Shepherd Siblings Alternative Rescue Mission TodayFebruary 11, 2016

A MUCH different kind of Behind The Scenes..


Some of what you will see in this blog post is highly controversial in the rescue community. Some of what you’ll see will be difficult to unsee. But I want you to know that it was ALL done in the best interests of the dogs.


After I posted the photos of the shepherds on Sunday, there wasn’t a group that could commit that quickly to doing the rescue and sponsorship. I kept thinking about them out there on the streets. I know there are so many like them..but I met these dogs..and I wanted to DO SOMETHING.


So I enlisted the help of some rescue friends (Liz, Mary, and her family). We planned it out as best we could. But you know what they say..the best laid plans..


We had successes.



We had help from the community.


We had failures. The dark brown guy appeared today and we were unable to secure him. But not for a lack of trying..


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We did outreach. Shared information about distemper, spay, neuter, etc.

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We gave a kid a chance to show beautiful compassion to an animal who has likely never seen or felt it before.

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The 2nd female shepherd was not in the area today unfortunately. We decided to bring the 2 shepherd dogs to BARC, Houston’s animal control facility.


When I first started working with BARC in 2009, the shelter’s kill rate was over 90%. That meant that over 90% of the animals who entered the shelter never left. They were euthanized due to medical issues, old age, but more to a lack of space.


It’s been many years of hard work on the City’s part and dedicated rescue groups to now bring that (approximately) 90% to a save rate. That means most of the animals entering the shelter are leaving into the arms of their new adoptive families or rescue groups where they will later be adopted. (One of the dogs kept chewing the leashes quickly so we needed to do a soft muzzle at the shelter door to keep him safe.)


So, yes..for the average person bringing a stray dog to a shelter, there is a risk. But I have faith that one of our rescue partners will be stepping in during the 3-day hold period to “tag” the dogs for rescue then make plans to transport them outside of Houston. I will follow up to tell the rest of the story when that happens.


It’s sad looking and the dogs are scared and concerned for each other and confused..and believe me it’s not a happy thing to stand in line at the shelter to give them a dog. I hated it. But, it’s temporary. And all the people involved in today’s rescue mission believe that a dog is safer in a shelter than on the streets. That’s where they can go to get help. That is the beginning for them. If Addy wasn’t brought to the shelter, he would have died a horrible death on the streets.


To Be Continued..

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Abandoned Dog Disguised As A Little Lamb Emerges To School Us AllJanuary 26, 2016

Abandoned Dog Disguised As A Little Lamb Emerges To School Us AllIMG_4506-Edit

The Messengers.

I believe that dogs come into our lives to teach us what it is we need to know. For most, it happens with our own pets. But for some, like Dukey and Addy, the lessons are more widespread. As a rescuer and photographer of pets, I’ve met many dogs over the years. Too many to count, but I’ve been lucky enough to experience extra special soulful connections with a few dogs. They usually have a specific message they want to share. It’s hard to explain, they “speak” to me in a sense..and it happens with dogs I’ve rescued or fostered in particular. I’ve been sharing many of these messages on my social media for years. Now I want to share them with you.


The Story.

I saw this post the other day on one of my favorite rescue group pages:

We have named this sweet girl Jewels! I went and visited with her this morning and we took her for a little walk in the…

Posted by Boarding for Rescues & Animal Welfare on Saturday, January 23, 2016


Then I heard a little voice loud and clear, “Notice me! I look like a sweet lamb for cryin’ out loud! We’re gonna need some friggin’ help over here..”

This little lamb was discovered in the doggie fetal position when a woman went to check on her family’s house in Wharton, TX, a small town about 60 miles south of Houston. The home had been sitting vacant for about a year. And now there was an emaciated, sickly lamb-looking dog in the corner of the garage and this poor woman was in utter disbelief.

So, she scooped up the dog and off they went to the country vet. It was certainly the right thing to do, but she was not prepared to take on the task of caring for a dog in this condition. Coincidentally, Melissa Parr, the founder of a local rescue group, happened to be at the vet’s office when they arrived. She agreed  to accept responsibility for all the needed care of this dog moving forward. (BTW, I don’t believe in coincidences).


The Commitment.

“My first thought was, ‘Oh Dear God.’ Then I took a breath, and said the same prayer I always do when I rescue a dog. Whether it comes from a shelter, the side of the road, wherever, and no matter what shape it’s in:

Dear Lord, bless this sweet soul you placed in my path to care for, love, and heal, as I know I am here on earth for them.” –Melissa


She named her Jewels.

“Because she is a rare gem. I thought of naming her Ruby, Diamond, or Sapphire. But she’s all the rare and beautiful gems under the sun & moon! Jewels it was.”


The Status.

Jewels is a husky and no more than 2 years old. She has a bad case of demodex mange and a secondary skin infection, which are both treatable. I have seen many cases like this in Houston. But thankfully, with proper treatment, the dogs grow all their hair back and lead healthy lives.

She was so malnourished and weak, the vet technician had to hold her up during the exam, but ultimately they were unable to draw her blood. She was put on a very healthy diet of small meals, vitamins, and rest. The plan was to follow up with more lab work in a couple of days. Melissa and the vet staff prayed she would make it through the night.

The next day, Melissa was going to check on Jewels at the vet and she invited me to come along. We were overjoyed to see Jewels with a bounce in her step and prancing like the lamb-princess that she knows she is. Her eyes showed deep gratitude for all the care she had received in this short period of time. She has the sweetest loving spirit and even snuck me a tiny kiss.


“This is one of the worst cases we have ever seen. It’s truly amazing. No matter what they endure, dogs are still capable of loving. Just pure soul and heart.” — Sandy Cross of Alamont Veterinary Clinic


The Message.

“How I got to this point in my life is not nearly as important as what happens now. Please don’t ask why I was in that garage or wonder how I got there. Please don’t judge my past, the way I look now, or whoever neglected my proper care. They have already been forgiven in my heart. And your pity for me serves no good at all and is a waste of precious energy.

There are many more dogs out there like me. They need your love and efforts. Please spend your energy wisely. Be of service to them in some way. Find a rescue group to learn more. There is plenty of work to do.” –Jewels


The Need.

Jewels will have to be under the vet’s care 24-7 for several weeks before she is strong enough to go to Melissa’s rescue, Boarding For Rescues And Animal Welfare in El Campo, TX which is a 501c3 non-profit organization.

“I don’t do this alone. Our staff, Cheyenne and Ms. Ruth, play a huge part in the healing- body and soul- for these dogs.” God Bless Them For Realz.


If you wish to make a donation towards Jewels’ care, you may call the vet directly at 979.532.5569 OR do so in her name on Boarding For Rescues & Animal Welfare’s website.

Follow Jewels’ Journey on the pages below:

Robyn Arouty on facebook and blog. 

Boarding For Rescues & Animal Welfare on facebook.

All images © Robyn Arouty.


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Family Gives Shelter Dog With Inoperable Cranial Tumor the Gift of a LifetimeJanuary 15, 2016

Tuesday (12/29/15) in Houston, TX.


How It Works

A Shelter. This 3-year-old dog came into Montgomery County Animal Shelter as a stray today.

A Rescue. Lone Star Boxer Rescue was contacted by the shelter and they agreed to take him into their program immediately.

A Volunteer. He was transported to their vet for further tests. There is a tumor on the inside of his cranial cavity under the bone.

A Foster. It is inoperable and his life expectancy is 2 days. He is now in hospice care.

A Decision-maker. I asked Leisha Stinchcombe, the director of the rescue group, “Why did they pull this dog from the shelter today?” Her response was, “Just to make sure he knows love for a few days.”

A Donation. Groups like this can only exist and do this badass work with ourfinancial help. This dog is 1 of 3 terminally ill boxers that Lone Star took into their program today.

Leisha commented:

Adalard is his name. The day may not be easy but we are fierce with determination. This entire network of helpers in the world, who are far greater than me. I am deeply saddened yet humbled by the beauty I see in the unity of many teams. We alone, do not create this, and we cannot always repair. But we LOVE just as fiercely as we fight. Know that. For certain. Adalard. Noble strength.


Wednesday (12/30/15)


What It Looks Like

A Family. Lori Anderson, her husband James, and their daughters Bella and Ellie. It should be noted that Leisha initially declined Lori’s offer for hospice foster care based on the fact she has small children and this was going to get ugly quickly. Lori insisted that Addy come to their home.

Lori said:

I thought a lot about Bella and Ellie and how it will effect them. I think it’s extremely important that the girls learn about giving, loving and helping others in need, especially when they can’t care for themselves.


“The girls (5 and 7 years old) were with me when I picked him up from the vet. I told them about how special Addy is and how we are going to take care of him because he’s very sick.”

 “I wasn’t sure what to expect from this poor boy and was preparing myself for a very lethargic and slow moving pup. Well, to my utter surprise, in walks Adalard, nub wagging, bounce in his step, and ready to receive and give love.”

“I spent some time talking to Dr. Gordon about Addy’s condition, medications and how to help him the most. ‘Spoil him rotten’ was his advice.”

“On our way to the store to load up on toys and treats, Ellie turns around to look at Addy who’s in the back and says to me: “Mom, he’s smiling, look he’s smiling at me!”

“Adalard aka “Addy” has already made himself at home.”

“He is amazing, sweet, gentle, kind, well socialized with fur friends and humans. LOVES his toys.”

Ellie, 5, is featured here playing with Addy. She has Asperger’s Syndrome (higher end of Autism spectrum) and a particularly special connection with animals.

“It is evident that at some point he was part of a human family. We are so fortunate to be able to be part of his life. He may not have long, but his life will be full for as long as he does have.”

 “We want his life to have meaning.”

“Yes, there will be sadness and tears, but it’s important they learn that this is okay.”

Let’s see how far LOVE takes him. You can follow his journey on the pages below:

Lone Star Boxer Rescue on facebook.

Robyn Arouty on Facebook.

All images © Robyn Arouty.

Blog originally appeared on The Huffington Post.


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Walter’s Second ChanceNovember 13, 2015

robyn arouty_MG_3905-EditWatch out, we’ve got a live one here! His name is Walter and a village came together for this guy to be presented to you.. Available for ADOPTION now!_MG_3880-Edit

His story is LONG..and you don’t have the TIME.. But suffice to say, sometimes a second chance in life is all you need..robyn arouty_MG_3955-Edit

He was adopted as a puppy by ADORE Houston Rescue to a family that didn’t have the capacity to appreciate the ENERGY of this Weimaraner/Pit Bull Terrier Mix guy.robyn arouty_MG_3893-Edit

Then he won the lottery and received a sponsored board and train regimen with Matt, THE TEXAS DOGFATHER, where I caught up with him to take these the foundation of a new building on their property..A NEW FOUNDATION for Walter to build from..robyn arouty_MG_3936-Edit

He LOVES other dogs and people. Check out the video below! (Children over 12 preferred due to his exuberance being a risk in knocking small kids over.)

He is a very SWEET and LOYAL hearted boy._MG_3899-Edit

The perfect home for Walter would be one of LOVING STRUCTURE. Walter is at his best when there are clear and consistent rules to go by._MG_3918

Any prospective adopters or fosters are encouraged to visit Walter at the ranch where they can see him one-on-one and socially in a group of other dogs. Adopters/fosters will receive hands-on instruction on how to parent Walter to keep him behaving at his best in any situation. They will deliver Walter to the adopter’s home and provide 2 hours of instruction on how to help Walter transition to that specific home and environment.

For more information or to fill out an adoption application, please visit Walter’s page here:

More Walter..


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Homeless Dog Impersonates Jimmy Fallon Characters to Find His Forever HomeOctober 22, 2015

Homeless Dog Impersonates Jimmy Fallon Characters to Find His Forever Home

Are you a big fan of #hashtags? What about thank-you notes? If you love to laugh & be entertained, THISTLE might just be your new best friend!








THISTLE is 8 months old and is being fostered in Houston, TX. Travel can be arranged for the right family. He weighs approximately 45 pounds right now and will likely grow to about 60 pounds.  He is a Lab/Shepherd mix, neutered, and up to date on all vetting and vaccinations.

We love you @jimmyfallon !

Click here to learn more about THISTLE or to fill out an adoption application via The Love, Molly Fund organization.


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