Here are some examples of how your donations are helping shelters and rescue groups, in the organizations’ own words.
The Petfinder Foundation’s Sponsor a Pet donations support our lifesaving mission. The Kentucky Humane Society is our state’s largest pet adoption agency and no-kill animal shelter. Donations like Sponsor a Pet help us provide nutritious food, medical care, spay/neuter surgeries and loving homes to thousands of needy shelter cats and dogs.
Donations such as Sponsor a Pet help us care for and find homes for more than 6,400 animals a year. Thanks to donations, we are able to provide each adoptable dog and cat with the medical and behavioral help they need to become happy, healthy companion animals.
12-year-old Charlie, a Poodle mix, came to the Kentucky Humane Society with a terrible eye infection. The fur around his eyes was so matted that our veterinary team was at first unsure if he even had eyes. When they shaved off the mats, they found he was suffering from a severe eye infection: The skin around his eyes had rotted off, and he was in tremendous discomfort and pain. Funds from Sponsor a Pet helped pay for his medical treatment and foster care. Charlie is now a happy, loving, grateful dog who will be ready for adoption in early January 2016. We were able to care for Charlie — and thousands of other needy animals this year — because of donations.
To feed the animals in our special medical-need Sanctuary
It helped feed them, as we do not get any food donated, so we have to pay for food which is so expensive.
Some of the money was used towards Kale (pictured), a dog with severe allergies who requires a special diet. It also helped 18-year-old dog Maia and two cats, Ping and Pong, who have cerebellar hypoplasia (wobbly cat syndrome), to name a few.
Towards two neuters (totaling $50; the donation was for $45)
Every dollar helps with spay/neuters.
The grant was for Emerson, who had already been fixed, so the grant went towards two male cats who needed to be fixed. Not a big story, but it did help! Pictured is Harry. From his Petfinder profile: “Harry is a handsome gray cat with the cutest dark grayish/purple nose! He was born around 3/1/2014. He prefers to take great care in becoming comfortable with his surroundings. Once he’s comfortable, he is a playful, funny guy and quite the snuggler. His favorite toy is the white stuffing from stuffed dog toys that got torn apart! He gets along great with other cats and dogs. He is used to getting his claws clipped regularly and his foster mom would be happy to show his new family how to do this if they aren’t familiar. Harry would be a perfect addition to a home with another cat that will show him around, help him feel comfortable with everyone, and be a great cuddle buddy.” Meet Harry: https://www.petfinder.com/petdetail/30524991
For foster dogs in our program.
Many of the dogs who come into our program have separation anxiety and are very stressed. The KONGs are very good for them. We stuff them with peanut butter or KONG stuffing and freeze them. This gives them something to do to ease their stress levels. We stress the use of crates with our foster homes. Not all the dogs do well at first in a crate.
So far we have had eight dogs who have used many of the different items we received.
Harry (first and second photos) is our famous little guy right now. I have attached a before and after of him. Harry started out very overwhelmed. He was neglected and never went outside. Everything was new to him. He loves the KONG chews and for some reason, the bigger ones are his favorite. Meet Harry: https://www.petfinder.com/petdetail/33927803
Biscuit (third photo) probably had the most anxiety we have ever seen. He was in a boarding facility for a few days in the beginning until we could get him into a foster home. He absolutely could not stand to be left alone. He chewed through metal fencing and a wooden door. Once in the foster home, a frozen KONG helped him to adjust to being left alone. He started to associate the treat with the foster leaving. He is now adopted and happy!
Mahoney (fourth photo) was adopted by one of our fosters. He is very hyper and not confident. The KONG helps him with his energy level.
The sponsorship was given to us by one of the dog’s previous owners, who saw her on Petfinder and knew she was her dog but she couldn’t keep her. She wanted to help, though, and the money was to be used to supplement the adoption fee for Xena, a pit bull terrier.
This money lowered the adoption fee on Xena, and helped her new adopters out a little bit.
Xena came to us as an owner surrender — the owner said she was aggressive to other dogs and he couldn’t handle her any more. She was at the shelter for a few months and went into our foster-care system. We learned a lot about Xena with this family, especially that she was not aggressive at all! All was going great until the foster family split up, and they could no longer keep Xena. So back she came to us. She was, once again, a gorgeous pitty left in the shelter — another casualty of the problems of humans! While she was here the second time with us, someone notified us that we had “her dog.” Now, this was the second time that someone had called and told us that Xena was “their dog,” so I found this quite strange. To make a long story short, Xena has had several owners in her life. One of her previous owners had to give her up due to life circumstances, which happens to the best of families. Xena then went to two other people (one of those being her sponsor) before she made her way to PAWS. When we got the second call, we had some investigating to do. The stories from the people we spoke with via telephone all matched up, and low and behold, Xena is now back with her original owner! They identified her by some markings and scars she had when she came to them years before. Needless to say, Xena has had an interesting life, but she is none the worse for the wear! In typical pit-bull fashion, she has taken all that life offered her — all that we humans have put upon her — with grace, dignity and love! She has been welcomed back into her home, with her mom, dad and five (I believe) human brothers and sisters. She is doing very well, and is finally back in her forever home. This has been one of my more memorable adoptions to work with, and I’m very happy that this was a happy ending!
The donations received in Q2 2015 went toward general operating expenses.
Along with donations received from other sources, this grant helped to fund supplies, staff, food and medical care that is vital to shelter operation.
We have approximately 90 cats in our care that were helped by this grant.
Razzle, Romeo, Ritchie and Ralphie are just a few of the kittens who developed upper respiratory infections this fall. Thanks to generous donations, they were able to receive necessary veterinary care. Razzle (first photo) has been adopted! Romeo (second photo) is a fat, happy, active kitten with a loud motor and a hearty appetite. Meet Romeo: https://www.petfinder.com/petdetail/34017941. Little Ritchie (third photo) is the runt of the litter but he is not aware of this! Ritchie runs, jumps and plays just as hard as all of his littermates and has energy to spare. He is also a snuggly little fella with a lot of love to give to his new forever family! Meet Ritchie: https://www.petfinder.com/petdetail/34017944. Ralphie (fourth photo) is a wise old soul with the body and spirit of a rowdy kitten. Just one look in his eyes and you will find a friend for life. Meet Ralphie: https://www.petfinder.com/petdetail/34017958
Vet care for Mira and Isabella
Both cats received rabies shots and a wellness visit.
Mira is considered a hard-to-adopt feline. She likes to use her teeth to show her affection. She is not a personable feline. Isabella is our fire kitty. She was found in the middle of a pile of rubble after her home burned to the ground. The family took her to an ER vet to be euthanized because they had nothing left. After she was stable, there was no place to go but a pound. Shelter to Home was contacted to take over her care. Isabella is a bit of a rebel but fares okay in a foster home with other felines and canines. Both these felines are still available for adoption. Isabella has before and after pictures. She is beautiful once again.
Medical care and medications
We applied the grant to the medical treatment of a senior bulldog in rescue.
The bulldog was rescued from local animal shelter and saved by rescue. Provided medical care and assistance until adopted. The pet sponsored was Wilma. From her Petfinder profile: “Meet Wilma: This precious girl was dumped at the Lompoc, CA, animal shelter and was overlooked for weeks by prospective homes/adopters because of her age. She’s an older girl that wants to be the only dog for the most part, though she has shown interest in some other dogs. At this time, we’re going to recommend that she be placed in a home as an only pet.
“She has older joints and would not do well in a home with stairs or in a home where she’d be expected to do a lot of walking. She’d be best as an only pet, in a home where she’d be the queen of the house, could have her own yard (a small one is more than fine), where she could take her potties, sun herself and feel comfortable knowing she’s in her forever home.” Meet Wilma: https://www.petfinder.com/petdetail/30031036
The $2,000 was used to buy modified live vaccines for our cats, kittens, puppies and dogs. We modified our vaccine schedule: All kittens and puppies began receiving vaccines every two weeks, starting at 4 weeks, while at our shelter or while in foster care. Previously, we started vaccinating at 7 weeks and vaccinated every 3-4 weeks. All cats and dogs older than 4 months received a second vaccine. Previously, we were only administering one vaccine.
The intent of modifying our vaccine protocol was to decrease the cases of upper respiratory that we had been experiencing. As everyone involved in animal rescue and sheltering knows, upper respiratory is so easily spread, so common, and can be costly to treat. Our goal was to keep our animals healthier. We saw a marked decrease in the number of cases of upper respiratory; far fewer vet visits were needed, especially for our young animals; our mortality rate decreased; and our adoption rates went up as our animals were healthier and ready to be placed sooner into their furever homes.
Just over 650 cats, dogs, puppies and kittens received additional vaccines because of this grant.
This little boy in the first photo was so excited to get his new buddies. He burst through the door when the store opened. He chose the names Jack and Stanley. While Mom was completing the paperwork, this little boy laid on the floor, looked into the cage and read a story, “Jingle Cats,” to his new kittens. Congrats to Jack and Stanley and their new family. These kitties came to us quite young, and because of the updated vaccine protocol, they never got upper respiratory infections and were able to have their furever family find them, fall in love and take them home while still kittens.
The second pic contains photos of multiple dogs. We have not lost a single dog to upper respiratory, have not had a single case of pneumonia, and have averaged only one canine visit a month for the last four months since we installed the earlier and more-frequent vaccine protocol. These beauties are all happy and smiling and many of them are in furever homes, happy, healthy and sooner than ever before. Thank you, Petfinder Foundation!
Nora (third photo) was one of a litter of six kittens we received, too soon separated from their mother after she was hit and killed on the road. These little ones, who should still be under the care of their mother, came to us with weepy eyes, thin and ragged. After three sets of vaccines, a loving foster home, good food and lots of love, they were all placed. And as you can see, Nora’s eyes, as well as the Christmas lights, are shining!
Rod (fourth photo), handsome Rod, of the two different-colored eyes, came in from [an open-admission] shelter. We were able to vaccinate him immediately, with a modified live vaccine, and repeat the vaccine in three weeks; then Rod was able to work his magic and become a part of a trio of rescues from the Sanctuary in one happy home. Being healthy meant the difference for a pooch like Rod, not having to wait for his furever home because he was ill or ragged-looking.
The KONG products are being utilized in our sanctuary to keep the dogs engaged to prevent boredom. We also provided most of our foster dogs with a KONG.
Some of our dogs have been in our sanctuary four-plus months. Even though we have great volunteers to walk the dogs almost daily, to be confined in their kennels is not ideal. We have found that filling the KONGs with low-fat dog food or natural peanut butter, then freezing them, provides prolonged entertainment. Many times we hide the KONG in their enclosure or their outdoor run to allow the dogs to hunt them down. When they bring them inside, they feel so accomplished. Of course we verbally encourage the dog.
We use the KONGs daily for the shelter dogs, which currently number 12 dogs. We have also provided approximately six foster dogs with KONGs. We have two blind dogs in foster who get so excited when we tell them we are getting their KONGs.
Okie is a blind, diabetic dog in foster. Although he does well finding his doggie door, etc., he has been with his foster parent for about 15 months. Okie loves licking and carrying his KONG around the yard,