Featuring: Our Mission in Action

On February 6, 2019, with the help of Hillsborough County Pet Resource Center 10 Havanese mixes were rescued from a hoarding cruelty case in Temple Terrace and placed in our care. The dogs arrived with matted and tangled fur with caked on feces and smelled strongly of urine. In need of help to get these pups cleaned up we reached out to our community on Facebook for grooming volunteers. We received an amazing response and are incredibly thankful for our community! View their transformations below.

*We will announce on our social media platforms when they are available for adoption. 

Grooming Volunteers: Emilie Desrochers from Petsville Citrus Park, Rebecca Lamunyan from Bow Wow Beautician, Melanie Denick from Diego’s Dog Grooming,  Ashley Bennett and Maggie Brenner

Photography & Documentation: Adam Goldberg from AGoldPhoto Pet Photography

 Video of Transformation:

Before & After Photos:











We received a call that a frail, thin dog was spotted in a field on Hanna Avenue. Our Community Outreach Manager, Darlene Esposito, immediately responded to the situation. Darlene along with two other staff members (Crystal Lufriu, Lead Kennel Attendant & Dana Johnson, Foster Care Coordinator) approached the scene and at first were unable to see or hear the reported dog. They walked back deep into the field and noticed a shed. Upon careful observance, the team began to hear small cries coming from shed. The shed was locked, but Darlene noticed a small hole underneath the shed. She immediately began to make her way under the shed following the whimpering noises. After a few minutes of searching, she found the source of the cries – 8 puppies!

Darlene carefully pulled all 8 puppies from underneath the shed with the help of Crystal and Dana. The puppies were immediately brought to our medical suite and assessed. All puppies appear to be in good condition and are approximately 14 days old, but this is not the end of this rescue tale…

We needed to rescue their mother. Darlene returned to the field that night and after making a careful assessment of the situation she decided to set a trap and was able to successfully retrieve her in the morning. The mother to these pups was malnourished and in need of care. Our team reunited the mother with her puppies and began giving her the medical attention she needed.

Mom has been named Winter and her puppies are named – Wanda, Wilbur, Whoopi, Waldo, Wren, Willa, Wade, and Winnie. All dogs are doing well! We are currently working back with our foster database coordinating a home for all 9 dogs so that mom and babies can stay together.

Watch footage of the incredible rescue tale: