Owner surrenders dog ‘Darla’ with $90 and note ‘please forgive me’

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When Darla’s owner had to move into a relative’s home and care for a sick family member, she had to surrender her beloved dog to the Harris County Animal Shelter. Tragically, the devoted owner had no choice, and in this situation hearts are broken for both Darla and her human. The following was posted on the Facebook page for Harris County Animal Shelter Volunteers:

“If this doesn’t break your heart I don’t know what will! Darla’s owner had to move into take care of a sick, elderly family member. She brought her in with $90 and a note that read, “please forgive me!” Review date Dec 28th. Poor Darla! I feel so bad for her owners too. Sometimes we don’t know all the circumstances around why people have to give up their animals, but this instance sure does hurt to hear.

Her owner said she was nothing but an angel the eight years she has had her since she was a puppy!”

Comments referencing this dog indicates she gets along with other dogs. Click here for her Pet Harbor listing.”I am ready to go!My name is DARLA. I am a spayed female, fawn and white Boxer mix. The shelter staff think I am about 7 years old. I have been at the shelter since Dec 08, 2016.” For more information about this animal, call Harris County Public Health and Environmental Services at (281) 999-3191. Ask for information about animal ID number A473752.

Please share this girl’s plight with approved rescue organizations, friends, family and social media contacts. Sharing saves lives. For more information, contact Harris County Animal Shelter located at 612 Canino Road, Houston, TX 77076. Information about donating to a particular animal can be found here.

(Photo of Darla ‘please forgive me’ via Harris County Animal Shelter Volunteers)

Check out Darla’s video here:




22 replies
  1. pennysdachshund says:

    God this is terrible and Texas isn’t Animal Friendly in most of the Shelters… They euthanize animals in the thousands upon Thousands…. Darla has to pay the price for her owner to help a family member…. This is SO unfair as she will more than likely lose her life … this holiday alone and scared NOT UNDERSTANDING WHY THIS HAS HAPPNED TO HER>>>>

    • Stephanie Eberhardt Wooley says:

      Kind of short sighted. I worked AC in Texas and we busted tail to get all animals out. But putting animals down is not the shelter’s fault. It’s the pet owners. This is a unique case and I would hate to give up my pets to care for family. But I would try every possible avenue other than a shelter. Not for the sake of euthanasia but because all animals deteriorate in shelter environments in any state.

  2. Sarah Nabinger says:

    Can’t someone foster this dog for her owner? The sick elderly family member may get better quickly, or god forbid pass on quickly. Someone please help Darla’s owner so she can keep her furbaby.

  3. Darla says:

    This breaks my heart. I wish there was some way that Darla (cool name, BTW, haha!!!) could be fostered until the owner’s family member passes away. I’m NOT wishing a fast death for that person – just wishing there was an alternative to the owner giving up her dog.

  4. Connie says:

    Is there anyone that can foster Darla if her food and care is paid for? It seems that there should be someone who can foster her as she sounds like such a lovely dog and perhaps her owner could visit her and then take her back when the relative’s problem is resolved. I would contribute towards her care to the approved foster home. My email is ccmog@aol.com

  5. Lisa says:

    Nope! If i had to take care of a relative my dog would be part of the deal. To help one you abandon the other, your beloved dog who has loved you unconditionally for all her life. Sorry i couldn’t forgive you, unless this is a no kill shelter chances are the dog you supposedly love will never make it out alive especially since she’s no longer young.

  6. stella says:

    I had my own shelter and rescue in Indiana and I was very happy to be able to do that occasionally to help those in need of losing their pets I would keep them for maybe even a year till they got back on their feet or found a place where they and their furbaby could safe together. I know there are shelters, rescues, fosters and possibly even a vet office that would help. Please check even Boarding kennels they may help. Best of luck and love to both.

  7. anne shaffer says:

    I will gladly keep this dog for this lady until she could take her back. Please contact me if this is an option she would like to do. We are in Maryland.

  8. Shelby says:

    I’m happy to report Darla is safe with a foster! She left today 🙂
    Freedom photos are on our Facebook. Just search Harris County Animal Shelbter Volunteers Darla

    • Lisa Marie Cross says:

      Thank you God, Rescue and Foster family. This ripped a hole in my heart. Weeping to hear she’s safe.
      Please let them stay in touch with her owner so she can know her dog is safe. I am sure if you asked Darla, she too, wants to keep in touch.

      I would say few bring in $’s and write such a note. Not excusing it, but it is far more than your typical surrender of a pet.

      God bless … sad story, but at least she gets to retain her life.

      Thank you.

  9. Beth Ross says:

    SAFE!!! Click on the Harris Count Animal Shelter’s Facebook link and it will show you a photo of her with her new foster family!!


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