Washington County SPCA: 1,363 dogs saved

The cuddle factor was high Thursday morning in the chill air outside the Washington County SPCA. Workers and volunteers held puppies close as they loaded them and their more adult counterparts onto a PetSmart Charities Rescue Waggin' Vehicle.

Aptly named, the vehicle loaded with 34 puppies and dogs was soon under way to the Humane Society of Boulder in Boulder, Colo., where dogs generally find a new home within a week of arriving.

Thursday's load brings the number of animals transported since the first load of 19 dogs in September 2009 to 1,363, according to Washington County SPCA Shelter Manager Paula Blower.

"We will be three years with the Rescue Waggin' in September and will reach 1,500 sent before September," she told 2NEWS, saying the 1,500 mark will likely be passed in August.

"As it gets closer, we get excited. That's a lot of animals saved."

According to PetSmart Charities officials, Washington County SPCA reached the 1,000 animals transported milestone a year before any of the other 60 partner shelters in the national transport program.

PetSmart Charities Rescue Waggin' vehicle that stopped Thursday in Bartlesville visits the shelter every month to give adoptable dogs and puppies an air-conditioned ride to Boulder, Colo.

When they arrive at the Humane Society of Boulder, the dogs get 12-24 hours of 'down time' before receiving a medical check-up, a spay/neuter surgery and then placement on the adoption floor. They tend to only stay there a few days due to a high demand there for these dogs.

Washington County SPCA is part of the Great Plains Rescue Waggin' Program and one of only 60 animal shelters across the nation participating in this national transport program.

For more information about the Rescue Waggin' program and other PetSmart Charities programs, click here or call 1-800-423-PETS.

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