In the last couple of decades, there’s been a dramatic drop in the rates of euthanasia. One of the consequences of more humane treatment by shelters is that the same animals who would’ve been put down are now living long lives, thanks to significant advances in veterinary medicine. Providing for their physical and emotional care can be costly, and divert resources from homing efforts.
Even if adopters have the best of intentions when choosing a new companion animal, most of us make a selection based on an ideal notion. It is the rare individual who has the time, energy and financial security to adopt a pet kid with chronic medical conditions, sadly many due to horrifying abuse or neglect. So, who will step in to care for these creatures?
Fortunately, there are groups of people who've made it their mission to provide superb care for the 'unadoptables' in the form of animal sanctuaries. This is why it gives us such great pleasure to highlight one such group, C & W's Rustic Hollow Shelter, one of our recent grant recipients.
This mighty-in-spirit collective says to each animal upon intake, 'welcome home, your new life starts today'. In operation since 1985, C & W's sanctuary is nestled on 190 acres of land which was originally a family farm. The current staff even works the grounds - flowering plants ring the patios, providing no end of things for curious kitties to explore.
Some of their cats have already been adopted before, perhaps even twice. And, for any of a number of reasons, ultimately returned back into foster care. For the cats at C & W's, there's no more uncertainty ... they are exactly where they should be. Everything they need is right here.
They specialize in caring for senior cats who become homeless upon the death of a pet parent, cats with feline leukemia or FIV, and also any number of kitties with chronic medical, physical, neurological or extreme behavioral issues. There are even two special-needs dogs who call this rescue home.
The sanctuary provides excellent living accommodations. Cats live cage-free, with access to toddler beds, stuffed animals and many perches for climbing and lounging. The even have their own TVs which play cat-friendly videos. Even though they will never have a 'traditional' family of their own, these felines are more than happy.
Not content to rescue just in their little corner of the world, this organization maintains working relationships with other rescues across the nation. In fact, they’ve partnered with one of our previous grant recipients, CARMA (a NM group), to save animals who are classified as 'adoption-challenged'. To date, they have taken in special-needs cats from over 30 states!
With a sizable staff for a small non-profit, close to 50 volunteers, co-directors who spend upwards of 80 hours per week and the supervision of Carmen Linda Conklin (Founder and Director), this is a true labor of love. C & W receives no governmental financial support, but rather is funded through donations, sponsorships, fundraising events and grants like our own.
In their community, they advocate on behalf of companion animals on several fronts. Their mission is to promote the humane treatment of all animals, provide community awareness and education on the importance of spay-and-neuter programs and make available behavioral counseling to prevent situations that could lead to abandonment. They even host bi-monthly low-cost clinics, often performing more than 50 surgeries per day.
The staff also does monthly therapy animal visits to area nursing homes. Not only do the volunteers bring along their wonderful kitties, they also bring animals from home, including ducks, chickens, rabbits, baby goats … sometimes, even miniature horses.
C & W plans to use their financial award to help cover the costs of veterinary care and daily operating expenses.
Here are just a few of the sweet, loving cats who now call Rustic Hollow their permanent home address …
From all of us here at Life’s Abundance headquarters, we thank this committed network of lifesavers for their incredible work. And we thank all readers and customers … through your personal donations and continued patronage, you’ve helped make all of our grants possible. Your generosity and loyalty have helped to make the world a better place for abandoned, abused and neglected animals across America.
We are currently accepting applications for funding. Our next round of grants will be reviewed in April, so if you know of an animal rescue organization that deserves special recognition and financial support, please encourage them to fill out an application. Download here.
Check back next month for more good news from The Dr. Jane Foundation. Together, we’re making a difference!