Now more than ever, you are needed to donate your old blankets, towels, and sheets to your local animal shelter. With financial cut-backs, repairs on shelters are often put off, so if it's drafty, the animals suffer. I know my shelter uses rags to stuff under doors. No kidding! Empty out those closets... this is your chance to get rid of stuff and do something useful!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Grey Muzzle Organization

Sarah Sue (on the right) was abandoned at a shelter in California and this little 11-year-old dog almost didn't make it. Muttville, a senior dog rescue in San Francisco, took her in and used their Grey Muzzle grant to pay for her medical care. Sarah Sue was adopted by Gene and now has a safe life with new friends. Grey Muzzle funds the Seniors-for-Seniors adoption program at Muttville.

I have mentioned The Grey Muzzle Organization before but want to starting focusing this blog a little more on organizations that are doing great work. This is one. I have heard them spoken about by dog rescue folk, and the resounding consensus is that everyone is thrilled they exist! If you have some spare dollars to give to a group, this one is surely worth your consideration.

A bit about them (from their website):
You may find it inconceivable then that a treasured member of the family would be tossed away when signs of old age appear, when extra care is required, or after the kids leave home. But this is an all too common occurrence. Old dogs are left at shelters, or simply turned loose or left behind, confused and frightened. Abandonment can also happen right at home: old dogs who are no longer wanted are sometimes banished to the garage or exiled to the backyard with little human companionship. And sadly, sometimes people or families who love their old dog are forced to give the dog up due to difficult circumstances.
...The Grey Muzzle Organization improves the lives of at-risk senior dogs by providing funding and resources to animal shelters, rescue organizations, sanctuaries, and other non-profit groups nationwide.
....Examples of programs that Grey Muzzle supports are shown below. Read about the organizations and programs we support, from Washington to California to Missouri to New York.
•In-home hospice care programs for senior dogs who are not adoptable
•Seniors for Seniors adoption programs: Helping senior citizens adopt senior dogs

•Medical assistance and beds for old dogs at shelters and rescues

Read more:

I always love an organization that has a page to list its values!
Values of The Grey Muzzle Organization:
1.We believe that old dogs contribute positively to our quality of life and have much to teach us about patience, respect, responsibility, loyalty and unconditional love
2.We believe that every senior dog deserves to live out their golden years, months, weeks or even days in a place of love, security and peace
3.We believe that dogs are not a disposable commodity; rather, they depend on us to care for them through all stages of their lives
4.We believe that at times it is appropriate to make an end of life decision based on a deteriorating quality of life or if the dog is harmful to itself or others
5.We believe in working with diverse organizations from across the county that share our fundamental values
6.We believe in honest and open decision making that allows us to be accountable to our donors and the organizations we support
7.We believe in providing educational support, advocacy, and sharing of best practices for those who support senior dogs

Again, if you have a few bucks to toss their way and you feel for all the senior dogs that in this economic climate are abandoned at dog shelters (and in fact, far too often even in flush times,) then please give this group a look. So you know, when a dog is left at a shelter as an "owner surrender," those dogs are put down first since the shelter people know no one is looking for him or her. Sometimes its that day, sometimes they have three days, but rarely longer. So, the idea that if you leave your old dog at a shelter someone else will adopt your companion of twelve years, is simply not true. Older dogs are more difficult to adopt out. People wrongly believe they cannot change (they can adapt quite nicely, despite the old adage to the contrary), and they come to you mellow and seasoned. Yes, they will require more money in medical care than a younger dog (though not always!) but someday so will we all. Sadly, even diligent and enthusiastic rescue groups cannot keep up with the sheer numbers of the six million pets that die in shelters every year. Many of these are seniors, and a good number are saved by The Grey Muzzle Organization. I'm glad they exist.