(CBS DETROIT) – Each year, Michigan Humane field crews respond to nearly 5,000 rescue and cruelty calls throughout the greater Detroit area. Our Alysia Burgio joined one of their teams of cruelty investigators and saw firsthand the leading role they play in the community.
“We tell people to think of us as 911 for animals,” said Pamela Dybowksi, an animal cruelty researcher at Michigan Humane.
Every day, Dybowksi and his partner Myron Golden gear up and hit the road.
“On an average day, we’ll probably get 10 to 12 calls, but they range from probably 10 to almost 30,” said Myron Golden, an animal cruelty researcher at Michigan Humane.
As cruelty researchers, Golden and Dybowksi say each call is different.
“We have good days, we have bad days,” Dybowksi said.
Dybowski says that some days are more difficult than others.
“We have a lot of abandoned animals, a lot of unsheltered calls, underweight dogs,” Golden said.
Golden says that much of the abandonment of animals is due to money and not being able to afford the resources needed to care for a pet. That’s where Michigan Humane comes in.
Once a month at the corner of Trumball and Holden streets in Detroit, pet owners can line up for free animal food and supplies at the Michigan Humane Pet Pantry store.
The warehouse is open from 8:30 am to 11 am on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Due to the sale, pet owners are only allowed to visit once a month.
These days, Michigan Humane serves between 150 and 160 people.
Michigan Humane is also always looking for donations. Donations can be dropped off at the adoption center located at 7887 Chrysler Drive.
“We’re just here to help and educate. We never want to take anyone’s dog,” Dybowksi said.
Dybowksi says that while it’s important year-round, it’s crucial in cooler temperatures that dogs have adequate shelter, including a doghouse and straw if they’re kept outside.
“Make sure the dog has a shelter of the right size, fill the dog house with straw, and make sure it has proper insulation. If you can put it in the garage, it helps keep out the wind, and so we do a lot of education.” Golden said. .
Michigan Humane will personally deliver if necessary.
“I just know that animals have feelings too, animals get cold feet. They can’t speak for themselves, so you have to be the voice, we have to be the voice,” Golden said.
Anyone who finds an animal that appears to need help should call Michigan Humane and field crews will go out and investigate to make sure the animal is being cared for properly.
You can contact the Rescue and Cruelty Division at 313-872-3401. If you call after hours, Michigan Humane asks the public to leave a message with their name and phone number and the call will be returned the next day.