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The Associated Press

Puerto Rican Puppies Find Homes In Connecticut

August 4, 2002
Copyright © 2002 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

ISABELA, Puerto Rico (AP) - They are abandoned because they are pregnant, because they are sick, because they have fleas.

They crowd the beaches and back roads of this semiautonomous U.S. commonwealth.

And lately, these Puerto Rican puppies have been finding homes in Connecticut.

San Juan-based Save-a-Sato has been sending strays 1,650 miles to the Danbury Animal Welfare Society's Bethel kennel since March.

Sato means "street mutt" in Spanish.

The puppies receive a tremendous reception at the Danbury shelter. At a recent open house, people lined up to adopt the gentle dogs. One woman and her daughter fell in love with a pup, only to find someone else had already filled out an adoption form for it.

"We have been looking all over for a dog like this," the woman told the Greenwich Time as her daughter cuddled the small, fluffy puppy.

Kathleen Reynolds, vice president and director of the Danbury Animal Welfare Society, promoted the satos on the shelter's Web site.

"Once we became aware of the overwhelming problem in Puerto Rico and the work that the Save-a-Sato Foundation is doing, there was no way we could turn our back on the situation," Reynolds said. "Whether the creatures are from Puerto Rico or here in Connecticut, it makes no sense that they should suffer or be destroyed when we have so many families here looking to adopt these types of dogs."

DAWS' first priority is still animals rescued in Connecticut, Reynolds said. The shelter only takes satos when it has available cage space, and many volunteers foster the Puerto Rican puppies so they do not need to stay at the shelter.

Another Connecticut animal shelter, Greenwich-based Adopt-A-Dog, received seven puppies from the Puerto Rican Animal Welfare Society between July 16-23.

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