a cattle dog looking out from a kennel

Saving animals on the border

In Laredo, Texas, a rural animal shelter holds the fate of hundreds of animals every day.

On the USA/Mexico border, a roof covers concrete kennel walls while open-air flows through the walkways. Outdoor dog houses offer a barrier to the elements, but when the kennels are packed with multiple dogs, not all can fit. As soon as animals enter this facility, the clock starts ticking. Please consider helping Ruff Start help them by donating today – any amount makes a difference!

Volunteers and staff work tirelessly to care for the 250+ animals in their care, but there is only so much time and space to do right by them. Only 26% of dogs leave this facility alive. We want to make this clear – this shelter isn’t the enemy. Lack of resources, animal welfare education, and mass spay/neuter campaigns keep this shelter flowing with animals day in and day out. As a municipal facility, they can’t turn any animal away.

The Southern city never thought to prepare for the winter weather that we see in the midwest. Pipes burst, clean water became inaccessible, bills piled up, and beloved companion animals were euthanized at even higher rates. They could barely thaw out the frozen water bowls when new animals entered the shelter even faster than before.

During the storm, kind citizens brought dogs and cats off the streets so they wouldn’t freeze to death. After the storm subsided and new problems arose, those animals had nowhere to go. Belonging to no one, they could either go back on the streets or into a shelter.

Our intake team at Ruff Start Rescue tags as many dogs in Laredo and Houston as we can. Tagging is essentially us saying, “Hey, we’ll take this dog. Please take them off the euthanasia list.” This is not a task for the faint of heart as we see the faces of dogs we can’t say ‘yes’ to. As a foster-based rescue, we can only save as many animals as we have foster homes.  You can find out more about becoming a Ruff Start foster on our website.

We’ve committed to one transport from Laredo every month, but with everything that’s been going on, we took on this upcoming emergency transport to help create space and save more animals in need. This Saturday, 29 Laredo pups are coming up to Minnesota. Watch them arrive LIVE on our Facebook page, late Saturday morning. 

We recognize that we can’t do this alone. We rely on you, our animal welfare friends and advocates, to help us save these amazing dogs. If you’re in a position to give, please consider donating today – any amount does make a difference. Together we can do extraordinary things and save so many more lives.

a dog in a kennel in Laredo

Keira is arriving Saturday, 3/6.

a dog looking out from a kennel

Keelan is arriving Saturday, 3/6.

How you can help animals in Laredo, Texas

We are so grateful for this partnership with Laredo Animal Care Services and can’t wait to see it grow. We hope you’ll see that they’re doing their very best to help the animals in their care. Ease their burden when you donate desperately needed supplies to Ruff Start Rescue by Friday, March 5. We’re sending as many supplies back as we can to the struggling shelter on March 6.

a puppy in a kennel at Laredo

Fiona is arriving Saturday, 3/6.

Here’s what they need:
  • Dog food (preferably Purina)
  • Metal food/water dishes
  • Metal water buckets
  • Towels
  • Blankets
  • Paper towels
  • Clorox wipes
  • Large garbage bags
Order items with ease from our Amazon wish list. Ruff Start Rescue will use any items not sent to Laredo. Email donations@ruffstartrescue.org with any questions.

Keep shelter pets off the concrete floor when you donate Kuranda beds and outdoor dog houses. Those can be sent directly to them at:

Laredo Animal Care Services
5202 Maher Ave
Laredo, TX 78041

Other ways to help

Sign up to foster! We can only save as many animals as we have foster homes. Click here to learn more about our foster-to-adopt-program.

Buy Lone Star merchandise – all proceeds benefit the animals at Ruff Start Rescue, and there are only 8 days left to order!

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a puppy hides behind a kennel

Harlequin is arriving Saturday, 3/6.

Watch founder and executive director, Azure Davis, talk about how RSR is helping in Texas right now