, but they're making substantial progress. It's time for other North Texas shelters to follow that lead.

What important pet- or animal-related issues should residents be most aware of in the coming year?
Forbes magazine recently documented that the pet business is now one of the largest industries in the United States. Americans spent $50 billion on our pets during 2011, which is more than movies, music and video games combined. It's obvious that Americans love our pets.

What factors are most important to consider for those who want to adopt an animal in 2013, and during the winter months?
Consider adopting instead of buying a pet. When someone adopts a pet from Rockwall Pets, they're not only saving a life, they're getting a pet who's had full veterinary care, including spay/neuter, vaccinations and testing. Puppy mills and backyard breeders, on the other hand, often keep their pets in deplorable conditions. Nearly 17 million American families are looking for a new pet each year, while four million adoptable pets are killed in shelters annually. Do the math. If only a fourth of those families would adopt a shelter dog or a rescue cat instead of buying from a puppy mill, we would end shelter killing. And that would mean a happy New Year for all of us.