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Homeward Trails in the News

Check what the folks at Homeward Trails have been
up to in and around the community!

Before October 2013, it was legal to chain a dog in Arlington County outside for 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. But thanks to efforts by local animal advocates, led by HT Executive Director Sue Bell, dogs can no longer be chained for more than three hours in a 24 hour period. “This is a tremendous statement to animal owners out there that Arlington will not tolerate chaining and neglect of dogs,” says Bell. “We applaud the County for passing the measure, the Animal Welfare League of Arlington for supporting it and enforcing it and our many animal advocates who helped get this through. It’s  a good day for dogs in Arlington!”

See the story on NBC 4 here:  Arlington Likely to Pass Dog Tethering Ordinance

After more than 8 years of working to save hundreds of dogs and cats from a desperate hoarding situation, we are finally seeing an end to the misery.

On Friday, September 13th, 2013 in Goochland County, VA, Annette Thompson was ordered to relinquish all the dogs and cats on her property. Even more importantly, she is no longer permitted to own or possess any companion animals.  Thompson is also not permitted to be involved in any way with animal rescue activities. On this day Annette Thompson signed legal ownership of all the dogs on her property over to Homeward Trails.

“This is a wonderful, wonderful day for the animals on her property,” says Sue Bell, Homeward Trails Executive Director. “We have worked for almost 8 years on this case, spent hundreds of hours, thousands of dollars and continued to hit our heads against the wall seeking justice for the animals. We are so grateful to finally see the day that Annette Thompson can no longer have animals, be involved in rescue and defraud the public and authorities about her care of animals.”

Thompson was convicted of six counts of animal neglect in 2011, charges that were only successful after HT and several other local rescues pursued these charges on behalf of more than one dozen sick and injured dogs rescued from Thompson’s property over years. At the time of the charges, HT had taken more than 700 animals from Thompson over five years.

Homeward Trails, along with our wonderful friends at the Animal Welfare League of Arlington, Alexandria Animal Welfare League, Fairfax Animal Shelter and the Richmond SPCA, removed 35 dogs from the property on Friday. On Wednesday, September 18, reps from Homeward Trails went back to the property to remove an additional 10 dogs and 1 kitten. Two of the dogs removed were taken by the Norfolk SPCA. There now remain 6 dogs and several feral cats, for which we are looking to secure places. “We desperately need more shelters and rescues to help take dogs. We are completely overloaded here at HT. We also are desperately seeking a barn home for the 3 feral cats. We do not want to see them needlessly euthanized,” says Bell.

The dogs have not been outside of their horrible, outdoor kennels for years. They are terrified, filthy and exhausted.  They need foster and forever homes, and we need volunteers to come to our office and take them outside for bathroom breaks or simply sit with them and teach them what human kindness is all about.

Finally, we need donations to help cover the very expensive vet bills. We are averaging $300/dog in vetting and that does not include those who test positive for heartworm, need x-rays, dentals or biopsies. It also does not include our boarding costs, which currently are running about $70/day.  To make a donation go to Goochland Hoarding Dogs.

Read the article in the Goochland Gazette here: Hadensville kennel to close

Read the article in Patch here:   Making Up for Lost Time:  Dogs From Hoarding Operation End Up at Local Rescues

THANK YOU FOR YOUR WONDERFUL SUPPORT!! WE COULD NOT DO IT WITHOUT YOU!!

 

 

HT joined the ASPCA, local rescue groups and shelters, and members of Congress on February 14th for ASPCA’s annual “Paws for Love” adoption event, celebrating rescued animals on Capitol Hill!  Several of HT’s animals were scooped up by elected officials and staffers, showed with kisses and hugs and even made their debut in the media!

Congressman John Campbell has a ball with HT rescued pup Ames at the ASPCA’s annual “Paws for Love” adoption event, held on Capitol Hill on February 14, 2013 Right: Congressman John Campbell has a ball with HT rescued pup Ames at the ASPCA’s annual “Paws for Love” adoption event, held on Capitol Hill on February 14, 2013

HT volunteer Melissa Spurrier hangs with HT pooch Dexter at the ASPCA’s annual “Paws for Love” adoption event, held on Capitol Hill on February 14, 2013

HT volunteer Melissa Spurrier hangs with HT pooch Dexter at the ASPCA’s annual “Paws for Love” adoption event, held on Capitol Hill on February 14, 2013

 

Congressman Jim Moran visits with HT Volunteer Debbie Marson and puppy Ames at the ASPCA’s annual “Paws for Love” adoption event, held on Capitol Hill on February 14, 2013

 

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