Favorite Charity: Pet Pardon
My husband and I established Pet Pardon approximately 1-1/2 years ago out of the love that we have for our pets. Many people see animals as material possessions--we see our pets as our family.
Seven years ago we adopted our first dog, Maximus. We didn't know anything about puppy mills at the time and Maximus came into our home with a horrible infection in his spine. He spent three weeks on strong antibiotics and three months of x-ray monitoring of his vertebra, which were being dissolved by the infection.
Two years later, still uninformed about puppy mills, we adopted our second dog, Parker. Parker came to us with pneumonia, a sinus infection, and was unable to eat because he was weaned too young and needed to be hand fed by bottle. After months of close monitoring, IV fluids, vitamins, antibiotics and lots of love, both of these pups were in perfect health. Or so we thought.
When Parker was 11 months old he had a grand mal seizure. Frantic, we brought him to the vet immediately. The next day, he had another seizure. Oh my, was my heart breaking! What was wrong with my baby?! As time went on and as medications were prescribed to help Parker with his seizures, we came to realize that Parker is indeed a very special dog, with very special needs. But, sadly, we also came to realize that while he is special and his needs are demanding, if we did not provide for him, he would die--something he did not deserve! We have taken this special boy from daily seizures to having seizures only every 7-8 months--it took a lot of research, vet visits, diet changes and lots and lots of love.
In our research, we came to find that there are MANY dogs, cats, and other pets and animals in the same situation as Parker and Maximus--most of these animals are at diminished health because of their time in puppy (or other animal) mills, breeding practices by these mills and general irresponsibility of others.
Since doing my research for Parker and Maximus, I have sought out two more special needs dogs and shared my love and attention with them. One is a female named Lacy that spent seven years in a puppy mill breeding and giving birth to puppies. The other is a young cairn terrier that was marked as vicious and in line to be euthanized at a shelter in Missouri. His name is Rascal, and let me tell you, he lives up to his name! He found his way to the shelter because he wasn't producing enough litters.
We started a non-profit, Pet Pardon, to help animals in shelters with special medical needs. We create jewelry and craft items for fundraising purposes. The money that we generate from the sale of these items is donated directly to the vets and shelters that are holding animals that need medical attention to remain off of the euthanasia list. The best-case scenario is that we raise enough money to provide the necessary medical procedures, pull the animal from a kill shelter (if that is where they are being housed) and place them in a foster home where they will get the necessary follow-up care and attention they need to become healthy again. Until then, we find foster homes or donate space in our home, and a piece of our heart, to these special animals in need. When they are healthy and stable, we look for permanent, loving homes for them.
Fire Mountain Gems and Beads has been a blessing for us! The level of customer service, assistance, professionalism and kindness that we have received from each person we have been in touch with while purchasing items to create pieces for our upcoming fundraising efforts has been wonderful!