What a week!
Monday and Tuesday my Classic Kippers’ team, which consists of Miss Sophie Peach, Master Kirby FitzKippers and “moi”, of course, launched our first collaborative effort. Our goal was to raise enough money to pay for the gas for Miss Tanya Parker and her Paws 4 Life team to take a van load of dogs from the Caddo Parish Animal Shelter (CPAS) to points north. It was our first combined project and it went swimmingly.
You see, Classic Kippers helps here, there and everywhere!
Naturally, when I found out that they were short on funds, I put out the first “call to arms” so to speak. The Merriam Webster dictionary describes a “call to arms” as something that makes people want to “take action” and get involved in an attempt to deal with a “bad situation”.
I have the most awesome caring followers. I would mention their names, but I forgot to ask if they minded and it would be, well, just plain tacky to do that without permission. I can tell you that every one of them has been there when I needed them! They are people who DO TAKE ACTION and I’m pleased as punch to know them! They are people who make a difference in so many areas of the animal community, among other things. They know that if I’m on it, then it’s for a good cause. (Like the great flood of 2016) I would never trick them! Trickin’ is for Halloween only- well maybe April Fool’s Day too.
The BAD SITUATION was that it’s a real bummer to try to drive a van all the way to Wisconsin on fumes, so I decided it was time for “Classic Kippers to the rescue”. Within the first thirty minutes I had a promise of enough money to get the Paws 4 Life van from Louisiana to Wisconsin and back! Then, by that afternoon we had enough for a second van and by Tuesday evening we had enough money from these special people to RENT a bigger van!
As it turned out, they were able to rent one ginormous van instead of two small ones. Many of these dogs were being held in foster care, but some had to be boarded to keep them from being euthanized before their “FREEDOM RIDE”!
The extra monies received went to help pay the boarding bill.
After I put out the first call, Miss Sophie Peach joined in to “raise the troops”, though she did get a tad emotional. Actually she just fell apart and cried in the middle of her plea. Finally, once our drive was over, Master Kirby FitzKippers gave a mighty cheer to spread the news that we had enough money for the trip and to honor those who donated. I was extremely proud of them both.
Friday morning found a Mom at the CPAS shelter were she gave the checks to Miss Tanya Parker for Paws 4 Life. That’s Mr Kelvin in the middle. He’s the Assistant Director at CPAS.
Then Mom documented the loading of the van and in the afternoon, she and Dad headed over to where the boarded dogs would be loaded and also the meeting place for people who were fostering dogs in their homes. Mom felt that those who wrote checks should see on what their money was spent! That’s why she went to S Louisiana when my supplies were trucked down there after the big floods last August. She wants people to always feel comfortable knowing where their money is spent and that all causes are worthwhile! It’s sort of like my stamp of approval- so to speak!
This would be Paws 4 Life’s EIGHTEENTH trip up North -crates brimming with dogs who would have been euthanized had Tanya Parker and her Paws 4 Life team not pulled them. They average about 34 dogs per trip which equates to about 612 dogs’ LIVES saved in the last 16 or so months. Mom said she was humbled by these volunteers.
LOADING CRATES & SUPPLIES AT CPAS
Mom and Dad watched the Paws 4 Life team organizing the copious amount of paper work required for the dogs’ relocation, they then loaded a plethora of crates that had to not only be fitted into the van like a jigsaw puzzle, but then lashed in with bungee cords for stabilization.
After all, crates were stacked three high. Each dog was fitted with more than one piece of identification and the crates were labeled too! It’s a process! And those papers. Those are the required veterinary records that must go with the dogs. They are like gold!!!!
And then it was time to load. Meet some of the dogs who last week were headed to the gas chamber on death row and this week climbed aboard their “FREEDOM RIDE”! It’s hard to watch the people who have fostered say “goodbye”, even though they know that beautiful lives lie ahead for these precious souls.
Look into their eyes- hope? despair? Mostly confusion, but in short order they will be adopted at the shelters to which they were relocated in Illinois and Wisconsin. In fact, the Wisconsin shelter wants an entire van of dogs just for their shelter-ASAP!!
These two ladies, the PAWS 4 LIFE volunteers, will unload everyone of those dogs, EVERY FOUR HOURS for a potty break. Remember they are stacked up higher than the ladies heads and six crates will have to be unloaded completely, at each stop, to get to the other dog crates. From Louisiana to Wisconsin and back by Sunday.
It’s truly a mission of mercy!
Their hearts are filled with compassion, love and selflessness.
After about a five hour process, it was time…..
As Mom and Dad stood their watching their departure, Mom cried. She knows the pain and heartbreak of Rescue’s successes and failures. This was a success. She also knows that my mission is to PAY FORWARD my good fortune, to help others who are abused and abandoned, has once again come to fruition by helping with this mission.
My heart is full and as I think about more lives being saved, the old adage of rescue runs through my mind.
“Saving one dog will not change the world, but surely to that one dog the world will change forever.” The faces above have been saved, more to follow… God bless these volunteers and all who rescue. Every life counts.
THAT IS ALL.