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Pets Alive: An Inspiring Animal Sanctuary

You’ll be moved by the inspiring work being done to make sure these animals get the love and care they deserve.

[BLUES GUITAR MUSIC] Pets Alive has been around for about 35 years, and we are no-kill sanctuary. We have always been a no-kill. The majority of our animals come from euthanasia lists from other shelters. Max just came to us recently from Arkansas, from a puppy mill. When they went under, they pretty much abandoned all the dogs. 

He’s a poodle. And his hair was stuck together in his fingers, he couldn’t spread his toes. And so the staff had to shave him all down. And he’s very shy. So putting Max, a shy dog that’s terrified and scared and a little skittish, and actually now has no winter coat, in our kennel environment is not a good situation for him. And so Max now lives in the adoption room, which is a big spacious room that we do adoptions out of. So he gets to see a lot of people coming and going. He gets to interact with other dogs, coming and going in and out of the adoption room. And he gets to spend all day with our adoption staff. 

We adopt between 1,000 and 1,500 animals every year, just out of this one location. Without volunteers to help us, we couldn’t do it. One of our things here is the starfish. And the story is that the man is walking along the beach, and he’s picking up starfish, and he’s throwing them back in the ocean. And someone comes up and says, why are you doing that? It’s ridiculous. You can’t save them all. And he says, no, but I can save this one. And it matters to this one. And that’s what keeps me going. 

When we have our alumni picnic, we invite everyone that’s adopted an animal from us to come back and bring that animal. This year we had the biggest response ever. We had 90 dogs come back with their owners. And I walked through and saw all these dogs and the grins on the people’s faces as they bragged about their dog and talked about their dog and how wonderful their dog was. Walking through that, that gives me the energy. That gives me the energy, saying this is what I was meant to do. This is why Pets Alive exists because of the love that is generated here. 

Glen came to us when the owner had run out of money and given up on taking care of Glen. Glen has a lot of medical problems, and he’s a very elderly horse. And when we first got Glen he was severely emaciated. He could barely stand on his own. And our volunteers, of course, we reached out to them and said, listen, Glen needs extra attention, and he has no teeth. So they showed up with baby food. And they would open up these jars of baby food and pour them into a dish and let Glen lick them up. 

Here at Pets Alive, we believe that the emotional needs of the animal are just as important as the physical. And for him to live alone just wasn’t acceptable. So Glen got his own goats. He has his own pet goats. And when we first put the goats in with Glen, he was terrified of them and he ran away. And we’re like, oh, no, this isn’t going to work, either. This is terrible. But eventually, in a couple of days, he was following the goats around and herding his goats. I mean “herding,” not “hurting”– herding his goats around. And now, whenever you see them out there, they’re hanging out together. And he’s got his little pals. But Glen recently had an eye issue. He’s none the worse for wear. He’s still hurting his goats around and owning his little pasture out there. 

All of our cat rooms are set up to be like living rooms as much as we can because we don’t believe in cages for animals. And we know that cats like to look out the windows. And we know that they like comfortable couches. And it helps their adjustment to go into a home. Pets Alive is going to definitely continue to grow. We are one of the few organizations that’s actually doing very well in the recession. People believe in no-kill. They want to see no-kill. They’re willing to help us financially with no-kill. 

Camp Tyler is our new dog area. Every year we try to do one big project. Rob Thomas is a musician, and him and his wife Marisol are both on our board of directors. They support us very, very strongly. And whenever they do a fundraiser for us, we try to use that money to do something big. And this year our big thing was to build Camp Tyler. And Camp Tyler is named that because they adopted a dog from us named Tyler many years ago, and he recently passed away. And it was to honor Tyler and to honor all that Rob and Marisol and their foundation, Sidewalk Angels, does for Pets Alive. 

There’s big spacious runs where there’s two or three dogs in each one. And they have a kuranda bed, and there’s a misting system for when it’s warm, and it sprays cool water on them. And they have their dog igloos, and they have pools in the summer. We have pools for each of the dogs. Camp Tyler is a place for them to have fun, enjoy their life, be loved on by our volunteers, walked– we have a beautiful dog walk here– while they are temporarily homeless. But they’re not homeless, they’re at camp. 

Petsalive.com or petsalive.org, either is acceptable, and there’s a section that says “About Us,” and it has all sorts of tours and video pictures, and you can see what we’re all about there. [GUITAR PICKING] 


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