LED BY PASSIONATE HOUSTONIANS, RPM PROVIDES A SECOND CHANCE FOR THOUSANDS OF HOUSTON'S HOMELESS DOGS AND CATS THROUGH TRANSPORT TO PERMANENT HOMES IN COMMUNITIES THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY THAT HAVE A NEED FOR ADOPTABLE PETS.
RPM's goal is to reduce the number of homeless dogs and cats on Houston's euthanasia list. We do this primarily through our partnership with BARC Animal Shelter & Adoptions (the City's pound) and the help of over 350 volunteers and foster parents who foster our animals for a two-week period while they are fully examined and treated by our partner veterinarians and until they are fully healthy to travel. Once ready, we load these precious souls onto our own retrofitted vans and transport them to awaiting agencies in other areas of the nation that place them in new, forever homes. In our first year of existence, RPM has, among other things ,(1) increased the number of transports to 3 per week; (2) transported over 3,800 dogs and cats to new homes; (3) helped BARC increase its live release rate from 45% to a high of 72%; and (4) of the 220 rescue groups permitted to pull animals from BARC, pulled on average 63% of all pets saved.
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Due to the mild climate in Texas, Houston has a year-round breeding season for dogs and cats, and it is possible for those pets to give birth to several litters per year. Moreover, Houston's spay-and-neuter initiatives, while growing, are still significantly behind those in northern cities. Combine all of that with Houston's backyard breeder mentality and the result is that there are an estimated 800,000 to 1.2 million homeless animals roaming the streets of Houston. Due to the sheer oversaturation of homeless dogs and cats in Houston, thousands of dogs and cats are needlessly euthanized each year in the Greater Houston area alone.
RPM’s transport program, while brand new to Houston, is not a new concept. Cindy Perini, one of RPM’s co-founders, was actively involved in a very successful transport program in New Mexico for over four years before returning to Houston. When Cindy first moved back to Houston and joined the Houston’s BARC Aid email list, she was struck by all of the puppies scheduled for euthanasia. She thought, like most of us and the general public, that rescue groups were lining up to rescue all of these darling puppies. The stark, very real truth is that they were all dying. Every. Single. Day. Indeed, 68% of the animals that enter BARC are puppies and kittens.
After working with various rescue groups for many years, the founders of RPM realized that the best way to save these animals was to build solid relationships with reputable rescue groups in Houston and in areas of the United States where live-release rates exceed 90% and there is no pet overpopulation, and then transport the animals to these areas using our own vans and drivers.
As Houston works toward reducing the number of litters through spaying and neutering cats and dogs, RPM’s goal is to save as many of those pets that are alive and homeless today as possible through transport.