The Hoke 50
Sometimes, it takes a village to make a miracle.
Hoke County is a rural area with sprawling fields, rustic barns, small farms, and large homesteads. It is also T.A.R.A.’s home. Many of our volunteers live in Hoke County, and we get most of our animals from the animal shelters in Hoke and neighboring Cumberland Counties.
So, when the Hoke County animal shelter was hit with a dire situation, we knew we had to step in to help, no matter what. A family had a few dogs, but for whatever reason, they were not altered. Over the years those dogs multiplied as more and more litters were born until the family now was trying to care for 67 dogs. The family realized they could not continue to care for the animals and went to the shelter to make arrangements to surrender all but 13 of the animals. (They are called The Hoke 50 because initially we were told it was a mass surrender of 50 dogs.)
Hoke County Animal Control is almost always at or close to maximum capacity. The management and staff often keep dogs in the shelter for months (they are not required to give them that long) in hopes of finding homes for them. In fact, we pulled Bear and King in February of 2019; they had been in the shelter since November of 2018. However, this mass surrender would devastate the shelter. Every dog that was there past his or her time was in danger of being euthanized.
T.A.R.A. pulled what we could from the shelter right away to help make room and, with the shelter management, spoke with the family. They surrendered some of the animals, keeping the majority on their property while we worked to figure out a way to save them all. We provided food and vaccines for all the dogs, even the ones the family is keeping. The Hoke Raeford Humane Society provided funding for heartworm tests for all the animals.
We sent out a plea for help and starting looking for vets that could help us spay and neuter all the dogs. More fosters stepped up willing to help house some animals. SPAY-NC was an absolute joy to work with. In about a week, they were set up and ready to process thirty dogs in a single day using their mobile surgical unit. The family, local vet techs, volunteers, and the staff of SPAY-NC worked together and over two days, all the animals were vaccinated, heartworm tested, defleaed, and thirty of them were spayed and neutered. At least fifteen are heartworm positive and will need treatment.
Some of these dogs have already started to be adopted while others are filtering into our foster homes as we have room. This past weekend’s tent event saw just over twenty dogs adopted that had been in our care. This gives us the opportunity to bring in more of the Hoke 50 dogs from the Hoke County animal shelter and the family’s property.
Of course, this massive effort is not without cost. The spays and neuters are not yet complete and heartworm treatment for the multiple positive dogs will be expensive. If you are able, please consider donating to help the Hoke 50. Donations can be made through Paypal to firstname.lastname@example.org, through our GoFundMe page, or directly at our adoption events.
If you are interested in adopting or fostering one of the Hoke 50, please contact: email@example.com.
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