Former Shelter Dog Abandoned, Now Saves Lives!

A former shelter dog who at one time was expected to be put down because he was believed to be “too vigorous” to be adopted is now helping to save lives in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.

Rocket, who is a black and white border collie ended up traveling to Texas with his handler Mike Stormetta of the Windsor Fire Protection District in California.


Over the last few days, the dog has been helping his colleagues with ‘search and rescue missions in the hardest hit areas’

Just five years ago the poor pooch was on Sacramento shelters euthanasia list because it was felt nobody would want to adopt him. But luckily a volunteer there noticed his promising characteristics, Andrea Berquist, whose husband is a dog handler, thought Rocket’s boundless energy could be put to good use and decided to adopt him.

After an initial evaluation in 2012, the dog was not found to be a good fit, but one year later after some intensive training, he was finally accepted as a search dog.

The pooch was partnered with Stornetta in August 2014 and then was developed as a team to deal with the aftermath of an aircraft crash in 2016. But in the days, since Hurricane Harvey hit Texas, Rocket has been deployed to Houston for the last few days assisting search and rescue teams with their recovery efforts.


“I’m overwhelmed to think of all of the people and time and effort that has gone into a stray dog that no one wanted, Andrea said in a posting on Facebook. “This is what it’s all about!”.

Many dogs were once owned and loved by someone, and for whatever reason given up and abandoned. They were surrendered due to a death, illness, a new baby or a change in the life of their owner, not because there was anything intrinsically wrong with them. When they’ve been through the trauma of abandonment, they will often form powerful bonds with their new owners. Even as adults, they often make very loving companions.

So if you have ever adopted, or believe in adopting animals, please share this.




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