Success Stories

Here are some examples of how your donations are helping shelters and rescue groups, in the organizations’ own words.

Marion County Dog Shelter: Dogs Playing for Life Mentorship Grant (Invitation Only)
What was the money or product used for?

It paid for my DPFL mentorship training at Austin Pets Alive! from Sept. 11-15, 2018.

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

I learned some new techniques and gained more confidence in my abilities. I feel more comfortable running multiple playgroups and working with dogs who have more-challenging behavior issues. I was able to come home and get started working with some of our more-challenging dogs and I was able to help several of them gain better dog-to-dog skills. I have been able to have more confidence in my ability to train our volunteers to help me run my playgroups and to be able to explain to them what behaviors I am seeing in the yard and why I might be making the decisions to move or to not move dogs in or out of the play yard. I have gotten some great feedback from my volunteers.

How many pets did this grant help?

So far 4-6, but I am still working with dogs currently as well.

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

We had Ace, a 3-year-old bulldog mix, who had selective dog-to-dog skills, but with what I learned at my mentorship, I was able to get him to the point to where he was playing with five other dogs unmuzzled. Ace was adopted and is doing well. We also had Diego, a 4-year-old bulldog mix, who was also selective and a status-seeking male. I was able to work with him to the point where I could take his muzzle off as well, and he could play with a smaller group of dogs, just no intact males. I had trained them both on Gentle Leaders and their adopters purchased those devices when they were adopted. I’ve included pictures of both Diego (fawn) and Ace (black and white). I feel so lucky to have been given this opportunity to learn and grow. I am studying now to take my test to become a CPDT-KA (Certified Professional Dog Trainer – Knowledge Assessed).

Animal Friends for Life: Senior Pet Adoption Grants
What was the money or product used for?

The funds were used to assist an adopter with medical costs for a senior, diabetic dog named Jelly.

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

The grant was used as a motivator for the adoption of a diabetic dog who has been in our care and who has been passed over due to her illness.

How many pets did this grant help?

One, so far.

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

The grant helped a dog named Jelly (first photo). Jelly was adopted by a local couple, but they decided to return the grant funds back to our organization to help another needy pet. The grant is being applied to another dog named Ruby (second photo), with permission of the recipient and the Petfinder Foundation. Ruby is a 3-year-old redbone coonhound with Addison’s disease.

Have A Heart Pet Shelter: Petfinder Adoption Options in Action Grant (Invitation Only)
What was the money or product used for?

Construction of isolation/quarantine kennels. Total cost to construct four isolation/quarantine kennels: $2,203.34. The Petfinder Foundation Adoption Options in Action Grant of $1,500 assisted with that construction.
Bricks $1092.28
Kennel doors $305.46
Rebar $30.50
Concrete and mortar $194.25
Paint, primer and supplies $190.85
Labor and metal wrap $390.00

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

Since the construction of the kennels, we have been able to accept more animals into the shelter because we have greatly improved our quarantine capabilities. In the past, we were not able to accept litters of puppies that require 14 days of quarantine and who have a much greater risk of diseases such as parvo, distemper and coccidia.

How many pets did this grant help?

22 puppies so far

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

Five puppies were found running on a dirt road in a very rural section of Marion County after being dumped. When we rounded them up, they were skinny, flea- and tick-infested and had diarrhea. After testing, we found they had coccidia. They were put in one of our new isolation/quarantine kennels and were treated and monitored. They quickly became healthy, adorable and ready for adoption. The two females were adopted from our shelter and the three males have been sent to a puppy rescue in a major metropolitan city. Some of them are still posted on our Petfinder page. Attached are photos of the pups when they came in and photos on the adoption day for the two girls. With our new kennels, we are now able to help the residents of our county when dumped puppies are found. Currently we have a litter of five new pups who have a similar story.

Friends of Orange County's Homeless Pets: Senior Pet Adoption Grants
What was the money or product used for?

To help a senior with medical bills in order to get her adopted

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

We were able to get Lola, our senior, healthy so she was adoptable.

How many pets did this grant help?

5

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

Lola is an 11-year-old boxer mix. One of her owners was hospitalized and the other became homeless due to medical bills. Lola found herself homeless. One of our supporters knew the homeless family well and reached out to FOCHP to see if we could take four of their senior pets. We agreed; we also took Hero, an 11-year-old terrier, and two 11-year-old cats. With a lot of support and social media, we were able to find homes for three of the seniors. Lola took a while longer.

We received a very generous grant from the Petfinder Foundation of $1,000 to help facilitate the adoption of Lola. Our goal was to offer her adopter a one-year pet-insurance policy to help cover any medical expenses she might need. Before we were able to purchase an insurance plan, Lola needed to see a vet. Her vet bills totaled $970 and we realized we would not be able to purchase an insurance policy, as it would not cover her preexisting conditions. So we paid her vet bills in the amount of $970 and offered to potential adopters that we would pay for her necessary medication for the remainder of her life.

Lola was adopted! Thank you, Petfinder Foundation, for making this grant available to us and Lola – you helped save her life. Lola was adopted by the most amazing person who was also a previous adopter — one of our first adopters from almost 14 years ago.

Dane County Humane Society: Dogs Playing for Life Mentorship Grant (Invitation Only)
What was the money or product used for?

The funding from the Petfinder Foundation was used to cover the admission costs for one DCHS employee to attend the Dogs Playing for Life Mentorship Program.

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

Attending the Dogs Playing for Life Mentorship Program inspired our staff to create a consistent play schedule for dogs in our care. Now playgroups are solidified as a program within DCHS’s Canine Behavior Team (CBT). Playgroups have allowed many shelter dogs who appear to be fearful in their kennels to come out of their shells and act like different dogs once they’re in the play yards. We’ve seen dogs blossom during their stay with us, and dogs with long lengths-of-stay have the opportunity to relieve stress from daily shelter life and act like “regular” dogs again. This has been extremely helpful for ensuring that our dogs remain dog social during their time at the shelter, and that they continue having positive interactions and experiences with other dogs once they are adopted.

Playgroups have also been beneficial for DCHS’s adoption and behavior teams. Seeing dogs interact with each other helps us identify what lifestyle may be best for each individual dog, and what pet personalities each dog will have the most positive interactions with. This had led to more successful adoptions and has reduced the amount of returns due to the dog being a “bad match” for the family.

How many pets did this grant help?

30

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

Calvin arrived at Dane County Humane Society (DCHS) as a stray found in the city of Fitchburg back in July. He was very thin, had areas of scarring on his front paws, and wasn’t neutered. Once Calvin was neutered and medically cleared, he was enrolled in the Canine Behavior Modification Program and had his first playgroup experience. Calvin was severely under-socialized and defensively aggressive towards other dogs his size. The Canine Behavior Team (CBT) decided to introduce Calvin to one of our smallest, but friendliest and wiggliest, dogs.

Once Calvin got out to the yard, he became a different dog. He was play bowing and jumping up and down with excitement. Within two weeks, Calvin became one of our best playgroup participants! He longed for playgroup each day he was at the shelter, and genuinely enjoyed playing with every dog who entered the yard.

While Calvin’s playing abilities and socialization improved, he was still waiting for the right person to come through the shelter to bring him to his forever home. In September, a spot opened up at a partner rescue organization, Happily Ever After, and CBT decided he was the best candidate to go since he had already had such a long length-of-stay at DCHS. Soon after Calvin was transferred to Happily Ever After, he was adopted into a loving home. Playgroups helped Calvin blossom while at DCHS and set him up for success for when he finally went home with his future family.

Halfway Home Rescue, Inc.: Sponsor a Pet
What was the money or product used for?

This donation was used to offset the adoption donation for Sam and Susie, a bonded pair of kitties. They came to our shelter when their owners lost their home to foreclosure. Neither had seen a vet in many years, so this grant will also be used to cover their veterinary bills.

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

This grant helped to cover veterinary bills for Sam and Susie.

How many pets did this grant help?

Two

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

Sam and Susie came to our shelter when their owners lost their home to foreclosure. They are not siblings, but have lived together their entire lives and love one another. Sam (right, male) is 6 years old. Susie (left, female) is 2 years old. Both are overweight, but we are working with our veterinarian to get them back into shape! Sam and Susie are a perfect combo and would love to find a forever family together. Both kitties are spayed/neutered, vaccinated for rabies and distemper, microchipped, feline leukemia/AIDS negative, and are current on flea/tick preventative. Meet them: http://www.petfinder.com/petdetail/42043325

Oregon Dog Rescue: Sponsor a Pet
What was the money or product used for?

See below.

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

All thanks to your grant, we are putting the money towards her upcoming visit taking place next week. Once we figure out what medical condition is causing problems, we can get her the treatment she needs in order for Tammy to begin her next chapter. Once we have an understanding of what is ailing her and a treatment plan, she will then become available for adoption and find her new forever home. We so appreciate your care and advocacy for rescue animals!

How many pets did this grant help?

One.

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

We have a lovely 8-year-old Shih Tzu mix named Tammy who recently joined us from a high-[intake] shelter in Porterville, California. We have been taking her to our vet for testing on her eyes. At the time of examination, cloudy corneas were noted with corneal edema conjunctiva present. Standard treatment does not seem to be relieving her symptoms and our vet is recommending that she is to be seen by an eye specialist. Tammy is not available for adoption yet and we are waiting for her glamour photo shoot until her eyes improve. [photo is not of Tammy]

Naperville Area Humane Society: Orvis Animal Care Grant
What was the money or product used for?

The grant funds were used to purchase a variety of enrichment items for our shelter dogs. One of the newest forms of enrichment that we as a shelter are doing is canine nose-work. We have wonderful volunteers, one of whom is a trainer at a nearby facility, who have donated time teaching nose-work seminars. We had the knowledge of the sport, but we were lacking the supplies to really utilize the sport in the shelter.

This grant allowed us to purchase nose-work kits and supplies so that we are now able to have shelter dogs participate in the nose-work sport. We also used some of the funding towards our new ball pits that we have in our outdoor play areas. All dogs seem to jump on board with this new enrichment area. Even the more reserved dogs all let their curiosity get the best of them and they spend copious amounts of time investigating the ball pit. A well-worth investment for the dogs — so thanks again!

Another major addition to our dog enrichment calendar included the purchase of fleece and rubber mats for snuffle mats. The material used to create these mats was purchased and then the children in our humane-education classes assemble the mats and hand them out to the shelter dogs. It is a wonderful project, and really gives the children a sense of fulfillment to see the joy the mats bring to the dogs. Lastly, the funding went to puzzle games and dog treats that are used daily and integrated in all the enrichment plans from the grant request.

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

This grant allowed our staff, volunteers, and humane-education students all to participate together to better the quality of life for our shelter dogs. We are so very fortunate to have had this grant awarded to our shelter, as it allowed us to improve daily enrichment for the shelter dogs. We work off a daily enrichment calendar that is updated regularly and provides the dogs with a variety of mental and physical stimulation. This was all made possible because of the Orvis Animal Care Grant; the funding has allowed us to improve our enrichment that we provide to the dogs. Everything purchased through this grant can be used multiple times and will continue to provide enrichment for shelter dogs for years to come.

How many pets did this grant help?

This grant will help about 300 dogs/year and about 25 dogs/month.

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

This grant helped one of our longer-term residents, Jillian, who I am happy to report has been adopted. Jillian was beginning to experience kennel frustration, so it was imperative that our animal-care staff provided her with daily enrichment. In addition to walks and daily playtime, Jillian would eat each meal out of a puzzle. The puzzles were purchased with this funding as well, and continuous to help our dogs who are too smart for their own good. Jillian also loved snuffle-mat and nose-work time, two puzzle-like games that worked her brain. She also was a regular participant in the ball pit as well as a year-round Easter-egg hunt champion. We would hide plastic eggs filled with treats around the outdoor area that she would seek out and pop open. It was because of this regular enrichment that Jillian was able to remain here with a sense of stability until she found her forever home.

Humane Indiana: Cat Enrichment
What was the money or product used for?

The money from the Cat Enrichment Grant was used to buy the following items:
6x cardboard cat scratcher pad
7x training clickers
12x bubbles
5x treat dispensing toys
2x 20-piece cat toy set
10x Temptations cat treats – 16oz
24x Friskies 24-can pack wet food
200x Stretch and Scratch Cage Exercisers
3x Pounce 3-pack moist treats
4x Fancy Feast 24-pack kitten wet food
4x Feliway diffuser refill – multicat- 3pk
1x 50-pack ping pong balls
1x 300-pack of pipe cleaners
1x 60-pack rattle furry mice toys
2x catnip spray – 1 fl. oz. bottle
1x catnip tub – 1 lb

All items totaled to the full $970 awarded.

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

This grant helped to provide in-kennel and out-of-kennel enrichment. For in-kennel enrichment, every cat is given multiple toys and scratching posts in their cage daily. During out of kennel time, cats played inside catnip boxes and ping pong ball boxes. Many of our cats, like Theo, got a chance to stretch their paws and play with puzzle toys, clicker training and targeting — all of which are a great ways to engage a cat’s natural instincts and prevent obesity due to overeating and sedentary lifestyle.

With the cat enrichment program, we aim to make every cat’s stay at the shelter as pleasant as possible by providing them outlets for instinctual behaviors. This grant allowed us to obtain supplies that stimulate the cats, relax the cats and allow human bonding. These three factors allow cats to be happier and healthier; and happier, healthier cats find homes more quickly.

How many pets did this grant help?

400

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

Theo is one of the long-term cats in our colony. Theo has loved playing with the catnip toys, searching for treats, and checking out all of the other awesome enrichment items that we got with the grant. Providing extra enrichment and mental stimulation is super important, but it is extra important for animals with a long length of stay, like Theo. These items have helped us to keep Theo engaged and happy during his time at the shelter, instead of stressed and scared.

The Cat Network Inc.: Emergency Medical Grant
What was the money or product used for?

The money was used for veterinary expenses for surgery for Lombardo to remove a tumor from under his shoulder.

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

The tumor was removed and was found to be benign.

How many pets did this grant help?

1

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

Lombardo was rescued as a kitten by the Cat Network several years ago and was adopted by a woman who passed away in June 2018. Her daughter was forced to return Lombardo (now age 16) to Cat Network because her two cats would not accept a new cat and were aggressive toward him. Shortly after his return, he was found to have a large sore under his left shoulder that appeared to be an abscess. An exam at the vet revealed that the sore was part of a large tumor. The vet did a needle aspiration and was concerned about the cells she saw under the microscope and recommended surgery to remove the tumor. The Cat Network applied for a grant from the Petfinder Foundation Emergency Medical Fund to cover the expenses related to the surgery to remove the tumor.

The surgery was done, and the good news is, the tumor was determined to be benign. There were several stitches required to close the incision, and Lombardo had to be confined to a small cage to limit his activity for several weeks. He seemed depressed during this time and wanted out of the cage, but he was not supposed to be walking around, jumping, or doing normal activities. The incision healed well and Lombardo is now enjoying good health in a Cat Network foster home. He is a very sweet and friendly cat, now free from the pain and discomfort of the tumor. Lombardo is available for adoption. Meet him: http://www.petfinder.com/petdetail/42751989

The photos show Lombardo recently, as well as the incision after the stitches were removed. We are very grateful to the Petfinder Foundation for the grant.