Street Dawg Crew pampers Pioneer Park pets
Seems like it’s true: Every dog has its day.
A dog’s love knows no economic distinctions. It wags its tail for rich and poor alike. To keep it wagging, Margie Varela and her partner Kimo Pokini, filled an important need.
Pets and pet owners within the homeless community were struggling to get by and take care of their beloved animals. “People don’t plan on becoming homeless and when they do, they don’t want to give up their pets. They are part of their family,” said Varela.
Homeless shelters provide temporary housing and meals for humans—if a member of the homeless community has a certified service animal they can stay with their human, but not a family pet or emotional-support animal—but since there isn’t anywhere for the homeless population to go with their animals, many of these people find themselves living and sleeping in alternative locations in order to keep their pets with them.
Once Varela and Pokini stumbled onto this truth, it wasn’t long before Varela earned her nickname, “The Pet Lady of Pioneer Park.” It is a nickname she is proud to have.
Varela and Pokini began showing up every Sunday at Pioneer Park with their “Doggy Survival Bags” full of dry food, soft food, treats, and collapsible bowls. When the dogs saw them coming they barked an all dog alert, spreading the news that treats and belly rubs were on the way.
This was great news for people who had lost everything and still refused to give up their pet.
“Many people live paycheck to paycheck and are only one calamity away from becoming homeless,” Verela said. “These people shouldn’t have to lose their pets. They’ve already lost so much.”
Donations are welcome and needed
The Street Dawg Crew is unique in that they aren’t a rescue organization. Donations are incredibly important since they aren’t eligible for grants.
If you would like to help, paws for a sec and visit their website by clicking HERE for additional information.
The Street Dawg Crew of Utah is now a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization promoting positive and responsible pet ownership by working alongside organizations such as Best Friends Animal Sanctuary and Salt Lake County Animal Services.
Together, we can make sure that indeed, every dog has its day.
For more K9 and other animal related articles, click HERE.