Doomed In Los Banos, The Nicest Pup You'll Never Meet

We are so sorry, RIP little guy

This little stray pup found my wife one day while she was walking our dogs. It came up, loving everyone, human and dog alike, and even our dogs loved him. Which in and of itself was an amazing event. When my dogs love another pup, it's a true sweetheart of a soul.

In our home the stray pup was perfect. So we did "the right thing" and turned it into the Las Banos (CA) city animal shelter.

That decision became our most guilt-ridden, horrible mistake we have ever made, in trusting the system.

The dog was entered into the Los Banos shelter system and despite our passing on the info about how sweet this dog was, things took a turn for the worse.

Like many dogs, it became very fearful in the shelter environment and became defensive and started biting at people. Rescues have to pick and choose and no one came to this pup's aid as it became more scared in that environment, so he was overlooked and then later, put to death. For no other reason than being afraid.

After rescuing a multitude of dogs almost every weekend since we moved to Los Banos two years ago, we stopped. We felt responsible for killing this dog and we stopped. We will no longer put any dog in the situation where it will be put down.

That was the day we chose to stop rescuing off the street and it breaks our hearts. This town runs rampant with loose and stray dogs. You can't go out the door without encountering them, whether the owners just let their dogs run loose or they are strays, either way, it's one of the most tragic scenarios I've ever been exposed to.

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Another Penalized Stray, RIP

From the outside, looking in, we heard that the Los Banos animal shelter has a reputation of being a high kill shelter. Within a week or two of having first moved to Los Banos we spent an hour or two catching our first LB stray, called the shelter, and had that first pup committed to the facility.

A week later it was nowhere to be found on the books and the staff there said it went to a rescue in Canada, but would not provide details.

The presumption was that this pup was put down and for some reason, they didn't want to admit it.

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We have a multitude of reasons to hate our local system. It is too easy. But be it as it may, this shelter is small and holds the animals for five days and that's that. But that is two more days than is required by the state of California.

After that first pup, we didn't trust the Los Banos shelter but as I got know some of the staff, I learned they try their best they can to get their dogs to rescues. But this region of California, and so many others like it is such a different world in how these people think of animals that it's sad. In fact, the "fine" citizens of this town and of rural central CA, well, they pretty much suck when it comes to how they care for a dog and keep it under their control and possession. As put to me once when I questioned a dog owner about keeping their dog on a leash, they have better things to spend their money on.

Other sad examples include a woman who always let her dogs run wild in the fields, until they were found on the road dead.

Or a family with three small kids whose pet was running around on the highway. I told the kids and they shrugged their shoulders. The next week they had a new puppy while the remains of their other dog was rotting away on the roadside.

Welcome to rural living and the mindset of way too many people.

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With the mentality of so many people not caring about a dog because it's 'just an animal' infuriates us. People are too lazy about their attitudes regarding animals. There's a reason around 3 million animals get put down in shelters every year. Just plain stupid situations and mentalities coming together to create a horrible combination of circumstances for so many innocent animals, suffering at the hands of man because of stupidity and lazy people, broken even farther, by a stressed rescue system that is always under funded for the challenge of the strays in the streets of America.

But we're still mad as hell at our local shelter.

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