Jane Schroeder and Colleen Hodgson of Lancaster, WI, have been neighbors for years and have shared a love for animals even longer. In this time, they’ve noticed many animals show up on their road, animals that were obviously dropped off.
“They’ve been dumping animals out there for 20, maybe 30 years,” Hodgson said. “It’s in the fall when [college] kids come and they get pets and they’re in rentals, then landlords come and inspect and find those pets and they aren’t approved for a pet. Then, the pets show up being dumped.”
Hodgson is a University of Wisconsin-Platteville alum. She was born in Lancaster but raised in Mineral Point. She has lived numerous places, including Milwaukee, for 20 years and Alaska for 18. She came back to Lancaster to be near her family. Schroeder on the other hand has stayed more local through the years as she taught special education at Platteville High School. Both ladies are retired; Schroeder and her husband currently do family care for two handicapped men.
“He [dog in picture] showed up between 9 and 10 in the morning. Down at the end of my driveway I have a little quarry and that’s where they found it. My neighbor told me she tried to get the dog in her car but she would only get so far and the dog would run away. I was cooking some bacon at the time so I grabbed a few pieces and grabbed a bag and ran out there,” Hodgson said. Her husband was there and tried to catch him but every time a car would come by, the dog would chase it. He was waiting for someone to come and get him. Hodgson finally got the pet carrier out and was sitting in the grass where she was waiting for an hour and half. The dog finally came and sat down by her feet.
“Finally, he came back and sits right up here [points to her chest] near my shoulder. So, I fed him some bacon pieces and I pick him up and put him right in the carrier.” Hodgson said “He didn’t bite or growl, no fuss or anything. He was just the sweetest pup, so I took him home and put him in my garage. Then when Jane came back we put him on the leash and walked him in around.” The two then took the dog to the Grant County Humane Society in Lancaster.
“He would never have survived there,” Schroeder said. “We have so many coyotes out there.”
At the rescue, they put the dog on the website to try and rehome him, where he found a home in Platteville. The two found out if you take an animal as a stray to the Dubuque Humane Society there is no charge. They have had other instances like this, such as when Hodgson took a pregnant cat to the humane society.
“It doesn’t cost them any money [to take to the rescue], just the gas to drive some place and the humanity,” Hodgson said. “I don’t want to see any kid graduating from this college that is so cruel that they would drop an animal out in the wild that can’t defend itself.”
Schroeder describes that most of the animals dropped near her properties are cats, more than dogs. Out of the 12 cats she has, 10 of those just showed up on her property from being dumped off. “They were obviously house cats,” Schroeder explains. “They would let you even hang them upside down. They were the friendliest kittens.”
Schroeder and Hodgson would like to see more animals going directly to a humane society and not on their rural road.
For more information about the Grant County Humane Society in Lancaster go to www.grantcohumanesoc.com or call (608) 723-6366.