>>The all woman run animal rescue, Pets Stop Here, is a Godsend for deprived or unwanted domestic animals. The 501(c)(3) not for profit has been finding, rehabilitating and placing animals with adoptive parents since 2016. There are a number of animal rescues in the Rochester area and the directors at Pets Stop Here Rescue are continuing that good work.
The directors of the rescue all met while volunteering at Rochester Animal Services, otherwise known as Verona Street Shelter. They saw that there were more animals than the shelter or other local rescues could handle, so they decided to branch off and start their own. The rescue is growing. In 2019 they adopted out forty animals, which is more than half of what they have done in the past three years combined.
Pets Stop Here rescue works with local shelters to save animals that might not otherwise have a chance. The group started off by boarding animals and taking them to much needed veterinary services, but has since expanded to create a foster program where these helpless animals are rehabilitated in a family home. “A lot of times these dogs are sent out to local rescues because they can’t adjust to shelter life,” says co-director Kelley Murtha, “They can’t pass their behavioral exams because they are just so shut down and sad. So that’s how we end up with them.” Pet Stop Here funds a lot veterinary work such as major operations or heartworm treatment that can’t be done at local shelters due to lack of funding or resources. Their website, features a number of testimonials from pet foster parents. Many of these temporary relationships end up becoming permanent, with the foster becoming the adopter. The adoption process is rigorous, which ensures the best possible outcome for both the prospective adoptee and their new family, including “fur” siblings. It is in fact a six step process to adopt these rescues, which includes a probationary weekend stay.
The company is not supported by the state or local government in any way. Any and all funding comes from private donors. Murtha has a creative mind when it comes to raising funds: They recently paired with the Rochester eatery, Chick’n Out; there is a glow mini golf fundraiser coming up; they often do bar events, where a volunteer comes in to guest bartend and donates the tips to Pets Stop Here. Facebook Pay Pal fundraisers are huge for them, and private donations are also a major source of funding. As is obvious, these folks do tireless work in order to improve, indeed save, the lives of local animals.
Interested volunteers can reach out the rescue via their website. Just fill out the contact submission form, and they will get back to you ASAP. Help can come in the form of volunteering for doggy field trips, fundraising, grant writing, or even just spending time with the animals. Anyone who is willing can help in one way or another.
“We really wouldn’t be anywhere without our volunteers,”
says Murtha. Co-director Dawn Saunders broke down their model in a nutshell: “We bring them in, we get them well, we take care of any needs they have and we get them adopted! Peace, love, rescue.” If there is one things pet owners can do to help alleviate the tragedy of unwanted animals it is this: Spay and neuter!