Pembroke Pines Police Providing Pooches a Lifeline

Pembroke Pines Police help make many reunions possible, but one this past weekend showed off a new side of the police department as they try to help out man’s best friend.

Six months ago, Tammy Moses’ German shepherd mix named Gypsy was stolen from her home in Bell, Florida, near Gainesville. The theft came at an especially tough time for Moses’ family.

“We had just lost the children’s father in November and it was extremely hard,” Moses said.

Then last Thursday, Gypsy was found wandering the streets in Pembroke Pines. A Pines police officer spotted the dog and brought it back to the police department’s animal assistance program. It’s a temporary shelter for dogs often found by officers on their beats. The area for the dogs used to be a picnic area.

“We’ve made the best use we can out of this area for employees,” said Pembroke Pines Police Captain Al Xiques. “It’s now gone to the dogs.”

The program is partnered between Pines Police and the non-profit “Pooches in Pines” which takes in the animals after they’ve run out of time at the department. Space at the department only allows for five dogs at a time for five days.

Still, since 2011, volunteers with the Pembroke Pines Police Department have been able to help 500 dogs find their owners or new homes. Police volunteers help out by walking and feeding the dogs during their breaks.

“I volunteer because I love this program,” said Tracy Calvino. “I would hope if my dog got lost, someone would bring it back to me.”

Even as NBC 6 was at the facility learning more about the program, another dog, appropriately named “Lucky” went home after a few hours after his tag led volunteers to his rightful owner.

And soon, police hope a new kennel will be put in for the department’s program. The program will be relying on donations form the community to make the upgrades possible. The upgrades will be for the program that for Tammy Moses has given her a new life with an old friend.

“To just reach out and do what they did for me and my family; it’s just amazing,” Tammy said. “I will forever be indebted to them. They are my angels.”

One more note on Tammy's story, Gypsy was reunited with her owners when Detective Dean Soubasis drove the pooch half-way to Bell, Florida on his day off to make the reunion happen.

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