Here are some examples of how your donations are helping shelters and rescue groups, in the organizations’ own words.
We used this product to increase mental-health conditions for our large-breed dogs who require daily enrichment. We have integrated the use of KONGs into our enrichment program.
The use of KONGs has greatly increased the amount of play and mental stimulation that our dogs get while awaiting loving homes. Our enrichment program has helped us decrease length of stay and increase the adoptions by increasing positive behaviors in our canines.
The Kong grant of supplies has helped 989 puppies and dogs as of April 30, 2021!
Bear is a sweetheart who came to us on Feb. 25, 2021 (first photo). Bear was petrified and considered “semi-feral”; he also lacked socialization skills with other dogs. He was not responsive on a leash and would “freeze” with human contact.
We found Bear to be heartworm-negative and covered in ticks and fleas despite frigid temperatures just a week before his intake. He had suffered a significant injury to his right hind leg, which required amputation. But losing a limb didn’t keep this short and long-bodied soul down for long.
With frequent daily care, within three weeks of staying with us Bear became friends with two of our vet techs and began to look forward to play time every day. Our techs used his “ball” drive with stuffed KONGs to encourage exercise to strengthen his legs. We are happy to say that Bear found his happily ever after and is in a wonderful home with his new mom thanks to the care and activity he received.
Physical therapy for one of the cats in our rescue
This grant was used to fund the twice-weekly therapy sessions for Bobbi Lee, one of our foster cats. She currently goes to WAG and receives physical therapy and acupuncture. The therapy has been helping to strengthen her hindlimbs and promote her overall mobility. She also walks on an underwater treadmill to help strengthen her legs and try to get her standing up straight!
Bobbi Lee came to us as a tiny kitten unable to use her back legs. She also had issues with her bladder control. Bobbi Lee immediately began seeing our vets to come up with a plan. We knew that, while she was a baby, it was the most critical time to set her direction and take action.
Bobbi began biweekly therapy five months ago to strengthen her “good” leg, as the one she completely drags may need to be amputated. This is to give her the best shot at mobility. She does acupuncture and physical therapy weekly. Her foster mom works on her exercises to help keep her strong. Bobbi Lee is a happy, healthy teen now who thinks life is grand and nothing stands in her way. Attitude is her strength.
We are so close to completing her therapy and getting our vets’ final evaluation of how to proceed, and whether amputation of one of the back legs would be beneficial. Bobbi Lee has not been adopted yet because she is still undergoing treatment. However, once she is given the all-clear from our vet, we hope someone scoops her up quickly!
Enrichment for foster dogs
Thanks to this granted box of Kongs, we were able to give each dog entering our rescue enriching chew toys. These dogs often come into our care scared and anxious. Having a stuffed Kong helps give them something to do while they decompress from stressors.
Meet Happy. He came into foster care from a shelter. Happy was anxious and destructive. Having busted through several crates and destroyed multiple rescue toys, he needed help! Thank you, Kong, for providing Happy with a strong toy that helped get him through “ruff” times. We are also “Happy” to report that this foster dog has been adopted!
The money was used to purchase Stretch and Scratch cardboard scratchers for cat cages.
This grant allowed us to purchase enough scratchers that we are able to provide every cat with his or her own scratching post. The cats are now able to exhibit natural feline behavior and relieve stress.
Paparazzi (first three photos) was returned to the shelter because the resident cat could not coexist with her in the home. When she came back, she was very quiet and secluded, but after a day or two, she came out and immediately started scratching on her scratcher. She’s not hid ever since. She is still waiting for her forever home. Meet Paparazzi here.
Grant funds were used to purchase 200 cat kennel scratchers for all the cats at MCPAWS. We also used funds to purchase five heat disks to help keep tiny kittens warm and happy!
These funds helped us provide exceptional care for the cats. Cats at MCPAWS really enjoy having the kennel door scratchers. Our kittens need the heat disks to help them have the best chance at surviving without their mom. We really appreciate this grant!
More than 200
Paka was a feral cat who turned friendly. Paka loved scratching on his kennel cat scratcher! He was adopted into a loving home in part because he was living a mostly stress-free and happy life at the shelter thanks to his cat scratcher, playtime with staff, and a clean kennel. Thank you, Petfinder Foundation!
The P.L.A.Y. beds were used in kennels with certain dogs who either were afraid to use the Kuranda beds or couldn’t have them due to chewing them. And they worked great! We would put a blanket over the top to help prevent them from getting chewed on or dirty and the dogs seemed to love it. We have actually sent two home with the dogs who would only lie on the P.L.A.Y. beds.
It helped us by creating a kennel space more like a home environment than a shelter. Most dogs at home will have a dog bed or two to lie on, so it helped ease that transition from shelter to home. It also gave them a much more temperature-controlled bed: Our heat is through the floor, so in the winter, it helped them keep a more regular body temperature.
Pictured is a dog named Kingsley. Kingsley was a very scared fella who never really knew people could be super awesome! He did not lie on the Kuranda bed we had in his cage, so we took that out and used one of the P.L.A.Y. beds with a nice blanket underneath. He loved it! It became his safe space and traveled with him to his forever home.
From Facebook: “Say hello to Kingsley, a 5-year-old Lab/retriever/pit mix who was found as a stray in South Carolina and is now available for adoption. Since he was a stray, he is just now learning the world isn’t a big, bad, scary place like he once thought. As a result, he is very shy when he first meets someone new, but once he gets to know you, he is the biggest cuddle bug you will ever meet. Along with being shy, Kingsley is also frightened by loud noises and, honestly, anything he hasn’t come into contact with before; because of this, he will need someone who can be patient and loving towards him while he learns to trust them and become comfortable in their home and with them.
“Kingsley loves going for walks in the woods; he really comes to life with his head up high and tail wagging whenever he gets onto one of the paths around the shelter, cheese of any kind, stuffed toys that squeak, and his soft, comfy bed and/or a couch. He also feels very safe in his kennel. Because of this, we would recommend having a safe place, like a crate or place to hide, set up in your home for him so whenever he feels overly stressed or anxious, he has a place he can go to calm down. Kingsley does great with other dogs that are his size or bigger and kids, but he doesn’t do well with cats or small dogs.”
Cat supplies and enrichment.
Right now it’s kitten season so all of the toys and catnip have been used for all the cats/kittens in our shelter as well as all our kittens with fosters.
We have had several litters of kittens dropped off to us this past month. We try our hardest to spend as much time with them as possible to socialize and play with them. These toys that were so graciously donated to us have been able to keep the kittens active and engaged while playing with the others. The first photo is of Jude: meet Jude here.
The money that the grant generously provided helped to offset the necessary emergency expenses we incurred in response to severe winter storms in Central Texas in mid-February 2021. These storms, which brought record-breaking ice, snow, and frigid temperatures, wreaked havoc on electricity and water supplies throughout the state and caused damage and disruptions for Highland Lakes Canine Rescue shelter dogs, humans, and infrastructure. We spent the funds to provide emergency water and care for the dogs in our protection during the emergency and to restore water and safe access to our shelter site as the storms receded.
The $610 Disaster Grant monies received directly covered the expenses we incurred from clearing downed trees, emergency labor due to impassable roads, fixing broken pipes, and purchasing water while pipes were frozen. Thank you!
Having these funds restored to our budget directly resulted in our ability to take in and afford basic medical expenses for four additional dogs in 2021. Our basic medical expenses average just over $150 per dog, which includes spay/neuter, vaccinations, heartworm/parasite tests, and a microchip for every dog we take in. As a small, community-supported non-profit dog-rescue shelter, our budget has already been impacted by COVID-19 cancellations of most recent fundraisers, so this $610 allowed us to increase our intake to four additional needy dogs following the disaster, all of whom have had all the standard medical tests and procedures performed, and who have all been adopted!
This grant allowed us to bring in four additional dogs who might otherwise not have been lucky enough to be taken in from [open-admission] shelters, local law-enforcement kennels, or other [high-risk] situations. Specifically, this grant allowed us to intake Squirrel, Emma, Gecko, and Jackie O.
All of these dogs were given basic medical examinations, spay/neuter, heartworm/parasite tests, and microchipping by Highland Lakes Canine Rescue.
Squirrel (first two photos), an adorable terrier-mix puppy, came in after a car accident caused injuries that required her back leg to be amputated. Therefore, we incurred extra expenses and time spent with her on vet visits and wound cleaning/stitch removal.
Thankfully, her happy, loving nature and puppy energy were completely undaunted by this injury and she was adopted very quickly by a loving family who report that she is doing wonderfully!
Each of these four dogs was listed on Petfinder, except for Squirrel, who was adopted locally even before making it onto the website.
We are incredibly grateful for this wonderful grant to provide important cat enrichment items for the cats at our shelter. Two items we outlined in our original application were not available after we received our grant but were able to select similar items with comparable prices. Our grant was used to purchase:
HIPIPET Cat Tunnel Bed 3-in-1 Cat Bed, Cat Toys, Scratch-Resistant Cat Tunnels for Indoor Cats Play Tunnel Tube with Removable Washable Mat (Brown). Purchased through Amazon.com ($40.99 each x 4 units).
PetSafe Zoom – Automatic, Interactive, Rotating Laser Cat Toy with Two Lasers. Purchased through Amazon.com ($24.95 each x 4 units).
Cat’s Meow Motorized Chaser Cat Toy. Purchased through Chewy.com ($19.99 each x 1 unit).
KONG Cat Playground Cat Toy. Purchased through Chewy.com ($19.99 each x 4 units).
SmartyKat Hot Pursuit Electronic Concealed Motion Cat Toy. Purchased through Chewy.com ($11.96 each x 2 units).
K&H Pet Products Nylon Hangin’ Cat Condo. Purchased at Chewy.com ($98.99 each x 4 units).
Amazing cats come to our shelter at PAWS Atlanta every year as they wait to find their forever homes. During their time with us, they love to hang out and play in the four free-roaming rooms in our cat cottage. This is an incredibly important part of our facility. Each room (approximately 10’x 10’) provides plenty of space for cats to interact and play, including screened-in window-box enclosures and a screened-in porch where our feline friends can enjoy fresh air and sunshine on a nice day. The toys, tunnels, and condos have been placed in these four rooms. It did not take long before our cats were enjoying these new additions to their space! This enrichment for PAWS Atlanta has been especially important. We strongly believe in giving our cats the most loving care and stimulating spaces that we can. By having funds to purchase these items, it helps us do exactly that for them. It has also helped us keep our expenses down as we continue to deal with the many impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. We are extremely grateful for this support! Thank you!
Over the course of a year, we expect that approximately 425 cats will benefit from the enrichment items. We purchased our items at the end of March 2020 and have so far had about 50 cats enjoying the toys, tunnels, and condos in our cat cottages.
One of our cats who took an immediate shine to the new enrichment items was Billie (first photo), a 1-year-old black-and-white beauty. It was no time before she was playing with the laser toys (who wouldn’t love that?), climbing through the tunnels, and taking a snooze in the cat condos. Billie has a beautiful singing voice, which caught the attention of one of our prospective pet parents. We were incredibly excited when, after being at PAWS Atlanta since April 26, 2020, Billie went to her forever home on April 13, 2021.
Another big fan of the Petfinder Foundation’s generosity is the adorable Ditto (second photo). Ditto came to PAWS Atlanta in March 2021 completely feral, under-socialized, and scared. In no time, she began opening up, even letting some of our staff pet her. She loves the other cats and is particularly fond of one that came in with her, Matthew. He’s a bit shy too, but they find comfort in feline companionship. Ditto is making great progress! She has really been enjoying lounging in the hanging cat condos and tunnels. Who says feral cats don’t know how to enjoy a good toy and a great place to take a nap? Ditto is still available for adoption. Meet Ditto here.
The money was used to sponsor the adoption fees of some of our senior animals. Approved families did not have to pay the fees, encouraging them to give senior pets the opportunity of a forever family.
This grant helped FMAR receive more interest from the community in adopting and helping senior pets in need. Three of our senior pets were able to be adopted into loving families. Oftentimes, when considering taking home a senior pet, people are hesitant due to potential medical bills. Having a sponsored adoption fee helps adopting families save up for these other costs.
First adopted out was O’Malley (first photo), a chunky senior kitty who was found a stray. He stayed at the shelter for a few months before finding the perfect family. Because his adoption fee was sponsored, his new family was able to take the extra step to get O’Malley the special diet he needed to help him shed some pounds! O’Malley’s total adoption fee would’ve been $120.
Next was a very old Yorkie named Kane (second photo). He came in needing to recover from kidney stones and needing urgent dental care. After we got him fixed up, he was able to find an amazing family who were thrilled to have his $300 adoption fee sponsored.
Last to get adopted was a very long-term resident named Shadow (third photo). She is a beautiful long-haired tabby cat who found a family with another senior kitty for her to snuggle up with. Shadow’s $80 adoption fee was sponsored by the Petfinder Foundation Senior Pet Adoption Assistance Grant.