Adoptable dogs in Columbus are finding their permanent homes hundreds of miles away through the efforts of the Community Animal Rescue Effort, the City of Columbus Animal Care Services and the CanINE Express Transport Project. C.A.R.E. and Animal Care Services are partnering with the CanINE Express to match adoptable pets with responsible owners, reduce shelter overcrowding, and help eliminate the need to euthanize animals due to a lack of critical resources.
The CanINE Express, based in Nashville, humanely transports shelter dogs from south-central Indiana to no-kill rescue shelters in other areas of the country where there is less overpopulation of pets and a strong demand for well-socialized, healthy adoptable dogs. C.A.R.E. and Animal Care Services began partnering with the CanINE Express this year, and the second transport of adoptable dogs from Columbus left the morning of Thursday, February 28, from the Animal Care Services shelter. The CanINE Express usually transports the dogs with their own volunteers, but C.A.R.E. board members Elaine DeClue and Nicohl Birdwell-Goodin volunteered to drive the transport vans.
The transport will take 10 dogs from the Animal Care Services shelter and C.A.R.E. foster homes to shelters in Maine, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire. The dogs range in age from puppies to adults, including four around 3 months old, four around 6 months old and one who is close to 10 years old. All receiving shelters have been vetted and approved by Cathi Eagan, founder of the CanINE Express Transport Project. The first transport was in early February, when 12 local dogs were taken to shelters in Ohio and New England, where they were quickly connected with their new owners.
“The CanINE Express is another excellent public-private partnership that ensures the adoptable dogs in our community are finding great homes,” Mayor Kristen Brown said. “We will continue our efforts to have a 100% save rate at the City’s Animal Care Services shelter and eliminate the need to euthanize healthy, adoptable pets.”
Three of the puppies being transported Thursday are pit bulls that will be delivered to the Miami Correctional Center in Maine, where they will be partnered with well-behaved inmates as part of the Paws in Stripes program through the Animal Welfare Society of West Kennebunk, Maine. The dogs are housed directly with men and women prisoners approved by prison officials. The puppies spend six weeks with their handlers, being house broken, learning social skills and taking obedience classes. At the end of the program, the dogs are ready for adoption and help meet the high demand from owners who are on a waiting list for the pets.
C.A.R.E. and Animal Care Services will continue to transport adoptable dogs through the CanINE Express as often as there is demand at other shelters. C.AR.E., Animal Care Services and the CanINE Express are extremely grateful to The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals for their generous $17,000 grant to spay/neuter and prepare Indiana shelter dogs that will ride on each monthly transport.
C.A.R.E. is in need of volunteers to offer temporary foster homes to dogs between transports. The temporary stays are usually two to three weeks. For more information, contact Ashley Anderson at 812-350-4686. The CanINE Express is also in need of transport drivers. For more information, contact Nicohl Birdwell-Goodin at 812-343-8649.