Petfinder Foundation News

Cooling Grant a ‘Game-Changer’ for Tucson Shelter Dogs

BEAR - pacc

Bear cools off at Pima Animal Care Center in Tucson, Ariz.

Your donations to our Summer Cooling Campaign are saving lives at Pima Animal Care Center (PACC) in Tucson, Ariz., by helping the dogs there get adopted. The shelter used our Summer Cooling grant to install an overhead misting system in two visitation yards, meaning potential adopters can now comfortably spend time getting to know the resident dogs.

“It’s a game-changer,” Animal Care Advocate Justin Gallick tells us. Here in Tucson, temperatures have already topped 111 degrees, and before the outdoor misting system was installed, potential adopters did not have a cool, comfortable place in which to visit with the shelter’s dogs. “Now they can take the time necessary to make that bond,” Gallick says.

Two brother kittens enjoyed catsicles at PACC.

Enjoying catsicles at PACC

As part of Petfinder’s Summer Pet Safety campaign, we’ve challenged Petfinder.com visitors to help us raise $10,000 to keep 10,000 shelter pets cool and safe. (You can donate here to help.) PACC’s grant was possible because of your donations, and it is making a big difference to the shelter’s adoption numbers, Gallick says. (Find out how pets are keeping cool at our first Summer Cooling grant recipient, Humane Society of Southern Arizona.)

When we visited PACC to check out its new misters, we brought along kiddie pools for each of the yards. We also made cooling catsicles to share with the shelter’s cats (get the recipe for catsicles here), and pupsicles that we made by freezing low-sodium chicken broth in an ice cube tray.

Tipper loved her pupsicle.

Tipper loves her pupsicle.

The grant came at just the right time, since the shelter – which takes in nearly 25,000 lost and homeless pets a year – is currently being inundated with unwanted litters (read our previous blog post about PACC).

“It’s raining puppies and kittens,” Adoption Coordinator Ellie Beaubien says.

Adelle was adopted the afternoon after she enjoyed pool fun in PACC's visiting yards.

Adelle has since been adopted.

While the misters in the visitation yards certainly make adopters more comfortable, they also give the shelter’s nursing-mother dogs a place to take a break from their puppies, Beaubien says. Before the summer, staff members would give each nursing mother half an hour of exercise and fresh air in the yards – but when the high temperatures arrived, that became too dangerous.

Now, thanks to the misting system, “nobody’s getting overheated,” Beaubien says. “We really needed those. It was a great investment.”

Donate to help us keep 10,000 homeless pets cool, and Orvis will match your gift!

 

donate.jpg

 

These Abandoned Puppies Won’t Be having Puppies!

Adopted Pit Bull Allie in her new home

Adopted Pit Bull Allie in her new home

Thanks to our SNAP-X (Spay, Neuter, Adopt, Protect) grant, some pit bull puppies who were abandoned at the Humane Society of Pensacola in Florida won’t be having puppies of their own.

The shelter applied for a SNAP-X grant to help with the county’s problem with an overabundance of that breed, writing, “We would use the funds to spay the pit bulls and pit bull mixes that we see so often in our shelter.”

new_born

Mama dog Angel‘s pups as newborns

Luckily, the grant funds had arrived the day an entire Pit Bull family was left at the facility — mama dog Angel, her mate and their four newborn pups. All six dogs “were abandoned on our porch with a note,” the shelter’s managing director, Sarah Humlie, tells us.

“Dad has been adopted,” she adds. “Mom is still waiting for her forever home, and all of the puppies have gone to great new homes.

“The puppies were beautiful and well behaved. By 10 weeks old, Bane knew how to sit, shake and roll over! Allie, as you can see from the picture, is a sweet girl without a care in the world in her new home. Both of these puppies were able to be spayed and neutered with the help of the grant.”

Bane in his new home

Bane in his new home

The pups’ mama, Angel, “loves to play, is a delight to be around, and will bring a smile to any face,” according to her Petfinder profile. Learn about adopting Angel here.

A SNAP-X grant also helped a dog named Sherman, who was in the care of Maple Hill Farm Toy Breed Rescue in Butler, Ohio.

Maple Hill president Dawn Porter tells us, “Sherman was a dog sent to us by a lady from Shelby. She found him and tried to find a home for him but could find no one, so she sent him to us. He is a poodle mix — we felt even possibly part Chinese crested. [A couple] came to adopt Laura; they liked her but then saw Sherman and the husband could not stop loving on him. So they ended up deciding to adopt him instead!”

OH582-sherman-maple-hill-farm

Thanks to program founder Fabiola Beracasa and everyone who donated to make these SNAP-X grants possible!

donate.jpg

 

SNAP-X: Saving Lives, Preventing Unwanted Litters

With our SNAP-X (Spay, Neuter, Adopt, Protect) program, created by media personality and adoption advocate Fabiola Beracasa, we’re helping shelters combat pet overpopulation in regions desperate for spay and neuter services. Here are the stories of just a few of the pets SNAP-X has helped:

West Virginia

“These are some dogs who have benefited from the grant,” says Beth Vuolo, Executive Director of Summers County Humane Society in Hinton, WV. “The first four are still available for adoption.

Trixie is a sweetie. So far she is fine with all my creatures, with the exception of Vanna, who won’t stop barking at her. She is doing very well with everyone else these days.

Goose is an awesome guy! Super sweet, shy and timid at first, but always gentle and loving. Goose loves to play with the other dogs and is truly your best friend. Goose is very happy sprawled across your lap getting a belly rub. Goose is about 18 months old and 70 pounds.

Brogan is a huge baby. He tries very hard to please and loves other dogs. Brogan is so big, he scares other dogs when he runs up to say ‘hello’ so he is learning some manners. He knows how to sit and he is learning to walk on a leash. It is hard to get a picture because he wants to sit for you all the time. Brogan is not pushy. He’s great with cats, kids and dogs and would love to go home. He is 18 months old and 93 pounds. He has an impressive Mastiff bark and we think he is mixed with Labrador. Very friendly.

Mickey loves people! He wants to say hello to everyone he meets and get a good scratch. Mickey loves other dogs too but he doesn’t share his food with them (we are working on manners). He has wandered in the hills so long he hasn’t figured out food is not scarce anymore. Mickey is a great guy and will make a great companion! Mickey is about 5 years old and 59 pounds.

Kelly

Kelly

“Kelly is a 9-week-old puppy spayed before going home. She was surrendered when someone failed to spay their dog and ended up with a litter. Their dog is now altered and has been adopted. This is a picture of Kelly in her new home.”

Wyoming

Brandee Smith, program coordinator for the Laramie, WY, chapter of Black Dog Animal Rescue, emails us:

Corona 1

Corona

“The first two pictures are Corona, a yellow Husky mix. He was neutered in our program. He was adopted! Corona was [pulled from a shelter]. He hadn’t been there long but he had few options, I think mostly because of his look. He was in our program about two weeks before he was adopted to a family in Laramie.

Corona 2

Corona with his new family

“The next is Klondike, a black Pit Bull mix, who was neutered in our program and then adopted! Klondike was at a shelter for several months and quickly deteriorating. [One of our volunteers] was there when he was surrendered. She said it was heartbreaking. He screamed and cried and refused to go in the back. He was adopted after only about a week in our program.”

Klondike.

Klondike

Ohio

These two stories are from Dawn Porter, president of Maple Hill Farm Toy Breed Rescue in Butler, Ohio.

Buddy — now Biscuit — in his new home

“Buddy’s owners decided they made a mistake and didn’t want him after all after only one week. He is about 11 weeks old, a chocolate Yorkie. He is a wonderful guy! So sweet and quiet considering his age. He went to his new home today. He will be called Biscuit now!”

The SNAP-X grant also allowed Maple Hill Farm to help puppy mill survivor Hannah, a 5-year-old Chihuahua who’d spent her life in a tiny cage. “The money has enabled us to make an appointment for Hannah to be fully vetted next week,” Porter says. “Thank you so much for this opportunity to help more dogs.”

Many thanks to Fabiola and everyone who donated to SNAP-X for helping these and many other pets in desperate need!

donate.jpg

 

Animals Suffering in Colorado Wildfires

Zed is tiny and adorable

Our grant to The Gabriel Foundation is helping protect Zed the lovebird.

With Colorado wildfires still raging, our disaster grants are helping to reunite evacuated pets with their families and to protect 950 homeless birds from the deadly effects of smoky air.

After the state’s most destructive wildfire broke out near Colorado Springs on June 11, we rushed $3,000 to the Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region (HSPPR), which has cared for nearly 1,000 animals affected by the disaster. We also sent $1,500 to The Gabriel Foundation so it could purchase the expensive air filters it needs to protect the delicate respiratory systems of the 950 homeless Parrots and other birds in its care.

Nelson, the Elderly Parrot

Our grant is helping Nelson the senior Parrot.

“We are downwind from the fires, and because we use swamp coolers and birds’ respiratory systems are extremely delicate, our birds’ health is greatly at risk,” The Gabriel Foundation’s Administration Manager Jennie Wyrwicki tells us. “We need to make sure we have filters running constantly.”

HSPPR’s Grants and Corporate Relations Manager Marsha Wayman tells us that her organization has already reunited 315 animals with their grateful families. Many displaced pets are or were in the shelter’s care because their pet parents were evacuated and had to bring their pets to the shelter for temporary care, Wayman says.

HSPPR also went into homes to retrieve pets who had been left behind, like Callie, below. When Callie’s family was forced to evacuate, she was hiding and they could not find her. They were thrilled HSPPR was able to save her life.

Callie's Happy Reunion

Callie was reunited with her grateful family at HSPPR.

We’re proud to be supporting these happy reunions and the hard work Colorado’s animal-welfare organizations are doing to save animal victims of the disaster.

Donate today so we can save more pets when disaster strikes, and Orvis will match your gift!

donate.jpg

Help Us Keep 10,000 Shelter Pets Cool this Summer!

Samantha Esquivel and Sara Gromley from the Humane Society of Southern Arizona share frozen treats with adoptable Benson.

HSSA‘s Samantha Esquivel, left, and Sara Gromley share homemade frozen dog treats with adoptable Benson.

As part of Petfinder’s Summer Pet Safety campaign, we’re challenging Petfinder.com visitors to help us raise $10,000 to help keep 10,000 shelter pets cool and safe this summer. (Donate to keep shelter pets cool here.)

Dewey loved playing in the kiddie pool.

Dewey plays in the kiddie pool.

The funds raised will go towards Summer Cooling grants to help shelters purchase misters, sun shades and other cooling devices.

We visited the first grant recipient, the Humane Society of Southern Arizona (HSSA), this week. HSSA, which takes in about 10,000 pets each year, received $1,000 to help keep its animal residents cool as temperatures in Tucson hit triple digits over the summer. HSSA Public Relations Lead Samantha Esquivel showed us some of the ways the shelter keeps pets comfortable in hot weather (and you can too):

Benson Frolics

Benson cools off in a kiddie pool.

1. Fresh, cool water – for both drinking and playing in – is key for keeping dogs like Benson, a 9-year-old flat-coated retriever, safe and happy. Not only does Benson benefit from HSSA’s overhead misting system, he loves the shelter’s sprinklers and kiddie pool, which you can set up at home.

2. Homemade frozen treats – such as a Kong toy stuffed with peanut butter and kibble stuck in the freezer for several hours – are an easy way to keep your pet entertained and cool. You can try our recipe for catsicles to give your feline friends a frosty, tasty snack.

3. Shade sources – such as trees, dog houses or the sunshades HSSA uses in its visiting yards – are crucial when your pet is outside. But even if plenty of shade is available, be sure to limit your pet’s time outdoors and watch closely for signs of heatstroke (learn the symptoms of heatstroke).

Sibling 9-week-old kittens Emmit, left, and Lily enjoyed their catsicles.

Emmit, left, and Lily enjoy their catsicles.

“The best part of our dogs’ day is when they get to let loose in the visiting yard with volunteers, but we always have to be vigilant about heat and usually cut playtime short,” HSSA Public Relations Coordinator Sara Gromley tells us. “Thanks to a grant from the Petfinder Foundation, we’re able to extend the fun!”

Robbie the 1 1/2-year-old Red Tabby loved his catsicle treat.

Robbie, a red tabby, loves his catsicle.

Check out Petfinder.com’s Summer Pet Safety campaign for more cooling tips.

Are you with a Petfinder member shelter? Apply for a Summer Cooling grant here.

Donate to help us keep 10,000 homeless pets cool and Orvis will match your gift!

donate.jpg

 

A Maltipoo Is Thrown Over a Shelter Fence

Tippy Sits in the Grass

Tippy is available for adoption at k9.5 Rescue.

When Tippy the Maltipoo was thrown over a six-foot-high shelter fence onto concrete, our grant from Orvis — which matches donations dollar-for-dollar up to $30,000 — arrived just in time for k9.5 Rescue in Greenville, S.C., to save her life.

“She was literally on the verge of death, with a heart rate of 36,” k9.5 President Allison Rathert tells us. “During a period when we only had a few hundred dollars in the bank and an emergency-room fund that was soon to be maxed out as a result of Tippy’s visit, the $1,000 grant allowed us to cover a life-threatening crash and do what we needed to do to save her.”

The 2-year-old dog’s left hip was completely out of its socket, and she suffered nerve damage, too, Rathert says. Tippy spent three days in critical care. Veterinarians also diagnosed her with Addison’s disease, an adrenal condition that affects dogs like Tippy for life.

Despite her acute injuries, chronic condition and the past abuse she suffered, Tippy was cheerful, affectionate and friendly. After three days in the hospital, she entered a foster home for an extended recovery and is up for adoption (learn about adopting Tippy here).

“Tippy is currently doing remarkably well and responding to her medication,” Rathert says. “She is back to her feisty, active and joyful self.”

Bryson Sitting in the Sunlight

Now that his eye has healed, Bryson is available for adoption from k9.5 Rescue.

After paying for Tippy’s care, k9.5 still had $200 in grant funds remaining. Rathert says she put that money toward medical treatment for Bryson, a 2½-year-old Great Pyrenees suffering from entropion. The painful eye condition caused Bryson’s lower eyelid to curl inward and scratch his cornea.

“Bryson has recovered successfully and his eye looks fantastic,” Rathert says. “He has not squinted or had drainage since.”

We’re proud that our grant allowed k9.5 to help these two beautiful dogs.

“The joy and immense relief that flooded me upon opening the envelope simply cannot be described accurately,” Rathert says. “It was literally a lifesaver.”

Help us save more homeless pets like Tippy and Bryson!

donate.jpg

 

Saving a Pregnant Pit Bull and Her Puppies

Sunny is available for adoption

Sunny is available for adoption at Utah Animal Adoption Center.

When Utah Animal Adoption Center in Salt Lake City rescued a very pregnant Pit Bull from an abusive situation, our grant from Orvis — which matches donations dollar-for-dollar up to $30,000 — helped pay for the mother’s and her seven puppies’ medical care.

“Sunny was extremely malnourished,” Resource Development Director Samantha Johnson tells us. “You could see her ribs.”

Despite being badly mistreated, Sunny had a gentle and loving temperament that endeared her to the staff. Five days after the shelter took Sunny in, they helped her have her pups.

“She was the sweetest thing ever,” Lead Shelter Assistant Lindsay Ortega says. “She let us assist her, she let us rub her belly, she let us clean her babies off. She was the best momma.”

One of Sunny's seven puppies.

One of Sunny’s seven puppies

The grant helped the shelter pay for Sunny’s spay as well as her puppies’ spay/neuter surgeries, microchips and vaccinations. Johnson tells us that the organization took in 1,175 animals last year and found homes for 1,139 of them.

“Our ability to take on a pregnant animal, rehabilitate her, and find homes for her puppies is greatly impacted by the funding we received from Petfinder Foundation,” Johnson says.

Four of Sunny's seven puppies; all are up for adoption at Utah Animal Adoption Center.

Three of Sunny’s seven puppies

Donate to help homeless pets, and Orvis will match your gift!

donate.jpg

Helping Animal Victims of the Colorado Wildfire

Displaced Cat in Kennel

This Humane Society of Pikes Peak Region photo shows one of the many displaced pets in the organization’s care.

We’ve rushed $3,000 in disaster aid to Colorado Springs, Colo., where the Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region is caring for 358 cats, dogs, birds, pocket pets and other animals displaced by the raging Black Forest fire.

“We’re working around the clock,” Grants and Corporate Relations Manager Marsha Wayman tells us.

The fire is the most destructive in the state’s history, with officials saying 360 homes have already been destroyed. Thousands of residents are being evacuated, and many of them are bringing their pets to the shelter for temporary housing and care.

“We’re working right now with animal recovery, trying to locate animals that have been left behind,” Wayman tells us.

Two Displaced Dogs in a Cage

Two of the many dogs whose owners were evacuated and who are being cared for by the Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region.

The fire comes less than a year after the state’s second-most destructive fire, the Waldo Canyon fire, struck the region.

Temporary Shelter for People and Pets

A temporary shelter for people and pets being managed by the Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region.

“The good news is we have an incredibly experienced and talented team,” Wayman says. “That’s kind of a silver lining, but the impact is going to be larger this time.”

As the manager of the area’s Community Animal Response Team, the organization is tasked with providing professional response, resources and community education during and after disasters, Wayman says. They are housing displaced animals at several locations, including one site where pet parents can stay with their pets. They working to transport large animals – such as horses and goats – to other organizations that are better equipped  to care for them, Wayman said.

Chinchilla in Cage

The Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region is caring for small displaced companion animals like this one, too.

The organization expects to spend a significant amount of money on transporting and housing pets while their caretakers are indefinitely displaced. Wayman says she is grateful for the Foundation’s fast assistance.

“We appreciate it so much,” Wayman said. “We need all the help we can get.”

Help us save more pets when disaster strikes.

donate.jpg

Delivering a Grant — and Meeting Shelter Pets — in Tucson

Lisa Walks Nina the Adoptable Dog

Petfinder Foundation Executive Director Lisa Robinson walks Nina, a Pit Bull mix, at Pima Animal Care Center in Tucson.

Once in a while, we like to deliver a grant in person. So this week we headed to one of our local Tucson shelters, Pima Animal Care Center (PACC), to present a $1,000 Summer Cooling grant. The funds will be used to install a misting system in the shelter’s meet-and-greet yards and outdoor dog runs to make both more comfortable for the pets and potential adopters.

While we were there, we also spent some time walking a few of the resident dogs — including Nina (above) — and speaking with staff and volunteers about the positive changes the shelter is making. We left feeling prouder than ever to be supporting its work.

Animal Care Advocate Justin Gallick tells us that the county-funded facility, which takes in nearly 25,000 homeless or lost pets a year, is undertaking a radical outlook shift.

“Our culture, and reputation, has for years been based on the animal-control model,” he says. “Now there’s a lot more emphasis on customer service, finding the right match and post-adoption follow-up.”

Justin with Snookums the Puppy

PACC’s Justin Gallick snuggles with Snookums, a 6-week-old Pit Bull.

The organization recently increased its live-release rate from around 50 percent to nearly 65 percent, Gallick says, adding that he expects that number to continue to rise. In the past, PACC did not have a staff member dedicated solely to increasing adoptions, but it recently hired its first full-time adoption coordinator, Ellie Beaubien. It also hired its first full-time volunteer coordinator, José Ocaño. Since February, Ocaño has increased PACC’s volunteer force from 90 people to more than 300.

When it was time for us to walk dogs, two of the shelter’s regular volunteers, Laura Hines and Kainan Jarrette, paired us with pups who needed exercise. PACC is situated next to a small lake – a rare sight in the desert! – and devoted volunteers such as Hines and Jarrette ensure PACC’s temporary residents enjoy daily excursions around the water.

Foundation Walks Dogs Around the Lake

Petfinder Foundation Senior Program Manager Toni Morgan, Robinson and PACC volunteers Laura Hines and Kainan Jarrette (from left) walk adoptable dogs.

Hines and Jarrette come to PACC several times a week to exercise and socialize dogs such as Ernie, a 1-year-old German Shepherd mix (below). Their apartment complex won’t let them adopt any more pets (they already have two cats), so the volunteering helps them get their pet fix.

“I have a very strong love for animals, and it’s nice to be part of the solution,” Jarrette says.

“It’s mutually beneficial, really,” Hines adds. “You get to do something for them but they also give a lot to you.”

Laurie and Kainan and Ernie

Hines and Jarrette with Ernie

We left excited to return to the shelter to see the new misting system installed in time to help the resident pets beat the summer heat. As Adoption Coordinator Ellie Beaubien tells us, “Our animals need it so desperately. I really can’t thank you enough!”

We’re also thrilled that PACC staffers will be attending our upcoming One Picture Saves a Life seminar in Las Vegas, where they’ll learn how to take lifesaving photos of their adoptable pets. PACC’s One Picture Saves a Life grant also includes a digital SLR camera and Photoshop photo-editing software.

Both grants are sure to help save the lives of pets such as Preston (below). We can’t wait to come back!

Preston the English Bulldog

Preston the English Bulldog is available for adoption from PACC.

See all of Pima Animal Care Center’s adoptable pets.

Help us help more pets in need.

 

donate.jpg

 

ThunderShirt Transforms a Blind, Frightened Beagle

Little Fella the Beagle was comforted by the ThunderShirt we granted to

Little Fella is comforted by his ThunderShirt (and a pal).

Our ThunderShirt grant to Friends of the Animals in Lancaster, S.C., transformed the life of Little Fella, a 1-year-old blind Beagle who was abandoned by his guardians and terrified of the world.

“Once the shirt was on, I could pick him up and place him in a crate with a stuffed dog to begin his socialization training and to provide him comfort,” Friends of the Animals foster mom Renae Barnett tells us. “It worked!”

Little Fella wore the Thundershirt continuously for a month, during which time he bonded with the other dogs in his foster family.

“I have a pack of dogs,” Barnett says, “mostly big: two blind and deaf Aussies and some small elderly dogs. Little Fella came out of his shell and within two weeks he was sleeping with them and playing with them.”

Littel Fella is Happy Today

Little Fella has been adopted.

Although he couldn’t see it, Little Fella managed to map out his foster home and get around the house well. He was eventually adopted, and we’re thrilled that our ThunderShirt grant helped make room in the rescue for another dog in need.

“He is an awesome boy and we miss him and love him,” Barnett says. “But the goal is always to find the best home for each pet.”

Help us help shelters and rescues save more pets like Little Fella.

Are you a Petfinder member? Apply for a ThunderShirt grant.

donate.jpg