Houston - On Tuesday, July 10th at approximately 11:30 pm, two Precinct 7 deputies and their Sergeant were responding to an unknown medical emergency on the toll road eastbound at Hillcroft with EMS and HFD on the scene. On the way there, one of the deputies, Deputy Taylor, was re-directed back to the Southeast Toll Plaza for a dog on the toll road. After clearing the unknown medical emergency the other deputy reported back to Southeast Toll Plaza to assist Deputy Taylor with the animal call.
Deputy Taylor advised he was able to shoo the dog away from the roadway before being hit or injured by oncoming traffic. The dog then wandered into the tunnels under the toll road. After several attempts, deputies were able to retrieve the dog from the dangerous tunnels so that would she not be trapped or worse.
Once they had the dog in their possession and discovered that although she was wearing a red collar but not wearing tags to help them identify her owners, the Sergeant on duty attempted to contact the Harris County Animal Control, local animal shelters, and Pearland Animal Control. However, no units were available to assist them since it was after hours. During the day shift the (Harris County Toll Roll Authority) HCTRA has equipped IRT units with pole catchers and kennels but unfortunately there are no IRT units at night, and deputies do not have access to any of these resources.
Deputy Taylor, not feeling comfortable with leaving the lost animal near the Toll Road for fear of her being hit by a car took her to the Humane Society located at 147000 Almeda Road. The deputy released the lost pet behind the shelter where there were other dogs and food and water available. Since it is the first priority of Toll Road deputies to ensure the safety of motorist on the toll road, and because they are not equipped to secure animals or lost pets after hours, the deputy and his supervisor felt the animal shelter was a safer alternative.
Later that evening another Deputy reported that he found a flyer posted looking for a missing dog with three (3) legs with a phone number listed. So, Deputy Taylor put in a call and was able to reach the owners of the dog to inform them of her last location.
Unfortunately, deputies are seeing an increase of stray animals on the Toll Road. This is putting the animals and motorist attempting to keep from hitting them at risk. The deputies followed the HCTRA proper protocol by taking the dog out of harm's way from the dangers on the toll road and from the dangers in the tunnels. Deputies are keeping a lookout for the lost pet now that they have identified an owner.