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How did you get started?

February 25th, 2005, 10:43 AM
All of you dog and cat rescuers out there, how did you get started in rescue? What have been some highlight? Down moments? What keeps you going? How are you set up, etc? I would love any and all info. I think people will enjoy sharing some rescue anecdotes. I hope so, at least! If nothing else, it's a chance to brag about all the good things you all are doing!

February 25th, 2005, 02:49 PM
Last April I was driving in a nearby municipality when a golden retriever ran out in front of me and then along side my car all the while looking at me. I love goldens and had two at the time so I immediatley pulled over and called him to me. It was a busy street so I opened up my car door and in he jumped. Obviously exhausted he laid down immediately.
Only when he was in the back seat of my car did I ask myself what was I going to do with him . I had to go to work and when I tried to get him out of the car and into my house I realized that he had no intention of leaving my car.
Not sure what to do I brought him to our local shelter. They had no trouble getting him out of the car (experience). No one had called to report him missing and in the week he was there never did anyone come looking for him. I checked on him everyday and contacted the Golden rescue group in my area. After a week no one had claimed him so I picked him up and brought him to a vet where he was neutered, fostered and then finally adopted. Through the contacts I made with the rescue group I became involved slowly until I learned the ropes.

Every week we hear about at least one dog that is in need of help. The volunteers scramble sometimes to get a dog out of a home where it can no longer live. It is picked up most times by a volunteer who will then make arrangments to have it neutered/spayed and vaccinated if necessary and then fostered and evaluated until a suitable forever home is found.

Both my goldens are rescues. The experience of rescuing a dog has been so rewarding for me that I have decided that all my future dogs will be rescues. There are so many wonderful dogs in need of a home. Most of the time they are given up through no fault of their own and need a second chance. Anyone looking for a dog should consider a rescue.

February 25th, 2005, 02:53 PM
Plainsjane,that's a good thread to start..I for one am very interested in these wonderful people involved in rescue and fostering,their stories,ups and down,etc... :thumbs up

February 28th, 2005, 04:49 PM
I started with Ontario Golden Rescue. Originally, I heard about rescue through my Golden Leaves newsletter. Whenever anyone would ask my hubbie or me about our goldens (bought from breeders and one "private" adoption) and where we got them, we would always try to steer them to Rescue to adopt. After my divorce, I contacted the Ontario Rescue group. I volunteered to man their info booth/general store at a couple of various exhibitions in Toronto, and brought my golden for people to see the breed, size, hair, temperment etc. (The Royal Winter Fair was Callie's last show before I lost her to cancer.)

When I moved to Montreal, the Ontario folks gave me a contact number here. We do not have the same opportunities here for promotion to the public (like the Sportsman Show, Royal Winter Fair, etc). They added me to their email list and one day there was this desperate plea for someone to pick up an older golden who HAD to find a new place to stay that day. My lease was for two goldens and since I had lost Callie, I said "damn the torpedos" and brought my first foster home with me. God Bless my landlord. He has only said something to me once about my fostering and that was because I had a real barker on my hands (another foster home was able to take him in). So now my own golden usually has a foster "sibling" in the house to keep him company while I am at work. Then this little mini-doxie needed a ride back to Montreal from Toronto at Thanksgiving, well, he is still with me. I figure that he is so small that he does not count as a full dog, so I still foster (there is a 2 dog limit in Montreal).

The joys are many, such as receiving email updates on the 5 puppies we recently adopted out and there are the sad times too, Henri was in foster for the last 4 weeks of his life. Poor lad was full of cancer and had to be pts. He was my barker. His second foster mom and I were there for him at the very end and now his urn sits in my living room, where he will never be alone, or unwanted again.

You can help rescue in so many ways. Just transporting dogs for rescue, handling the paperwork, keeping files straight, fund raising ideas, carrying cards with the rescue info and talking to folks at pet stores, or where ever. I hand out more flyers at rest stops when I travel between Montreal and Toronto, than any place else. My guys are the best advertisements for rescue going.

Sorry for the long response, this is my particular little soapbox. Especially, coming from Ontario and seeing how much worse the conditions/atttitudes are here.

February 28th, 2005, 05:09 PM
To work in rescue would be my ideal job unfortunately I have not won the lottery so I must have a real job with a paycheque every week. I do foster from time to time, I donate whatever I can money, food, toys, blankets every little bit helps because rescues run on donations and need everything they can get. If I have extra cash sometimes I will buy gift certificates or gift cards for pet stores in the area. When I had my car I would do transport which was great because I love long drives and I could be doing something to help out and all it costs is gas. I had one guy that I delivered a beautiful St. Bernard to he came from Michigan and I got him in Toronto and took him to Parry Sound the guy was so happy to get the dog and could not believe that people would do all the transport for nothing. It was not for nothing this dog was getting a forever home. He wanted to pay me I told him make a donation to the rescue well he would not let me leave without coffee and home made cookies and money for gas. Well I left knowing that this dog got a great home. Do dog walking at your local shelter there is lots to do.

February 28th, 2005, 05:21 PM
Mastifflover: I hear you about the day job and paycheque. That is what I do to feed the body, rescue feeds the soul (coz my day job sure doesn't)