We get calls every week from shelters around the county asking for us to please come and help German Shepherds that are on the list to be euthanized. Most of the time it’s not one, not two, not even three.
There have been times that we get the call from the shelter with a list of 15 to 20 German Shepherds awaiting their fate, a ride to freedom or a walk down the hall, where their life will be over.
Imagine the trip to the shelter. There’s a lot of time to think, and what is the first thought? How can we get the dogs home? How do I choose, of all the good dogs, who to leave behind because there is only so much room? And then you meet them and look into their eyes and those thoughts become reality, and you try to find ways to make miracles happen, ways to fit just one more dog into your vehicle, and then you beg for just a little more time, time to come back tomorrow to pick up the ones you had to leave behind, but when you show up tomorrow, it is just too late.
That was a major problem for us until two very generous families donated two vehicles to the rescue. They became endearingly known as the “Doggie Van” and the Doggie Limo.” Those two vehicles gave us room to make sure we never had to leave a dog behind because of lack of space. Those same vehicles enabled us to bring all the dogs to adoption events on Saturdays, to bring the dogs with special needs to swim therapy and to the vet. The van and the limo have cruised the freeways from south San Diego to Los Angeles. They have made the treks to Riverside sometimes on a weekly basis and negotiated the winding mountainous roads to Coachella, all to give a dog a second chance at life and a forever home.
Sadly, the Doggie Van and the Doggie Limo are very quickly reaching the end of their lives, and it’s time to retire them. Even with constant maintenance, they are reaching the point of not being safe. We can’t risk having a breakdown with our very special cargo aboard, but right now they are our only means of transporting most of our dogs to the adoption events and our making shelter runs. We carry cans of oil down and transmission fluid with us as we make the trips from San Marcos to Del Mar. The daily temperatures are rising to 75 degrees, and the air circulation system has already failed. We are doing the best we can to manage with what we have, but we have to find safe replacements before they completely quit. We don’t want to go back to the days of having to leave dogs behind in the shelters because we don’t have vehicles to transport or dogs not being able to attend adoption events because they don’t have a ride. So we are reaching out to our special team of angels for help. We need the money to purchase two new vehicles. They don’t have to be brand new. They don’t have to be top of the line brand new. They just need to be safe for the dogs.
Our goal is $15,000. To help raise the money for our Rides for Rescue we will be having a fundraising dinner on May 19th, at the Bushfire Kitchen. Tickets are $35, with 15 percent of that being donated to the rescue to help with new vehicles. We will have live entertainment and lots of nice raffle prizes to help generate more funds. There will be great food, but it will also will be an opportunity for you to meet others who share the same love of German Shepherds that you have and it will give us the opportunity to recognize some people who have made a difference. We know that the 15 percent donation from the dinner will not be able to cover the cost of two new (new to the rescue) vehicles and we know that some of you may not be able to make the event. We are asking anyone who can to make a donation. As we always say, and it bears repeating, no donation is too small. Coastal is very very lucky to have a team that always comes through when the dogs are in need. That need could not be greater than it is right now. If you would like to meet one of the dogs who was given a second chance because there was space in the Doggie Limo and the Doggie Van, just reach out and touch the dog that you have adopted from Coastal, give them a big hug and say hello. We are asking for your help with Rides for Rescue, the first ride for shelter dogs on their way to forever.