The "Freedom for All" march begins at 9am Wednesday in Hidalgo Park, located at 7000 Avenue Q. It's hosted by Barrio Dogs -- an organization that seeks to educate, empower and transform Houston's East End community by raising awareness about proper animal care and the importance of spaying and neutering pets.
Barrio Dogs formed in March 2010 when founder Gloria Medina Zenteno returned home to the Greater East End after years away and saw her old neighborhood overrun by homeless and neglected animals. She said she worked with rescue groups but realized that the community needed a solution addressing the root of the problem. With that belief, Barrio Dogs was born.
"I think residents are fed up with the homeless, unwanted and abused dogs they witness daily in certain parts of the East End like Hidalgo Park," Medina Zenteno said in a release. "Barrio Dogs is desperately trying to spread the word that spay neuter is the only solution to Houston's animal overpopulation. We want to urge residents to spay and neuter their pets and encourage them to call authorities when they see neglected, abused or chained animals. Our goal is to engage residents and local civic and political leaders in finding a solution to these problems that diminish the quality of life in our community."
Participants in the Freedom for All march Wednesday morning will gather in the park and walk through the surrounding neighborhood, then meet back at the park for a rally with speakers and information about low-cost spay and neuter alternatives, proper pet care and tips for reporting animal abuse and neglect.
If you plan to attend, organizers are discouraging people from bringing their own pets on the walk for safety reasons because the area is known for stray and roaming dogs.
To see the map route for the march, visit Barrio Dogs on Facebook.