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Two Chihuahuas, Harley and Teddy, both puppy mill survivors, traveled more than 5,000 miles along with National Mill Dog Rescue to spread awareness and truth about the commercial dog breeding industry and along the way, rescued an astounding 165 dogs!
Harley, a 13 year old Chihuahua and an iconic figure in the social media world, spent 10 years as a commercial breeder in a puppy mill. His one-eyed (a result of being power-washed inside his cage at the puppy mill), grizzled image is immediately recognizable to his 30,000 fans. Although suffering with congestive heart failure, Harley actively uses his Facebook page to spread awareness about the cruel realities of puppy mills and to raise funds for non-profit rescue groups.
And, Teddy, an adorable 8 year old Chihuahua, spent the first 7 years of his life in a Kansas puppy mill before being rescued last year. Teddy helps spread puppy mill awareness and shares his experiences of learning about life outside the cage to over 11,000 Facebook fans.
Together, along with National Mill Dog Rescue (NMDR), the adorable advocates took to the road for “Harley to the Rescue,” a campaign they started in May. Originally, the pair hoped to raise $2,500, the amount needed for NMDR to make one puppy mill rescue mission and save about 25-30 dogs. But, the response to the pairs’ mission was overwhelmingly positive, with donations exceeding $50,000 via generous supporters and sales of “Harley to the Rescue” apparel and hats.
Their job didn’t end with raising the funds needed to rescue these dogs from puppy mills. Accompanied by their human parents, both dogs traveled on multiple trips throughout the Midwest, saving the dogs and networking them via social media to help the dogs find their forever homes. Each of their missions was documented and shared via social media for their fans to experience their rescue trips.
And, Harley and Teddy aren’t done yet! Although 165 dogs have already been rescued from the horrors of life in a puppy mill, their mission of “Dogs Saving Dogs!” will continue through 2014!
National Mill Dog Rescue is a Colorado Springs based 501(c)(3) organization that rescues, rehabilitates, and re-homes discarded commercial breeding dogs from puppy mills. NMDR relies on volunteers to care for the dogs, from the moment they are surrendered to the time they are adopted and beyond. The organization depends on the generosity of the public to provide the high level of care for the dogs and to continue to be able to save them.