There are many angels in the pet rescue world. I’m consistently amazed by some people’s willingness to donate their time, resources and skills to better an animal’s life. It’s heartwarming. Not to get too sentimental here, but its stories like these that renew my faith in humanity. When you spend time researching and writing about animals, you come across some pretty horrific articles. Then, thankfully, you read stories about organizations that take the bitter taste out of your mouth. These organizations and the volunteers who make it all happen are heroes.
Geography can be a problem when it comes to abandoned pets that need new homes and people who are searching for a pet to share their life with. Generally speaking, South Carolina, Georgia, North Carolina and California have an overabundance of animals in the shelter system. Conversely, states like Oregon, Washington, New Jersey, New York and even Florida typically have more potential adoptees than animals. Solving this logistical problem and finding a way to get the pets to people who could adopt them used to be impossible. But now, thanks to pet flight rescue organizations, all that is changing.
Pet flight rescue organizations are a fairly new concept. These non-profit groups find a way to connect general aviation pilots with animal rescue volunteers to fly homeless and abandoned pets to safe havens; to areas where they can find forever families that will take good care of them, feed them a healthy pet food like CANIDAE, and offer them a lifetime of love and companionship.
It takes a certain kind of heart to rescue dogs, and Diane Perrigo is all about that kind of heart. Living between two countries, Diane and her husband Alan have spread the care across the border as well, spending time in both California and Baja, Mexico.
Diane remembers having dogs as part of her family when she was growing up, including a St. Bernard and Dachshunds that were pheasant hunting dogs of her fathers, but the importance of rescuing dogs in need did not hit home until about 20 years ago.
Her basic philosophy behind her dog rescue efforts is, “If I can help get a dog in need to a good home, I want to.” Her time and efforts include offering temporary foster care, transportation for dogs on their way to a new forever home, and helping to find a home for dogs in need. “I want to prevent the unnecessary killing of so many unwanted, abused or neglected dogs,” she told me. She believes that somewhere there is a home for each of these dogs, and she wants to help find them that home. Over the years, Diane has helped rehome dozens of dogs.
There are numerous dog rescues that are worthy of mention. Today we are showing our appreciation and spreading the word about Gentle Ben’s Giant Breed Rescue. I was able to catch up with the very busy Noreen from Gentle Ben’s and ask her a few questions. The more I learned about this program, the more enamored I became of it. I love the idea of rescuing big dogs and fostering them in the home.
Gentle Ben’s Giant Breed Rescue is a non-profit 501 C (3) large breed dog rescue located in west Pennsylvania. They take in unwanted large breed dogs that may end up in shelters or are abandoned through no fault of their own. The rescue also helps families who have lost jobs, lost homes or have medical conditions which make it impossible for them to keep their beloved pet. Dogs are welcomed into Gentle Ben’s home, provided with veterinary care and given lots of love and reassurance. The families in these situations are kept up to date with emails and photos of their pet. When a dog is taken in it becomes part of the family whether it comes from a loving home or has been abandoned. Either way, the goal is to nurture and love the dog to keep him happy and healthy.
Although I’m not in the market for a new dog at the moment, when the time comes I will get a rescue dog. There are plenty of great dogs in need of a forever home out there. But what if you’re looking for a rescue dog to adopt, yet still want to get a purebred or a specific breed? That’s when you need to know how to find a rescue program for the type of dog you’re looking for.
Check with Breeders
Many dog breeders are approached when a dog needs a home, but they can’t take in all the dogs of a breed so they need to be able to tell people who to get in touch with for a rescue. Because breeders specialize in a specific breed, they often know a lot of people who deal with the same kind of dogs. When a person cares deeply about a breed and wants to be helpful, they will know of a reputable rescue where you can find the dog you’re looking for.
Simply use your search engine to find rescue groups and then narrow down the search with the breed you are looking for. BUT keep in mind that not all rescues are the same. Do a little research, check out their website, and try to locate people who have worked with the rescue to make sure it is a reputable program. Facebook is a great way to find out what people think of an organization and what their experiences have been.
There’s nothing worse than suddenly discovering your pet is missing. I know from experience how hard it is to search for a lost pet when you have no idea which way they went or where on earth they could be. In the past, all you could do was hang posters, talk to neighbors, walk the area around your home, and worry. It may not take the worry away, but there is a newly launched network that may be able to help. The Lost Pet Alert Network may be your best hope if you’re searching for a lost pet.
You can find animal shelters in every community across the country, in rural and city locations. Some are small and others are quite large. Over the last several years, pet populations in shelters have increased because of the slow economy. The Lost Pet Alert Network was launched on December 5, 2011 in an effort to help pet owners find lost pets that have made it into a shelter or rescue organization.
The best tool we have as pet owners that can assure a lost pet’s return is the microchip. Other than a tattoo that can help you identify your pet, a microchip contains pertinent information someone scanning you pet needs in order to return him to you. It has become a practice for animal shelters and rescue organizations to scan pets entering their facilities to see if there is an implanted chip. After all, it’s to their advantage if they can quickly return a pet to his family. Shelters depend on donations to operate and the slow economy has also slowed donations to many shelters across the country, leaving a lot of them struggling with their budgets.
It can be difficult for adult cats in animal shelters to find their forever home, since many people prefer to adopt a cute playful kitten instead. For cats with special needs, the chance of being adopted is almost nil. Blind Cat Rescue & Sanctuary (BCRS) was started in 2005 to provide a safe home for blind cats that are deemed unadoptable by regular shelters. This lifetime care facility for blind cats is located in St. Pauls, North Carolina on a 24-acre farm that’s also home to numerous horses, donkeys, chickens and turkeys.
Blind Cat Rescue is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that gives a second chance at life to kitties that have been certified by a veterinarian as being blind. Cats with 20% or less sight are accepted as blind. Most of the cats that come to the sanctuary will stay for the remainder of their life, although they could potentially be adopted out if the right family came along.
As often happens in life, Blind Cat Rescue’s inception came about through a twist of fate. In 2000, the organization’s founder, Alana Miller, was volunteering at a local rescue group with her daughter Stephanie. At an adoption event, a man brought in a tiny kitten he’d found; its eyes were crusted shut due to a severe eye infection. The rescue group didn’t have the resources to accept the kitten, and when the man said he was going to abandon it in the parking lot, Alana made a split-second decision to take it herself. From that day on, the Millers seemed to be a magnet for blind cats in need of a safe haven. When Alana realized they had become the go-to resource shelters would call when they had a blind cat, she decided to fully commit to the mission. Now, Blind Cat Rescue offers a safe, clean, climate-controlled home for approximately 40 special needs felines.
The personal opinions and/or use of trade, firm, corporation or brand names, in this blog is for the information and convenience of the reader. Such use does not constitute an official endorsement or approval by CANIDAE® Natural Pet Food Company of any product or service to the exclusion of others that may be suitable. All opinions in this blog are those of the individual authors and not necessarily of CANIDAE® Natural Pet Food Company.