Puerto Rico is a wonderful and downright passionate island with a lively mix of natives and American transplants adding to its spicy cultural life. In Rincon, our winter home, there is a sense of purpose within the community that helps keep our environment beautiful and healthy for all of us to enjoy. One thing both locals and visitors to Rincon have in common is an awareness of the need to keep down the dog, cat, and horse population to ensure the island can thrive and have healthy animals enjoying it too!
There are cultural differences between the way Puerto Ricans and Americans approach pet care, especially when it comes to spaying and neutering male dogs. This means the number of stray animals that are born and thrive on the streets and beaches never really decreases – hence the island has no lack of animals that need rescuing!
There are many organizations that work hard and so selflessly to help these animals in need; in Rincon we have Defensa Animal de Rincon and Animal Rescue Foundation of Rincon among many other independent rescuers who tirelessly pick up puppies and kittens and get them adopted! Appropriately located on Dog Beach, on the Southeastern side of the island, is The Sato Project — the Puerto Rican’s term for mutt is sato.
After guests of my Paddle Diva SUP, Surf and Fitness Retreat packed their bags and headed home last month, I put on my volunteer hat to transport one sato, Scupper, to his forever home in New Jersey. My friend Tia, a well-known Rincon animal rescuer, arranged for this sweet puppy and his two bothers to have a second chance at life. The three pups were discovered under an abandoned house. When examined, it was discovered they had every parasite and puppy disease imaginable! But with the loving care and help from Tia and local vets, all three were nursed back to life. Six weeks later, the three were on flights back to the States to be welcomed by their new respective owners!
Here are some pictures of the fun we all had caring for Scupper the night before to our flight, during the flight and at his reunion with the most wonderful couple! Scupper’s new life looks as bright as the Puerto Rican sunshine!