On New Year’s Eve, while most of the country was getting their party hats ready to watch the ball drop, football players from North Bergen High School were running around the industrial part of town helping local police nab three adorable dogs who were freezing in the severe cold.
What’s more, they did this for 12 hours in temperatures cold enough to make you feel like someone just slapped you silly.
Lieutenant Bronson Jusino explains to Babble how it all went down:
“On December 31st, 2017 we received a call about three unattended dogs, a mother and two puppies, in an industrial part of town. North Bergen police officers, New Jersey Humane Society, and volunteers from the North Bergen High School football team responded to help capture the dogs. It took approximately 12 hours to capture all three dogs in the frigid temperature.”
The incredible rescue included the volunteer efforts of a local football team, which may not come as a surprise to locals. “The football team does have a culture of community service,” says Edward Somick, North Bergen High School’s vice principal and head coach of the football team. He shares with Babble that the kids on this team are really and truly a class act. “On many occasions, the players aide in township events, usually serving food at functions (annual North Bergen pool party), as well as recreational events for younger kids where the players face paint or aide in playing games,” he says.
So, how did the football players even get involved in the first place? Somick tells Babble, “The players that rescued the dogs became involved because the one player (Mike Santini) — his dad runs the shelter. He brought his friend (Christopher Lopez) with him for the two days to perform the rescue.”
The three dogs, a mother and two pups, are a Rottweiler mix and suffered through sub 20-degree temperatures. Since being rescued, they have been transported to the New Jersey Humane Society where they will remain until they are adopted.
Kayley, who works at the shelter, reassures Babble that the dogs are safe. “They are all medically OK. They were given a checkup by the vet tech upon intake Monday night to ensure they didn’t need any emergency medical care — which they did not. The next morning when our vet came in, she looked at them again to make sure they did not need additional medical attention.”
She went on to explain that once they settle in and their individual needs are assessed, they will go up for adoption. Kayley also stressed the importance of paying close attention to the weather and how it can adversely affect pets.
“It is extremely important that the public takes animals into consideration during this time,” she says. “The temperatures currently qualify as adverse weather conditions which legally makes certain housing conditions mandatory for animals, you can see those here. If anyone sees animals outside, we encourage them to call their local animal control and to make sure they inform their neighbors, friends and families how dangerous it can be.”
Thank goodness for the kind, warm hearts of the North Bergen High School football team, local police, and the New Jersey Humane Society for keeping one sweet mama dog and her two pups safe and sound.