Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Rescuing Dogs in Wyatt

On Thursday, November 18, Hope Animal Sanctuary Director Doll Stanley responded to a plea for help from Theresa, a Wyatt, Mississippi resident. Theresa was seeking help for an 86 year old neighbor, John, who had several momma dogs and litters of puppies. John lives in the rusted-out shell of an old school bus and is barely able to take care of himself, let alone his ever-expanding pack of dogs, so experienced help was desperately needed.

Doll met Theresa and her son at John's property that afternoon. Theresa and her son had been helping to feed and care for both the dogs and John. They gave Doll the lay of the property and filled her in on the personality traits of each dog and pup. As this was happening, John arrived. He said he was happy for the help, but didn't believe in spaying/neutering animals - that it was "unnatural." Clearly in over his head because of this belief, he relented after speaking with Doll and agreed to let us spay/neuter all the adults and take all the pups for adoption.

Doll left with ten puppies initially and went back a few days later for another litter of three. All of these puppies will be altered by Mississippi State University's mobile vet team in the coming weeks, then transported to our adoption partners, Every Creature Counts, in Denver for adoption.


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

November Transport

Every transport is a challenge. The logistics of an operation that brings together so many people and animals from so many different locations could give UPS a run for their money, and our most recent transport was no different.

Hope Animal Sanctuary Director Doll Stanley and volunteer Lisa Martin departed the sanctuary this past Sunday afternoon and proceeded to pick up animals from all over northern Mississippi. In addition to the animals on this transport from Hope Animal Sanctuary and the Winona, Mississippi city shelter, animals were pulled from shelters and individual rescuers from Carthage, Clarksdale, Cleveland and Indianola. The final tally of animals on this transport was a mind-blowing 85 dogs and 11 cats. By far our biggest and most ambitious transport to date.

Everything went smoothly, including the unexpected roadside rescue of a dog found wandering alongside a busy highway in north Mississippi. Delta Dawn, as she's now named, joined the transport and was welcomed with open arms by the good folks at Every Creature Counts. Many of the animals from this transport will be adopted this weekend at a adoption events held in and around the Denver area.

We're so grateful to our rescue partners, Every Creature Counts, for their continued support in helping us find homes for dogs and cats who otherwise would have no hope of finding a good home. We want to thank Dr. Phil Bushby and his team from Mississippi State University's vet program who spayed/neutered most of the animals on this transport. Finally, thanks to HAS volunteers Debbie Young and Sherri Norquist for hours of data entry work that made this transport go so smoothly.


Monday, November 8, 2010

Remembering What Matters

I spent nearly the entire month of October in Mississippi filling in for Doll at Hope Animal Sanctuary (HAS). Doll was on much deserved and much needed vacation and they needed an extra pair of hands, so I offered to help. This was not my first time at the Sanctuary, I've been down several times and spent almost three months there at the end of 2007.

I was grateful on this trip to be joined by my nephew, Zach, who helped me immensely with the day-to-day operations and afforded me the ability to give the three employees, William, Lisa and Elizabeth, some much needed extra time off. I was impressed with the efforts of this team and I admire very much the work they do for animals, both in and out of the Sanctuary.

To me, there is no better way to remind yourself of what truly matters than working hands-on with animals. Animals that in most instances are coming from situations of abuse, neglect and violence that most of us cannot imagine. Had a rough day at the office? At least no one dumped you and your siblings along 70 mile per hour Interstate 55, like what happened to a group of weeks-old puppies that were recently through the Sanctuary - all had been hit by cars and despite receiving immediate medical care, none survived their injuries. Or Nicholas, a dog I took in while I was there. Nicholas had finally broken through the collar that chained him likely in someone's backyard. More a lawn ornament than and living, breathing, feeling animal, Nicholas' collar had become partially embedded in his neck, undoubtedly bringing him agony for only he knows how long.

Nicholas shortly after arriving at the Sanctuary.

These are just a couple of recent stories from Hope Animal Sanctuary. Sadly, not every story is a victory, but had HAS not been there to ease the suffering of animals that would ultimately succumbed to their injuries, they would have had to suffer for much longer. And had HAS not been there to rescue the ones that survived and thrived, they never would have gotten out of their hopeless situations.


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