Adopt and Rescue

Featured Volunteers: The Haynes Family

What is better than one volunteer?

The answer is… an entire family of volunteers! 

The Haynes family learned about Planned PEThood of Georgia a few years ago through their daughter’s high school. There was a colony of community cats living on the campus that needed to be trapped, neutered, and returned (TNR). At Planned PEThood of GA we offer humane trap rentals for a refundable deposit, so it was cheap and easy for the PTA to get their cat situation under control. 

Soon after the high school project, Crystal, her husband, and two daughters Alannah, 16, and Aisling , 13, adopted a kitten named Nala at one of our Petsmart adoption centers. Nala is doing great these days and loving life on her cat trees. That could have been the end of the story, but the Haynes decided they wanted to become a foster family for other homeless animals. About six months into the pandemic, they signed up to foster animals. They have become a valued part of our volunteer and foster team.

The pandemic has been difficult for teenagers used to after school activities and outings with friends. Fostering homeless animals has given Alannah and Aisling something fun to do after school work and chores. The animals also provide lots of companionship which has helped tremendously.

Not only have the Haynes assisted other animals find forever homes, they have adopted 3 animals of their own this year including tuxedo siblings and a new puppy, nicknamed Ghost Dog.

We asked Crystal a few questions about her experience fostering with Planned PEThood of GA. Below are her answers:

Why do you continue to foster with Planned PEThood? For that amazing feeling I get when my foster kitties find their purrfect forever home

What do you get out of volunteering with Planned PEThood?  I love that I am helping to save precious lives, but mostly I love all the purrs, snuggles, and playtime.
 
If someone was interested in volunteering or fostering what advice would you give them?  Do not hesitate to contact your foster mentor whenever you have a question. (New foster homes are paired with senior foster home mentors.)  They are an amazing resource, and my mentor, Amy, has been tremendously helpful and reassuring every time I have had a concern about my fosters.

 

Volunteers and foster parents are vital to our success. The animals depend on our efforts to place them on solid ground. If you have even a tiny bit of time to spare, a unique talent or trade to offer, or a spare bathroom/basement to occupy consider contacting Planned PEThood today.

Apply to become a volunteer.

Apply to become a foster home.

E-mail questions. 

Your life will be filled with more hair, but your heart will be happy. 

 

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Mufasa Moves to Ohio After Completing an Obstacle Course

Sometimes fostering is a sprint and other times it is a marathon. Mufasa was definitely a marathon kitty. To be honest, he may have even been an obstacle course kitty, jumping through hoops and over hurdles before landing the perfect adopter… in Ohio. To understand just how special his adoption is you must first understand Mufasa’s special needs.

Mufasa is estimated to be about 9-years-old and was rescued by Planned PEThood from a high-kill shelter. We have no idea how he landed up there to begin with or what his life was like before us. To say he was a hot mess is an understatement. His long hair was so matted that he had to be fully shaved upon rescue, and during the shaving process we realized he was emaciated and declawed for starters. Things were a challenge for Mufasa from day one, but he has always been the perfect gentlemen. He easily won over his foster parents with his blue eyes and LOUD meow.

Unfortunately Mufasa’s journey was just beginning. Remember, we are on a bumpy crazy obstacle course here. In summary, after months of vet visits and tests here is the list of ailments Mufasa suffers from:

1. Arthritis – moderately severe in elbows and mild in wrists
2. Bone Marrow – non-regenerative anemia
3. Thickened Small Intestines – possible cancer or IBD
4. Heart Murmur
5. Declawed – refuses to use litter box; uses puppy pads but often has misses and loose/soft stool

Just one of these ailments would typically detour an adopter, but five serious issues seemed like it would scare everyone away. His foster family was open and honest on his profile and shared the good, the bad, and the difficult. Mufasa was going to be an expensive kitty, but he was worth it!

Every once and a while we would get an e-mail or application that seemed promising, but they seemed to always fall through. It seems Mufasa knew the perfect mommy was on her way the entire time. He just patiently waited in his cat bed.

To care for his medical issues Mufasa needed a RX diet, probiotics, monthly injections for arthritis and joint supplements. Who better to care for his issues than a retired vet tech with experience with his breed and medical conditions?! When this application came in it was too good to be true. Mufasa would even be an only cat with ALL of his new mom’s attention. Just one small hiccup in the application. His adopter was in Ohio and Mufasa was in Georgia.

Well, when it is meant to be everything just falls in line. Mufasa’s adopter flew (in a pandemic) to Atlanta to pick him up at the airport. His foster family overjoyed to bring him to the airport for a final farewell. Just like that Mufasa’s obstacle course was complete. He made it to the finish line and won the prize. A life of love, comfort, and care thanks to a serious of events. Each part playing a significant role in Mufasa’s happy ending. 

Every adoption is a race to the finish line. Some are fast sprints that take but a few weeks from rescue to adoption, others are marathons that take months or years, and occasionally there are a few obstacle course runners like Mufasa. Foster homes are the constant that every animal needs in order to get to the finishline. Consider becoming a foster home today!

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Love at First Sight, Vision-Impaired Kitty Adopted

Hi there! My name is Fabio, and this is my story.

In 2019, I found myself in a rural high-kill animal shelter. They said I was feral, unfriendly, and unadoptable, but I was just  petrified! I am visually impaired, and the loud noises at the shelter left me scared and confused. 

Lucky for me, Planned PEThood was able to travel more than 50 miles to rescue unadoptable cats, like me, from this rural shelter to place in their Working Cat Program.

The Working Cat Program saves cats deemed unadoptable who would otherwise be killed, and it places them in unique locations at businesses, farms, and homes as working cats. That was the original plan for me… 

However, with a little bit of love, care, and medical attention the team at Planned PEThood realized I was far from feral. I was named Fabio, which fits me perfectly. I am blonde, fabulous, and friendly! I was just visually impaired, scared, and in pain.

For more than a year I lived at Planned PEThood’s spay/neuter clinic. I met LOTS of friends and friendly people, but the clinic was loud and filled with commotion. I longed for a quiet home to call my own. 

Just a few weeks ago, I got my wish! I was adopted by a very loving and understanding mommy and a feline sister. She wanted to share an update with you: 

“He’s the chillest cat I’ve met. It took only one day for him to start exploring and letting go. You all took care of him so well he is already pro at most things. Fabio is spending most of his day on the lounge couch and gazing out the window, since we have a busy and lively neighborhood. He is starting to play, and I’m understating more and more the range of his vision. He does laps around apartment while touching the wall/perimeter with this tail, almost like a walking stick . He zooms one fast time around the living room after using the litter box, which I find hilarious. Other places he’s claimed as nap spaces include: under our bed, by the screen balcony door and under my desk. I’m winning his heart one serving of wet food at a time, I can feel it.” – Fabio’s Mom. 

Planned PEthood’s team and supporters are the only reason I am alive and well today. Thank you all for your kindness. I look forward to a long and happy life with my new family. 

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3-year-old and 5-year-old Brothers Raise Kittens and Release Feral Cats

3-year-old Jakob and 5-year-old Markus have an intense love of animals. But really, they had no choice in the matter. Their parents, Jennifer and Al, have been training them since birth! As long-time animal lovers and rescuers, Jennifer and Al felt it was important to teach their children how to care for animals in need.

Together, this family of four helps orphaned kittens and momma cats get the vital care they need after being rescued as foster parents for Planned PEThood of Georgia.

Not only do the boys help their parents care for the cats and kittens, but they help to prepare them for adoption. Handling the kittens gives them important exposure to children that helps at adoption events. A friendly kitten is more likely to be adopted! The animals aren’t the only ones benefiting from this relationship though. The boys learn lessons about compassion and responsibility while making a difference. “It is a life lesson that can’t be learned in schools. So, I can’t get mad when they don’t want to do online learning. They rather play with the kitties!” says Jennifer.

3-year-old Jakob even took a turn releasing a community cat with his dad after TNR (Trap-Neuter-Return) recently. For those of you who don’t know, TNR is when a community cat (sometimes called wild or feral) is humanely trapped, spayed/neutered and ear tipped, and then returned to the place it was trapped. This is the only humane and effective way to reduce cat overpopulation. Watch Jakob release his first community cat below!

Markus, Jakob, Jennifer and Al are making a difference in our community. We look forward to seeing who these sweet young boys grow up to be. 

If your family might be interested in fostering please visit our foster page or email our foster coordinator. Together, we can make a greater impact. 

 

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Adoptions increase 20% in March 2020

The ONLY positive thing to come out of COVID-19 is the fact that animals across the country are receiving more love than ever before from their owners. Not only are pets getting more love, but homeless animals are being fostered and adopted at record rates! It is wonderful to see the demand to save lives increase so dramatically! 

In March 2020, Planned PEThood’s adoptions increased by 20% compared to the previous year. A total of 59 pets found loving homes in March! Below is a list of all the babies that found forever homes and some of their happy pictures. If you want to see your happy picture here next month view our adoptable animals. Congratulations to all of the lucky families! 

If you adopted a pet from us we would love to see updates! E-mail us anytime at info@PEThoodGA.org 

March 2020 Adoptions: Angel, Angelica, Beau, Beethoven, Brooks, Bubble, Buzz, Cannoli , Cassie, Cha-Cha, Champ, Cheeto, Chloe, Cocoa, Cosmo, Crumpet, Crystal, Curious George, “D,” Daisy Mae, Donovan, Dudley, Elsa, Elliot, Emerson, Fred, George, Ghost, Gigi, Harlow, Hulk, Icicle, Jessie, Jupiter, Kona,  Maui, Meowzer, Mia, Moana, Nigel, Peaches, Pogo, Popsicle, Purrcules, Riley, Sam, Sanford, Scone, Scotland, Sir Shenanigan, Snugglewumps, Skipper, Squeaks, Stripe, Stripes, S’more, Sybill, Taffi, Tormund, Woody

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70 Animals Receive Free Spay/Neuter and Rabies Vaccines with $5,000 Grant

70 cats and dogs in Lawrenceville will receive free spay/neuter surgeries and rabies vaccinations at Planned PEThood of Georgia on Feb. 25, Spay Day USA, thanks to a $5,000 grant from the Georgia Pet Foundation.

Georgia Pet Foundation

Feb. 25, 2020 is Spay Day USA. This national day is devoted to bringing attention to pet overpopulation in our country. When the day was created in 1994 by the Doris Day Animal League, 14-17 million pets were killed each year in shelters across the country. Today that number is way down, closer to one million, but  there is still a lot of work to do. “We are moving in the right direction,” says Planned PEThood Executive Director and Co-Founder Elizabeth Burgner. “There are people and communities that still need education on the importance of spaying and neutering their pets and financial help to make it happen. Many low-income families love their pets, but struggle to care for them medically. That is why we applied for this grant.” 

According to Gwinnett County Animal Welfare and Enforcement, a majority of their stray animal calls come from Lawrenceville, the largest city by population in Gwinnett County. Lawrenceville also has the highest poverty rate in the county, at 21.6%. For comparison, Georgia’s average rate is 16.9% and the national average is 14.6%.  Image result for spay day usa 2020

While this grant will not solve the overpopulation issue in Lawrenceville, it is a start. This grant from the Georgia Pet Foundation will cover free spay/neuter and Rabies vaccinations for 70 animals on Tuesday, Feb. 25, which is Spay Day USA 2020. Appointments have already been filled, but there is a waiting list to be considered if more slots open up or more funding becomes available. “We wish we could offer free services to everyone in need,” says Planned PEThood’s Development Coordinator Lauren Frost. “We are always seeking sponsorships for free services, and our regular prices are so low that with a little planning most people can afford them.” If you want to donate to our spay/neuter efforts please visit our donation page and select “Spay Day USA.”

Planned PEThood of Georgia offers low-cost spay/neuter services year-round at their Duluth clinic. Cost for surgery is between $50-$60 for a cat and $70-$110 for a dog. There are additional discounts for feral/community cats. 

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New Grant Helps Lawrenceville Residents

Planned PEThood of Georgia has received a $5,000 grant from the Georgia Pet Foundation to assist residents in Lawrencveville, GA with spay/neuter. Lawrenceville is among the highest areas of stray animal calls to Gwinnett County Animal Welfare. Together, we want to make a real difference in this community by spaying and neutering 70 animals at no charge through this program.

The Georgia Pet Foundation is funded by the sale of special license plates at your county tag office. Their mission is to end pet overpopulation in Georgia through low-cost statewide spay/neuter programs. 

If you are a Lawrenceville resident and need assistance spaying/neutering your personal pets please call 678-561-3491 and speak to a receptionist about this grant. Spay/Neuter surgeries for this grant will be held on Spay Day USA Tuesday, February 25th only and do have have special criteria you must meet. Thank you Georgia Pet Foundation for your support and efforts!

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In Loving Memory of Biscuit – “Dammit, Biscuit!”

A few weeks ago we lost our original lobby cat, Biscuit, to cancer. Please take a moment to read this sweet obituary of our Biscuit boy written by our board member, Erin.

“Dammit, Biscuit!”

Those words frequently rang out in our clinic, beginning in 2010 when we opened our doors. Figuring that an organization dedicated to reducing the euthanasia rate at local shelters should practice what it preached, Planned PEThood founders Elizabeth Burgner and Lynette Thorpe Purves adopted a young orange-and-white cat from Gwinnett County animal control, back when the “live release” rate for cats was far below today’s 95%+.

They named him Biscuit and set him up as the official Clinic Cat, and he took to the job like he’d been born for it: greeting visitors, inspecting donations, and supervising the staff. He walked around the clinic like he owned it, and he soon revealed a talent for getting into trouble. Hence: “Dammit, Biscuit!”

Biscuit crossed the Rainbow Bridge January 7, 2020 after a brief battle with cancer.

If personality dictated lifespan, Biscuit would have outlived every human who knew him. As everyone who met him can attest, Biscuit was special–in all the best ways. He was even immortalized as a bobblehead and in multiple marketing promotions and materials!

“Dammit, Biscuit!” He reveled in going where he wasn’t supposed to, sneaking into the room where we keep our barn cats who are waiting to be adopted, the kennel rooms, staff offices, the supply closet where we keep the treats. He even figured out how to open closed doors by jumping up and pressing the door lever down with his paw!

“Dammit, Biscuit!” He LOVED food and treats and would chew open donated bags if we didn’t hide them. He would beg for the clinic staff to “share” their lunch with him–and was usually successful. He wanted to sample EVERYTHING you were eating.

When a friendly, laid-back tuxedo cat was trapped in a feral colony, brought in for neuter surgery, and took up residence at the clinic because he was too sweet to be returned to the colony, Biscuit found his best friend. He and Jerome had an epic bromance, cuddling up together and then wrestling for dominance. Our staff and volunteers are giving Jerome extra cuddles.

Biscuit and Jerome helping with donation thank yous.

Biscuit developed lymphoma a few years ago–and with treatment, he fought and beat it. After losing a lot of weight and energy, he bounced most of the way back to his sassy Biscuit-y self. Recently, when he lost his appetite and turned more ornery than usual, we knew something was wrong again.

While waiting for test results, he went home with one of our longtime volunteers, Bob, for more intensive care and pain management–and all the attention he wanted. After the biopsy revealed a form of oral cancer, an oncologist confirmed that the prognosis, even with aggressive treatment, was poor.

He crossed the Bridge with people who loved him at his side.

Run free, Biscuit! Open all the doors. Steal all the treats. Eat all the food. Inspect all the boxes and bags. Welcome all the visitors. Sleep in all the beds. Go find the clinic cats who crossed the Bridge ahead of you, like Freddy and Raisin.

Dammit, Biscuit! You were a darn good cat. You left us too soon, and we miss you more than we can express.

We know many of our supporters loved and will miss him, too. We invite you to post your photos and remembrances in the comments below. We have created a Facebook album with our many photos of Biscuit also.

If you want to make a memorial contribution in Biscuit’s memory to help other animals in need, we will list all of the memorial donations on this page. You can make a memorial gift here.

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Meet Clover, A VERY Lucky Kitten

We have an amazing rescue journey to share with you, come take the heart-warming ride with us. Make sure to watch the video below to see the full story in action.

Clover’s story began in a small rural shelter, where he was taken after suffering a horrific injury. Something or someone had sliced or burned the skin from his back, literally head to tail. This shelter, with no veterinary resources — without even A/C for the hot southern summer — was unable to help him. Can you imagine what would have happened to Clover without your help?

Thankfully, he had friends like you to rely on and provide him the help he so desperately needed. Today, he is safe, his wounds treated and his heart filled with love. Clover’s story has a happy ending, because he had friends like you to count on during the most difficult part of his young life. 

Every day, your support makes stories like Clover’s possible. That is why we need your help now more than ever. Your gift today can save a pet from a life of pain – and open a world of experiences and love. By contributing just $25, we’ll be able to provide antibiotics to a dog or cat for a week, and with an additional $25 gift we can make sure that same animal receives the proper vaccinations, too. 

Would you be willing to make a special year-end donation of $25, 
$50, or whatever you can afford to help save animals like Clover?

DONATE NOW

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Jameson has ALOT to Say

Everyone, meet Jameson! This little boy was crying in a storm drain for the last five days. People in the neighborhood started giving him food. They could hear his crying, but could not manage to get him out of the drain. Luckily, their need for help made it to Jeani’s desk. Our TNR Coordinator, Jeani, goes above and beyond for the community and its animals.

He was terrified, but now he is safe. You can see him purring and eating a big bowl of food in the video while he talks to Jeani about the last few crazy days! After his ordeal, Jameson had a wound on his back leg and tail. Yesterday his injuries were addressed with our veterinary team, and in a few short weeks he should be back to 100 percent. He even has an adoptive home waiting for him!  

Thankfully, Jeani was able to catch him and get him to safety!

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