Reports From This Organization

National Mill Dog Rescue: Senior Pet Adoption Grants Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

We waived the $300 adoption fee for Sophie, a one-eyed, 7-year-old Maltese who had been a puppy-mill breeding dog all of her life until she was rescued.

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

Waiving the fee was a nice bonus for the family that adopted Sophie. It may have influenced their decision to choose her over another dog.

How many pets did this grant help?

1

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

Recently, one of our special senior Maltese pups finally got her adoption day! Sophie has fought quite the battle to get to this day, including birthing a litter of pups she was carrying when she arrived at National Mill Dog Rescue, losing an eye (prior to arrival), and an injured leg! She is one tough little fighter. She certainly deserves the wonderful family who found her! She will have a terrific fur sister named Molly, too. Congratulations on your forever family, Sophie! We wish you all the best in the world! You can see a video of her here.

National Mill Dog Rescue: Senior Pet Adoption Grants Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

We used the money to cover Salsa’s adoption fee of $200 and the estimated cost of her heart medication, which is $190. Salsa and her bonded pal, Dudley, were adopted on Jan. 22, 2019. She had been with NMDR since 2014!

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

It helped our organization cover a portion of the cost of rescue and care for Salsa. Any time a gift or grant is received, it gives our mission a lift so that we can keep going back for more discarded mill dogs.

It also helped her adopter make a decision to take her home, knowing the cost of her medication would be covered and the adoption fee was waived. Every incentive helps move our precious dogs to happy homes.

How many pets did this grant help?

1

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

Salsa was a commercial breeding dog in a puppy mill for the first seven years of her life. Then, in 2014, the mill owner decided she was no more good to him. He was about to take her to one of Missouri’s notorious dog auctions when Theresa Strader of National Mill Dog Rescue stepped in to save her. Salsa is a timid Chihuahua who Theresa could see right away would not do well in a kennel setting, so she has been in a foster home for the past four-plus years. There, she bonded with Dudley, another senior foster Chi. (Here’s a video of Salsa.)

For inexplicable reasons, Salsa was one of the least viewed dogs on our and Petfinder’s websites. She was simply passed over in favor of other dogs. But when Angie Morrissey of Longmont, Colo., and her two children decided they wanted Dudley, they couldn’t bear to adopt him without Salsa, who was so dependent on him for her security.

Because Salsa was not their first choice, it really helped the family make the decision to take her when they learned there would be no adoption fee and the cost of her heart medication would be covered for the rest of her life!

Thank you, Petfinder Foundation, for helping Salsa find her forever home.

National Mill Dog Rescue: KONG Toy Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

The Kong toys were stuffed with peanut butter and used to provide sensory enrichment experience to our dogs during quiet time in their kennels. Our dogs have had no exposure to toys and we love to use KONGs to facilitate a positive interaction with humans and their environment.

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

We enhanced their quiet time and training programs by providing a long-lasting toy that resulted in mental stimulation and a satisfying independent activity. We didn’t have to allocate funds for this purpose due to having this generous grant of high-end toys.

How many pets did this grant help?

We usually have 100+ dogs at our kennel. All who were able to enjoy the KONGs were provided with a toy. The toys are washed and reused in our sensory enrichment program.

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

We recently rescued eleven 10-month-old husky puppies destined for euthanasia at a puppy mill. They arrived at our kennel scared and worried, displaying typical behavior of retreating from humans, such as hiding in corners and avoiding eye contact. We filled the KONG toys with peanut butter and our rehabilitation staff used this as an engagement activity to build trust and provide a positive interaction. To our joy, the puppies approached the toys and eventually starting sniffing and licking the peanut butter. We intend to continue to use the KONGs as a core part of our rehabilitation of puppy-mill survivors.

National Mill Dog Rescue: Purina and Amazon Treats for the Holidays Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

Helping recently rescued puppy-mill survivors learn to trust the kindness of the volunteers at National Mill Dog Rescue, aiding in their adjustment to life as a family pet.

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

We rescue more than 800 puppy-mill breeding dogs a year, lifting them out of miserable lives lived in cages with little or no human contact. As a result of their grave lack of socialization, these dogs must be given time and TLC to adjust to freedom. They may be so fearful at first that they will not permit any contact. The product supplied, Beggin’ Strips, helped us bridge the gap between total fear and positive interaction.

How many pets did this grant help?

50

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

Seven-year-old Nimbus didn’t know how his life was about to change when he was rescued on Feb. 27 from a Midwest puppy mill and brought, along with 114 other dogs, to National Mill Dog Rescue’s Peyton, Colo., headquarters. Nimbus had been a breeding dog for most of his life, but he was no longer profitable to the mill owner, and so, one way or another, he had to go. Thanks to the delicate relationships National Mill Dog Rescue Executive Director Theresa Strader has built with about 150 commercial breeders, tiny Nimbus got a chance for a whole new life. The mill owner contacted Strader in January to see whether she would take Nimbus and several other dogs off his hands. Strader didn’t hesitate because, when a mill dog’s time is up, getting there is literally a matter of life and death.

Nimbus was part of one of the largest rescue efforts in the organization’s 9-year history. Dubbed Hearts2Hearts, the trip covered 1,800 miles in 56 hours through three states, with three rescue vehicles and a team of nine experienced rescuers.

Strader led this latest run, as she so often does, and she oversaw the dogs’ care and treatment post-arrival at Lily’s Haven, the spacious NMDR kennel facility. She filed this report on March 12:

“It’s been two weeks since we returned from our big rescue. We’ve been very busy getting all the dogs medically evaluated and treated, groomed and settled into a whole new routine. As usual, we’ve uncovered a host of medical conditions that not only make us sad and angry but keep us very focused on our mission and the desperate need to make puppy mills a dark part of America’s history.

“The following is a list of conditions our veterinary team found in this group of dogs: severe dental disease, broken and/or decaying jaws, dry eye, ear infections, orthopedic diseases, mange, cherry eye, hernias, luxating patellas, cataracts, eye infections, blindness, skin infections, injuries/wounds, foot lesions, pyometra, mammary tumors, heart murmurs, neurological disorders, respiratory illnesses, alopecia, severe matting of fur, fleas and ticks, internal parasites and a variety of congenital defects. After doing the math, 95 percent of our new arrivals are suffering from one or more of these conditions.

“In addition to the care we provide at our own veterinary clinic, we’ve taken 21 of these dogs to local private-practice veterinarians for additional care: x-rays, blood work, ultrasounds or echocardiograms, specialist evaluations or emergency care.

“Unfortunately, there is nothing new or unusual with this group of dogs. It is so deeply disheartening to see them in such horrible condition, an utter betrayal of the human-animal bond. There is so much work yet to be done to abolish this cruelty.

“Despite these deplorable conditions, the vast majority of the dogs greet us with resilient and forgiving spirits, wagging their tails, kissing our hands and accepting our touch. As ever, a few will take more time to find their courage, but over time, we will make all of them well and prepare them for the life they’ve always deserved.

“Although the work we do each day is physically and emotionally exhausting, we are truly some of the most rewarded people on the planet. The indomitable spirit of the mill dogs gives us strength, and knowing that one day their person will come for them keeps us hopeful. We are as determined today as we have ever been to be their voice and to bring about lasting change.”

National Mill Dog Rescue: MyRescue.dog Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

The money covered the costs of 20 dogs’ entry into freedom. From the time they arrived in November to the time they were adopted to new homes, these dogs received loving daily care and veterinary services averaging $250 per dog. The daily care was provided at our wonderful, large kennel facility in Peyton, Colo., by a host of volunteers. Veterinary care was provided at our on-site clinic by our staff of highly qualified veterinarians and technicians. Each dog we rescue receives spay/neuter surgery, heartworm testing, deworming, microchipping, extensive dental surgery due to years of neglect and poor food at the mills, treatment for parasite infestation, which is normal at the mills, treatment for eye and ear infections and injuries, as needed, removal of mammary tumors.

In addition to the in-house care, we spend an average of $9,000 a month for veterinary care at outside clinics for those dogs that require specialized treatment or surgery.

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

This grant helped prepare 20 dogs for life as a family pet, after years of living life as a breeding machine in a puppy mill. It helped not only with the daily care and veterinary care described above, but helped facilitate their adoption to new homes through our paid-staff adoptions coordinator and it helped support our website, where available dogs and our adoption application are accessed.

How many pets did this grant help?

20

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

Journey is the ideal new name for a 2-year-old Havanese we called Captain when we rescued him in November, because his new people traveled through many states looking for him and they’ll be traveling through many more with him on board their RV! Having lost their Westie in December, this compassionate couple realized that they couldn’t be in a home — or an RV — without a dog. Their search for the right puppy included trips from Colorado to New Mexico and Arizona. But when they saw Journey’s picture on the National Mill Dog Rescue website, they headed straight for our Peyton, Colo., kennel.

In a recent conversation, Journey’s new mom says the little guy is adjusting very well, is learning about potty training, is eating with enthusiasm and is a “joy to us.” Described as loving, playful, attentive, inquisitive and alert, Journey has found two dedicated, loving parents. What’s more, when he’s not on the road, Journey will be enjoying his home and lots of open space on 7 acres.

Having had experience with their Westie, also a puppy-mill survivor, Journey’s mom and dad are committed to providing as perfect a home as possible for their new addition. As his mom says: “Journey is in our life forever.”

National Mill Dog Rescue: Dogly Do Good Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

Funds were used to defray veterinary medical expenses for Wren, a 10-year-old puppy-mill survivor we rescued in February. Her expenses far exceeded the amount of the grant, but we are so very grateful to have received the $500 toward her care. See below for details.

Because of the poor health that puppy-mill dogs have to endure, and because of our commitment to give them all of the treatment they need to be restored to health, our expenses for outside veterinary care run about $9,000 every month. This is in addition to the average $240 per dog for standard care in our in-house clinic.

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

See below story about Wren. She is just one of nearly 10,000 dogs we have rescued in our eight-year history. It is our goal to save as many as we can and to educate the public about the sad realities of the commercial dog-breeding industry.

How many pets did this grant help?

one

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

Wren, a 10-year-old former breeding dog in a Midwest puppy mill, was in sad shape when we rescued her earlier this year. She had a luxating jaw and an old fracture on the right side of her little face where some of the bone was missing. As a result, her pink tongue slides out of the side of her mouth — now very cute, but not so cute before! She had mammary masses, which are common in puppy-mill dogs who have been repeatedly bred for years on end and never received veterinary care, She had untreated infections, which left her ears swollen and painful.

Wren had jaw surgery, spay surgery, mammary-tumor surgery, plus the standard vaccinations, deworming, microchipping, and a ton of TLC from dozens of volunteers, who have comforted her and loved her every single day since she arrived at our Peyton kennel on Feb. 4, 2015.

Wren was part of our Hundred Hearts rescue — the largest in our eight-year history — which brought 100 dogs from mills in Kansas, Missouri and Arkansas home to freedom.

Wren has recovered well from all of the trauma in her past life. She is ready and willing to meet her lifelong family and become a treasured family pet. Meet Wren: https://www.petfinder.com/petdetail/31497232/

National Mill Dog Rescue: WAHL Grooming Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

Wahl products were used for bathing and grooming dogs that had been rescued from puppy mills.

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

http://bit.ly/nmdr_ty

Above is the link to our Facebook page, wherein we thanked the foundation and Wahl for this donation of six bottles of shampoo. This gift reduced our costs and enabled us to use our resources for other needs.

How many pets did this grant help?

It is difficult to estimate how many dogs were bathed with the Wahl products. What is more important is the exposure through Facebook, which you requested, and which always leads to pet adoptions and donations. Thank you again for selecting us for this gift.

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

Here is an excerpt from a report by a first-time volunteer, a college student, who went with our rescue team in November. “One of this puppy-mill breeder’s employees mentioned that he had a 3- or 4-year-old golden retriever who did not want to breed anymore, and the breeder was willing to turn her over to us (along with the dogs we had come for). My ears immediately perked up and the thought of leaving her with this man made me sick. With limited room on board, it was a stretch, but, as always, [NMDR executive director Theresa Strader] made it happen. The man brought her out; she was so scared and stayed flat on the ground. Later that night as we serviced the dogs, I stayed with her and watched her frantically run around the yard, ignoring my gaze and avoiding my touch. Eventually, she would come over and stand somewhat close to me; then she would lie down beside me. By the end of the evening, she rolled over on her back, accepting belly rubs. As I loaded her back into her kennel I noticed my hands were black just from patting her. Her temporary name is Whitney until she finds her forever home.

“I hope and pray, like so many others, that one day rescues like this one won’t be needed and that every animal will be treated with kindness and that everyone human will understand why.”

National Mill Dog Rescue: Shelter+ Challenge Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

The grant was used to provide veterinary care for newly rescued puppy-mill dogs. Since 2007, we have rescued more than 8,400 dogs from deplorable conditions in large-scale breeding operations throughout the Midwest and as far east as Tennessee. Our biggest expense is for veterinary care, because the rescued dogs are generally in terrible condition. Incoming animals are spayed and neutered and, at a minimum, receive heartworm tests, microchips and vaccinations. Most require extensive dental procedures; some have completely rotted mouths. Following is a sample of other conditions seen and treated: pyometra, injured and infected eyes, ears scarred from untreated infections, parasite infestation, parvo, leg and foot deformities, genetic defects, blindness, deafness, hernias, mammary tumors and other cancers. On average, the veterinary team treats 60 dogs a month at a total cost of roughly $14,400 or $240 per dog rescued. Veterinarians contracted to provide special care cost an average of $5,000 monthly. Every dog rescued is given every possible chance for survival and a good quality of life.

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

This grant helped to cover some of the veterinary costs associated with a puppy mill rescue in September 2013. See explanation above.

How many pets did this grant help?

This generous grant helped four dogs that required spaying, heartworm testing, microchips and vaccinations. As indicated above, the average cost for this basic services is about $240 per dog.

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

Among the dogs helped by your grant is Seri. She was 3 months old when rescued from a puppy mill in September. She couldn’t be sold to a pet store because of a strong heart murmur, so she was of no use to the mill and was scheduled for euthanasia. We rescued her and learned from her medical evaluation that she had a totally operable condition — but the surgery was expensive and she needed it immediately. The veterinary team at Colorado State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital in Fort Collins, Colo., undertook the procedure on Sept. 24. Seri stayed at the hospital for a few days but then returned to her NMDR foster family. Very soon thereafter, the family decided to make her their own. Now a happy, healthy 6-month-old beauty, Seri is living life to the fullest — a life she would never have experienced without National Mill Dog Rescue.

National Mill Dog Rescue: Shelter+ Challenge Grant Report

What was the money or product used for?

The Shelter Challenge Grant was used to provide veterinary care for newly rescued puppy mill dogs. National Mill Dog Rescue (NMDR) has saved over 8,000 dogs since we were founded in 2007, and each month we rescue approximately 80-100 dogs. Our biggest expense is for veterinary care, and the generous grant you awarded NMDR helped provide this intervention for dogs who needed such care that were rescued in mid-2013. The dogs were spayed or neutered, received all vaccinations, and were treated for parasites, infection, and dental problems. We are a no-kill shelter and are committed to providing all dogs with the veterinary care, nurturing, and socialization they so desperately need. Your support helped with these veterinary expenses for the newly rescued dogs and gave them a good start to their new lives.

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

All rescued dogs, upon arrival at the NMDR kennel, undergo a comprehensive intake process during which they are vet checked and treated for disease, injury, dental problems, parasites, and other health-related conditions. One of the dogs rescued on this trip, Leroy, received this veterinary care and his story and photos are shared within this report. Your generous support helped to cover some of the veterinary costs needed to care for the group of dogs rescued along with Leroy. The dogs arrived at the NMDR kennel with severely matted hair, ticks and fleas, and were malnourished and very fearful. It has been inspiring to watch their transformation from the first day of arrival (when they received basic veterinary care and grooming), to their days at the kennel where they always had plenty of food to eat and received daily socialization from caring volunteers, to the time when they realized that they were in a safe and loving place and began to trust again! The resilience and love these dogs demonstrate is incredible, and your generous financial support helps to make that transformation possible.

How many pets did this grant help?

Your grant helped to covering the basic veterinary costs associated with the intake of this rescue in July, 2013. The rescue involved 77 dogs who arrived with a variety of conditions. While costs vary per dog, the basic veterinary care provided at intake can run from $100-200 per dog.

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

One of the dogs rescued on this trip is Leroy, age two. After being rescued from a mill in Missouri where he lived in filthy conditions, Leroy arrived at NMDR. Volunteers found that he was infested with fleas and ticks; in fact, they pulled 28 ticks off of Leroy that first day. Much of the scarring you can see in the photos is from flea and tick bites that had been left untreated at the puppy mill. Leroy also had a bad ear infection and needed surgery on one eye due to past ulcerations. NMDR treated the flea and tick infestation, cleaned and groomed him, and he spent his first days in a safe, warm kennel with a raised bed, plenty of food, and caring attention from volunteers. Leroy was then placed with a foster family where he is learning to trust and loving the attention and care he is receiving. The last photo in the series attached shows Leroy enjoying some time on the deck with his foster-siblings! Leroy is now awaiting his forever home. We thank you so much for the generous support that makes stories like Leroy’s possible.