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Vandals steal gas from Phoenix animal shelter van; 35 dogs wait to be rescued in Mexico

More than 30 puppies will have to wait longer for a Phoenix no-kill rescue to pick them up from Mexico after vandalism held up operations, not once, but twice.
Published: Mar. 31, 2022 at 9:23 PM MST|Updated: Mar. 31, 2022 at 10:36 PM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - More than 30 puppies will have to wait longer for a Phoenix no-kill rescue to pick them up from Mexico after vandalism held up operations, not once, but twice. The owners are now thousands of dollars out of pocket, but are unsure if the vandalism was done by somebody who finds themselves in the same financial boat.

35 puppies were all loaded up in Rocky Point, Mexico waiting to be picked up by HALO Animal Rescue Thursday. But CEO Heather Allen said when staff went to leave Phoenix in the morning, they noticed there was gas everywhere.

“It appears they used some sort of drill device to make their way through the tank. There were 3 holes in the tank,” Allen said. The van was in the repair shop Thursday, and a new gas tank will cost them $2,500, in addition to a couple hundred more for the broken side mirror they found as well. But this is all too familiar to the shelter.

“Last night was the second time that it’s happened,” said Allen. Just last week, surveillance footage at the rescue captured somebody stealing the hose from another one of their vans to siphon the gas. They’re unsure if both times were done by the same person, and if tough times were the motive.

“Only guessing with the rise in gas costs that it’s causing some people to take desperate measures,” said Allen. The 35 pups are still waiting to be picked up by the no-kill shelter, and luckily the repair shop was able to fix the van in time so they can make it down there Friday instead. But Allen said this only hurts their cause, and ultimately, the animals they’re trying to rescue.

“When something like this happens, it doesn’t just impact the people involved, more so it impacts the animals involved,” said Allen. “Now we’re spending money on gas tank repairs that we would rather be spending on saving animals’ lives.”

If you’d like to help out the shelter with these repair costs you can go to their website here and click “donate.”