Missouri Italian Greyhound Rescue
|MO Rescue Reps|
Missouri Italian Greyhound Rescue began operating out of Springfield in the late 1990's. At that time, the Italian Greyhound Rescue Foundation had only been in operation for a couple of years on a national level, with little or no coverage in the central USA. The first few dogs trickled in from Missouri, Kansas and Oklahoma. During the fledgling days of IG rescue in general, the internet was still getting established as well, and much of what was accomplished was done only by mail and phone. The initial rescue rep in Missouri initiated contact to get involved with rescue based on a magazine ad, and eventually applied to help via a "snail mail" application. Although the official rescue efforts began in the late 1990's, there was an unofficial rehoming effort started in 1992, which sprung from a strong interest in the breed and a personal effort to save Italian Greyhounds locally.
The MO Italian Greyhound Rescue started when puppy mills were at a peak of production, and it was common to see many seriously neglected, crippled and even elderly dogs culled from breeding facilities when they were no longer successfully producing. Missouri IG Rescue also saw puppies for which there was no demand, or those with cosmetic blemishes for which they were declined by the pet store buyers or brokers. Dog auctions were also prevalent in Missouri leading to further dogs needing assistance.
People banded together to speak out about the conditions and circumstances while networking to save and move dogs from these horrific circumstances to states where they had a better chance at homes. The internet made it possible to educate the public on an unprecedented level and over the years public outcry and stricter laws have diminished the number of mill dogs.
Thankfully, today, most dogs come to rescue from former homes rather than commercial facilities, although puppy mills are still very prevalent in Missouri. From the early days, the group covered Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, plus lower Illinois, networking with our sister rescue in Wisconsin and upper Illinois. It was often necessary to transport dogs out-of-state in order to get them into foster homes. But, now, with more people involved, we can accommodate them locally. Most of the foster homes and adopters in Missouri are concentrated in Kansas City and St Louis where interest and need are strongest.