TOLLAND, CT (WFSB) – The owner of a K9 training facility has been furloughed after 31 dogs had to be rescued there.
Channel 3 has received an exclusive rescue dog update.
Some of the dogs that survived the Black Rock Canine Training Center in Naugatuck are on their way to new homes in different police departments. Another group, dubbed “The Lucky 13” is receiving additional care at an organization in Tolland.
The owner of the Black Rock facility, New Canaan Officer David Rivera, has been charged with animal cruelty after police say dogs were shot on the property.
According to all police accounts of conditions at Black Rock, all 31 dogs were rescued from hell.
Some wondered how anyone could walk past the dogs knowing they hadn’t been properly cared for.
Thirteen of the surviving dogs from the Naugatuck cruelty case have found a little slice of heaven at the Tolland Tails Kennel.
They spent the last few days in the care of co-founder Alyssa Larson, who has experience handling German Shepherd and Malinois dogs.
“All very active, high energy working dogs that need a job,” Larson said.
The state Department of Agriculture turned the animals over to Tolland Tails and the Hometown Foundation, an organization that funds the training and care of rescued K9s and working dogs.
Together, they said their goal was to turn these dogs, once on the verge of death, into the life-saving animals they were meant to be in police departments, the TSA and in homes supporting veterans.
“These dogs need donors and support for grooming medical bills and just basic necessities,” said Samantha Silverman, Hometown Foundation.
The dogs had more space to spread out and expend some of their energy, but the biggest hurdle was making sure they gained weight in a healthy way.
“You can’t just give massive amounts of food all at once,” Larson said. “You have to do small amounts of it just to get their body used to eating again.”
A Larson dog showed Channel 3 should weigh around 55-60 pounds.
“He was weighed in the ER last night at 39.1 pounds,” she said. “Often people think the worst even when you’re trying to help. [You should have seen] the looks I got from people walking a skinny dog around the vet clinic.
But just like first impressions, superstition carries much less weight when people peel back the layers and see the forces at work to change things.
The organizations said dogs need to know someone cares about them, forces strong enough to turn a worrying number into something big.
This is why the dogs became known as The Lucky 13.
Anyone wishing to donate to the Hometown Foundation fund to support dog recovery can use a text donation number and website with more information.
Text “k9support” to “76278”.
The Hometown Foundation website is https://hometownfoundation.org/.
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