THE Ararat pound is fast becoming a safe haven for stray dogs and in the last year with the help of Victorian Dog Rescue it has been able to save one of the highest number of animals in recent years.
Trisha Taylor from Victorian Dog Rescue said the organisation had taken in many of the dogs for rehoming in Melbourne, helping to contribute to the 80 per cent save rate that has been recorded in last financial year at the Ararat pound.
"The main thing is they are all alive and happy," she said.
"We've been working with the pound with Saveapet for a couple of years but it has really become a stronger relationship over the last 12 months or so.
"You can see the surrender figures have gone up a lot which has its good and bad side. Eight dogs were killed over the year, but my understanding is all were not re-homeable because of overt aggression, stock killing and so on. It is a big change if you compare it with the 60 killed a few years ago.
"We took every re-homeable dog we were offered."
Ms Taylor said there is usually a transport every fortnight from Ararat to Melbourne, which takes dogs and some cats to their foster homes.
More than 30 cats were saved from the pound in the past 12 months, as against virtually none the year before.
Ms Taylor said each year a calendar is produced that includes about 25 photos of animals, nearly all rescued from pounds with their stories told by their adopters.
"A few of these this year with be Ararat dogs," she said.
"If it were not for community foster care networks like ours working with pounds many more animals would die, but it is not mandatory for pounds to rehome under the current Code, so we are delighted to work with a forward-looking pound like Ararat."
Ms Taylor said the subsidy program, which has featured in The Ararat Advertiser recently and includes for the price of $50 any local can adopt a fully vet worked animal (chipped, vaccinated and desexed) and Victorian Dog Rescue pay for the balance of the vet work has proven popular.
Victorian Dog Rescue hasn't however had as much success finding volunteers and carers locally.
If anyone is interested in adopting a dog or cat locally they can email firstname.lastname@example.org