The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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One step away
June 8, 2024

Volunteers save animals from euthanization

Photo by Vanessa Peña

The Urgent Animals volunteer group has many puppies available for adoption that range in all ages

Prior to 2013, Hearne Animal Shelter and Robertson County Animal Control were forced to euthanize animals due to limited space. Over the past two years, Deborah Fatheree and her fellow volunteers have worked hard to solve this problem.

Urgent Animals of Hearne, Texas volunteer group works to remove animals housed in Hearne Animal Shelter and provide them with medical care and foster homes. 

Deborah Fatheree began working to rescue animals from the shelter in 2013 and said she has since organized a number of volunteers and foster homes. 

“July 1 will be 25 months without any animals being killed due to space, and almost 1,050 animals rescued,” Fatheree said. “We give them every shot — we have had some for over a year. It’s an act of love for the animals but also sad that it even has to take place.”

Fatheree said Urgent Animals is simply volunteers — not a non-profit. The animals are fully vetted, spayed and neutered from donations and personal funds. 

“We buy our own cards, we buy our own shirts, we use our own funds,” Fatheree said. “It is just a really ‘boots-on-the-ground’ effort.” 

Volunteer Jasmine Rodriguez, who has fostered since February, said watching her animals accept the care they receive is very rewarding. 

“The best experience is just to see the dogs pull through, feel comfortable, knowing that they are being taken care of and loved,” Rodriguez said.

Emily Walker, wildlife and fisheries junior, said her involvement in the group began in February after she offered to foster a pit bull mix named Radar. 

“I fostered Radar, and she was my first foster which was a lot of fun,” Walker said. “I come to the events every Saturday even when I’m not fostering.”

Walker said students can get involved by volunteering for local organizations.

“It’s so preventable, as long as you spay and neuter their animals and don’t buy dogs from poor breeders,” Walker said. “It’s difficult as far as fostering but students can get involved in many ways, not just with us but with Bryan Animal Center and Aggieland Humane Society.”

Fatheree said Urgent Animals is always looking for foster homes and volunteers.

“We need more fosters, we need adopters, we need more locations for events and we need vet fund help,” Fatheree said.

Urgent Animals hosts adoption events every Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at America’s Country Store in College Station.

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  • Volunteer Brooke Mountain practices her “shake” command with one of the puppies at the adoption Saturday morning

    Photo by Vanessa Peña
  • Georgia McDonagh cuddles with her foster puppy Ross as she waits for him to get adopted Saturday morning

    Photo by Vanessa Peña
  • Russel Rhoben ’12 takes Troy for a walk Saturday morning during the adoption 

    Photo by Vanessa Peña
  • Billy Lansford plays with her foster dog Shorty during Saturday’s adoption

    Photo by Vanessa Peña
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