VINELAND - Three of 170 dogs rescued from South Korean meat farms arrived Thursday afternoon at the Cumberland County SPCA to begin new lives.The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals staff pulled up to the shelter’s side door to unload its precious cargo, affectionately known as Amos, Beth and Regina.RELATED: Petway youngsters show puppies love at SPCAKind words and treats coaxed the dogs from their crates still bearing American Airlines shipping labels.“There she is, isn’t she a cutie,” said Bev Greco, the SPCA executive director, as she welcomed the smallest arrival. Turning her attention to the drum beat of a wagging tail, she greeted another dog. “Look at you, you’re handsome.”The dogs and puppies are being transported to shelters around the U.S. and Canada, thanks to the Humane Society International.Video provided by Newsy NewslookHumane Society International is leading an effort to banish dog farming in South Korea, the only country where these farms exist solely to supply the dog meat market.Within the past year, 485 dogs have arrived in the United States and Canada after the humane society convinced five dog farmers to end the practice.While the dogs’ plight is subject to international scrutiny, the SPCA saw three frightened pups in need of some tender loving care.“This is the first time we’re doing this kind of thing,” said Greco. It was made possible through an existing relationship with the humane society.“We are considered an emergency placement partner,” Greco said, noting she received a month’s notice they would receive the dogs.FacebookTwitterGoogle+LinkedInSPCA saves dogs from South Korean meat farm FullscreenBuy PhotoAmos, a hound and mastiff mix, eats from the hand of foster coordinator Jessica Morrison Thursday, May 5 at the Cumberland County SPCA in Vineland. Amos was saved from a South Korean meat farm. Joe Lamberti/Staff PhotographerFullscreen1 of 8 Next Slide8 PhotosSPCA saves dogs from South Korean meat farmFor a month, Beth, Amos and Regina remained quarantined overseas. They arrived in the United States two weeks ago and were sheltered at St. Hubert’s Animal Welfare Center in Morris County, where the SPCA picked them up Thursday.“I expected the two big ones, I didn’t expect that little baby girl,” Greco said, referring to Beth.To help transition them into pet life, the dogs will live with foster families, said Jessica Morrison, the shelter’s foster coordinator.RELATED: Dogs rescued from South Korean dog meat farm arrive in U.S.Michelle Spatafore of Vineland, an experienced SPCA foster home provider, was there to greet Beth, a 5-month-old spaniel mix.“I can’t wait to get her home,” she said, sitting at the edge of the crate assuring the trembling pup she was now safe.“I’ll keep her separated for a little while until she adjusts,” Spatafore said. “It’s a different life.”These dogs never wore a collar or walked on a leash.Get your full year subscription for as low as$19.99/YEARLIMITED TIME OFFERUNLOCK MY $19.99 OFFERRELATED: Volunteers at heart of Cumberland County SPCAThere were tell-tale signs of harsh lives — exposed ribs due to malnutrition and splayed feet from standing on wire.Dogs are the most resilient animals, Morrison said. Despite their rough starts, the dogs were willing to reach out.“They are social animals,” she said.Amos, the most outgoing, was the first to take a few tentative steps from his crate. His dark eyes scanned the pen before he walked its perimeter, sniffing the new scents. Shelter staff sat crossed-legged on the floor waiting for the 2-year-old mixed breed dog to come to them.MORE: How one dog raised $4,000 for Cumberland County SPCATempted with food, Amos inched forward to accept their touch with a wagging tail. Soon, he felt secure enough to close his eyes and drift off to sleep.The focus now is to help the dogs develop some self-confidence and let them show their personalities, Morrison said.“Then we will be able to determine what type of home is the best fit for them,” she said. “As much as they are not our typical strays — we’ve gotten feral dogs, unsocialized dogs, backyard dogs — we’ve seen dogs like this before; they are just from a different circumstance.”The SPCA committed to three dogs so they wouldn’t be pulling resources away from local strays.MORE: Millville cat saved after jar removed from head“This is a little different,” Greco said. “First of all, it’s for a really great cause and we feel we should be part of the solution.”Instead of an iron fist, the humane society approach was to offer a helping hand.“We wanted to be a part of this because they’re helping the people, they are not just shutting these farms down,” Greco said. “They are helping the farm owners convert to other types of businesses.”The farm where the SPCA pups came from is converting to a mushroom farm, Greco said. By offering the farmers a new way to earn a living, it eliminates the need to dog farm.MORE: Dog, dumped with trash, now ready for home“That is
Just when I thought things couldn't get better, I find out I'm getting 'fixed' this week!!! I didn't even know I was broken. How cool is that? I've been busy. I had a reunion with Beth and Regina at the shelter recently, they look as happy as I am! Learning to sit has proved useful, turns out it's the cue for humans to give me treats or an ear rub. My new dog friends are teaching me local dog manners, like how to share toys and how to run really fast. I'm getting a workout for sure. All in all, I don't have many complaints, which is why the humans think I'm a quiet, laid back kind of guy, And next week I'll be even better!
After a few days she showed a lot of interest in coming out of her area and interacting with the other dogs. She loves to run around the back yard on the grass. For the 1st time last night she laid on the couch and let me stay next to her and pet her. She has come along way in her short time and Foster she started out cowering in the back of her crate. She soon let us know that she didn't want to be in the crate anymore with a very high-pitched bark. I moved her from her crate and integrated her with the rest of my dogs. She really came out of her shell when she was around the other dogs. It took her a few more days so let me pet her but once I did she quickly realized that it was something nice and not something to be feared. It took her a few days to master the stairs and be brave enough to go out side with the rest of the dogs but now she's doing that several times a day. When she goes outside she runs runs runs all over the yard. You can really tell she's happy to be free. That still has a long way to go But I have every confidence that she will tackle every challenge just like she has in the Last couple of days. Our next goal is teaching her to walk on a leash. However for now I just want her to enjoy just being a dog.
UPDATE COMING SOON!
Regina Loves to Run in the Yard
Hi, I'm Amos. Last week I didn't even have a name, and now I'm writing my story!! Let's just start with the good stuff. I arrived at the CCSPCA shelter a week ago Thursday evening, and was checked out on Friday. I won't lie, I was totally out of my league. I wanted to be friendly, I wanted to play, but really didn't know how. I also didn't know how to walk on grass, or anywhere out in the open, for that matter. I'm embarrassed to say my foster family got me home in a crate, so I could be carried across the grass.
However, I'm a pretty fast learner. It only took a couple of days, some toys, and lots of food to warm up to my new family. Sometimes I play hard to get, but my tail is wagging! I soon learned how to walk on a leash, but it took me a couple of days to venture out onto GRASS! It felt good!
When I arrived I had nothing, now I have a new collar and my own jacket. Also private quarters all to myself, with room service and a cleanup crew!!! I don't need a crate to get to the car, and on a trip back to the shelter for a checkup I sat in the back seat!! Things are definitely looking up.
There are other dogs here who act like they own the place, maybe they do. I'm told we will all play together soon. I'll keep you posted.
Regina spent the first few days keeping to herself and observing her surrounding. In just one week she went from shutdown and scared to showing interest in play and seeking human attention - Regina loves peanut butter and took her first steps on grass this week!
Beth spent her first night in a big crate. I did not hear a peep out of her. When I would approach her she would run to the back of the cage. She relaxes much more in the presence of my dogs. Early this morning she got out of her crate because only one latch was latched and she was waiting at the top of the steps for me. She is currently upstairs with the rest of us. She plays with the dogs but if I try to pet her she runs in the corner so I'm just letting her be for now. She will come and lick my hand every once in a while and I just let her come to me when she wants.
Cumberland County Library youth program had a terrific time reading to their new furry friends at the Cumberland County SPCA.Kristin Ramer, CCSPCA Human Education Coordinator, provided a tour of the Cumberland County SPCA and told the children about opportunities to help animals in need.They shared their reading skills and made new furry friends.Be sure to join us at the Cumberland County Library for exciting programs. Visit www.cclnj.org or call 856-453-2210, Ext. 110.
It’s been a year since my last “new baby and pets” column. I have written about getting ready to add a baby to our family and how it will affect our pets, bringing baby home, and baby’s first year with our pets. I realize now that I can no longer write about my baby and the pets. I must now write about my toddler and pets.And wow – that is a whole different story to write! Episodes of “My Toddler and Pets” include “I want to use the dog as a step stool so I can climb out the window”; “Feeding the cats things they shouldn’t be eating”; “Playing veterinarian”; and my personal favorite, “I can hold the leash by myself, and if you don’t let me I’m going to lay down on the sidewalk and cry.”MORE NEWS: Vineland Wawa to close its doorsHowever, our big adventure in child and pet ownership this year came during the winter. We always had been a multi-dog household, but when our sweet Labrador Buddy passed away last fall, we had been flying mostly solo. Last winter, we brought home a little mixed-breed dog for what was supposed to be a short stay. However, she developed a mouth tumor and our little guest turned into a hospice foster, who passed away in the spring. After so many losses, we needed a break. So, for several months, Bandit was an only dog. But as we began noticing his anxiety increase, we knew that we needed to find him a canine companion.This is the point where I realized that we had become “that” family. The family that wants a dog, but it has to get along with other dogs, and be safe with cats, and be absolutely wonderful with children. Also, since we are a working family, the dog would need to be OK to be crated while we are at work, so it should probably be housebroken as well. And also a calm dog would be good, as Bandit is high-strung. I used to roll my eyes at these people, because that dog barely exists. But now I found myself looking for that dog.Bubba (Photo: CCSPCA)I struggled with this for a while. I have always brought home the broken, the sick, the dying – the dogs that no one else would want. And I still wanted these dogs. I still would see them at the Cumberland County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals shelter and so desperately want to bring them home and give them comfort. But I also know that at this stage in my life, I cannot meet their needs. I can’t give them the time and energy and even physical space that they require; right now, my daughter needs that from me.After feeling guilty for so long, I finally came to the conclusion that this is OK. Sadly, we are not likely to run out of dogs needing help, and life years down the road will look different than life looks today. I realized, most importantly, that the time I spend with my daughter now and the lessons I hope to teach her will shape her to develop compassion and understanding. If I do my job as her mother correctly, one day the animals that she helps will more than make up for the ones that we cannot help now. Or maybe she will choose to help children, or senior citizens, or even insects for all I care; the most important thing is that she grows up with kindness in her heart and an understanding of the value of her actions.And guess what? The perfect dog for us did come along. She sat for weeks in the shelter before I deemed her “unwanted” enough to take home, and it was clear from the get-go that she was meant to be with us. Rosie is a senior Boxer who isn’t perfect, but she’s perfect for us.
This past weekend, the Cumberland County SPCA was honored at St. Hubert’s Animal Welfare Center’s Canine Cotillion with a Star of Recognition award. The Canine Cotillion is a beautiful event sponsored by St. Hubert’s to raise funds to support the thousands of animals it helps each year. The event was held at The Westin Governor Morris, a beautiful location that even welcomed canines to the event! This was a really special part of the evening, as we were able to see three dogs that were near and dear to our hearts before they went to St. Hubert’s for continued care and adoption. Hugh is the cutest little old man you have ever seen; he’s still available for adoption and has stolen many hearts already. Roo is a sweet little pit bull who arrived at the Cumberland County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals shelter hairless and in dire need of medical attention. Elvis also arrived at our shelter in pathetic condition, missing all his hair and sick; he needed St. Hubert’s help. Seeing Hugh, Roo and Elvis, restored back to health and so happy, was a highlight of the evening for us.MORE SPCA NEWS: Hundreds of pets at shelter walkathonThe Canine Cotillion gave us a chance to dress up and enjoy an evening together. We would like to thank Petfinder for sponsoring our table and making this special night possible for us. In attendance were our executive director, Bev Greco; foster and rescue coordinators Jessica and Maria; cruelty investigators Charlene and Diana; veterinary technicians Roberta and Laura; and volunteer Karen. These are the staff members who have worked tirelessly to form a strong relationship with St. Hubert’s that has saved hundreds of lives. Most of our time together is working, so it was really nice to relax and enjoy the evening together. And as rare as it is for us to relax together, its’ even more uncommon for us to dress up! We traded our shelter shirts for outfits that sparkled and exchanged leashes for necklaces.The event was spectacular. The menu was vegetarian and vegan, and the food was plentiful and delicious. St. Hubert’s had prepared a beautiful video introducing “The Zephyr,” its new lifesaving transport vehicle, and highlighting the amazing work it has done. For every $1 that is donated, 93 cents goes directly to the animals. We are proud that in 2015 alone, 396 of those animals were from Cumberland County SPCA.Love Muffin (Photo: CCSPCA)The first time that The Zephyr arrived in our parking lot was an emotional day for us. Not only does this vehicle represent hundreds of lives to be saved, it was named in honor of a very special little dog that just happened to come from our shelter. The Cumberland County SPCA and St. Hubert’s have a relationship that goes back many, many years. However, for a period of time, transports had stopped. In 2011, we reconnected and St. Hubert’s offered to take in a senior beagle. At the last moment she was adopted, so I made a call and asked if they would take Zephyr instead. He was a concoction of beagle and perhaps bulldog and who knows what else. A little man with an unforgettable face that was easy to fall in love with, despite a slightly cantankerous personality. He desperately needed their help and they were happy to take him. Zephyr wound up making St. Hubert’s his home. I can’t imagine a home where he would have received more love – he was simply meant to be there. Zephyr was the catalyst that restarted our relationship – a relationship that has not only saved hundreds of lives, but provided us with their professional and compassionate support in our times of need.We’re excited to continue our work together. St. Hubert’s has initiated a new program, the Feline Pipeline, where healthy and adoptable cats are transported from overcrowded shelters in New Jersey to shelters in New England. We know that our explosive feline population will benefit greatly from this program and we look forward to seeing the Zephyr’s arrival throughout the summer. You can sponsor a rescue ride on the Zephyr by contacting St. Hubert’s at 973-377-7094.