DAWG hosts transport, saves more than 100 dogs from euthanization

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DENISON, Texas (KXII) -- Thursday, the Denison Animal Welfare Group, also known as DAWG, helped give more than 100 dogs a second chance at life.

They did it by hosting a dog transport, where dogs come from high-kill shelters and pounds all over Texas to join some from Denison to be moved to shelters up north that have a more room.

"Down here, of course, we have a big problem with strays, people don't get their dogs spayed or neutered, people dump their dogs, when they get too big or they decide they want to go on vacation," said James Harbor, a retired police officer turned founder and president of Shiloh's Road to Hope, a non-profit dog transportation group based out of Plano.

"We rely a lot on outside donors and just people in the dog world that support what we're doing to donate to keep us rolling," said Harbor.

For him, the labor of love all began back in 2015 when he fostered his now adopted dog Shiloh, who was 30 minutes away from being put down when he picked her up.

Once Harbor heard how much for-hire transport groups were charging rescue organizations, he decided to be a driver himself.

"I thought if I could start this, we could do it on donations only, we wouldn't have to charge the rescues."

Since he started Shiloh's Road to Hope last year, he's helped give more than 500 dogs a second chance.

"The places up north, the humane societies that I take dogs to in Wisconsin and Minnesota, are empty when I get there," said Harbor. "They may have 20 kennels and they may not have any dogs."

Cindy Huth with DAWG said most of the dogs were pulled from pounds and shelters all over Texas where they were on the euthanasia lists due to space constraints.

"There is an over abundance of unwanted dogs and puppies and so shelters run out of space," said Huth. "We are experiencing the same thing here in Denison."

Huth said it's a different story, though, up north and that most states there have much stricter spay and neuter laws, plus there's more adopters than they have available animals.

"There's a lot of them that people fall in love with online and they go ahead and pre-adopt it through that humane society and then when we get there, they're - a lot of times - they're waiting for them," said Harbor.

After getting walked and fed, the dogs were loaded up for the trip.

"It'll be about 18 to 20 hours by the time I'm done," said Harbor. "It takes this kind of stuff to make this happen, it takes groups like this and people like this."

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