Here are some examples of how your donations are helping shelters and rescue groups, in the organizations’ own words.
The funds from the 2021 Senior Pet Adoption Assistance Grant have not been used yet, but we are holding them in reserve for the future adopters of Minnie and Dewey, a senior pair who have been in their foster home with Symbiotic, Inc., for almost a year.
Though we have not yet used the grant money, this grant gave us a great opportunity to increase our exposure of Minnie and Dewey. We shared multiple posts about the 2021 Senior Pet Adoption Assistance Grant to assure any potential adopters that they would have $1,000 toward any veterinary care that the pair might need after adoption.
This grant will help two seniors, Minnie and Dewey, as we search for their forever homes.
Minnie and Dewey are a bonded pair of seniors who were surrendered by their previous owners when the family divorced and neither adult was able to keep them. Minnie is a deaf, 10-year-old mixed breed and Dewey is a 14-year-old hound. They have been together since Minnie was a puppy, and Dewey is highly bonded to Minnie.
Before being surrendered, Minnie and Dewey spent their lives living outside in the family’s backyard. The pair stayed in a small rural shelter in Franklin, VA, for two weeks before Symbiotic, Inc., was able to bring them into rescue. After entering their foster home, Minnie needed substantial veterinary care, including having a large mammary tumor removed and numerous teeth extracted.
This pair is incredibly sweet and laid back. Minnie’s favorite pastime is long walks, though she also loves curling up in her bed for long naps afterwards! She is the sweetest, most gentle dog, and she loves pets and butt scratches. She shows a genuine excitement when she sees people coming and responds with such joy to everything.
Dewey’s all-time favorite activity is walking around the house with a stuffed animal in his mouth. When left alone, Dewey finds a stuffed animal and curls up for a nap near Minnie. He is a huge love bug and loves snuggling with his foster family on the couch.
Though they are loving life in their foster home, Minnie and Dewey are ready to find their forever family. They have been in their foster home since the beginning of February 2021 and were posted on Petfinder in April 2021. This pair is incredibly sweet, but they have not received much interest at this point, likely because they are a pair of large, senior dogs.
Unfortunately, Dewey has developed signs of dementia and has grown too anxious and unpredictable for a typical adoption. His foster home still loves him dearly, and they have agreed to provide fospice (foster hospice) care for the remainder of Dewey’s happy and comfortable life.
In an effort to find Minnie a forever home for her remaining years, we are currently testing separating Minnie and Dewey to see if we could adopt her out without increasing Dewey’s anxiety. Minnie is a happy, gentle, sweet, healthy girl who we think is highly adoptable.
The assurance of support with future veterinary bills will also help assuage any fears that an adopter might have around adopting a senior dog. We are continuing to explore options that will provide the best quality of life for both Minnie and Dewey!
Our award grant was used to pay for half of our floor renovation. Since we had half of the floor cost covered thanks to the Petfinder Foundation, that, in turn, allowed us to free up capital for new cat enclosures (in addition to the floor renovation we desperately needed). They make our rescue look more welcoming and the cats are actually able to see visitors without being hindered by the chicken wire we’d had up prior to the revamp.
Since the renovation completion this month, we’ve adopted out 67 cats, which is double our normal January amount. While we do love having our cats at the shelter, the end goal is to find them loving homes, and this renovation has improved our numbers substantially.
One of the key reasons is because the new floors and areas are so appealing to visitors and the cats really seem to love them. The Petfinder Foundation made that possible and we couldn’t be more honored and pleased by being selected for this Capital Improvement Grant to make up for our shortfall.
Among the 67 cats who found homes in January was Kirby, who got a home thanks in part to the recent renovations. We had a veterinarian stop in to look for a cat for the family and she was blown away by what she saw at our shelter, since there really is nothing quite like it in our area.
She lives on a farm and wanted an indoor pet and fell for lovable Kirby. He was twice adopted and both times he was returned for spraying when he got comfortable in the home. We told her the situation and she was happy to keep him indoors and said that if it didn’t work out, she would acclimate him to her barn if he liked the outdoors more than being inside.
It’s hard to place a cat who has urination issues. However, having a shelter that now looks more professional has helped us attract adopters like this vet who put the cat’s needs first. As for cats like Kirby, the new image of the shelter is increasing their chances of getting quality homes, which is wonderful.
We purchased sixty 60-ft ground-runner trolleys for pet owners in our communities who are struggling to keep their dogs restrained due to the impact of Hurricane Ida on their fencing and their homes.
This grant helped to keep pets at home with their people instead of in the shelter. Our community is still reeling from the affects of the major storm and these funds went to keep pets safe at home and out of the shelter.
Many pets were helped by these funds. We found that so many people were incredibly grateful for the resources we gave them following the storm. When our field team arrived at a location in which a dog was reported running loose, we were able to supply one of the 60′ ground runners to the owner to help them properly restrain their dog. They were so happy that we were there to offer solutions to one of the many problems they were facing following the hurricane.
The grant award of $650 was used to purchase four large, igloo-style dog houses.
A number of our dog houses were in serious need of replacement in order to meet state regulations and to make a safe environment for our dogs. These four new dog houses have enabled us to meet both of these goals.
Approximately 40 dogs
DeeDee (first photo) is an senior dog who likes being inside her dog house with her blanket whenever the weather turns a bit chilly. It is just to her liking. We are in the process of trying to return DeeDee to her original owner as soon as certain conditions are met, so we hope this happens very soon. In the meantime, we are happy that she has a solid, safe, dog house in which to spend her time outside. You can meet DeeDee here.
This grant was used to help implement and promote our field-trip program.
The field trips provide important enrichment for the dogs and also give us valuable behavioral insight. Field trips have also led to adoptions.
Ralph has been a longer-term resident and we were told he was “unwalkable and could not be around other dogs.” Our field-trip program has helped Ralph get out of our facility and into the real world. There we have found he is much more walkable and friendly than we were led to believe. Ralph is still looking for a home, but he has a much better chance of being placed now! You can meet Ralph here.
Kongs were used to give out to adopted dogs. Instructions were given on how to effectively use the product to reduce stress in a new environment.
Adopters were very happy to get the Kongs. Many of them would see the Kongs in our vetting room and ask for them before we offered them.
We had a bully named Sully who was adopted out and returned due to stress in the environment. We gave the Kong to his next adopter. They filled it with treats and gave it to him when they left the house. They said he was very focused on it. They went and got a bigger one so it would last longer. Within a few days the adoption was finalized. Now he no longer has to worry where he will wake up. He is finally home!
The grant funds we received are utilized to help aid our enrichment program here at the shelter. With the funds, we were able to purchase items that we use daily that can be expensive. Items included Kong spray cheese, chew items (rawhides, yak cheese bones, and other various types of chew items), licky-mats, flirt poles, and Toppls.
By being able to purchase all these items with the grant funds received, we were able to provide items that we have always wanted for the shelter, but never were able to purchase due to needing them in bulk or they’re being too expensive.
Enrichment items are a huge asset to the shelter, as the dogs are here every day in the kennels alone. Being in a kennel environment creates so much stress for them, and if 30 minutes of chewing a bone, working on a puzzle toy, or playing chase can help them feel better, then the enrichment has created a healthier environment for them.
Many dogs can start to get bored and worn down from being in the kennel, even if they are here for a short time. The “kennel crazies” are a real thing and we try to eliminate them from happening as much as possible. Mental health for the dogs is just as important as, if not more important than, physical health. If their mental health deteriorates, that can create so many actual health problems as a result.
These items will be essential to their overall health while at the shelter, no matter how long or short of a time they are with us. The Kong spray cheese is used with the Licky-mats and the Toppls or Kongs. These puzzle toys are great to keep a dog busy by working to get the cheese out of the item. Sometimes it can last for up to 30 minutes or more, which is a great pastime for them while they are in their kennel.
The rawhides and other chews are great for individual, supervised chew time. This gives the dog time out of their kennel and chewing on something to keep them busy quietly. Not only does this help them decompress from the kennel, but it helps them learn to calm down and have quiet time, which will help them in their new home.
The flirt pole is like a giant cat wand toy for a dog. We help a lot of pit bull-type dogs and they love to chase things! These poles have a small chew/rope toy at the end that they can chase while the human is waving it around and it exerts a lot of their energy, which helps tire them out and decrease boredom and reactivity in the kennel. These poles are great for any kind of dog, but when we have dogs with high energy in the kennel, it is a great way to release a lot of that energy and keep them tired since we cannot get them running all day long.
We received the grant funds close to the very end of 2021, so we started using the funds very late in December into January of 2022. We expect to help around 300+ dogs in the next year with the items we have received from the grant funds.
Currently, we have a dog named Ice (first photo) who has been with us since August of 2021. He is a handsome, white pit bull-type mix dog who is only about 2 years old. He has been with us for so long because he has unknown neurological problems. He gets “wobbly” when he walks and leans to the right, which causes him to fall a lot when over-excited.
He is just the sweetest and most joyous dog, but he has recently started to lick his paws excessively due to the stress of being here long-term. We have started using the licky-mats (second photo) and Toppl toys as part of his routine with the Kong cheese. He absolutely LOVES this and we have seen a reduction in the licking of his paws.
Unfortunately, he has not been adopted yet, but we are looking forward to his future of being able to find a family that is drawn to how adorable and sweet he is regardless of his medical issues.
The new enrichment has already created a better outlet for him, which in turn can help us showcase him better and help him relax more for when potential families come to meet with him. It also has reduced the redness and sores he got from licking his paws. You can meet Ice here.
The money was used on a lifesaving endoscopic procedure to open Mila’s esophagus.
Mila would not be alive today without the help of the Petfinder Foundation’s Emergency Medical Grant. Mila needed an immediate endoscopic procedure in order for her to ever be able to eat or drink again.
Mila might be one of the most fantastic creatures you have ever met! Mila was surrendered to the Sierra Vista Animal Shelter at 3 months old. She was immediately tested, and found positive, for parvo. The shelter contacted Little Lotus Rescue and asked if we could take her.
Mila had a terrible run with parvo, requiring overnight care and constant monitoring, but she is a strong girl and she made it. After recovering from parvo, she regurgitated and/or vomited with every meal. Through this, she received multiple blood transfusions and various diagnostics before she was ultimately diagnosed with a throat stricture.
She was successfully managed until an incident in which she ate something that she could not swallow, leading to a blockage. We and she has worked too hard for this to be the end of her incredible story. She was admitted to the hospital, where x-rays were taken and sent for consultation to clarify images. The vet recommended a scope to remove the blockage safely.
Today, Mila is living her VERY best life with her new family.
The Covid-19 Operation Grant provided food for the animals in the organization.
When Covid-19 was beginning to slow down and stop animal food deliveries through our typical supply, Greater Good, we began to have trouble affording to feed the many animals in our care. This grant helped to feed seven miniature horses for 30 days.
We have a small herd of miniature horses that came to us one by one through Covid-19 as owners became unable to keep up with the steady rise in hay costs in Southern Arizona. This grant purchased 20 bales of timothy hay for this group of small friends.
To make our sheltered pets more comfortable while they await their new homes. Some of the beds were sent home with the pet because the pet loved the bed so much and we wanted to facilitate a less stressful transition to the home.
Without these beds, the dogs and cats just have fleece blankets to sit on. The cushioned beds seem to be more appreciated by the pets. When the pet was adopted, the owner could place the bed in the home and the pet knew where to rest and felt more comfortable.
Monster the kitten (first photo) was too small for adoption when she was first found by a local animal lover. The good Samaritan brought Monster to the shelter and agreed to foster and then adopt her when she was old enough.
When the foster had to leave town, Monster spent a couple of days at the shelter and was lucky to be here when the new beds arrived! Monster received a bed and, when she went back into foster, the bed went with her, and when she came back to be spayed, the bed followed.
When she was finally adopted, she got to keep her bed, and she loved it!