LINDALE - The Cannery Lindale has teamed up with country singer Miranda Lambert’s MuttNation Foundation, GreaterGood.org and Rescue Rebuild by donating a historical house that they purchased to be used as a pet adoption center, which will be adjacent to the dog park also being built.
The house was moved 400 feet from its original resting place to an open 2-acre lot in the heart of Lindale on Wednesday.
MuttNation and GreaterGood.org are celebrating their 10th anniversaries this year and decided this was the perfect way to collaborate.
“Mutt Nation foundation has been working with dogs now for 10 years and has done very good,” Rick Lambert, Miranda’s father. “We adopted 999 dogs out last year. GreaterGood.org has taken notice of what she has done and they notified us and wanted to do a project with MuttNation because it’s their 10th anniversary also.”
Tyler Junior College's vet tech program also will join in the partnership by maintaining the adoption center and using it to train their students.
“Having an adoption center for the city of Lindale and MuttNation was not in the plans of the card originally,” Lindale City Manager Carolyn Caldwell said. “We didn’t have the funding for it, so we almost didn’t accept the house because of that. But TJC stepped up and TJC is actually going to manage this for us. Once TJC said ‘look we will help you manage it’ then we were able to do this.”
Caldwell said that if it wasn’t for MuttNation and TJC the project would have been scratched. At one point it was scratched and rescheduled for phase two of the multiphase project.
“In our original design of phase one we had a dog park and it was pulled out because of funding,” Caldwell said. “So the Lamberts and MuttNation stepped up and said ‘we would like to do this for you.’ They are developing it in the city park so it will have a dog park behind it and we are going to cut a trail from our main trail and tie the entire 29 acres together.”
Phase two will begin in March 2018. That phase, when MuttNation will match some city funds, will involve adding some water features for the dogs, and things for them to play on.
“We intend for this to be a social gathering place for humans as it is for dogs,” Lambert said. “Dog lovers all have that in common and they want it to be a socialization process for both of them.”
The process for the dog park began four years ago when a mass survey was done by the city of Lindale.
“We did a big survey of what the citizens would like to see,” Caldwell said. “One of the highest scoring items was dog park. It is what we needed, it was what the citizens asked for.”
The adoption center will be known as the MuttNation Station to keep the historic value of the railroad that used to run through the property that the house is on.
“We are going to theme it kind of railroad-themed because the railroad used to run right through here and stopped at Pickers Pavilion to dump out the fruits to be canned at the cannery,” Lambert said. “We are going to keep that theme a little bit. We are going to paint it railroad depot colors and it will be available for community use.”
The house is one of the oldest houses in Lindale. Caldwell said it belonged to one of the city’s first marshals.
“The city was founded in 1905 and I think this house was built either right around the same time that the city was actually founded, or in 20 years of founding of the city,” Caldwell said.
Over the next couple weeks the house will be renovated and the dog park built. Organizers are looking for more volunteers as well as businesses interested in feeding the work crews.
“We are trying to do this so that there is no tax money spent whatsoever by the city,” Lambert said.
The adoption center will have four meet-and-greet rooms where people can interact with the dogs in a comfortable setting.
On Oct. 14, MuttNation Station will have a big adoption event with organizers bringing in dogs that were lost in Hurricane Harvey and are now looking for their forever home.
“We just went down to Houston and took 283 pets out of shelters to make room for the pets that are coming in that are lost from their owners,” Lambert said. “Pets we took had been in there a while and unfortunately some of them were destined for the needle. We don’t like that so we took them out of there. We have dispersed most of them across the United States now. Miranda’s heart is no-kill shelters or low-kill shelters to try to save all the lives we can.”