October is Adopt-A-Shelter-Dog Month. This is a nationwide initiative to rescue dogs from shelters, and an opportunity for us to look at ways to better the lives of animals around the Coastal Bend. The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals designated this month to bring awareness of dogs who need a home, and to get people thinking about adopting who may not have otherwise been considering it.

Americans own approximately 70 million dogs in the United States. There are some surprising benefits to owning dogs. A committee at the American Heart Association reviewed many different studies on dog owners, and concluded that, compared to non-dog owners, people who own dogs can enjoy generally healthier lives. Dogs are also reported to lower heart disease risks and depression in their owners over the long-term.


Besides the many advantages to owning a pet, there are specific benefits to taking in shelter dogs. The Humane Society of the United States estimates that animal shelters care for 6-8 million dogs and cats every year in the United States. Unfortunately, of those dogs and cats, 3-4 million are euthanized. Even if the dogs remain at a no-kill shelter, an adoption will likely give it a better quality of life as shelters can easily get overcrowded. Rescuing a dog relieves the burden on these shelters and allows other dogs to receive the care, attention, and quality of life that they need.

There are many dog adoption shelters in the Coastal Bend area, and I’d like to highlight a few today. The Gulf Coast Humane Society was founded in 1945 and was then called the Gulf Coast Humane Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. The Society eventually built its own kennel to house stray or abandoned animals that were picked up by local police or citizens. The kennel is located at 3118 Cabaniss Parkway, Corpus Christi, Texas, and can be reached at (361) 225-0845. The Corpus Christi Animal Care Services offers adoption of dogs as well. Unmarked strays without collars or identification are brought in and are held for about three days. Pets thought to be owned remain at the animal care center for five days. Peewee’s is another great shelter in our area. It is a nonprofit, no-kill shelter that is located at 1301 Saratoga, Corpus Christi, Texas. The shelter is committed to rescuing, rehabilitating and re-homing small animals. They can be reached at (361) 888-4141.

The Port Aransas Animal Shelter is situated at 403 W. Cotter Avenue. It was built in 1987 after a series of fishing tournaments to raise money for such a shelter in the town. The Animal Friends of Port Aransas is a nonprofit organization that helps the area by volunteering for the shelter and providing care, treatment, and re-homing services for the animals.

These are not the only shelters in the area, but a selection of some of the potential choices when adopting a pet. Some additional shelters include: For the Love of Strays, Mission: Pawsible and Coastal Bend Small Breed Rescue. Adopt-A-Shelter-Dog Month offers an opportunity to make a difference in the lives of these animals as well as the community.

If you have questions regarding any of the information mentioned in this week’s article, please do not hesitate to call my Capitol or District Office. Please always feel free to contact my office if you have any questions or issues regarding a Texas state agency, or if you would like to contact my office regarding constituent services. As always, my offices are available at any time to assist with questions, concerns or comments (Capitol Office, 512-463-0672; District Office, 361-949-4603).

– State Representative Todd Hunter, District 32

Rep. Hunter represents Nueces (Part) County. He can be contacted at todd.hunter@house.texas.gov or at 512-463-0672.