Here are some examples of how your donations are helping shelters and rescue groups, in the organizations’ own words.
The funds from the Petfinder Foundation's New Year, New Home grant helped us reduce and waive adoption fees on some of our long-term cats.
At St. Sophia's, we work to have low adoption fees; but even so, some cats, for some reason or another, stay in our care longer than expected. This grant helped us reduce our adoption fees for cats who had been in our care more than 90 days (some of whom had been with us over 300 days!). For the month of April, we ran a "Not Spring Chickens" grant to reduce the adoption fee down to $30 for cats in our care who fit the above long-term stay requirements. About 30 cats were selected for this promotion -- and each day in the month of April, a different cat was featured on our website and on our social media platforms.
The goal was to have 30 cats adopted at the reduced rate of $30. So far, of the 30 posted, 11 have found homes and 19 are still looking!
A few success stories include: Aesop (first photo)! This boy came to St. Sophia's as a terrified young kitten. He could hardly be interacted with, but loved the company of other cats. To top it off, he had extreme diarrhea that just wouldn't get better no matter the testing, treatment, and medications. After a long six months, Aesop not only got his potty issues resolved, but became more and more trusting and comfortable around people. One of our previous adopters saw his story and came and scooped him up.
Ghostly (second photo)! This handsome lad, roughly 3 years old, was in our care for a whopping 195+ days! You can tell by the photos how happy his new adopter is to have him in her life now. Ghostly is a LARGE boy and deaf. He also is very rambunctious and loves to play, but doesn't always realize how big of a lug he is and how loud he can be. Being deaf, he had no fear, but that meant he could also be a bit mischievous. He needed just the right home that would understand his personality and needs, and we're glad he found it!
Rasputin (third photo)! Rasputin was surrendered by his owner, then adopted, and then returned for not getting along with another cat, so we knew that finding the right home for him was going to be a challenge. He liked other cats -- albeit only certain ones -- and there was no rhyme or reason to why he was okay with some cats and not others. After 190+ days, Rasputin went home to a very loving family -- where he's going to be the ONLY kitty.
Sweetums and Woozie (fourth photo)! Surrendered to Chicago Animal Control as part of a multi-cat hoarding situation, Sweetums and Woozie were a young, but very bonded, pair of boys, so we really wanted to find a home for them together. Woozie was very outgoing, but Sweetums was shy and always looking for Woozie to show him the way. Both boys went to a home together after 94 days in our care.
Graceful (fifth photo)! My favorite story of all; this sweet girl couldn't have asked for a better life. Graceful was surrendered by her owners along with another cat to Aurora Animal Control. On arrival, she was normal and healthy. Three days later, she couldn't walk. Not knowing what to do, Animal Control slated her for euthanasia (her friend was healthy and adopted out). We took Graceful in, and after a battery of tests that all came back normal or inconclusive, our vets determined that the best course of action was to try a steroid and see if we got any improvement. And we did! Within a few days of her injection, Graceful was up and trying to get around. At first she couldn't eat unless you held the dish AND her head (otherwise she'd just face-plant and then vomit it back up because of the nausea from all the bobbing and weaving) -- but within a week, she was up and walking (albeit like a tin soldier) and eating (while her legs were splayed to prop her up). The hardest part was the litter box -- but once we climbed that hill, Graceful was ready for a home. A loving family who had just lost one of their cats who'd had neurological issues saw our plea to find the "right" home for Graceful and they immediately contacted us. After 214 days, Graceful found her forever home! We're so happy that we get updates on an almost weekly basis! She can now drink from a water dish!
Of course, these are just SOME of the stories! We can't wait to continue this promotion to help our other cats get adopted as well.
We posted the 30 cats in our 30 "Not Spring Chickens" campaign on our website and social media. The link to our Facebook album with the photos of the cats and their descriptions is available here: http://bit.ly/2LMxVtk (this link only shows the ones in the promotion that are still available; please note, Flakka is pending for adoption this Friday, June 1, 2018, and Micah is being transferred to the care of another rescue that specializes in FeLV+ cats).
Care while on transport
Tex and a dozen other cats went on a transport to a shelter in Maine that actually had a demand for cats. The transport went smoothly and most of the cats have already been adopted in Maine.
The sponsored pet was Tex. Tex was dropped at the SpayMart Sanctuary as a very young kitten. He was all alone and the staff spent time with him as he grew and grew. He is a very sweet, affectionate boy. He was at the sanctuary for about four years and had not been adopted. In April of this year, there was an opportunity for Tex to go on a transport to a no-kill shelter in Maine, as that shelter needed healthy, adoptable cats. Tex was well-behaved on the transport, which took 36 hours, and he was adopted almost immediately upon his arrival. SpayMart is happy that the love and attention that Tex received at the SpayMart Sanctuary made him a favorite on the transport and gave him the opportunity to find a forever home.
This grant helped us provide urgent veterinary care to pets in need. Without grants like these, we would not have been able to help animals like Delilah, and she would have worsened and likely died.
Delilah was a sweet tortie kitten brought in by a homeless person who found her with a horrible injury to her leg. After trying to get her help at different rescues, he came to Jelly's Place and we took her in. Her leg was so injured that her bone was exposed. She needed an amputation, and because gangrene had set in, the vet had to remove most of her shoulder blade, then transfer other muscle to partially recreate her shoulder. Delilah then she required another hospitalization and extended treatment to overcome a serious infection that set in after the original injury. Delilah got along with other cats and loved to be held and petted. As Delilah was recovering, one of our volunteers showed pictures of her to a friend who had another three-legged cat, and she fell in love. Delilah is now happy in her new home and has a sibling just like her. Thanks to the Petfinder Foundation, Delilah had a second chance.
The product was used to assist in enriching the lives of the dogs who are with our rescue indefinitely.
This grant helped our organization by affording us the ability to put funds previously earmarked for toys towards medical bills. The grant helped the dogs in our care by giving them additional stimulation and something extra to play with.
Liam is a permanent member of our rescue family. He was brought into the rescue a few years ago from a neglectful situation. Liam is a very dominant male, and though he's not aggressive, he needs constant reminding of where his place is in the pack. An extremely experienced handler and long adjustment period (since he doesn't do well with change) would be required for Liam to be adopted. Liam is finally comfortable in his environment and we feel this is the best place for him to live out his days. For a dog with this personality, mental and physical stimulation is critical, and this grant has assisted in providing Liam with both. As you can see in the picture, he loves the Kong.
The $2,000 Petfinder Foundation New Year, New Home grant was used to reduce or waive the adoption fees for our animals who are more difficult to adopt. The cats who were sponsored by this grant fell into several different categories, including: senior/adult cats, cats with chronic illness, cats with difficult attitude/behavior (shy, scared, hiding, etc.), long-term residents, etc. We also held a Mother's Day adoption event in which all mother cats' adoption fees were waived on May 13th.
This grant helped our organization by bringing more people through the door to meet the sponsored cats. Just like with any promotion, potential adopters were intrigued and more receptive to visiting the adoption center and adopting the sponsored cats. This grant sponsored 35 cats; 23 cats have reduced fees (from $95 to $50) and 22 cats have waived fees. So far, 15 of our sponsored cats have been adopted. The remaining 20 will always be sponsored during their stay here, even though the grant timeline has technically ended. Because this grant has sponsored 35 cats, it is helping to make room in our shelter for 35 more, thus bringing our total cats helped to 70. That means 70 cats will be saved and live happy, healthy lives!
Because Cat Haven always takes our cats back, Sugar (first and second photos) was returned to us when her adopter could no longer care for her. In her previous home, Sugar had become obese, weighing 20 lbs. Because of this, she needed a family that was willing to keep her on a weight-loss diet and exercise routine. She was also physically uncomfortable and took a longer time to warm up to visitors. Under these circumstances, many potential adopters favored her less than some of the other, younger kitties at our shelter. Because her adoption fee was waived through the Petfinder Foundation's New Year, New Home grant, visitors had more of an incentive to give her a chance. She was finally adopted by the Chiasson family, who have given her a loving and caring home.
Bitsy (third photo) and Charlie (fourth photo) came to Cat Haven with five other adult cats after their guardian, a longtime supporter of Cat Haven, passed away from cancer. They came to us scared and confused, and took a long time to warm up to the staff, volunteers, and visitors. They wanted so badly to be loved, but needed adopters who would be willing to be patient with them. Because their fees were reduced through the Petfinder Foundation's New Year, New Home grant, visitors had a greater incentive to be patient and give them a chance. Bitsy went home with the Gabor household and Charlie has a new family with Scott.
The funds were used to offset the cost of low-fee cat adoptions.
The low adoption fee of $20 encouraged cat adoptions: We adopted 17 cats as of May 25, 2017, which is successful for our area.
Bubba was surrendered to the shelter several years ago. Bubba was adopted during our low-fee adoption special being held because of the generous New Year, New Home grant. We will continue to offer these very-low-cost cat adoptions because of this grant.
Money was used to send Debbie Cook to training in Austin. She attended a four-day class with Dogs Playing for Life.
Debbie received and passed on much-needed additional knowledge on group size and make-up, as well as general guidelines for dog playgroups.
Short-term, 28. Long-term, undetermined
Fernando was a sad story. He was surrendered to us because the family lived in a very cold area in South Dakota and their vet said Fernando's feet had been injured to the point that he could no longer be in that severe winter environment. Fernando just couldn't understand why his family had left him. His behavior changed for the worse. We introduced him to playgroups. Initially, he didn't interact with or want to be a part of the group, but we did not give up. On his fourth day, the light switch came on and he started to pick friends and even become somewhat of a play leader with the other dogs. His previous family had such high hopes for him, even writing a letter to his future new family members. Finally, the day we'd all hoped for happened and the perfect family came along looking for big playful house dog! Fernando had struck gold!
The funds from the New Year, New Home grant were used to reduce dog adoption fees by $75 and cat adoption fees by $25.
This grant was a great opportunity to help place pets into adoptive homes. We were able to successfully help 56 animals find homes, including three of our longest-term animals.
Judge (first photo), an approximately 2- to 3-year-old pit bull terrier, had been with us for one day short of a year. Thanks to the Petfinder Foundation grant, Judge found his new home, and is doing great! During his time at the shelter, Judge was rarely asked to be seen. When you first looked at him, he appeared to be “too hyper” or “aggressive” as he ran around his kennel, kicking off the walls and barking at visitors. But this couldn’t be further from the truth. Judge was a sweet dog who got along great with kids and adults. He loved to play and run around the yard. Once he burned off some energy, he would seek the comfort of human companionship. He loved giving kisses and enjoyed cuddling and lying at your feet and relaxing. Judge, like many dogs, did not prefer the company of cats, but did well with some dogs upon a proper meet-and-greet.
Amelia (second photo) and Midnight (third photo) were two of our longest-term cats, also just shy of one year at the shelter. The New Year, New Home grant provided by the Petfinder Foundation helped to find them both loving families to adopt them.
The money was used to help reduce or eliminate the fees for our homeless pets to help them find new homes in the new year.
We provided medical care for a few and spayed a couple of rabbits. Also provided regular husbandry items such as shavings, toys, hide boxes and more. And great vegetables and food. We were able to get the fuel we needed to pick up animals around the area.
We have found 45 animals new great homes since March 10, 2018. We do have a few more who need homes, but we will get homes for them. Thunder the rat (first photo) was found running the streets in Kansas City, MO. He was loose out in terrible storms that we were having. He was caught by some good Samaritans, and they kept him until we could pick him up. Thunder was very scared, shy, skinny and dirty. We gave him a safe place to stay and he still wanted nothing to do with us. Feeding him and picking up and talking to him got him out of his funk, and he now lives the life of luxury with a new pet mom.
Mossie (second photo) was a beautiful ball python who came to us not eating. She had an upper-respiratory infection. Several trips to vet and injections later, she started acting better, then shed, and once we got her eating well, she came around. Mossie was very friendly and didn't mind being held. Once she got a little weight back on her, she found a great home.
Emma the bearded dragon (third photo) has been adopted.
With a few more dollars left, we will be able to continue to help at least 25 more pets. We had a special: adopt one rat, get the other free, with a reduced fee of $5. Rats found great homes. We had great opportunities with this grant and we thank the Petfinder Foundation for making it happen.
This generous Petfinder Foundation grant of $2,000 was used to promote and offer fee-reduced pet adoptions, with a special emphasis on placing bonded pairs of adult cats, including the featured duos Manny and Sheba, Beezur and Lady, Fatone and Myrcella, Mandy and Moses, and Fleece and Squeakers.
This grant helped FFGW create interest and find loving homes for adult bonded pairs, who can sometimes be overlooked by adopters. This promotion was a huge success and we are extremely grateful to the Petfinder Foundation for supporting our all-volunteer organization!
As many as 30
Fatone and Myrcella (first photo) have been best friends since an observant shelter volunteer paired them up. These sweet girls adore each other and clearly needed to be adopted together, but the timid duo would need someone who understood their initial shyness and allowed them time to settle into a new home. With love from an experienced foster and financial security provided by a generous Petfinder Foundation grant, this lucky pair learned to trust people. With newfound confidence, they captured the hearts of their adoptive family and moved into their purrrfect new home on May 22, 2018!
Fleece and Squeakers (second photo) are brothers. Fleece is the handsome short-haired fellow, while dapper Squeakers sports the long, silky fur! These boys worked as "shop cats" in a quaint West Virginia antique store until they suddenly found themselves unemployed. The siblings packed their bags and set out for Northern Virginia in search of a more favorable job market. Fleece and Squeakers were so well-qualified, with a resume that included a stellar reference from the Petfinder Foundation, that they soon found permanent positions working side-by-side in a delightful new family.
THANK YOU, PETFINDER FOUNDATION, FOR SUPPORTING HOMELESS PETS EVERY DAY!!