Orvis Animal Care Grant

Whitman County Humane Society: Orvis Animal Care Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

The grant money that we received was used for purchasing new enrichment items for the dogs that are living at or will come to Whitman County Humane Society. These items are being used to make the dogs’ stays more enjoyable and make them more adoptable!

Some of the items that were purchased included Petstages Dogwood Stick chew toys and a Rubbermaid tote to contain multiple toys that now lives in our play yard so the staff and volunteers have quick and easy access to toys to provide for the dogs during that enrichment activity. Quite a few food enrichment items were purchased that included Lickimats, a Trixie Mad Scientist food windmill, a Foobler ball, chain belt sets to make frozen treats to hang from the fences, and SmartBones calming chews to help keep the dogs busy while helping to keep them calm in an environment as stressful as a shelter.

One item from our original proposal that was not purchased was popsicle molds. This decision was made due to the item that we were wanting to purchase no longer being available and other options were more expensive than we were willing to spend.

Play sand and a flirt pole were also purchased, which allow the dogs to experience new physical activities, from digging in sand to jumping and chasing the fleece lure on the flirt pole. To stimulate sensory enrichment, a portable speaker that plays calming music was purchased, as well as windchimes. The dogs have enjoyed listening to sounds that were not other dogs barking.

The initial proposal put the items that we wanted to purchase at $959.23, and we requested the full $1,000 to account for changes in price and shipping for the items. When ordering the items, quite a few were under the price that was initially seen and reported. This allowed for funds that otherwise would not be used if solely going off our proposal to purchase other items that were not initially included. In the effort to not waste any grant money that we received, we purchased new gentle leaders, easy-walk harnesses, and chain leashes. These items are being used to train the dogs to walk on a loose leash — a characteristic that makes a dog more adoptable! Some dogs that come to us can be very destructive and mouthy towards a leash; a chain leash discourages the dog from grabbing the leash and pulling on it and/or chewing through it.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

This grant has helped our dogs experience more positive interactions with the staff and volunteers. Before, we did not have many options in terms of enrichment. What the dogs had before were old and highly chewed-up toys, broken puzzle feeders, and KONGS. Now the dogs who come into our care have more ways to work their brains and bodies. The new food enrichment items allow for the dogs to get their meals in new and fun ways! New chew toys give the dogs something that they can chew and munch on. The grant has also helped allow the dogs to get more exercise with having more durable leashes and harnesses while also using the time as a training period so they know how to walk on a leash when they are adopted.

How many pets did this grant help?

Since the receipt of this grant we have helped 18 dogs, with more to come as more dogs come to our shelter.

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

In early January, a dog named Pippin was surrendered to our shelter. We knew he was an anxious guy, but we never anticipated how difficult his shelter stay would be for him. We saw a young border collie with happy eyes on day one, and that quickly changed. He absolutely shut down in the shelter. Within his first week here, he bit one of our staff members. We discovered that Pippin was incredibly food-aggressive and in the shelter felt as though his resources were going to be taken from him.

Of course, once he had a bite history, finding him a home took a long time. We found ways to work around him and try to grow his confidence with us. Our resources were limited, and our toys and puzzles were too worn down to stimulate Pippin in the ways he needed.

With training and all the new toys and enrichment activities that we were able to purchase with the Orvis Animal Care Grant, Pippin started to show us those happy eyes again.

On August 4, Pippin found his happy ending. His new “mom” had been following him for months. She put in the work and did the research to help make Pippin’s transition to the home a successful one. We are so glad we were able to give Pippin what he needed with your generous gift and start him on the path of rehabilitation and help him become confident enough to overcome his initial fears so much so that he was finally adopted!

Our Lil' Bit of Heaven Animal Rescue & Sanctuary: Orvis Animal Care Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

The monies from the Orvis grant were used to purchase a sound system with multiple speakers for the main campus kennel, soothing CDs for the dogs, and problem-solving toys for the dogs.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

Soothing music now flows through the 12 audio speakers that line the perimeter of the main kennel and helps the dogs calm down. The West Paw problem-solving toys help to keep the dogs occupied and entertained. The toys are dishwasher-safe, challenging for the dogs, and are very durable.

How many pets did this grant help?

211

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Larry (first photo) is a senior dog who has shown some signs of depression. Jerky treats were wedged into the bottom of the West Paw Zogoflex Toppl treat-dispensing toy and given to Larry (second photo). Right away, Larry perked up, manipulated the toy with his paws, opened it up and spent an hour rescuing the treats that were wedged in the bottom. That was a long period of time that Larry was engaged in play and he was gratified when he retrieved all of the jerky. Larry has not been adopted as of this time, but he is a candidate for our Forever Foster Care program and we have been looking for a foster home for him. You can meet Larry here.

Muncie Animal Care & Services: Orvis Animal Care Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

We used Petfinder Foundation grant monies to purchase agility equipment and toys that can be enjoyed over and over, and are sturdy and washable, to enrich our dogs’ exercise time.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

Outside time is so vitally important to our dogs mentally, emotionally and physically, and the equipment purchased is making their play moments even more positive. Since we have no shaded areas in the dog areas, we installed canopies in the corners of the play yards. On hot and sunny days, the dogs can enjoy the outside longer since they are not in constant direct sunlight and have shade available for them to relax under. The agility equipment also encourages potential adopters to interact and spend more time with our dogs. We want our dogs’ stays at MAC&S to be a loving and stimulating. The agility items will help keep them upbeat, active and more engaging to potential adopters.

How many pets did this grant help?

1,125 dogs

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Beretta is a very active German shepherd who has had an extended stay at the shelter. He came in as a neglect case and is waiting for a court date to determine if he can be returned to the owner or be placed on our adoption floor. Beretta is so smart. Until we had the agility equipment, he didn’t have much to play with on his own in our exercise yards. He was frustrated and full of energy in his kennel. Now he can discover the different activities available to him. He is happier and more mentally stimulated.

Spokane Humane Society: Orvis Animal Care Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

We purchased six foldable dog pools and three kink-free hoses to provide our dogs with some good clean fun while they await their forever homes!

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

Thanks to the Petfinder Foundation and the Orvis Animal Care Grant, we’re able to provide dogs with a fun enrichment option when our weather permits. We have 76 lakes and more than a dozen rivers within a one-hour drive of our shelter, so learning which dogs like water also helps us match them with outdoor enthusiasts looking for furry friends to share adventures near or on the water! Your funding has generated a gift to our volunteers and staff, too. Because we are driven by our love for animals, seeing a shelter dog have fun is a heartfelt reward. Nothing is better than seeing a dog have fun!

How many pets did this grant help?

20 to date, but we expect it will be in the hundreds over the life of the pools!

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

King is a 6-year-old, 51-lb. terrier mix who came to the Spokane Humane Society as a transfer from an overcrowded shelter. The sweet goofball has a lot of energy, and thanks to grant funding by the Petfinder Foundation and the Orvis Animal Care Grant, we learned that he LOVES the water! We’re hoping this insight helps us find him just the right home with someone who enjoys the outdoors and water too. We’re sure the owner willing to give King love, boundaries, and access to water will make him one lucky dog. You can meet King here.

Homeward Animal Shelter: Orvis Animal Care Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

The money we received from the Orvis Animal Care Grant was used to purchase supplies for our new dog-enrichment program. Items purchased included a CD player (to play soothing music), baking extracts (to create unique smells in the dogs’ kennels), treat and food puzzles of various types and sizes, silicone molds to make ice-cube treats, and balls for a ball pit to be set up in our outdoor play area.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

The grant has allowed us to start a formal enrichment program for our dogs, including scheduled activities each day, as well as daily scent changes and soothing music. Thanks to the Petfinder Foundation, we were able to create an enrichment schedule that gives our dogs something to look forward to each day and provides them mental stimulation while they are in their kennels.

How many pets did this grant help?

500

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Trooper (first photo) came to us a little over a month ago. He was extremely malnourished, weighing only 34 lbs. upon arrival (as a pointer, he should have weighed easily 50 lbs. or more). We had him fully checked out, and found that there was no reason for him to be so skinny, other than that he wasn’t being fed enough for his energy level. Within 10 days of arriving, he gained 11 lbs. and his ribs and hips were no longer protruding under his skin (second photo). Due to his high energy level, keeping Trooper calm in a kennel was difficult and walks did nothing to tire him out. We had just implemented our enrichment program and Trooper thought the food puzzles were the absolute best. They would keep him busy for quite a while each day. Thankfully, Trooper received a clean bill of health and was adopted after less than two weeks in our care, but the enrichment supplies allowed us to keep him busy and entertained while he awaited his forever home.

Upper Peninsula Animal Welfare Shelter: Orvis Animal Care Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

The grant money was used to purchase agility equipment for our shelter dogs.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

Oh goodness! The dogs love the agility equipment. The equipment gives them a safe and constructive way to have fun, keep their minds busy, gain confidence, release energy, help build relationships with humans, and relieve boredom. They are much more happy and healthy, and our staff loves working with the dogs, helping them and seeing them make progress.

How many pets did this grant help?

Hundreds

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Thanks to this grant, insecure dogs like Prince here can get a big confidence boost and can use their brains to prevent kennel frustration. We are truly very grateful for this. Prince started out with barely knowing “sit.” Look at him now! He does all kinds of things. And he is so proud!

Prince is still available: You can meet him here.

Northern Oklahoma Humane Society (Ponca City Humane Society): Orvis Animal Care Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

This money was used for the purchase of kiddie pools for the dogs to play in during the summer heat.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

By providing pools to the dogs in our care, we were able to give them enrichment through playtime. We also use the pools as a safe place for mama dogs to raise newborn puppies. This gives the mom and her family an area that the pups can’t get out of, but she can. We have two dedicated rooms and a patio at our new facility for the care of mother/puppy groups.

How many pets did this grant help?

50

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Kavik, a husky mix, was rescued from our local municipal shelter — he was found as a stray and never claimed. As most huskies are, Kavik is very energetic and adventurous. As you can see, he thoroughly enjoyed his water time. Oklahoma can have some brutal summer days, so having this water time to cool off is a huge blessing for our dogs. Kavik is the type of dog who needs special attention, and lots of it! Being able to provide him an outlet for energy as well as a way to cool off on a hot day was an amazing opportunity for him as well as our staff. He has been adopted.

Paws for Life Rescue: Orvis Animal Care Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

Grant funds were used to purchase supplies to make flirt-toy poles for the foster dogs in our care. Funds were also used to purchase harnesses needed for the dogs to be on-leash during flirt-pole activities. Our foster dogs benefit from behavior training with flirt poles before they can be adoptable.

Volunteers were organized to help make the flirt poles from donated and purchased supplies. All poles and harnesses can be used for future foster dogs in the rescue. We made more than 30 poles, which will benefit hundreds of dogs, as we will reuse them for years.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

We know that the mental stimulation and exercise using flirt poles can provide much-needed enrichment for many of our dogs awaiting adoption. Many of the dogs we pull from [open-intake] shelters are high-energy and highly reactive. During the cold winter months in Michigan, these flirt poles can be utilized indoors to exercise dogs when they’re not able to go outside in extreme temperatures. Both long outdoor poles and short indoor poles are used for the dogs. They are a great training tool for our behavior-challenged dogs who need to work on impulse control, manage energy levels, and practice training commands both on-leash and off-leash. This training tool will help hundreds of dogs to be more adoptable!

How many pets did this grant help?

30 current foster dogs and many future dogs

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Rosa (pictured) is a sweet, fun 3-year-old dog who loves to be rewarded for learning new things. She is eager to train with the new flirt poles, especially with a plush, soft toy at the end of the rope! She is available for adoption through Paws for Life Rescue and you can learn more about her here.

Heartland Animal Shelter: Orvis Animal Care Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

The funds from this grant were used to develop a structured playgroup training program. Using the knowledge obtained at our Dogs Playing for Life Mentorship program and the funds from the Orvis Animal Care grant, we were able to develop a binder of playgroup processes and procedures, create a playgroup tracking system, start a comprehensive training program and get our staff members and volunteers trained to run playgroups for all of the dogs in our care!

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

This grant allowed us the opportunity to develop a training program so that we could teach as many staff and volunteers as possible how to safely and effectively run playgroups. Because of this, all of our dogs are now able to participate in playgroups and we have found this to make them much happier, less stressed and better socialized. Potential adopters also really enjoy seeing our dogs having a great time with other dogs while in playgroups and this has made many of them much more adoptable!

How many pets did this grant help?

250

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Zilda is a young German shepherd who had been returned to the shelter twice in less than four months. Because she had major on-leash dog reactivity and was also one of our biggest, strongest, and most energetic dogs, this posed a challenge all winter when we were walking her on the ice and with other dogs all around.

Our dog-program manager was able to use the resources from this grant to safely match Zilda with another dog, Jordie (second photo), who was also experiencing behavior issues. This match was the best we have ever seen! For months, they were able to play together daily and became the best of friends despite still not wanting to be around any other dogs. Zilda has now been adopted and there is now a silly, heart-shaped “Zilda + Jordie 4-Eva” sign hanging in the kennel to remember their friendship that developed because of our playgroup program! Jordie is still waiting for his forever home; you can meet him here.

Humane Society of Southern Wisconsin: Orvis Animal Care Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

We used the funds provided to us by the Petfinder Foundation 2019 Orvis Animal Care Grant to purchase dog enrichment supplies for our in-shelter dogs. Specifically, we purchased Adaptil calming aids, several different sizes of Kong toys, various different designs of treat/kibble-dispensing rocker-ball toys, several different varieties of Jolly Ball toys, and durable Nylabone chews.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

This grant helped our organization by allowing us to purchase much-needed dog enrichment supplies at a time when our budget was far more than tight. It helped the pets in our care by providing the tools we needed to give our sheltered dogs the mental and physical exercise they need.

How many pets did this grant help?

150

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

He-Man was directly helped by this grant. He was with us much longer than most dogs. Most dogs spend just about eight days with us, but He-Man spent two months — over seven times the average time a dog spends waiting to go home at our facility! Because of this extra time spent in a kennel environment, He-Man had a big need for both physical and mental exercise. The Petfinder Foundation 2019 Orvis Animal Care Grant provided us with the funds that we needed to be able to meet those needs for him. He received daily enrichment during his time with us and thus was able to remain physically and mentally well during his extended stay until he was adopted by a wonderful, loving family.