Redland Rockpit

Redland Rockpit


So this area we call it “Ghost Dog One.” We
know of a couple of dogs here, and it’s called ghost dog because you never see
them. There have been very few times that we see them people take pictures of them. So,
one of the dogs was here close to two and a half years,
his name was Duke, and when they started doing construction here is when the dogs
had to start moving around and he ended up getting hit by a truck. He hid under a
container over here for a while maybe about a week or so, and one of our
volunteers was able to go in there and after hours she spent hours trying to
get him out. It’s hard to see because it’s all bushes now,
but actually that blue container there is where he hid. We used to go in there
and feed that was our feeding spot because we knew that’s where the dogs
would come out of the shipping containers, but now it’s all bushes so we
feed out here, but Duke was under there for a while. When I first started feeding
about a year ago there was a dead dog in this first container here. It
was heartbreaking to know that there’s dogs out here and they don’t always
survive. My name is Chandra Waters, I have adopted Benedict and Duke. Both are
rescues out of Redland, Florida, and both of them are tripods. I had lost my dog to
osteosarcoma bone cancer in his leg, and I knew I wanted a another special-needs
dog, and then when I saw Benedict come up on Poodles and Pooch, he just tugged at
my heartstrings. I adopted him at that point I had no idea that he was
even from the Redlands, and on my Facebook feed something just popped up
and it was a picture of him when he was initially injured. I’m like that looks
like Benedict is that that can’t be my dog, and then I started researching more
and found out that he was from the Redlands and connected with the Redlands
that way. I started following Duke’s story, and reached out about adopting him as
well. He was what they call a ghost dog. He was a pack of about four to five dogs
I believe initially that were just free roaming on their own, deathly afraid of
humans, didn’t want any kind of human contact, never even showed their faces,
but he was out on the streets with that pack for about two years. My name is Jessie Pena, and I’m with
Redland Rock Pit Abandoned Dogs Project. Our mission is to feed dogs. There are a
lot of dogs that are unwanted, that are discarded, that are dumped daily. Also, we
started picking up dogs because there are a lot of dogs that they use for bait,
you know there are a lot of dog fighters out there, so that we can or our second
mission. I have actually witnessed people dumping dogs. They just drive to an
isolated area open the car door and just kick them out, and what
happens with the dogs is that they will start chasing that car. My name is Raizza, my last name is Perez, and I have a dog rescue. It’s called ResQMe. It was my dream
for many many year. People are dumping dogs all over the place. We are in the
dumping area, and unfortunately we don’t get a lot of adoptions. It’s a
community problem because people they get a puppy today, and then tomorrow when
the puppies are already old they don’t want them anymore. So they do what it is
in exchange- they bring that one to the pound or they dump it on the street, and
then they go on get they get themselves another puppy. *Speaking in Spanish* Raizza introduces herself to the nursery owner, Santos Delgado. Raizza: Cuantos perros tienes aqui? Santos: Total es doce. Raizza: He has twelve dogs in here Raizza: ¿Y por qué tienes tantos perros aquí porque la gente los abandona? Santos: Exactamente. Raizza: Yeah, because people dump them all the time, so he picks him up and brings them in here. Raizza: ¿Por qué crees que los perros son tratados así aquí? Raizza: A lot of people just, they can’t have them anymore. Santos: “Podrían llamar a servicios para animales.” Raizza: They could call Dade County, and they
can come and pick them up. Santos: Pero los pusieron en el caro, abrieron la puerta y se fueron. Raizza: But they just open up the door, and they just
dump them in there and they just drive away. Santos: Lo he visto. Raizza: He has seen it with his own eyes. Santos: Pobre animal se pierde Raizza: And the dog is lost, they don’t know what to do. Raizza: Yeah people just don’t care, they just drive and they just run them over. Raizza: And he feels really bad about it. He
doesn’t want them to get killed like that, so he brings them into this nursery,
and he takes care of them. Everybody’s got their shots in here. Every year he takes them
to get shots. He pays for everything. Everybody is nice and healthy here. And on top of that they take
care of nurseries at night. He said that he’s good enough to feed himself and feed the animals. So that’s what’s going on in here. Santos: Gracias por la entrevista. Raizza: He said thank you very much for the interview. There are a lot of abandoned animals. They
dump them in this area. They usually do it on the fields. That’s where you see them
actually dumping the animals outside, and I can’t see an animal hungry or thirsty,
so I give them food, I give them something to drink. The only problem that I have
around here is the Santeros. These tracks, all the garbage bags and everything here,
these people dump the carcasses of the animals that are being sacrificed. I
smell it. I’ve seen goats, dogs, birds, iguanas,
pigeons, cats, and dogs. My name is Olga Parrish, I own Gardenia South. She had a husky, years and years ago, and somebody took her and they got the
puppies out, and they left her to die. When I found her on the street I said oh my god she’s pregnant, and I went and got her to see maybe she just got hit and save the puppies, but
somebody had opened her up. The day before a woman came in here, and was
dressed in all white, Santeria, but it was just a coincidence that she shows up, and then the next day my dog is…. I wish I could do more. You have done so much for dogs. I
know it. Right here is the Redland Agricultural Area. I’m from up north, New Jersey, New York. I lived in farmland out there. I have never seen this kind of dog dumping, animal dumping in my life. Maybe they
just believe that, “Oh there’s people rescuing dogs, so they’ll be alright.” but
the dogs aren’t alright. We went right here to Homestead, to a little restaurant called La Pasdita, and I just happened to look up and seeing something moving
in front of me, and I noticed that it was this little puppy right here. The
place that’s next door to the Pasadita is a vet’s office. I had got a good look
at him, and I noticed that he wasn’t well. You know, his skin doesn’t look right to
me. I’m assuming that that’s the reason why somebody just dumped him there. My
husband was able to catch him, and we fed him, and gave him water. If you have a
dog/puppy that’s sick or unwell, the last thing that you should ever do is
dump them. They’re not able to fend for themselves. There’s so much help
out there these days for these kind of dogs. There’s just no need to do that,
you’re just literally giving the puppy a death sentence.
I wasn’t born here, but I was raised here in Homestead, and all my life I’ve seen it. My name is Rachel Shearing. I live here in the Redland. I moved down to Miami about three and a half years ago, and I had no idea what the dog
situation was down here, but I quickly found out. Just driving around here you
see dogs on the side of the road, you know these people they dump the dogs out
here and they think they’re going to survive just because they’re animals, but
they’re they can they’re not equipped for that. You know all you can do is just
keep food in your car and try to take pictures of them and put them on
Facebook, and try to network them to get them to a rescue. We are the Grahl’s. This is Glenn, I’m
Robin, and this is our son, Hayden. We moved to the Redland about three and a
half years ago. Somehow these three found us. Onyx turned up on our block between Christmas and New Year’s. We were out of town. She just was sitting at the gate. She was
microchipped, we had her checked out by the vet. The owner said “not my dog” and
she’s been here for two and a half years. When we realized she needed a friend we
brought her to meet somebody at Animal Services, and she met Nitro. We brought
him home that day. Maybe six months later my husband was on his motorcycle, and
somebody was coming in the other direction on the guise of walking their dog. I was watching a guy, he got out of his white car, and had the dog on a leash,
and I looked in my rearview mirror, and I watched him drop the leash, got back in
his car, and drove in the opposite direction. I turned around on my
motorcycle and came back, and Tahoe is extremely friendly and he came right up
to me. We think okay, maybe he’s chipped and we’re going to take him to the vet. So,
we did and found out that he wasn’t chipped, and we decided that he’s going to
live we’ve got to own him. Obviously they come from a home, they’ve had a family once, and they just are found in a bad situation. So when we
go feed they actually want to jump in your car and go with you. We also have
dogs that have been born here, and they don’t know anything about a human touch.
So what happens is when they see us they will go hide. People also have the
misconception that these are wild animals, that these are animals that
are going to attack you, these are animals that are not
domesticated and it’s completely wrong. I’m David Kerpel, we’re from Deerfield
Illinois. I’m Brandon Kerpel, I’m Samantha Kerpel, and I’m Erin Kerpel. I thought that when I went out there a lot of the dogs would be really scary, and they might attack me, or my family, but quite
the opposite a lot of them are very friendly, and they’re coming up and
they’re playing with us and that’s really nice and that’s something that I
certainly didn’t expect. So I think it really would be nice if other people
knew that, that these dogs out here they can be adopted, they can be fostered, and
they can be loved because they give love. So, for the holidays a few years ago we
gave each of our kids $50 of “do-good” money, and so we said they could either
donate it or they could take it and use it to do something bigger and better with. We decided to turn it into something more. We baked dog treats, we sold dog treats, we raised a lot of money. We saw horrific images of all the
terrible stuff that’s happening. And when we saw that, we were determined to do something about it. We couldn’t just let these dogs die. So we wanted to help them, and bake
treats, and sell them, and then donate all the profits. It’s so sad that we can’t do something major about it. We can’t take them home, and
help them. Dumping an animal it should be illegal, it is illegal, but people just get away with it, so they think that it’s something easy to do. This is one of our spots where we
stopped to feed actually up the road there is what they called “skinny
shepherd.” We actually feed right over there on the left, and we just happen to look over
and saw what this bag was, which was a bigger bag at one point that had zip
ties around. We got out and stopped and we looked. We could see
clearly that there was a dog’s leg sticking out, and a mouth, and at that
point it looked like it had been either dumped here, or somebody killed it and
zip tied it, and left it here, and we weren’t sure so we reported it and unfortunately
a month or two later it’s still here. It’s just kind of strange that they
would take the time to tie it on both ends. Here’s the front end. I don’t want to
get too deep, but you can actually see it’s teeth there. We found a dog here in Redland that was
almost dead. She was found in an isolated area. We were feeding at that time, and we
rushed her to the vet. I’m Dr. Scola. I’ve worked here for 12 years,
taken in many trauma cases for a long time. The Redlands for sure are one of
the biggest projects. When Spirit came in she was very close to passing away. She
had very low blood sugar, very low temperature, could not move, raise her
head, she honestly looked dead. She was chewed from one end to the other
by multiple different dogs on multiple different days. There was not a part of
her body that wasn’t bitten and torn. She had given birth at some point. She had
milk, no babies, but had definitely given birth, and we think that’s why she was attacked. My name is Cristina Maristany, I’m a vet here at Knowles Animal Clinic Snapper Creek for about ten years now. Spirit I remember came in, and was
probably one of our worst cases that we’ve seen of abuse and just how sick
she was. When she came in we kind of had her head lowered. She didn’t want to lift
her head. Some dogs will do that just because they’re scared or they’re timid,
but in her case I could tell she wanted to but physically she was unable to, and
in surgery when we took her to surgery we explored the neck wounds, and her neck muscles were pretty much severed. To be able to get her through such a tough
situation, and then see her happiness come through like wagging her tail, her
eyes lit up, you know I mean it’s just it’s heartwarming to see that. Sometimes
these dogs are so so sick that it does require a lot of finances and sometimes
there’s nobody able to provide for the treatment, and it’s not
that they’re not always able to be treated it’s just that the finances sometimes are a limiting factor for these guys, but when you have somebody that’s
committed from the rescues, and says look we’re all in for this dog we’re gonna do
whatever we can, it’s amazing the results that you can see after. If you can find people wonderful enough to give them a chance medicine now can fix near anything, so if you find people to do it the technology
is there and it can be done. They deserve it. They’ve already went through
everything. I actually live in the Redlands now, and and I have for 12 years.
It is a dumping ground is the problem, so not only do they breed on their own but
every day more and more dogs are dumped there. The Redlands are a big issue
because it does not really belong to a city. It’s really an unincorporated
area, and it spans a large area along the Everglades. When Animal Services is called, unless a dog has bitten someone, they will not
collect dogs from the Redlands. I actually have had trouble with my very
own where I live. I’ve lived all over the country in nine different states.
Miami is the only place I’ve been where it is not a given that every family
spays and neuters. A lot of them do not, and a lot of them
let their household pets have babies, and babies, so it’s a little different
culture here, and it would really help if everybody knew it’s not just for
overpopulation but also health and it’s just not something that is across the
board here. Trying to get the word out to make sure that they understand that adopting a dog is a life long commitment is probably the most important thing.
Definitely spaying and neutering helps to prevent these unwanted
pregnancies that are out there. You know, so many dogs that are out there that are
loose like down south and Homestead, they just keep reproducing, and it’s hard
to kind of catch up you know, but definitely adopting is the way to go, and
to try to have you know people understand that when you adopt one that
it’s a forever thing. When you come to this country you think that everything
is completely different than where you’re coming from,
and unfortunately in Dade County, it’s pretty much the same. This is the way I
see it when you’re driving, when you run a red light you get a ticket.
What happens when you kill a dog? It’s very simple. I mean you are abusing an animal that cannot defend himself. They know what the dumping areas are, and this is one of them, so I don’t see why they don’t fix it. I just don’t understand the reason why. I
mean if you get yourself a dog, and you throw it out, and you don’t want him
anymore, and somebody picks him up I mean you’ve got a problem. But it’s a society (problem)
because nothing happens to them. Spay and neuter should be mandatory. The amount of
backyard breeding going on, it shouldn’t be ok. The laws are there. They’re not enforcing them. All it takes is that if a
police officer sees it, all they have to do is stop and give them a ticket, run
them off, give them a ticket. It’s a $500 fine for it not having a kennel license,
and a $500 fine for not having breeders license. Last summer alone we took in three pregnant moms. We had over 40 puppies. We had a litter of puppies that was found in a dumpster. We’ve had litters that were just pulled out of construction sites. We’ve seen people go
to Miami-Dade, turn in a senior dog, and turn around and walk out with a puppy.
That shouldn’t be okay. It’s heartbreaking, and there are dogs
everywhere. Sophie’s (Circle Dog Rescue) saw the problem, and we decided to take a team down, and we spent one afternoon out in the Redland, and came home with 10 dogs
that turned into 19 dogs because one was pregnant. The best way for people to follow
through with spays and neuters is education has to start at the first
veterinary visit, even your friends, internet, there’s commercials on it, so
you know just getting more of the word out about how important it is. It’s getting better better than I’ve seen it maybe in the past five years. It’s getting better. One dog can produce up to eight ten puppies in one litter, and that’s one time. If you think about over a dog’s life time how many litters that
could produce that’s how many dogs are now in the world because of just that
one dog. Spaying and neutering will help that tremendously. It will cut down on
the need for shelters, it will cut down on neglect and abuse that’s going on out there. Spaying and neutering is the big fix in
all of this, and it’s an easy fix. There are so many resources out there for
people. People think you know I don’t have the money to have it done.
There are definitely resources out there for low-cost spay and neutering. I’m
touting on that, but that is really going to be the fix to the problem that
we have created with all of these unwanted animals in our in our country,
and in Florida. Miami-Dade county needs to acknowledge that there is rampant animal dumping out here. We have to somehow start implementing the law,
enforcing the law. There are a lot of really good laws, but nothing is actually enforced. Miami-Dade says there is no problem, there is no animal cruelty, there is no huge dog dumping problem here. This story should tell you the difference. We see all these rescue groups, and people asking for donations, and we look further into it, and then we ended up with one (dog), and we saw the problem. This is unfathomable to us. I’d like to see so many more people be available to foster
these dogs or even adopt the dogs. We’ve seen dogs that were going to be fostered, and some of the fosters back down, and I really want to see foster’s that are committed to it,
and that will like enjoy having the dog. We’ve fostered, rescued, been a part of
transporting over 70 dogs just in one year. So for us it has been amazing. 70 dogs
have new homes directly because of my small family. So when people say are you making a difference, I really think so, but I don’t do it just for that reason. I also do it because it’s taught my children so much about compassion, and helping others, and seeing past disabilities, and deformities, and
illness, and seeing that even the little tiny things like caring for
mangey puppies that come in with no hair, that they become beautiful again, and
they find wonderful homes. My kids I think are better people for it. I know that there are some schools down here that do special programs. The Redland Rock works with a school up in the Hammocks, and they have rescue dogs and
they ship them up to Connecticut, and try to get them out of Miami. They
also work with the kids with teaching them how to train the dogs, because
that’s a lot of the reason why dogs do get dumped is because people aren’t
educated on how to train their dogs. My name is Jordanne Yunis. I’m an 11th grader in the Felix Varela Veterinary Academy. I am in the dog training program here,
where we work with certified positive reinforcement trainers to work with
abandoned dogs that came from the streets, or are owner surrenders, and everything like that. With our positive reinforcement training everything that we do has a
positive impact on the dog, so we do not hurt the dog, we don’t scare the dog.
Everything we do is reward based, so we either capture behavior by treating them
or we lure them into something which is also with the treat.
I’m cleaning after the dogs, feeding them, making sure they get their their
socialization and playtime, and that they’re not stressed out or locked up
all day. I also deal with adoptions so I go to several adoption events to help the abandoned puppies and abandoned dogs get adopted. I speak with the adopters. I help them transition to their dogs, talking them through proper management, and how to properly take care of them. If they
say that they’re going on vacation a lot, or that they’re never home then
they shouldn’t have a dog. If they’re going to have it locked up all day or not pay attention to it. I’m Romina O’Brien. I tend to work more with the puppies. The most rewarding part is seeing dogs get better, with
behaviors or some of them you know come with like a bunch of fleas, or a little
sick, and just seeing them be happy and get adopted into good homes
is amazing to me. Sometimes it’s kind of sad to see them go,
especially when you got attached to them. I’ve lost a few dogs working
here, and I think that’s always hard, losing a dog. It’s hard seeing
something that you saw healthy not go through or be sick. We tend to get
one or two I think every week or at least a litter. There are so many dogs that
we get constantly. There was a point here in June that we
had like 27. Our main catching zone is the Redlands, but I mean there’s still so many dogs out there, and it’s whatever we can catch or whoever we find. It’s really
important for everyone to spay and neuter their dog. Even if their dog never
leaves the house it’s so important because on the off chance they get out
and they get someone pregnant or they get pregnant, those puppies, like we have
enough puppies in the world right now, and you shouldn’t really be focusing on
that because the amount of puppies we got that are sick, or full of fleas, or
you know they’re out there you know with a feral mother, and it’s hard to catch
them like the puppies we just got. Adopting a dog saves that dog. It
changes everything, it’s their second chance. It changes everything for them
especially dogs who have been abandoned before. Them knowing that you’re not going leave them is so important for any dog. Don’t get an animal if you’re not going to take care of it. Don’t get an animal if you feel
like you’re not in the right position to. The story behind everything like
every dog has their own purpose, they have feelings, they need to be
treated the right way just like humans are. Just knowing what I’m doing is helping the dogs in need and everything it’s just an amazing experience. I would really like to see more education you know maybe even pamphlets, or flyers, or something and maybe try to educate them, maybe they’ll
read it maybe they won’t, but we need to start with a young kids too, the kids in
school, and educating them, and then I think eventually over time it can
get better. We’ve had birthday parties, children’s
birthday parties bring the girls in to come and take a tour and instead of
gifts they they got donations for the dogs. So every little thing just teaching your
children how important it is to care about another living breathing thing is
I think it’s vital. Well, it’s not a high priority, and we need to make it a higher priority and that’s a cultural thing to make it a higher priority. We have to
show that there’s a problem, so in some ways you know by us doing a good job in
taking care of some of these problems, the problems are not highlighted
you know for society to see, so it’s a catch-22, but it’s one we’re willing to
willing to be part of. There are not people here who are making hundreds of
thousands of dollars a year, and I dare say through the county there are
probably some people who are making $100,000 a year in salaries. It would be really wonderful if we could get a little bit of help. How do we get help?
People that would be willing to foster. But if everybody would help a little bit
as far as donating, I mean I’m not talking about thousands of dollars I’m
talking about a dollar, each of us, if we could do that to the rescues not just my
rescue, but just about any rescue out there, we would had a little bit of money
and we can help a little bit more, and we can do so much more than what
we’re doing right now. A lot of people don’t understand the plight of overpopulation right now, and that is that is the biggest problem and that’s
why these rescues are out there, that’s why the shelters are there. It’s really
due to people not spaying and neutering their animals, and having all of these
unwanted pets. You know, we’re a first world nation. We have the ability to help.
We are the ones as humans that created this problem here in our country, so it’s
our responsibility to clean it up, it’s our responsibility to care, it’s our
responsibility to do the right thing. If there’s a need somewhere outside of our community, we’re always willing to do what we can, because it’s our problem. It’s not just local. We have to help wherever we can.

5 Comments on "Redland Rockpit"


  1. Such an urgent and important topic addressed by an excellent, very informative and impactful documentary. Everyone should view this!

    Reply

  2. Very well done. Miami-Dade and the state of Florida, we should be doing better than this. Denying that there is a problem isn't going to make it go away.

    Reply

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