POSTED: Monday, August 30, 2010 - 7:09am
UPDATED: Wednesday, September 22, 2010 - 4:14pm
TYLER - A capital building fund has been launched to support the efforts of the recently established Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals or SPCA of East Texas.
Tyler attorney Deborah Tittle-Dobbs formed the non-profit SPCA of East Texas this year, to respond to and investigate animal cruelty and neglect as well as house rescued animals for adoption. “A capital building campaign has been launched to construct a modern, first-class, family friendly, Animal Services Center,” said Tittle-Dobbs. “The SPCA hopes to serve local animal control agencies by housing rescued dogs and cats and placing them up for adoption.”
Currently, neither the city of Tyler nor Smith County has a local facility to house stray or neglected dogs for any length of time. City of Tyler residents who lose an animal must drive 30 miles to search for and hopefully reclaim their lost pet. All lost dogs and strays from the city are transported by animal control to a heavily overcrowded shelter in neighboring Cherokee County. Euthanized animals must then be transported back to Tyler for disposal by animal control. On average 60-100 dogs from our community are euthanized each week because of the lack of a community shelter.
The SPCA of East Texas hopes to remedy this situation and is seeking private donations to build a shelter in the Tyler area. “With current community budget constraints, it will take private donors to build this shelter. Whether you can give a few dollars or more, any contribution to help us construct a facility to house unwanted dogs and cats, until they find a new home, is greatly appreciated. Please mail your donation to the SPCA, P.O. Box 2026, Tyler, TX, 75710. We will promptly send you a letter acknowledging your gift,” said Tittle-Dobbs. “If you want to give in memory of a pet or in honor of one, plans include a memorial courtyard at the new shelter recognizing those donors and their animals. We hope to raise enough money to purchase our building site and begin construction in 2011.”
Other programs will include humane education in schools, spay/neuter awareness and pet overpopulation, “Critter Camp” a children’s day camp and a community event center for animal organizations and public events.
Additionally, the first SPCA cruelty investigator has been hired with Smith County District Attorney drug seizure funds. Former Tyler police officer, Roy Linn will investigate calls received through the SPCA hotline at 903-596-SPCA.
The SPCA will investigate complaints in cooperation with local law enforcement and facilitate seizures and prosecution when warranted. Last month, a woman driving on highway 155 was seen dumping her border collie in the middle of the road. Local cable company workers, who witnessed the incident, saw the dog try to chase its owner’s car and be struck by another oncoming car. The SPCA paid for veterinary care and rehabilitation expenses for “Rosie Roadrash” who is healing nicely and now available for adoption. With a partial license plate provided by the cable workers, Smith County Sheriff detectives are still searching for the driver of the car.
The SPCA has now formed its first board of directors. President is Deborah Tittle-Dobbs. She and her husband David, both former Smith County prosecutors in the district attorney’s office, currently operate their own law firm. Tyler veterinarian Dr. David Post will serve as vice-president and Danika Maher, is secretary. Other board members include Rebecca Berkley, Dr. Andrew Berkson, Smith County Sheriff’s Department Lieutenant Gary Middleton, Allyson Perkins Decanio and Tyler Assistant Police Chief Steve Sharron.
For more information contact the SPCA of East Texas at 903-596-SPCA or 596-7722 or visit our website at www.spcaeasttx.com