Pets & Animals

'Hugging' dogs saved from kill shelter are still up for adoption

Kala and Keira were just two hours and six minutes away from being euthanized when the Angels Among Us Pet Rescue organization gave the pair another chance.

The adorable dogs, who have been widely recognized on the Internet for the beloved photo of the pair "hugging," are being fostered, but have not yet found a permanent home.

"When they went on a run in the shelter, they bonded and they would play," Anne Clarke, a representative from AAU told TODAY.com.

Malena Evans

Their personalities are perfect for each other— Kala (right) is quite rambunctious. She loves to play, especially with Keira, who is much more calm and often just "lets things roll."

A Facebook post from the organization includes a plea from Kala, desperately asking everyone for help:

"I'm Kala. This is Keira. We're so scared in here. The people working in the shelters see how scared we are but just told each other that today is our deadline. We have to have someone rescue us or we'll be “next.” Keira is black and not a “real boxer,” just a mix. She's so brave and tells me it will be okay no matter what happens. She tells me to be brave too but I don't know if I can be. Can you see our faces. Keira knows what will happen. You can see it in her eyes. She's putting on a brave face for sure but I can feel her heart beating fast while I'm clinging to her. If no one saves us, someone will take her away from me. I'll see her as she goes down the hallway. She won't come back and I'll cry. They'll come for me next and I won't be as brave. We've comforted each other while we were here. She gave me hope when I had none. Now it's over. Unless..."

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AAU worked alongside the Etowah Valley Humane Society to rescue the pups from a Georgia rural shelter. Since their removal on July 20, the 8-month-old hound mix and 1-year-old boxer have been medically evaluated at a local AAU vet partner office.

The dogs are healthy, except for some minor fleas and ticks that are currently being treated.

The organization raised roughly $3,400 in donations after the photo appeared on Facebook. The money covered medical expenses for both dogs, with enough left over to put toward other animals that are being taken care of by AAU.

The non-profit organization has helped more than 8,800 animals in Georgia avoid euthanization by rescuing them from kill shelters. AAU has more than 800 animals in the system, the increasing amount aligning with their motto, "Rescue One Until There Are None."

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Before being admitted, both dogs were strays. In Georgia, strays are only held for 3-7 days before being put down.

"There's so many animals that we rescue out there. The reason we have to pull animals from shelters is because people put them there," Clarke said. "Tax money is not going to cover housing these animals. The non-profit side of the world has to help."

Thinking about adopting? This is what you'll need to do, according to AAU:

1. Fill out an application

2. Home check: The department of agriculture requires AAU to do a home check on all fosters every six months

3. Pay the adoption fee: The fee is roughly $280, which covers shots, microchip, spay or neuter and vet records

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