March 12, 2012
Hello everyone! I hope you are enjoying our new website and had a chance to sign your pet(s) up on Pet Club. We are excited about the new look and have gotten a lot of positive feedback and many suggestions that we hope to implement throughout the year.
Most of you know that Ryan and I had the opportunity to visit Best Friends Animal Society in Kanab, Utah prior to the race in Las Vegas and it’s a trip I highly recommend.
After Ryan and I formed the Foundation in 2005, our first project was a post Hurricane Katrina trip to St. Francis Animal Society in Louisiana. Best Friends Animal Society had also been there helping out. That’s when I started to really learn about their facility and the wonderful things they do and hoped to visit it one day.
I could go on and on about how great the facility, the staff and the hundreds of volunteers are with the animals, but there are a few things that really sat with me and I hope to duplicate them with Rescue Ranch as it develops.
The biggie was the campus environment – it’s great. Sure they are 3,800 acres and Rescue Ranch will be set on 87 acres, but having that same type of setting with buildings spread out and not on top of each other gives it a more comforting feel and makes the visit feel more like an experience.
One day doesn’t seem like enough time because there is so much you can do there – it’s not just about seeing animals. You can drive through the canyon and stop to have a picnic while looking at the awesome scenery, walk around Angels Rest pet cemetery, which is a very emotional experience, walk the trails and take the guided tour.
You can even do sleep over’s with the animals at local hotels or the cabins on sight. You just need to make arrangements prior to your visit.
I would like to go back and spend a few days volunteering, have more time with the animals and get more educated on their programs. We were there one day and still didn’t get to see everything they do.
People have asked me what my favorite part of the day was, and I have the same answer every time. It was meeting Lucas. Lucas was one of Michael Vick’s dogs and a champion fighter. He was so loving and loved getting his butt scratched. Just knowing his story and the pain and suffering he went through to get to where he is today is incredible. He is the sweetest dog and well adjusted to being part of the office staff.
Brooklyn made the trip with us. I didn’t know how she would do, but she stole the show and the camera shots. Our first stop was to see the rabbits and she was still napping and didn’t get to pet them. Then we went to the horses and that was it for her. That’s because the horses are trained to kick a big soccer ball. The ball was bigger than she was and watching her roll it to the horses and them kick it back was adorable to watch. It’s amazing when given the chance how much kids fall in love with animals.
I highly recommend taking a trip to Best Friends. You will not be disappointed.
When we arrived in Las Vegas, I took a tour of a few local organizations called The Shade Tree and Noah’s Animal House. They are different than other places I’ve been because The Shade Tree is a safe haven for abused women and their children who are getting their life back on track and able to be on their own. Noah’s Animal House is for the pets of those abused victims to stay, get the medical attention they need, while being out of the abusive household. So many pets in those environments are abused just as much as the humans involved and The Shade Tree found that women wouldn’t leave their pets behind, so this is a wonderful place for everyone. They have such a great program and a huge need for it in the community.
I hope to bring some of their practices to North Carolina and incorporate them into Rescue Ranch. I enjoy visiting places during our travels across the country. Its gives me new perspectives and ideas so that when Rescue Ranch is built we do it correctly even though I know we’ll hit a few hiccups along the way.
If you have a question or topic you would like me to write about please send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks for taking the time to visit our website, and we appreciate your support.
All my best,