Over Memorial Day weekend, the Harris County Animal Shelter in Houston, Texas had over 200 cats and dogs surrendered over the long holiday weekend. Given the staggering numbers, the KHOU11 news team headed out to the shelter to cover the story… and found yet another dog dumped at the shelter by her owners.
The large white dog was tied up to the shelter fence with a heavy metal chain. Despite how cruelly humans had treated her prior, the sweet pup wagged her tail enthusiastically when she saw people approaching. Dr. Michael White, director of the Harris County Animal Shelter in Houston, Texas, happened to be watching the news segment and couldn’t believe what he was seeing.
“I was watching the local news and I saw Janelle [Bludau], the reporter, outside our facility at the gate out by the road. She was talking about this dog she found, who had been chained to our front gate when she came to the shelter that morning,” White shared with The Dodo.
The reporter kindly said she would stay with the dog until someone from the shelter could arrive to let them inside, so White rushed to get to the shelter. Janelle, named after the reporter who found her, was covered in fleas, was diagnosed as heartworm positive, and an x-ray revealed Janelle was pregnant was ten puppies!
Shelter staff estimated Janelle to only be a week or two away from giving birth, so White brought Janelle home so that she could give birth in a quiet, comfortable space.
“I decided I wasn’t going to leave her there any longer, and I took her home. I didn’t want her to stay up there in that condition. I hate for animals to give birth in a shelter situation,” White shared.
Janelle enjoyed her time at White’s house immensely. “She’s extremely affectionate toward people. She would love to be a lap dog, and will climb into your lap, but she weighs 65 to 70 pounds,” White said.
After a couple days at White’s home, Janelle seemed anxious and uncomfortable. “We knew when I got home from work that evening that something was up. I was hoping she’d do it during the day, but…” White said.
White is a practicing vet of 30 years and has delivered dozens of litters. Janelle was in the best of hands with him. “My wife and I stayed up with her all night assisting in each delivery. At 3:36 a.m., [puppy] number 10 was born, and we thought that was it, but number 11 was born at 6:05 a.m. It was a long night for me, my wife and Janelle,” shared White.
By the next morning, Janelle had delivered 11 healthy babies! Not surprisingly giving her sweet personality, Janelle has made the perfect Mom to her pups.
“It’s funny to watch her. Dinnertime for the puppies is like a free-for-all. It’s loud and they’re all squealing, trying to find their spot. Every now and then I’ll see her move over to the side and get some of the little ones over with her to nurse without the rest of them interfering. “I couldn’t have asked for a better mother. She’s doing an excellent job with them.” White said.
Once her babies are weaned, Janelle will be spayed and will begin the search for her forever home. Whoever is lucky enough to adopt Janelle will be sure to have a lifetime of happiness!
“I think she is going to make an excellent pet. She’s a very, very nice dog, very sweet, got a great disposition, loves everybody and she’s a nice looking dog, too,” White said.
Janelle, the lab mix found tied 2the gate of the Harris Co Animal Shelter by r own @JanelleKHOU & @MikeBadaBing, had 11 healthy puppies this AM! Shelter Director, Dr. Michael White, is fostering the whole fam-another reminder of how crucial fosters are! Mom & pups doin great ❤️ pic.twitter.com/A4tcunGamN
— Lisa Hernandez (@LisaKHOU) June 13, 2018
If you’d like to make a donation to the Harris County Animal Shelter, click here. Even a donation of just a dollar will go a long way in helping the shelter rescue more dogs just like Janelle.