Spa Industry Pals Team Up to Save Pooches Post-Hurricane

Volunteers caring for a dog rescued from Hurricane Harvey // Photo courtesy of Delia McLinden (Delia McLinden)

Delia McLinden, vice president of sales for Farmhouse Fresh, and Shawna Dahl, director of business for Sothy's USA, met by chance at a Spatec networking event. The two bonded over their brands, their industry, and surprisingly, their love of animals.

After witnessing the devastating effects that took place in Houston and south Texas after Hurricane Harvey (FarmHouse Fresh is based in McKinney, TX), McLinden reached out to Dahl expressing how terrible she felt over the animals that were left behind in the storm. Dahl acknowledged she felt the same way, and the two decided to mobilize a plan into action.

Delia McLinden and Shawna Dahl
Delia McLinden and Shawna Dahl

Dahl suggested to McLinden that if she could get the Texas dogs to her, she would get them placed in Minnesota. In line with their charitable mission to help animals in need, FarmHouse Fresh funded and assisted in the major cross country transport of 50 abandoned dogs from Texas to Minnesota, and ensured they would be well taken care of.

A local rescue group from Dallas, TX, called The Underdog Project coordinated the safe transport of the dogs from south Texas while the FarmHouse Fresh team helped to care for the dogs at a temporary location in Dallas. After over 20 hours of travel, the dogs arrived in Alexandria, MN, where a team of 30 Minnesota volunteers were waiting at Oak Park Kampground with leashes, bowls of food and water, and treats. They stretched their legs, got some exercise and fresh air before heading back for the final two hours north, thanks to Fagen Incorporated, which provided another cargo van, crates, and volunteers for the last leg of the trip.

The 50 rescued dogs are now up for adoption while being housed in foster homes and in several state-of-the art, no-kill shelters in Minnesota including: Headwaters Animal Shelter, Paws + Claws Rescue & Resort, Ellie's Legacy Pet Rescue, K9 Rescue and Rehoming, The Babinski Foundation Animal Shelter, Pope County Humane Society, and Paws Plus.

Many of the animals are receiving necessary medical treatment and are stronger than when they first arrived. According to McLinden, the rescues are reporting that the dogs are soaking up every bit of care, attention, and food. One extremely malnourished dog gained seven pounds in five days.

In a statement, McLinden said, "the heart of the spa industry centers around caring for others, and in this case it extended in the best way possible to our four-legged friends in need."