Peacock wrangling. A jaw-less dog. Cats stuck in vents. A dog thrown out of a third-story window.
If an animal's in trouble, you can be sure the staff of the Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region is on the case. Their diligence will be featured in the new six-episode series "Rocky Mountain Animal Rescue" on Nat Geo WILD, a network that focuses on animals and nature from National Geographic. It premieres at 8 p.m. Saturday and runs through April 7.
"We just love showing people how much we do for the animals here in our community," said Gretchen Pressley, HSPPR's community relations manager. "People think a pet comes in, and we immediately get them off to their new home. But in the case of Jumper, the third-story case, it takes months of rehabilitation. That's what we're here to do. It's exciting to share with the community the touching stories and hard work that go into these cases."
Folks from the TV channel reached out to the shelter about 18 months ago and spent three to four months last summer following HSPPR staff members out on cases, such as rescuing five kittens from a woman in a truck at a former homeless camp, and in the vet clinic, including the neutering of two puppy brothers dropped off by owners who could no longer care for them.
Pressley says she believes the shelter was selected due to the powerful combination of its law enforcement program and veterinary clinic, which employs six full-time vets, an unusually large number for a shelter.
"It was how all of our programs work together," she said. "A lot of shelters either don't do animal control and animal rescue or do only animal rescue or vet services. We do it all here, including the foster care program and our trap neuter return program. On top of all that, we have heartwarming adoption stories and missing pets reunited with their owners."
HSPPR set a record last year by adopting out more than 10,000 animals in Colorado Springs. Across all its locations, which includes sister shelter Pueblo Animal Services, they adopted out almost 12,000, scoring another record.
The staff hopes their turn in the spotlight spurs interest by folks across the country.
"We want to get people interested in animal welfare and sheltering, and hopefully they'll get involved at a local level at their own shelters," said Pressley. "It's exciting for our animal-loving staff. Many of us grew up watching Nat Geo WILD. The staff is excited to appear on a station that has meant so much to them."