Desperate need for foster families in El Paso to care for animal cruelty victims

Rusty is looking for a foster home after police found him in an abandoned car with a metal chain embedded in his neck.

A detective with El Paso police’s animal cruelty unit said she is desperate for foster families. Law N Paws has taken in many animal cruelty victims recently, and says the number of incoming animals who need foster homes is increasing with the warm weather.

Rusty, for example, was found in an abandoned car last month on Jobe Road, and is looking for a family to love.

“In the police department, our air support spotted a dog inside an abandoned vehicle in the county. Thank God for some civilians who were out there on their quads getting Rusty and bringing him into Animal Services,” said Detective Vanessa Acosta, founder of Law N Paws. “I don’t know how he survived in the desert that long.”

Acosta works in El Paso Police Department’s animal cruelty unit. On the side, she started Law N Paws to help find homes for cruelty victims such as like Rusty.

“We want to protect our victims because they don’t have a voice. We need to be their voice and protect them and give them a second chance at life,” Acosta said.

They named him Rusty because he was found starving and emaciated with a rusty chain embedded in his neck.

“It was embedded into his skin. It’s a cruelty. That’s a torture because they caused the pain on that dog. It was a metal chain that instead of putting them in a collar like you’re supposed to properly put, they put the actual chain on his neck,” Acosta explained. “I gather that it was from when he was a puppy, because he grew into that chain. They can eventually die if not caught in time. Because it’s a poison in their bloodstream.”

She said Animal Services didn’t have the space for a dog like this.

“Unfortunately, a lot of these cruelty animals, they’re seen as broken,” Acosta said.

“Our animals aren’t always the fluffy, cute, adorable dogs that you want to see. Our babies have, for the most part, a difficult past,” said Tia Rose, a foster mother with Law N Paws.

Rose has fostered 15 dogs within the last year through Law N Paws. All 15 dogs were placed in homes. She also is a foster coordinator and rehabilitator with the rescue.

“It’s kind of a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it’s absolutely wonderful to be able to see them find that forever home, have that connection,” Rose said. “Then on the other hand, it’s kind of sad because I don’t get to have that love in my home anymore. But it creates a space so that we can continue to do the good work that we do here in El Paso.”

Laws N Paws is paying for nightly dog boarding right now because there are not enough foster families.

“We need foster homes and we need donations. We are a donation-based organization. We do not have a property. So all of our fosters go into homes,” Rose said.

Rusty is in training right now with Liam, who was left at a bus stop in Central El Paso.

“His owner just left him. We don’t know who this person was because unfortunately, Liam wasn’t microchipped,” Acosta said.

Liam and Rusty are both waiting for someone to take them home.

“Liam deserves a second chance. He’s super friendly, he’ll get along with other dogs,” Acosta said.

If you want to be a foster parent for one of these victims, reach out to Law N Paws on Facebook or email Both Rusty and Liam come with updated shots and microchips, and a free training class.

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