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  • Category: Actions You Can Take > Animal Rescue > Abandoned and Homeless Animals

    K9 Sgt joins in rescue efforts (Best Friends)

    Sept 29 from Cathy Scott at the Best Friends / St. Francis sanctuary.

    After the levee broke between Lake Pontchartrain and New Orleans, veteran Sgt. Cliff Deutsch of Naples, Florida, began researching which animal rescue group to hook up with so he could help save flood victims’ pets. He got on the Internet and came across Best Friends’ web site, then he called the sanctuary in southern Utah to find out more.

    “You guys seemed organized and professional,” he said, “and were involved for the right reason.” Cliff, who works in the Collier County Sheriff’s Office special operations K-9 unit, chose to volunteer his time with Best Friends.

    Once at the Best Friends/St. Francis shelter, he became a member of a retraction team that, when he arrived this week, was going into St. Bernard Parish in New Orleans. “I’m exposed to death and misfortune every day in my line of work,” Cliff said, “but this type of event is just extraordinary. These dogs are so helpless and so innocent. It warrants a need to volunteer your time. I decided to drive 15 hours and leave my daughter on her birthday to help the most innocent creatures on Earth.”

    While it’s his first time in animal rescue, Cliff said he’s always been a dog person. In fact, at work his partner is a canine. “I’m a dog handler for the sheriff’s office,” he said.

    After his first day on a rescue team in New Orleans, he said the drive back to Tylertown was sobering, even for a seasoned law enforcement officer.

    “I've seen the worst, and even I got emotional driving home after seeing the devastation and what these dogs and cats have endured,” he said. “Working these last two days is more rewarding than saving lives of kids from street drugs because you're hands-on with these animals.”

    At home in Naples, Florida, Cliff works in the narcotics section of special operations with his K-9 partner. “It’s rewarding saving lives doing drug interdiction,” he said, “but this is so much more. It’s hard to explain.”

    Cliff left Tylertown Thursday to return home in time for a belated birthday party for his 10-year-old daughter, Faith. Like so many other volunteers who eventually have to go home, Cliff said it’s tough to leave when the animals are still out there waiting to be rescued. “I know everyone here is still going out, so I know dogs and cats will still be saved while I attend my daughter's birthday party.”
    Contact Person: Best Friends
    This page was last modified on 10/03/2005.

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