Sailor works to save dogs


Roo, formerly known as Charlie, enjoys the comfort that comes with being adopted to a loving family.

Martin Luther King Junior once said: “Never, never be afraid to do what’s right, especially if the well-being of a person or animal is at stake. Society’s punishments are small compared to the wounds we inflict on our soul when we look the other way.”

PO1 Alana Power does not look the other way.

She has saved the lives of 70 dogs and five horses through her one-person Su Casa Rescue organization.

“I started the rescue because I wanted to do more for those who could not speak for themselves, those who needed help after having a rough start in life,” says the sailor, who works at Maritime Forces Pacific headquarters.

She chose Su Casa to symbolize the safe homes she provides for her rescues.

“Mi Casa Su Casa means ‘my place is your place’, so I chose something that would signify the rescued are welcome and they have a safe place.”

Most of the dogs come from San Bernadino, California, which has high-kill shelters; they would be euthanized if not saved by her.

She began rescuing horses in 2009 and dogs in October 2013 with Bella and Henry, two puppies that became part of her “forever pack.”

All her rescues come with unique, but grim stories.

One such pup is Roo, a Chihuahua from California.

He weighed 2.5 lb., and was surrendered to the shelter by his owner to be euthanized.

“The owner wanted him killed because something was wrong with his back leg. This little guy’s leg had been broken and not given vet care. He was able to walk and did not appear in pain, but he had definitely sustained injuries,” she says.

He arrived as a small, sickly pup who won her heart as she nursed him back to health.

He was eventually renamed and adopted out to a loving family.

“Within a month he had a wonderful adopter that wanted him. We met and the rest is history.”

While she does the adoption work unaided, she does get help from a small group of committed individuals.

“I have people who donate recyclables, food and money; I have people who come up and help me walk the dogs,” she says.

“But it’s mostly my money, my time, it is my everything.”

Through her connection to the military, PO1 Power has adopted a few dogs to members in the Forces.

To some, the process to adopt may seem arduous, but this is the only way she can be assured a dog is going to a responsible family.  

Interested adopters are matched with a puppy – photos of available pets are on her Facebook page – then visits are set to meet and see if they get along.

“Sometimes many visits are required in order for folks to choose a forever companion. A home visit follows, then the completion of an adoption contract, and then the pup is off to their forever home.”

In certain cases where a family may not want their dog anymore, it must be returned to Su Casa.

“All animals that I rescue are lifetime members of Su Casa and must come back if the details in the adoption contract cannot be met,” she says.

People interested in a rescue dog should visit PO1 Powers Facebook page


Karen Brandon

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