Secondhand Mutts was founded in 2006 by Becca Riker, a local animal advocate in Cleveland, Ohio. Since its inception, hundreds of dogs have been taken off the street and placed in good homes. Their mission is to respect all dogs by providing shelter, necessary veterinary care, and “every resource possible to ensure they find loving forever homes and a fresh start.”. With over 200 adoptions since 2015, they prove faithful to their promise.
Secondhand Mutts started organically, but unexpectedly. One day, Becca Riker, founder and executive director of the nonprofit adoption center, found a dog tied to her door. She thought, I have a building, I have supplies, there’s no need for a dog to not stay here with us. “It was a no brainer to me,” she says. “Just let the dogs come stay, the more the merrier.
At the time Becca was already running her for-profit business, the Mutt Hutt, where people can bring their dogs for socialization, overnight stays, and grooming and training. She now successfully runs both organizations with a happy heart. At any given time, Secondhand Mutts could have six to 12 dogs in the center. Most of the dogs stay at foster homes while others live on-site at the Mutt Hutt.
The dogs you’ll find at Secondhand Mutts come from a variety of locations: West Virginia, South Carolina, Southern Ohio, as well as places in and around Cleveland. “There are so many animal rescues,” Becca says. “We’re really lucky here in Cleveland that the animal community is very supported.”
Becca enjoys being able to connect with dogs and help them go from scared, street dogs to social and well-behaved pups. “Personally, my favorite part is seeing the dogs that go through that decompression and transition phase, and then blossoming and seeing them go on their way.”
Interested in meeting their pups? Go to a Meet our Mutts event held on the first Saturday of every month at Pet People in Rocky River, the third Saturday of each month at Chagrin Pet & Garden Supply, or check out Tremont Tap House the first Tuesday of the summer months. There’s no better time to stop in for a Yappy Hour, try a “Respect the Dog Ale” and possibly find a new best friend.
2603 Scranton Road
Cleveland, Ohio 44113