From the Founder

A letter from Betsy Robinson

In 1990 my life changed forever. Like a lot of people, I had this misconception that animals at our local animal shelter, “the pound”, were somehow second-rate, mangy, dirty animals. Boy, was I wrong. At the time, I had three poodles of my own. One afternoon, I went by to pick up “the girls” from the beauty shop and noticed my groomer working on a beautiful little toy poodle. I commented how adorable she was only to be told that she had come from our local animal shelter. I was shocked! How could such a darling poodle be at the pound? I set out to find her a home, and I did! The next week I stopped by to visit with my groomer again, only to find him grooming an Old English Sheepdog. I had an Old English Sheepdog growing up and remarked how much I loved the breed. I was told, “another shelter child.” I couldn’t believe it! Another wonderful dog at our public shelter, how could this be?

Betsy Robinson

That is how it all started. I could not stop thinking about those two beautiful dogs that had been cast out, dumped at the shelter. Two weeks went by, but I could not get those animals off my mind. God had begun to work on my heart! By the third week, I determined that I wanted to make a difference in the lives of these animals that through no fault of their own, were winding up at the pound – I would become a volunteer! I scheduled a meeting with the volunteer coordinator with the intent of going to the shelter and playing with the puppies and dogs ( I am allergic to cats, although I do love cats and have one of my own.)

The volunteer coordinator called me into the meeting room and as we began to talk, the director of the shelter walked in and sat down with us. I learned later that she normally did not do this. (God working on my heart). I excitedly told them that I was there to make a difference!! The director then told me that at the present time, they were only able to keep puppies and kittens 3 to 5 days before being euthanized, as there little immune systems were so fragile and they caught every virus and disease going through the shelter. If they could raise enough money to vaccinate the puppies and kittens, they could then keep them several days longer, thereby increasing their chances of being adopted. I asked how much money would the vaccines cost and she told me $3,000. At that moment, I said, “Order it, I will get you the money!”

In the next two weeks, I didn’t raise $3,000, but instead I raised $10,000 for the shelter. For the next two years, I raised $65,000 for the shelter and was going down there 3 days a week. I began walking through each week and spotting animals that with just a little “makeover” could be adopted. I knew that under all the hair , grass-burrs, dirt and neglect was a beautiful and wonderful animal waiting to be discovered!!!

I spent the next five years going to the shelter each week finding movie-stars waiting to be discovered and gave them a little extra help on their way to finding a permanent loving home. During that time, I saw many young, healthy and very adoptable dogs and cats destroyed simply because there was no place to keep them until a new home could be found for them. If there was just some place to keep these animals, so many of them could be saved!!!!!

Little did I know, when I went to the Animal Shelter that day back in 1990 that my life would be changed forever. God burdened my heart with the plight of homeless animals and since 1997, over 10,000 animals are alive today because of it and the numbers continue to grow!

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