efore you pick up the phone, read this page!  Chances are the answer you are looking for starts here.

Marley’s Mutts receives hundreds of calls a day about dogs needing help.  Due to high volume of calls about stray, rescued or owner surrender dogs, we are not able to return calls about these dogs.  It is not that we don’t care – we do!  We simply have to help the dogs we can and guide our fellow rescuers to other agencies that might be able to help.  Below is our mission statement which explains our purpose and policy.  Also, below is a list of local agencies for you to call for assistance.

Marley’s Mutts Mission:

Marley’s Mutts Dog Rescue is a registered 501c3 Non-Profit Organization that is concentrated on saving the lives of Kern County’s incarcerated canines.   Kern County’s shelters are bursting at the seams and register some of the highest euthanasia rates in the country. We are committed to these shelter dogs simply because they have NO ONE and are closest to death.  These dogs are at the shelter because they have been abandoned, lost, neglected, discarded or abused and many of them have no way out but RESCUE. These dogs are without family, love or representation and we aim to save as many as we can. We are their rescuers, their voice and their future.

Marley’s Mutts Dog Rescue is not taking public found strays or owner surrenders at this time. We do offer assistance on our website with training options, rehoming services, and networking resources. We hope to grow enough in size and capability to one day consider owner surrenders and strays as part of our rescue mission but at this time we feel that our services and skills will be best applied if we prioritize the rescue of  dogs on death row.


Local Animal Control and Rescue Organizations

Kern County Animal Control

201 South Mount Vernon Avenue
 Bakersfield, CA 93307
 Main Number: 661- 321-3000Emergency:  661-861-3110



SPCA of Kern County

3000 Gibson St.

Bakersfield, CA 93308



Kern Humane Society

2111 Brundage Lane

Bakersfield, CA 93304

(661) 325-2589


Alpha Canine Sanctuary

Bakersfield, CA 93308




H.A.L.T (Helping Animals Live Tomorrow)

P.O. Box 733

Bakersfield, CA 93302


Delano Animal Control

1525 Mettler Avenue.

Delano, CA



Lake Isabella Animal Shelter

14891 Highway 178

Lake Isabella, CA 93240


Mojave Animal Shelter923 Poole Street, Mojave Airport
  Mojave, CA 93501
  Main Number: (661) 824-1030

Shafter Animal Control

 18849 S. Shafter AvenueShafter, CA  93263 661-746-2140 - shelter

661-746-8500   Service Calls


Taft Animal Control

1080 E. Ash

Taft, CA

Valerie Madsen, 661-763-1227


Tehachapi Humane Society

21600 Golden Star, Unit #3

Tehachapi, CA 93561



Wasco Animal Shelter

5409 7th St.
Wasco, CA 93280

Email: Christina Anderson  [email protected]


Kernville Contact Information

Animal Control                 661-549-0180

Animal Shelter                 661-378-1131


Ridgecrest Animal Shelter

411 San Bernardino Blvd

Ridgecrest, CA 93555




Safety first!

Don’t cause a traffic accident

You can’t help an animal if you become injured in the process. Look in your rear-view mirror before braking, turn on your signal, pull your car completely off the road, turn off the ignition, set the parking brake, and put on the hazard lights. If you have emergency flares, prepare to use them.

 Catching her 

Consider the safety of the animal. A strange, frightened, and possibly sick or injured animal can behave unpredictably. A sudden move on your part, even opening your car door, can spook her and cause her to bolt—possibly right onto the highway. If the animal looks or acts threatening, or, if for any reason, you feel uneasy about the situation, stay in your car.  Call animal control or police for help and keep an eye on the animal until help arrives.


Step 1 (If you know you are likely to help a stray animal)

Prepare a kit to keep in the car. This should include: dog treats, a leash, a blanket, food and water, bowls and a first-aid kit for pets.

Step 2

Attempt to approach any stray dogs with caution. Without knowing their history with other people, you could be bitten if they believe you are a threat.

When moving toward the animal, speak calmly to reassure her. Move slowly.  Make sure she can see you at all times as you approach, and perhaps entice her to come to you by offering a strong-smelling food such as canned tuna or dried liver.

Step 3

Allow the dog to get used to your presence, talking soothingly and holding out your hand to allow him to smell you. Allow him to come to you. Do not attempt to pet him right away, as he may be skittish and take off, or attempt to bite you.

(If the animal is injured, Signal approaching vehicles to slow down if you cannot confine the animal, or divert traffic around him if he appears to be injured and is still on the roadway.)

Step 4

Give your new friend a dog treat or two to prove your friendliness. This can be especially helpful in luring the dog to safety if he is hungry or starving.

Step 5

Slip a leash or soft rope around the dog’s neck after he has come to see you as an ally and lead him back to your car or your home. If he acts agitated at all in the car, do not attempt to drive him anywhere as it could cause an accident — call Animal Control at this point. But if he is calm, secure the leash to the back of a seat so he cannot move around in the car.

 Step 6

Give the dog water immediately as he may be dehydrated. Give him food if he seems hungry, and especially if he appears starved or thin.

Step 7

Contact a shelter or veterinarian if you are able to get the dog home safely. If you wish to keep the dog, he should receive an exam and shots. The veterinarian may also be able to find a microchip, if the dog has one, to locate an owner. If you wish to give the dog up for adoption, the shelter can advise you how to bring him in.

Call for backup

If you’re not able to safely restrain the animal, call the local animal control agency (in rural areas, call the police or sheriff). Do so whether or not the animal is injured, and whether or not she is wearing an identification tag. Leave your phone number with the dispatcher, and try to get an estimate of how long it may take someone to respond. If possible, stay on the scene to keep an eye on the dog or cat until help arrives. Make sure you report to authorities precisely where the animal is by using road names, mile markers or landmarks.


If you are able to transport the animal, and cannot take her home, take her to the nearest animal shelter. If you plan to keep the animal in the event no owner is found, notify animal control that you have the animal or that you have taken her to a veterinary hospital for treatment. You can usually place a free “found” ad in your local newspaper. Keep any identification, such as collar or tags, should any question arise later.

If you decide to take the animal home

If you decide to try to find the owner yourself, be sure to  contact your local animal shelter or animal control office first. This will give you an opportunity to let the appropriate agency know that you have the animal and to provide a description to them, in case the owner contacts them. Also, have the animal scanned for a microchip at your local veterinarian or shelter; this quick ID check could help you find the owner right away.

Before bringing the animal home, make sure you can keep your resident animals separate; the found animal could be sick, fearful, or aggressive with other animals. Once you have him safely at your home, take pictures and create a “found pet” flyer to post around the area in which the animal was found. You can also post notices at veterinary hospitals and on web sites such as petfinder.com.

If you’ve tried to find the owner without success, but are unable to keep the animal long-term, you can try to re-home the animal yourself.