It doesn’t take much to create a city, just roads, buildings, and some people thrown in. But what does it take to makes a community? When groups like charities, support groups, activity centers and many more arrive to a city, they can help it flourish into a community that people are proud of. One group in particular, which I will be observing, is a nonprofit animal rescue. Animal rescues help communities by lowering authentication of animals at shelters as ell as helping control the animal over population in the cities.
Along with bringing new loving additions to many families in our communities. For a weekend I will follow Indigo Halverson, a long term volunteer of Vista Rescue in Moreno Valley. I plan to find out just how much of a role they play in our lovely community. A day before adoptions, an event held at Petcock to show case an animal rescues pets, spoke with Indigo Halverson to go over details of Vista Rescue. Indigo explains that Vista Rescue has been around for five years, started by Karen and De Grooming. Their daughter Nikkei Grooming also helped run the rescue.
Indigo happened to come across Vista Rescue while she was in her junior year of high school. Originally, it was a school based community participation activity, but by the end of the year the Groomsman’s and the rescue became like family to her. Their mission statement,” Vista Rescue is made up of a team of volunteers who have given a large part of their life to making sure our furry friends don’t have to wander the streets wondering where their next meal will come from. We make sure we give a temporary mom to these animals until we can find them a forever home.
We also will not limit ourselves to dogs and cats. We will take any animal who doesn’t have a place to call home anymore no matter what it may be” (Vista Rescue). For the past five years now Indigo has continued to spend countless hours as a volunteer of Vista Rescue, helping all animals, not just dogs and cats, find new homes. Many Other Volunteers have come and gone, with many new ones emerging, but Indigo and the Grooming family expect to keep going for the long haul. On Saturday I meet with Indigo at the Grooming household.
Both Saturday and Sunday they meet at this house to gather all the animals and supplies for the rescue. Walking in, it was a very clean and organized house, no smells and no messes present. Following Indigo down a hallway, we came to a room that hosted roughly twenty cats. Many were random strays while others were litters Of kittens. As cute as the kitten were, Indigo explained that all the animals had to be spayed and neutered. According to ASPIC, an organization for protecting animals, states, “Each year, approximately 2. 7 million animals are euthanized (1. 2 million dogs and 1. Lion cats)” (Pet Statistics). By requiring all of the rescue animals to be fixed, it reduces these numbers. Most of the animals brought in are ones that have been found on the streets, which come from strayed litters. It’s a means to population control of these pets. As examine the room I notice once again, it’s a clean and non-smelling room, which is much to my surprise. There were multiple cages, cat toys, litter boxes, food and water dishes everywhere, but all clean and organized. In the closet Indigo grabbed cat carriers and began loading cats into them.
They ere placed by the front door as we headed to the back yard next. Roughly fifteen small breed dogs were housed in a kennel, it was a large area allowing plenty of running area for the animals as well as many squeaky toys and bowls of food and water. As with the cats we did the same with the dogs. Once all of the cats and dogs were ready we loaded them into Careen’s truck. Putting what we could in the truck and some in the bed of the truck. There was a final check to ensure all paperwork was also grabbed by Karen for all the animals, then it was off to Petcock’s adoptions.
Getting to Petcock roughly twine eleven to noon, We unloaded the carriers from Careen’s truck into the store. There is an area already set up imminently to the right when walking in the doors which Karen and Indigo went straight too. This area is specifically for adoptions. Walking over I already see some cats in the cages. Curious about them, I ask Indigo which tells me they are a part of their rescue. They are only able to do events on weekends, which through the week they leave a certain amount animals at Petcock to try to adopt. Taking roughly a half hour, all the cages and animals were set up.
Making sure none of the cages looked over crowded with animal. With everything set up, it reminded me of a shelter, just cleaner and with less smell. This brought me to a question for Indigo, why Petcock? Why not do this at the shelter? And lastly why isn’t the shelter helping with adopting animals? Indigo gave me an answer much what the humane society stats,” 6 to 8 million-?Number of cats and dogs entering shelters each year,” and that,” 3 to 4 million-?Number cats and dogs adopted from shelters each year” (Pets by the Numbers). That means only about half f the animals going into a shelter are also walking out.
The other half sit and cause over crowded spaces in the shelters, leading to many being euthanized even though nothing is physically wrong with them. Many shelters just don’t have the funds to take care of them all, and this is where rescues like Vista come in to try and save the day. A second chance for hope of a new home. With every person that came up to look at the animals, Karen and Indigo answered all the questions asked. Many which surprised me because of all the animals, they knew all the animals by name, and injuries or conditions hey have, as well as breed and facts about the type of breed. They did not push people to adopt.
They wanted to inform, so that these animals can find a good home. Another approach Karen took was even explaining the benefits pets have on their owners. Looking at web MD, pets have actually enhanced physical conditions in a good way, such as,” In one study of 240 married couples, pet owners had lower blood pressure and lower heart rates during rest than people who did not own a pet” (Nazarene). Karen and indigo used these facts to push the idea that people are notes benefiting the animals by adopting, rather that the animals help them life healthy life, and this is just one of twenty eight studies on benefits.
Throughout the day, Indigo maintain the cages by cleaning, feeding, and refilling water to the cages. It was important because individuals would look less at the cages that were a mess and more at the ones with everything neat. Perhaps this gives individuals a thought that the animal would be destructiveness or messes. Also Indigo rotated many of the animals throughout the day, as cages that were below waste level received less attention. There were strategies needed for ensuring al the animals were given the same attention. When one couple was ready to adopt a small cat, indigo explained paper work that had to be signed.
There was a charge to adopted, but later learned that the fees go towards the required spay and neuter policy. It also helped cover all shots and vaccines needed. The couple would just have to take the cat in on specific days to Suntanned veterinary clinic, were the shots would be given at no additional charge. The remainder cost helped fund Vista Rescue by paying for animal products such as food, litter, and medicinal. The rice was not much different than the cost of an adoption fee through an animal shelter. In fact, once the adoption was complete, Indigo even helped the couple finding what they needed at Petcock for their new cat.
An added advantage to Petcock for allowing a rescue to hold its events there. Like Vista Rescues with this single adoption, there are other rescues such as Animal ague of America, the claimed to,” have saved over 1. 000,000 lives, and our advocacy and partnerships have helped to save even more lives. ” (Rescue and Adoption). Even though it is a small number compare to numbers of over population in shelters, groups like these together make a huge impact by raising awareness and taking action with steps of lowering the over population.
The last thing any rescue, or any one for that matter, is to see a poor animal put to sleep for no reason, especially our volunteer Indigo. As the even rapped up to a close, all of the reverse process of putting the animals in the cages began. Everything was cleaned, sanitized, and prepped for the next day. None of the workers at Petcock ever stopped to talk to Karen or Indigo the entire time. There was no reason to, Vista Rescue is a well-run on-profit organization that does not take advantage of the opportunity that Petcock is giving them.
They keep it clean so they can continue to come back and do what they love. They loaded the truck and headed home. Once at the house and after unloading, Karen let the cats roam the house and the dogs outside. This was different from that Of a shelter, it was a temporary home that felt just like that to these animals, home. One kitten was adopted, but in the eyes of the volunteers of Vista Rescues, the day was a big success. Indigo said with pride,” All it takes is just one adoptions, that’s one less animal stuck n an overcrowded shelter.
It’s an animal that has a new family. It’s not like their just pets, they become an actual part of our families” (Halverson). This is why Indigo puts in so many hours volunteering. It’s not a hobby, it doesn’t make her money, and there’s no added benefit to herself directly. It’s taking these poor animals and giving them a second chance, a chance for a long full life with a loving family who will bond for many years to come. This is what makes us a community, its bringing life and joy to all the families of this city.