BOGO Bowl Customer & Partner Stories
Lynn, Aussie and Jack
When Aussie, an Australian Shepherd, and Jack, a Newfoundland, come in with wet feet, they step into their kennels beside the door and stay there until their paws are dry. The boys learned to do this because Lynn, their “Mom” cannot bend over to wipe their feet.
Nineteen years ago Lynn fell on a wet floor and tore tendons and ligaments all over her body. She had surgery for two herniated discs. Two days after that surgery, three more discs herniated. Since she fell that day, she has been disabled with degenerative disc disease, arthritis and bone spurs.
Lynn and Paul had been married for 32 years, and between them they had seven children, 27 grandchildren and four great grandchildren. Paul became ill with cancer, and Lynn was his caretaker throughout his illness. Paul died in November, 2010. Lynn says, “After Paul died,” Jack and Aussie “were both here for me.” They help her feel safe in her home.
Aussie and Jack were adopted at different times and, although they are different breeds and ages, they are like brothers. They are also both allergic to corn and grain. They rolled and scratched all night in misery. Lynn’s vet suggested the dogs might have grain allergies. Lynn found grain-free dog food to try, and within two weeks there was a major difference—Jack and Aussie stopped their frantic scratching and rolling.
When Paul died, Lynn not only lost his companionship, her income was significantly reduced. Through Iowa’s Elderly Medicaid Waiver Lynn receives services which allow her to stay at home. Waiver staff referred her to The Pet Project Midwest to get support for Aussie and Jack.
The Pet Project provides no-grain food for Jack and Aussie. Lynn says, “For you guys to help me that way, oh, my goodness…. It is incredible how it does make a difference, and it costs a lot.”
Lynn volunteers through the Foster Grandparent program at Christ the King School where she is known as “Granny Lynn.” She has written and published a book, and she writes music.
Lynn also spends time being entertained by Aussie and Jack. Aussie started singing under his breath when Lynn listened to music. Now people call Lynn to have him sing on their answering machines. Aussie teases Jack and, when Jack has had enough, he gently takes hold of Aussie’s haunch to stop him. Lynn spells the words “out” and “treats” around the dogs. As she says, “They train you well.”
Hopefully Jack and Aussie will continue to entertain Lynn, provide her with companionship, and dry their own paws for years to come. Without the generosity of Pet Project donors like you, we could not help keep families like Lynn, Aussie and Jack together.
The Kibble Kitchen keeps families whole
“I wanted to let you know how much we appreciate your kindness and support of helping those in need. I am a single working person who had 3 dogs. I consider them my kids. Due to many circumstances I ended up adopting my sister’s children, which took a toll on me financially. I did not want to give up my pets (my kids). Times got hard and I just kept praying, about a week or so later I read about the kibble kitchen in the newspaper. It was an answer for my prayers. I know it is temporary assistance, and it sure does help while I look for a 2nd job. I am able to keep my dogs, thanks to the kibble kitchen and all their efforts. Hopefully I will be able to donate back when we get back on our feet. Thank You for ALL you do.” Letter from beneficiary of Kibble Kitchen Pet Pantry services.
The Kibble Kitchen is an all-volunteer animal surrender prevention program in Porter County, Indiana dedicated to keeping pets at home and out of shelters.
The pantry will supply supplemental free pet food to Porter County individuals and families that qualify. And in time will work towards offering low cost options for vaccines and spay/neuter surgeries.
In the past year more pets have become homeless because their families are facing tough economic times. With or without the downturn in the economy, every community has a homeless pet problem. But due to the economic woes here in Porter County, and across the country, the number of pets relinquished to animal shelters and abandoned has increased.
We are responding to that need because helping provide free pet food will help some families keep their pets.
Each day in Porter County families have had to make a choice between providing for their own living expenses versus keeping a pet. Feed the family or feed the pet? Visit the doctor or provide food and care to the pet?
Giving up a pet for lack of ability to care for an animal is a very traumatic experience for both the humans & the animal (s). While animals can also help up emotionally, psychologically, & socially, people who own pets often have better physical health due. The Kibble Kitchen works hard to keep families in Porter County together.
The Animal Rescue League of Iowa has all sorts of stories to tell
The Animal Rescue League of Iowa is the largest shelter in the state. Each year for the last 86 years they have taken in thousands of lost, abandoned or relinquished pets, and are often called in to help with shocking cases that get national attention.
Earlier this spring, they were part of an effort to rescue 88 dogs from a suspected puppy mill. The ARL brought 18 of the terrified dogs to their facility, vetting and grooming them and letting them experience human kindness possibly for the first time ever. It’s a tough job. "You immediately want to see them healthy, you want to see them groomed, and comfortable and bathed and all of those types of things, but no you don't get use to this, this tugs at the heart every time," says Tom Colvin with the ARL.
Three years ago, on March 5, 2009, a two year old Mastiff mix was found shot and left for dead in the river. The ARL, working with vets at Iowa State University Veterinary School, helped Duke get back on his feet (the bullet damaged his spine, resulting in partial paralysis in his back legs) and find the perfect new family with mom Susan and two Lhasa Apso siblings, Molly and Theo.
Whether they’re rescuing dogs from locked cars in 100 degree heat, investigating animal cruelty, certifying members of the Love-a-Bull Crew as Canine Good Citizens, going into schools to do education, or just finding the perfect match for a pet in their care, ARL-Iowa is making a huge difference in the lives of Iowa animals and their people.