Dead Dog Beach. Doesn’t exactly conjure up a pretty picture, does it?
It’s a beach at the end of a long deserted road in the municipality of Yabucoa, on the southeastern coast of Puerto Rico.
The beach is known as “Dead Dog Beach” because dogs are routinely taken there to be dumped, and it becomes the final resting place for many of them.
The Sato Project is a rescue organization that has been dedicated to helping the dogs of Dead Dog Beach since 2013.
They are the dogs’ only source of fresh food and water, and they work to gain the trust of dogs that have been abused and are skittish of human contact.
Preparing For The Worst
The hard-working staff and veterinarians of The Sato Project had already been inundated with dogs that had been abandoned and displaced by Hurricane Irma.
Then they got the news that Hurricane Maria had developed into a category 5 storm and was heading straight for Puerto Rico. Even worse, it was supposed to make landfall straight at Dead Dog Beach.
They prepared as best as they could. Dogs that were already in the shelter and vet clinics were evacuated to higher ground.
Supplies were stocked and supporters from the mainland sent portable generators to be used in the storm’s aftermath. Then it was just a matter of riding out the storm and waiting for the aftermath.
After The Storm
As we all know, Hurricane Maria devastated the island of Puerto Rico. The staff and dogs at Sato Project’s shelter made it through the storm, but the facility suffered catastrophic damage.
The winds and falling trees destroyed all the outdoor runs and kennels and there was significant flooding.
They were the lucky ones, though. When the team was able to make it back to Dead Dog Beach after the hurricane there were no dogs to be found.
After seeing the devastation left behind, they have to assume that none of the dogs that called it home survived the hurricane.
Staying The Course
The mission hasn’t changed, however. Since that first trip to the beach, The Sato Project has rescued several dogs that have been dumped at Dead Dog Beach after the hurricane.
Would you be willing to keep working so hard for abandoned dogs after such a catastrophic blow?