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We are Very Happy that Maximo got his FOREVER HOME. Here is a picture of him and his new daddy. Thanks for adopting from SAGA.


There aren’t many things that everyone in San Pedro agrees about, but no onewould argue with you when you say ‘It’s hot!’. It has been very warm the pastcouple of months and it looks like we may be in for a long and very hot summer.While we seek out the shade and drink ice cold drinks to cool us down, weneed to remember that our furry friends feel the heat just like we do. The onlydifference is that they depend on us to provide them with shade and fresh, coolwater.
Recently, a family in San Pedro suffered the tragic loss of their much loveddog. Why? Because they didn’t realise that dogs can suffer terribly in the heat.Their loyal pet followed them on a journey along San Pedro’s dusty roads oneafternoon. He seemed enthusiastic to run and stayed with them as he often doeson their journeys, running along beside them.
What this dog’s owners didn’t realise was that dogs often place their loyaltyabove their own health and welfare. They believed that if the dog became toohot or tired, he would rest or find a drink. Sadly, it was too late before theyrealised that their beloved dog had overheated and he died.
Remember that in the hot sun, your dog may be even more uncomfortable thanyou are. He’s wearing a fur coat, after all. It is best not to exercise your dogduring the hottest hours of the day – between 11am and 3pm. If you have totake your dog out during this time, make sure that you give him breaks in theshade and have plenty of fresh drinking water available.
Dogs do not sweat like humans do, so they can become overheated very quickly.If your dog is panting, you know he’s hot. Make sure you provide shade for yourdog during these hot ‘dog days’ of summer and have a plentiful supply of freshwater available to him at all times. Never leave him tied up in the sun.Keep an eye out for the symptoms of heat stroke, which can include any
of the following: heavy panting, dark red and dry gums, lying down andunwilling (or unable) to get up, collapse and/or loss of consciousness, thicksaliva and dizziness or disorientation. If you think your dog has suffered fromheat stroke, there are things you can do to help save your dog.
1. First, move your dog out of the heat and away from the sun right away.2. Begin cooling your dog by placing cool, wet rags or washcloths on thebody – especially the foot pads and around the head.3. DO NOT use ice or very cold water! This can make the situation worse.4. Offer your dog cool water, but do not force water into your dog’s mouth.5. Call or visit your vet right away – even if your dog seems better. Internaldamage might not be obvious to the naked eye, so an exam is necessary
Have a cool canine – not a hot dog!
If you are worried about a dog that may be over heating or suffering from heatstroke, call SAGA on 226 3266 for further advice.

Keep your dogs cool with fresh water


Many people don’t realize how much their pet is worth.  Pets are tremendously valuable.  Aside from their traditional roles as guards, farm workers, hunters and companions – research shows that having a pet makes us healthier.  Pet owners have better general health and lower blood pressure than non pet owners.  Kids with pets in their home take fewer sick days from school and have better non verbal communication.  Older pet owners are less lonely and more likely to be active if they own pets.  Of course, human beings only receive these benefits if they are responsible pet owners.

This year SAGA has seen an increase in the number of pets that have been purchased at great cost to the owner, given up for adoption.   Why would people spend hundreds of dollars on a dog, only to give it away to SAGA?

Many people will share stories of the local pot licker, its loyalty and good temperament with children.  If the ‘pot licker’ were considered a breed, maybe it would have more value.  Certainly, the Belizean pot licker is a unique dog and Belizeans should be proud to own one.  But some people want something specific – such as a certain coat colour or size – and so they go to pet shops or breeders to buy a pet off the shelf, in much the same way they’d buy a box of corn flakes.  The big difference is that a healthy, well cared for pet can live for 14 years or longer.  Pet ownership is a big commitment and should be taken especially seriously by parents wishing to teach their children about behaving responsibly.

The pets that are being given up to SAGA did nothing wrong except grow up.  The cute little puppy that was purchased six months ago has turned into a demanding, large and active dog that needs training, exercise and company.  Unfortunately, the people who purchased the puppy didn’t think it through and now there is an unhappy ending.  The children are sad and feel like failures, the adults have lost several hundred, maybe thousands of dollars raising the puppy and the dog is homeless, no longer loved or wanted.

If you are considering getting a pet, try your local humane society first.  In San Pedro, it’s SAGA.  Pet ownership is not a decision to take lightly or to make on the spur of the moment. The experts at SAGA will help you to find the perfect pet for your needs.  Once you have adopted the a dog or cat, you’ll soon discover how valuable a pet truly is.


SAGA receives calls daily about animals that need their help.  Whenever a member of staff picks up the phone, they can only hope and pray for a happy ending because calls to SAGA so often have such a tragic beginning.  Such was the case when someone called to report that a small dog had been left tied to an abandoned shack in San Mateo without food, water or shelter.

No matter how long a person has worked for SAGA, they never get used to the horrific sights that sometimes greet them when they rescue a dog or cat that has been the victim of cruelty, abuse or neglect.  Cinthia’s condition was terrible and her pitiful state just made her rescuers want to weep.  She was starving, had a terrible case of Demodex – a non contagious skin disease – so was nearly bald, was dehydrated and suffering from the deadly disease, Tick Fever.

Very little is known about Cinthia’s history before coming into the loving care of SAGA Humane Society.  So her tale starts with them. Sometimes it can be difficult to decide whether or not a dog will survive after being subjected to such incredible suffering and it is often entirely up to the dog whether or not they will fight for their lives.   After a grueling two months of intensive care and treatment with SAGA, Cinthia proved that she was going to fight and not give up.

As she recovered and gained her strength, along came a couple, Matt & Katina Ewing.   It was love at first sight despite the challenge facing them because they just couldn’t afford to fly Cinthia to the USA at the time.  Inspired by Cinthia’s fight for life, they didn’t give up and neither did SAGA. After some fundraising, Cinthia headed off to her new home and her new life.

Normally, our tale would end here – but it doesn’t.  Two weeks ago Katia Marin and Heidi Sowards, SAGA volunteers, were attending a conference in Puerto Rico.   Who should they bump into but Katina and Cinthia.  It was a joyous reunion and many tears were shed, not because of Cinthia’s sad tale, but because of her amazing happy ending.  Doesn’t every dog and cat that SAGA rescues deserve a happy ending?  If you want to give a dog or cat a new life, please contact SAGA on 226 3266.













Saga Humane Society says Thank You!

Saga Humane Society would like to thank everyone for their generous support of our Easter Fundraiser April 24, 2011.  The festivities were held at Caribbean Villas with our gracious hosts Graham & Ruth Veralls.  Without the help of our volunteers and generous donors, this event would not have been possible.
Road Kill Bar $50.00 Bar Tab
George’s Kitchen Breakfast or Lunch for two – $30.00
My Secret Deli Dinner for two
Polo’s Golf Cart Rentals (3) Hour Golf Cart Rental
Wahoo Lounge $50 Bar Tab
Mojito Bar & Grill $50 Bar Tab
Belizean Arts Statue Caribbean Sand Woman
Fido’s Dinner for two
Santiago Acosta Gifts Garifuna Doll
Bowen & Bowen Ice & cooler
Sergio – Mousepad Tables & Chairs

rie Caroll & Gecko Graphics Event printing
Pampered Paws Flea Bath

Pampered Paws Full Groom Faride Lima Easter Gift Basket
Red Ginger/Caliente/OR Blue Water Grill Dinner for two
Mar de Colores Hair Salon $50 Gift Certificate
Wild Mango’s Lunch Wild Mango’s Dinner
DandE’s Custard $20 Gift Certificate
Tanisha Tours Trip for (2) to Lamani
Destination Paradise Dive Shop Stuffed Eagle Ray
David Marin DJ
Tamara Sniffin Flyer design

Dr. Mark & Joan Johnson 300 Toothbrushes

Bacab Eco Resort wrist bands
Susie Quist Cookies
Laura Sutton Cupcakes
Mary Hawthorne Cupcakes
Alan Soto Face Painting

Mary Pugh

Laura Sutton
Nancy Roundtree
Jan Ahlman
Renee SteinmetzBruce Pickering
Cindy Ayala
Hendrik Oosthuizen
Susie Quist
Beth Hart
Ninfa Juan
Eileen Jamison
Saga Staff:
Lori Purdy
Grant Crimmins
Ari Trejo
Kathy Marin
Ingrid Lima
Coleen Creeden
Lillian Marquez

As we watch the changes in San Pedro we all get to know that with progress comes the good and the bad.  Unfortunately it is often our furry friends who end up paying the toll.  Freeway is a good example of this.

Recently taxis have been allowed to cross the bridge to the part of the island north of the cut.  Dogs who live in town grow up around taxis and learn how to stay safe and out of the way as they pass.  But for dogs north of the cut, taxis are a new and unknown danger.

Freeway grew up footloose and fancy free at a resort on the north side of the island because his owner lived and worked there.  He had not seen many taxis in his lifetime and because he was neglected by his irresponsible owners, he was just allowed to wander around on his own.  This had been safe enough until the taxis were allowed to cross the bridge.

Poor Freeway didn’t know anything about how to stay out of the way and before long he was run over.  Sadly, his owners didn’t care enough for him to take him to SAGA and have his injury treated.  So, his foot got worse and worse, leaving him in pain and suffering – only able to hobble around on three legs.  Luckily for Freeway, some kind tourists took pity on him and brought him to SAGA.

It was too late for Freeway and he ended up paying a very high toll.  Because his injury had been left so long without medical attention, part of his foot had to be amputated.  The worst part about this is that if his owners had been responsible and cared for him the way they should have, he probably would have recovered fully.

But there is good news.  Freeway is getting better and with the love and attention of the SAGA staff and volunteers, he will soon be looking for a new home with people who truly love and care for him.

If your dog is injured or if you see an injured animal that has not been cared for, make sure to get help.  You might just save them from paying a very heavy price.

Freeway’s foot
Freeway feeling better

For information on how you can help sick, injured or neglected animals or if you’re interested in adopting Freeway or any of his friends, please contact SAGA on 226 3266.


In February 2009, we visited friends in Ambergris Caye, Belize. They foster dogs for Saga – the local humane society.  This year, they fostered a little beagle named Toby. Toby used to live at the Belize Yacht club, but his owner gave him up for reasons unknown.

My 6 year only daughter and I fell in love with Toby instantly. We talked
about getting a beagle for years and here was a sweet one who
needed a home.  The deal was sealed a few days later when we woke to find
him smack in the middle of our bed with his head on the pillow! That was
it – I woke up my husband and said we had to bring him home with us.

Adoption was remarkably easy.  We went to Saga Humane Society and they
prepared the rabies and health certificate.  They also advised quarantine
was not necessary for dogs being brought into Canada from Belize (Belize is
part of the Commonwealth).  I called the airline, made arrangements and we
flew home.

We’re so happy to have Toby.  I own my own business and he comes to work
with me every day as our mascot – a job he adores.  But when he’s off duty,
he’s simply our baby and a great addition to our family!