Founder (and now retired) President Emeritus Terri Haase established “Save the Dals” in 1996, when she and a friend began distribution of educational flyers about Dalmatians. Terri’s motivation was a preemptive measure to the American live-action comedy adventure film “101 Dalmatians” (starring Glenn Close) which was set to release that same year. The movie, which filmed utilizing live Dalmatians and their adorable 99 puppies, set off a wave of impulse-buying of Dalmatian puppies. Shortly after the “cuteness” factor wore off, individuals and families who knew little about the breed, were now faced with real issues like potty and behavioral training; socialization; exercise; and so on.
Then reality set in, and a great majority of innocent Dals were being dumped into animal shelters because simply put, people had bitten off more than they could chew, and were now faced with the long-term commitment and dedication required to care for and love a pet for its lifetime. Thus, the birth of Save the Dals: Terri’s attempt (and legacy) to make her mark saving Dalmatians.
Terri, with her partner in crime (and husband) Bill, played an invaluable, active, and key role for more than 20 years in the rescue, rehabilitation and re-homing (our three R’s) of countless Dals. Their home became the safe-haven where many of the newly rescued Dals commenced the start of the next chapter of their lives. Special kennels, dog runs, and exercise yards were built to help the Dals, many of whom required medical attention and post-rescue vetting, until they were well enough to be placed into “foster” care with one of our volunteers. Terry kept accurate and detailed records of each rescued Dal, while Bill helped wash, feed, walk and care for the dogs. Their legacy will forever live on and we are grateful to both of them.