Choctaw resident Meike Parker has named it “Hunks and Pups.”
That’s the catchy theme of the new 2014-2015 calendar being sold to raise funds for The Underdogs Rescue Inc., a new rescue group Parker founded with her friend and fellow animal lover Jared White.
The pair said they formed The Underdogs Rescue Inc. as an organization dedicated to reuniting lost pets with their owners. And Parker said another big part of their work is finding caring homes for abandoned animals and encouraging pet owners to find new homes for their animals or give them to the Underdogs rather than dumping them on the street.
The group’s motto is “Don’t let them go. Let us know.”
Paying the bills
Parker, 43, said she and White, 30, have been funding their rescue efforts since they started the new rescue group. She said this includes medical treatment for the rescued animals and spay/neuter fees.
Parker said the 18-month calendar, which begins with July 2014 and ends with December 2015, features Oklahoma City-area “hunks” interacting with their canine friends. Being sold as the group’s first fundraising effort, the calendar includes photographs by local photographer Teri Carr. The animals featured in the photos are either the pets of the men photographed or dogs rescued through The Underdogs’ efforts.
White, of Oklahoma City, said money raised through the calendar will help pay the organization’s ever-growing veterinary bill and aid it in fulfilling its mission to rescue, rehabilitate, advocate and educate.
It’s fitting that two literal “underdogs” brought Parker and White together.
Parker said she has found as many as eight dogs abandoned along NE 63 as she travels to and from the Choctaw home she shares with her husband, Jerry.
Two of those dogs she found in March 2013 were a pit bull mix and an ebony-color Belgian Malinois, which she scooped up in an area between Spencer and Choctaw.
“They were in the middle of the road,” she said.
Parker said she posted a picture of her newfound furry friends on Facebook and Craigslist, and called several animal shelters as well.
She said no one responded to her inquiries about the dogs, but White saw her Facebook post.
White said he reached out to Parker and met up with her to see the animals in person. He said he was drawn to the pit bull mix, which obviously had been abused and neglected. White said the dog sported what looked like cigarette burns on his ears and had “ticks the size of lima beans.” White said the dejected animal was severely dehydrated, and large patches of its fur were missing.
Once White decided to adopt the dog, he named him “Jack,” and he and Parker began talking about their concern for animals.
The two formed The Underdogs shortly afterward and now have a small group of fellow animal lovers who help foster abandoned and lost animals until their owners are located or until permanent homes can be found for them.
Parker said the organization’s long-term goal is to open a “no questions asked” sanctuary where people can bring unwanted animals to be cared for instead of dumping them somewhere.
In the meantime, as the group works toward that goal, Parker said The Underdogs are busy saving animals in need of love and caring homes.
“There’s no vacation from rescue,” she said.
AT A GLANCE
The Underdogs Rescue Inc.
For more information about The Underdogs Rescue Inc. or to purchase one of the organization’s 2014-2015 calendars for $20, call 593-8671, send email to firstname.lastname@example.org or go to www.theunderdogsrescue.wix.com/theunderdogs or www.facebook.com/theunderdogs.