Friday, May 29, 2015

HSTJ’s Spay/Neuter Programs - 2015

Each year we touch the lives of about 5,000 animals through our many programs, and one of the most complex is the Spay/Neuter Program. Sterilization is one of the main concerns for HSTJ because it contributes directly towards reducing the overpopulation of suffering animals.

How are the Spay/Neuter programs structured?
We are an all-volunteer association and all volunteers and officers receive no financial compensation. Therefore, and in order to maintain the functionality and consistency of the different S/N programs held year-round, we follow the same protocol for most of them.
The process is simple and involves Mexican and American volunteers who:
1) Locate an area, 2) organize several Itchy-Scratchy Clinics* to promote the S/N program, 3) find an appropriate location within that community and schedule the S/N Clinic, and finally 4) contact volunteers.
*SEE THE SECTION “The importance of   Itchy-Scratchy Clinics”

What different programs are there?
Mobile HSTJ Sterilization Clinics are scheduled throughout the year in some neighborhoods of Tijuana based on need. This program targets the general public in the poorest areas of Tijuana and sterilizes an average of 60 pets per clinic.  

Centralized Spay/Neuter Clinics are organized once a month at the HSTJ Center, which is a small facility that provides free and/or low cost veterinary treatment for individual rescuers and families with limited  resources. This program sterilizes an average of 40 pets per clinic. 

HSTJ Center is open during regular business hours and is prepared to offer free and/or low cost sterilization for rescues. It is conveniently located at Calle Mexicali in Colonia Buenos  Aires Norte. This program sterilizes an average of 60 rescued pets per month.

What are the benefits of each program?
Mobile HSTJ Sterilization Clinics
This program enables us to assess the need in various areas and expand our outreach in these more impoverished parts of Tijuana that would have no other means of controlling  animal population. Secondly, we take advantage of veterinarians that cannot be present everyday but can dedicate a full day doing surgeries. Also, a mobile hospital can be set up in an area where the greatest need is at that time. 
Centralized Spay/Neuter Clinics
We are able to use the HSTJ Center to set up mobile clinics on a regular basis, combining the benefits of mobile clinics with the added benefit of a modest, but well-supplied, veterinary clinic.

HSTJ Center
With the HSTJ Center open during regular business hours, rescuers do not have to wait for our monthly clinics to treat or spay & neuter new rescues. 

 The average for each of the past five years has been approximately 600   sterilizations per year. The overall increase is noticeable, but more so is the increase in the cat-to-dog ratio, as more and more people are convinced of the need to sterilize their cats as well as their dogs.
We are firmly convinced that all the effort volunteers put into organizing and carrying out these programs is completely worthwhile because this resource is continually available to the people who need it the most.

The Importance of Itchy-Scratchy Clinics
The “Itchy-Scratchy Clinic” is a street clinic for the community where volunteers are trained to provide treatment for internal and external parasites as well as minor injuries; pet owners are given 3 lb. bags of dry dog/cat food. All of this is a free service, yet those with resources are asked to consider a small donation to help with the cost of medicine. This program is essential. Through it we touch the lives of many animals who desperately need these services. It also gives us the opportunity to educate the public and encourage them to bring treated animals to our Spay/Neuter Clinics.

On behalf of Friends of HSTJ, we would like to thank our many supporters because without them, programs such as this one would not be possible.
-Spring 2015

Mateo gets a second chance

While cars were stopped at a red light, Mateo, a dark brown lab mix, limped through the crosswalk with a blood soaked face and neck.
A man in one of the vehicles quickly rescued Mateo and took him to an HSTJ vet who discovered that Mateo’s right ear was sliced in two.  In addition, an old injury was causing the limp, and he had severe dental problems and a skin infection as well.
Mateo received treatment for all of this and is making a steady recovery. He is currently in a foster home and is looking for his furrever home.

For information on adopting Mateo, please email

Junior the Pitt

HSTJ continues to support individual rescuers with food, supplies, and veterinary attention. The stories you are about to read are true and are happening right now. As your eyes read on, keep in mind that it is only thanks to our many supporters that this labor of love can continue.

Junior, a two year old pit mix, was abused and abandoned by his original owner and lived on the streets for several days before making his way to a small food cart. The woman who owned it fed Junior and noticed a large wound on his forehead. She took him to a vet who cleaned the wound and put him on antibiotics. But even with plenty of food and rest Junior was not showing any visible recovery. His rescuer sought help amid social media.
HSTJ volunteers responded, making arrangements so that Junior was immediately reevaluated. X-rays were taken and revealed a skull fracture and partial bone loss that left part of the brain exposed.
Some neighbors recognized Junior and exposed his abuser, who had repeatedly beat him on the head with a hammer before leaving and abandoning him. His whereabouts are not known.
An HSTJ vet performed surgery twice and was able to repair the damage. Junior is in a foster home and under strict and continuous observation for any possible signs of neurological problems. He continues to recover and is thriving with the affectionate care of his rescuer.  -Spring 2015

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Support our spay & neuter clinics. Your contribution of  $5 per ticket will help us continue to make our clinics possible and you will have the chance to win one of the following exciting prizes:
1)      Gift Card to Warby Parker ($95 value)
2)      Gift Card and Beauty Product Box ($120 value) courtesy of Whole Foods
3)      Gift Cards to Tower 23, Crest CafĂ©, Lotus Thai and other ($125 value)
4)      Surprise gift (fun and exciting = priceless)
Play and Win while you help animals with Friends of the Humane Society of TJ!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

In Memoriam of Olive Walker, Guardian of the Animals.

It is with profound grief that we mourn the passing of Mrs. olive Walker, a great lady and advocate for the animals of the world. Olive was our friend, benefactress, and heroine of the animals of HSTJ. She was instrumental in assuring the success of many HSTJ programs. We invite you to celebrate her life with us. We will never forget her.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Thank you Petco Friars Road!!

HSTJ wants to thank our many amazing supporters out there and we want to shine the light on one group in particular. The amazing staff at the PETCO on Friars Road (Margaret, Brandy, Sharon, Kevin, Jose and Tammy) who are so dedicated to helping out animals in San Diego and Tijuana. We hold adoption events at their location on most weekends and they do all they can to make sure that our events are successful, which has lead to many of our animals finding perfect furever homes. We are very lucky to have their support and we wanted all of you to know just how great they are. We know that it takes a village to really save more furry lives so please give your support/business to the PETCO on Friars Rd.and let them know how much we appreciate them.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Happy Holidays from HSTJ! Its Our End of Year Report! 2013

Dear Friends of HSTJ:

As the calendar year comes to a close, it’s time to evaluate our programs and plan for the new year. As a supporter and FRIEND, the board of directors invites you to participate in this evaluation by sharing your comments with us. This letter will provide you with a general summary of activities. For those who want specific details of programs and events, I encourage you to read the periodic reports that we post on our blog (

The past year saw:
  • a substantial increase in the number of spays/neuters and adoptions;
  • a breakthrough in legal action against animal cruelty;
  • the establishment of a fixed site clinic for rescuers working in the Tijuana area;
  • an expansion of the use of public, family community centers throughout the Tijuana area where we set up monthly mobile spay/neuter clinics;
  • the expansion of neighbor sites for the Itchy-Scratchy parasite and mange control clinics; and
  •  the establishment of an animal advocate legal fund to promote the enforcement of those city regulations that we fought so hard to establish.
Before I offer specifics about some of the aforementioned programs, I’ve included the required summary report that FHSTJ includes in its annual 990 report to the IRS. It will give you some idea of the amount of animals that benefit from the programs that you are supporting. [see directly below]

“During the past year, Friends of Humane Society de Tijuana [FHSTJ ] provided 85% of the financial support for the Humane Society de Tijuana's [HSTJ] programs that

performed 803 low cost and free spay/neuter surgeries; provided free services  for 3396 pets of the poor and street animals by treating them for parasites, mange and malnutrition; supported individual rescuers having a collective daily census of 200 animals with free food, basic medication and spay/neuter surgeries; distributed 75,000 pounds of pet food at clinics and among rescuers and facilitated 107 pet adoptions in Mexico. FHSTJ placed 43 hardcore rescues in permanent homes in the San Diego area. FHSTJ continues to provide support for HSTJ’s role as a recognized organization advocating the enforcement of  city animal welfare regulations through its work with the city and state government to reform dog pound conditions and the prohibition of minors at bull fights . This was accomplished with a corps of 40 volunteers who supplement the corps of 32 Mexican volunteers.  These programs continue to benefit communities on both sides of the American and Mexican border through efforts to control animal disease and animal overpopulation.”
Animal Advocate Legal Fund

Finally, after eight years of pleading and pushing the functionaries in the legal system, we saw the first animal cruelty case go to court. While the outcome was mixed [full details are in a special report on the blog], the fact that it went to court is a major breakthrough. Up to now, the city prosecuting attorney would not take a case saying that there was no precedent and until a judge was willing to accept such a case, they would not pursue the issue. Now, with this first case, it is time to push for more prosecutions of people violating the animal cruelty laws. We are in the process of meeting with the Mexican lawyers who took the first case pro bono. Our funds are limited but we are setting aside a modest fund to cover filing fees, local transportation of witnesses and other incidental expenses. We cannot expect the lawyers to cover these while they take on the cases pro bono. Last year’s donation barely covered our regular expenses so this money will have to come out of our modest reserves so as not to decrease the number of animals served in the other programs. Please consider a donation to support the legal action fund so that we don’t have to deplete our modest reserves that are necessary in case of a natural disaster such as occurred in Mexicali a few years ago.

Fixed Site Clinic

As I have emphasized to our donors ever since we started, we choose not to have a shelter for several reasons. The most important are the ongoing costs and the
controls imposed by the city of Tijuana. To run a decent shelter you need a lot of space and personnel. It cannot be run only with volunteers. It is expensive and even with funds there is no guarantee that it would be a healthy, loving environment for the animals. Then, there is another obstacle in Tijuana. City regulations require any shelter, public or private, to be under the direct supervision of the director of the city pound and his supervising agency, the department of health. These are the two entities that we have been trying to reform for years.  It would put the shelter at the disposal of the functionaries for their use and we would have to participate in the very practices that we have been fighting to reform. To solve the problem, we run mobile clinics and support several individual rescuers all throughout the Tijuana area. Now, we need to expand the services for these individual rescuers by providing them with a fixed location where they can bring their rescues without having to wait until the next mobile clinic. To do this, we have launched the Tijuana Animal Project.  It is a modest rented facility in the center of the greater Tijuana area where the rescuers can meet volunteer veterinarians and other volunteers to initiate treatments before they take animals to their homes for foster care.  In addition, the site will provide a permanent clinic for HSTJ spay/neuter campaigns.

Of course, we will still be offering monthly mobile spay/neuter clinics in the poorest areas of the city as well as the bi-monthly Itchy-Scratchy mobile clinics.


Since its inception, HSTJ has recognized that our organization alone cannot do all it takes to help the abandoned and distressed animals found all over the city. We have
encouraged groups to form around their special animal interests much as they do in first world cities. We have actively supported several rescue groups that have formed over the years. We supply them basic materials, food and spay/neuter surgeries; but, many of these organizations function only for a limited time and dissolve.  We continue to encourage individual rescuers to form rescue groups like those that exist in our sister city of San Diego.

Remember, HSTJ and FHSTJ are all volunteer organizations. We get no government support. We operate on a meager budget. Nobody receives a salary or other type of compensation. Our compensation is the satisfaction of knowing that we have saved animals from a life of starvation, disease, pain and fear.

Your generous support in the past has allowed HSTJ to make steady progress  each year. Please don’t let that progress slow down. The animals are counting on YOU!

On behalf of the animals, I extend a sincere THANK YOU.

Richard Massa

President, Friends of Humane Society de Tijuana
Delegado Directivo, Humane Society de Tijuana

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

HSTJ's November 17, 2013 Sterilization Clinic

Free Spay & Neuter clinic in the Colonia Castillo area of Tijuana

Sunday, November 17; HSTJ held a spay & neuter clinic in the Colonia Castillo area of Tijuana. The focus of this clinic was to provide support and help for local independent rescuers and some groups. A large group of volunteers from the Humane Society of San Diego came down and helped out at the clinic, assisting in the pre-op and post-op areas. Care was given to 56 animals. Thanks to all the volunteers who made possible this campaign

To see photos from this clinics visit: HSTJ's November 17, 2013 Sterilization Clinic

Monday, December 9, 2013

Article About HSTJ Posted in San Diego Pets Magazine by Mimi Pollack

­Thank you Mimi Pollack for writing this great article which will be posted in San Diego Pets Magazine

Animals don’t have nationalities. They will love you no matter who you are and where you come from. Unfortunately, humans’ treatment of animals varies greatly, depending on the country and culture. There are many strays and homeless animals in Mexico. The dogs and cats of Tijuana and Baja California, Mexico are lucky to have an organization here in San Diego, called Friends of Humane Society of Tijuana. This organization was founded to give direct support to the Humane Society of Tijuana and the same dedicated group of volunteers oversees both. Their mission is to promote the well being of the animals of Tijuana and Baja, including the more than 7,000 stray dogs, by setting up spay/ neuter clinics, “itchy/scratchy” clinics, giving assistance to people who rescue homeless dogs and cats, and programs to educate the public.

Up until 2006, there was not even a Humane Society in Tijuana. That changed when Richard Massa, a retired dean and vice president of San Diego City College, Leticia Coto, a long time animal rights activist in Baja, and Alejandro Arias, a local lawyer, merged their vision and energies and founded the society. Leticia Coto is now the acting president. They do not have a building or shelter, but rather rely on dedicated fosters on both sides of the border who help them. All their clinics are also mobile which enables them to go around Tijuana and northern Baja, and to some of the poorer neighborhoods where there is a great need for their services. They want to foster more responsible ownership that isn’t always there by explaining the importance of spaying and neutering, deworming, using flea medications and even just the basics like food, a bowl of water, and some shelter. They try to have four clinics a month which includes neutering almost 50 animals, 70% dogs and 30% cats. Their organization is strictly non-profit and they rely on donations that mostly come from San Diego and this side of the border.

Because of this, in 2007, with the help of Nicole Riley and Michelle S. Grycner, Friends of Humane Society de Tijuana was founded. Richard Massa is the president of Friends of HSTJ, Michelle is the vice-president and Nicole is the secretary. This organization was set up to give support to HSTJ, and they help to organize volunteers and veterinarians for the low cost spay/ neuter clinics, and the itchy/scratchy clinics where they treat the animals for fleas, ticks, mange, and parasites. They also find suitable fosters, set up adoptions of the rescued street animals, run the adoption events they hold at local shopping centers, including Whole Foods in Hillcrest and Petco on Friars Road, and help raise funds to pay for all the bills and supplies. Finally, they are also promoting humane legislation and working to sustain suspension of electrocutions at public dog pounds in Mexico. They are the angels working to protect the animals of Tijuana and Baja, provide them with a better life, and to promote more responsible pet ownership among the people. It is a daunting task. They have received funds from the Petco Foundation, but they are always in need of donations, supplies, medicines, and people to foster and volunteer. To find out how you can help and when their next event will be, go to their website They also have a Facebook page here.

Read more: San Diego Pets Magazine - Friends

Friday, November 1, 2013

HSTJ's October 2013 Clinic

During the month of October HSTJ volunteers conducted a sterilization clinic in the Colonia Camino Verde on October 27, 2013 fixing a total of 26 animals!