A tip to the Turlock Police Department’s Animal Services unit led to the discovery of 49 dogs living outdoors at a Turlock residence on Tuesday.
The Turlock resident told animal services the dogs were believed to be strays that were found around town and brought back to the residence. Many of the dogs were not spayed or neutered and the pack began to grow as puppies were born.
The Turlock Municipal Code allows for three dogs at a home. The resident agreed to surrender the 49 dogs and they were collected by animal services on Wednesday.
All the dogs were examined and scanned for microchips. Animal services said none were microchipped and that none of the dogs would be euthanized.
“As a reminder, please spay or neuter your pets to help control the pet population,” Animal Services said in a news release. “In addition, please microchip your pets just in case they get lost or run away, so that they can be safely returned home. Animal Services will microchip your pet by appointment.”
The Turlock animal shelter has 32 kennels and with the addition of 49 dogs, now has 85 dogs at the facility, the most the unit has ever had at one time, said Turlock Police spokesman Sgt. Michael Parmley.
“The challenge right now for the limited staff out here is the time it takes to care for all the animals,” Parmley said.
While the dogs had been living outdoors, the kennels they are currently in allow for dogs to be outdoors or indoors and all the dogs appear to be fine in either environment.
“They’re all really friendly and like getting pets,” said Parmley.
All the dogs will be going up for adoption, but first animal services wants to give any potential owners a chance to reclaim their dog. On Tuesday, animal services will start compiling a list of up to 50 people interested in adopting the dogs. On May 25, a drawing of the names on the list will take place; first drawn gets first pick. The drawing will be featured live on the Turlock Police Animal Services Facebook page. Any dogs not adopted will be released to animal rescues.
The humane society offers some advice for people bringing home a new dog, especially one from a rescue situation. The organization suggests pet adopters plan on staying home for a few days after bringing the dog home so there’s an opportunity to get to know each other. During this time it’s also a good idea to start a routine for feedings, walks and going to bed.
The humane society suggests people assume the dog is not house-trained and start from that point. Also consider training classes and using a crate, which dogs look at as a personal den, not a jail.
Most of all, the humane society said to be patient because it’s a new situation for all involved.
Low cost spay and neuter program information can be found on the Animal Shelter’s website, https://ci.turlock.ca.us/animalservices/spayneuterinformation/.
Animal Services will accept donations of food and other care items to help care for the animals. Those who wish to make a donation or who would like to get on the adoption list on Tuesday can call (209) 656-3140 between the hours of 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Saturday.