Rocket to the rescue

By Stephen Baldwin, RealWV

Last week, the Greenbrier Humane Society announced that the shelter was “officially full.” After a large intake of cats and dogs, they used every available crate and kennel to house animals.

Mereda Doss, who serves as Executive Director, says these upticks are a trend. “We received 861 dog and puppy intakes in 2023, up from 637 in 2022. Now 2024 has started with the same upward trend.”

“PLEASE HELP US,” she wrote in all caps on social media.

And that’s exactly what the community did in response.

Andrew Fitzgerald, owner of Almost Heaven Bark & Board, sponsored the cost of ten adoptions. “I just wanted to help out in any way I could,” he said. “Those ladies work very hard over there (at the shelter).”

Autumn Ingram sponsored another ten…and the community began fostering and adopting animals. In less than a week, more than ten dogs founds homes. Including Rocket (formerly known as Twitch at the shelter), who came home with us.


We call him Rocket, because…he moves as fast as a rocket. Also, he reminds us of Rocket from the Marvel Universe, a raccoon with a crooked and mischievous grin.

He is a five-month old Australian Shepherd puppy who was found by a local farmer after experiencing blunt force trauma (likely by a car) to the face. As a result, his smile is permanently crooked…and permanently etched in our hearts. Thankfully, the farmer found him and got him to a veterinarian.

This is our fourth adoption from the Greenbrier Humane Society in 16 years. Our dog Tuck, a 3-year old pit mix, immediately took to Rocket. He’s the little brother he never had. We’ve been blessed with the best mutts ever over the years, and we greatly appreciate the entire community which makes this shelter (and so many more like it) possible. Because our dogs aren’t “like” family in West Virginia, they are family.

A community effort

Mereda Doss has seen it all in her years at the local shelter. But she says their mission hasn’t changed. “We work so hard to find loving homes for each and every animal in our care,” she says. “The support we receive from the community is amazing! We cannot continue our lifesaving mission without our volunteers, supporters, and generous donors. To all who support the Greenbrier Humane Society, we say thank you!”

If you’re interested in fostering or adopting, visit the Greenbrier Humane Society on Facebook. They are open Tuesday-Saturday from 11am-5pm for visits and volunteers.


Related stories

Give us your feedback