Canine and Feline Rescue, Rehabilitation and Adoption Within Our Own Growing Community
I didn’t really talk on my Home page about the rescue work I’ve been doing for the past seven years, so let me tell you how (and why) WolfStone Ranch’s program is going to be vastly different from a conventional shelter operation...
First, I’d like you to check out my old webpage, Canine & Feline Rescue, Rehabilitation & Placement. Read more...
Second, I’d also like you to check out my old webpage, Canine Training & Behavior Modification… for the Local Community. Read more...
And third, let me now flesh out those very general and noncontroversial outlines from the old webpages with some hard truths, including some heartbreaking blood, sweat… and buckets of tears… as well as the shining light of my Vision for how to really Do It Right!!
- The ideal procedure I dearly wish we could follow would be this... that when an adoptable stray dog or cat shows up, or when we’re contacted by someone who wants to surrender an animal, there would be an excellent shelter (either locally or in St. Louis) to whom the easy-to-place animals could be taken or referred. But that’s just not possible now, because our local shelter is always full to capacity and the only St. Louis shelter that I used to really trust to always place my animals in safe and loving homes is no longer working with any of us distant, rural shelters… or so they told me, after their management shake-up last year.
- Until that situation changes, we must deal with ALL the dogs and cats who need rescue... but of course, that means only to the extent that our resources will allow us... which is why I have tried to stay “invisible” or “under the radar”, because it tears out my heart and I cry for days every time I have to turn someone away and I’m pretty sure that animal is going to be dumped or shot because I’ve had to say no.
- But I hope that… and perhaps through our other animal-welfare activist projects we can play a role in this… things will change for the better so that in the not-too-distant future we really can just deal with the animals with emotional and behavioral issues… whether they are strays, or from other shelters, or the pets of local families.
- And for such troubled animals, we need to find animal behaviorists and rehabilitators to work with not only the ANIMALS we rescue… BUT ALSO the PEOPLE who already own pets with issues and/or the PEOPLE who adopt our rehabilitated animals. Up until and including now, I’ve not had the money to hire anyone, so I’ve not put much time into trying to find a behaviorist or trainer of any kind. When we are finally in a position to find them or they find us, these may be people who already possess the skills and experience, or they may be people who get the necessary training because they specifically want to fill this critical need for WolfStone Ranch. Either way, they definitely will be people who become a part of the WolfStone Ranch Community because they believe in our Vision, as I’ve outlined in this “manifesto” website.
- We also need to find animals therapists who are trained to provide massage, acupuncture, reiki and maybe even chiropractic... as well as nutritional and homeopathic therapies. Ditto what I just said in the above paragraph about retaining animal rehabilitators.
- And we need to find those very rare and special people to adopt our rescued and rehabilitated animals who are going to provide, at the very least, the kind and level of care that I have been providing here at WolfStone Ranch. But up until now, this has proven to be virtually impossible. Which is one the many reasons why WolfStone Ranch’s main mission is CHANGING THE MIDWEST RURAL CULTURE regarding the treatment of animals!
Lemme give it to you straight... I’ve made a couple of horrible mistakes in placing my animals… and my response is to become even more adamant about doing it the way I know in my heart and soul is RIGHT. Now, I’ve been told that the way I wanna do things is “impossible”, that I’ve simply got to accept the way things have always been out here “in the sticks” and approach adoption in a more “realistic” and “practical” manner… To which I say, yeah, that’s how things have been…
BUT that’s NOT the way it has to continue to be! No, I’m going to be even MORE IDEALISTIC, because I swear to God and the animals I rescue that I will never again disregard that Sacred Voice within that has whispered to me that I wasn’t following my own ideals… that I was cutting corners… and because of that, some of the animals I’ve rescued have been allowed to suffer and possibly may now even be dead because of my poor decisions!!!!
Truth be told… I have not had good luck with Petfinder, or for that matter, with the few people who have found WolfStone Ranch online. I’ve turned down almost everyone who’s shown any interest in my animals because THEIR idea of a good home was not MY idea of a good home. And the one time that I did let someone who contacted me adopt a couple of my cats, I ignored my intuition… I had subtle clues that I should not have gone through with the adoption… and sure enough, I later learned that they had lied to me and the cats they had adopted from WolfStone Ranch were not living in a safe environment, as the woman had assured me they would be. I will NEVER forgive myself for this heartbreaking mistake!
Another time, I let a relative of someone I thought I knew well, someone I’d even done lots of rescue work with, adopt one of the kittens I’d raised from birth… one of my precious “children”! My trusted rescue friend assured me that this would be a safe home where my baby would be well loved and cared for. But shortly after I allowed them to take the kitten, I learned that they had my kitten DECLAWED!
OH MY GOD, for those of you who do not know, declawing is not just clipping the nails… no, it is a horrific operation in which the ends of the digits (fingers) are AMPUTATED. It is MUTILATION. And it can have a devastating effect on the cat for the rest of its life. It can experience pain every time it uses the litter box, or when it’s running or jumping. In other words, declawing can destroy a cat’s QUALITY of life. And because many declawed cats are surrendered to shelters because of the emotional and behavioral issues they develop due to the chronic pain of declawing… and many of those animals then end up getting “euthanized”… declawing can also destroy a cat’s QUANITY of life as well. I will never forgive myself for this gut-wrenching mistake!
I will go to my grave grieving the lives of my “babies”, my “children” whom all I wanted was to protect forever, but instead I screwed up and let them go to people who either tortured them or may have allowed them to die young (anything less than a full life based on the average lifespan) because they were not providing the care and protection that I was led to believe they were going to provide.
I CAN NO LONGER STAND LETTING MY BABIES GO TO HOMES THAT DO NOT BELIEVE IN THE STANDARDS OF CARE THAT I BELIEVE IN! So, until we develop a trustworthy network of truly good homes, we won’t be adopting out any more animals. Because I haven’t put in all the time and energy (not to mention donations) to save these priceless animals’ lives… just to turn around and “dump” them into situations that are, to one degree or another, as bad as where they came from when I rescued them!
THIS IS WHY, FROM NOW ON, WE WILL ONLY ADOPT OUT TO PEOPLE WHO WHOLEHEARTEDLY BECOME PART OF THE WOLFSTONE RANCH COMMUNITY... aka FAMILY But just what do I mean by that? What does it mean to become part of the WolfStone Ranch Community?
For one thing, it could mean someone who has become deeply involved with WolfStone Ranch, someone who has changed their life by devoting a significant portion of their time and talent and energy, either as an employee or volunteer... (of course, we’ll first have to raise the money to pay anyone to be an employee… because even I don’t get paid for the work I do for the rescue I founded)…
But it could mean someone who just occasionally volunteers... and yet who also remains involved with other social WolfStone Ranch activities…
And it could also mean someone who originally brought their own pet to us for rehabilitation and who, with their animal, remains involved in ongoing rehabilitation or other training classes… or even with other social WolfStone Ranch activities…
And, finally, it could also mean someone who has adopted one of our animals and who, with their animal, remains involved in ongoing rehabilitation and/or training classes… as well as other social WolfStone Ranch activities…
LET ME MAKE THIS PERFECTLY CLEAR… from now on, anyone who adopts one of our animals will be someone who will not just “put up with us” doing a home-check before and maybe one or two after adopting that animal. No… they will be people who WELCOME becoming an INTEGRAL part of our community, because they ENTHUSIASTILCALY EMBRACE the same standards of animal care, and they DEARLY LOVE the idea of sharing their animal-inclusive lifestyle with kindred spirits.
And instead of feeling like we’re being intrusive to want to make arrangements with them to stop in and visit from time to time, they will be delighted to see us and catch us up on the latest with all of their pets, whom they consider full-fledged members of their family! Shoot, they will even joyfully consider US to be members of their extended family!!
THE WOLFSTONE RANCH FAMILY… aka COMMUNITY… WILL BE MUTUALLY SUPPORTIVE… Which means that FOR THE LIFE OF THE DOG OR CAT THEY’VE ADOPTED FROM WolfStone RANCH, we can share things like pet-sitting for each other. And getting our animals together for play-dates. Going hiking and picnicking together. And happily sharing photos and stories of life with our animals. And let’s not forget… we can prayer-drum and prayer-sing together. And do yoga together. And cook vegan together. And do activist work together to help change the Midwest rural culture to providing more compassionate treatment of all animals.
Now, if you think all this sounds ridiculous and over-the-top… but you still love animals and would like to be involved in animal rescue… then I encourage you to get involved in OTHER shelters, because we don’t need to compete, and we don’t need to argue about the best ways to go about saving animals’ lives! The need is so great, there is room for everyone to help!!
BUT MY tribe… MY kindred spirits… are people who will be thrilled with the Vision I have just laid out. They will be as idealistic as me. They too will want to set the gold-standard. They too will want to help me make WolfStone Ranch the PARAGON of animal rescue and rehabilitation and placement. And they will want to help me take on the hard work of changing the culture… one mind and heart at a time… Knowing it will ultimately take generations… but that it has to start somewhere! Someone… some COMMUNITY needs to say… YES, WE CAN! It ain’t gonna be easy, and it ain’t gonna happen overnight, but we believe in the Sacred Within… and we believe in the AWESOME Power of Sacred Love… so we say YES, WE WILL GO FOR IT!!
So Be It