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2015 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Kittitas County Friends Of Animals

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animal Protection & Welfare, Animals

Mission: Our mission is to find a loving, forever home for homeless pets and to end pet overpopulation through spaying and neutering. The goal we are working towards is that no animal will be euthanized because they are homeless, and that each animal will have a loving home.

Community Stories

25 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

I called to ask about getting help with dog nurturing. The lady who answered was very rude. If you don't want to help low income people with spay and neutering then don't advertise it!!

Kara28

Client Served

Rating: 5

I recently got my 7 week old kitten, Paisley. She came from a home with worms, fleas, and no vaccines. I wanted my kitty as happy and healthy as possible. KCFOA was very helpful in getting me an affordable plan for my kitten's wellness check; which includes vaccines, fleas, worms, and spay/neuter. Once I Called, it took less than an hour to figure out a financial voucher for me. Now my kitten will grow to be strong and healthy! Thank you guys so much for your support! You're awesome :)

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

KCFOA helped me pay for the neuter of my kitten. They also took time to call vets and answer the questions I had about the procedure. What a great organization.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have taken animals into my home all of my life. Taking care of them has been costly. As a retired caretaker, I have been unable to afford the cost of every animal visit. Friends of Animals stepped in and helped me to have my ill dog taken care of the very next day. Thank you so much for your prompt attention and kindness.

Eileen Mallonee

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have a Chihuahua/Datsun mix named Jasper, and has been in our family for over five years. I saw a flyer at our local vets office. I contacted Kittitas county Friends of animals and spoke with Memory. She was extremely helpful and very understanding of our situation. Jasper needed emergency dental surgery. Within days she was able to help me get in touch with our local veterinarian clinic, Mount Stewart veterinary clinic. Thanks to this wonderful organization, and the wonderful staff at Mt. Stewart Vet you know I clinic, our family member Jasper, will be able to have his dental surgery and live with us for many many years to come.

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

When other rescues in my home town couldn't help me with stray three week old kittens, Kittitas County stepped up and got them vetted and on transport. THANK YOU!!

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

Last spring, my vet diagnosed my nine-year-old lab Lola with arthritis and hypothyroid disorder. The cadre of medications, blood works, and follow-up visits were overwhelming financially. As a full-time college student, I budget a very fixed income, and I began to fear I wasn't going to be able to continue caring for Lola (She has been with me since she was nine-weeks. She is my best friend and very much like a child to me). When I was referred to KCFOA from a practitioner at Mt. Stuart Animal Hospital in Ellensburg, Washington, and I wasn't sure what kind of assistance, if any, I would receive. KCFOA has been a blessing in mine and Lola's lives since contacting them. They have found private donors to help fund Lola's medications, and I've received vouchers for the follow-ups and blood analyses, as well as offers for reduced prices on Lola's food. They've even offered a voucher for her to see a holistic specialist in my area in order to give me a second opinion on Lola's health. KCFOA has been a light at the end of our tunnel. I cannot thank Joan Johnston and Memoree Cushing enough--who both told me when I first contacted them that they would do everything within their ability to assist me in affording the necessary care for Lola so that I can continue to keep her healthy and happy. Thank you, KCFOA, from the bottom of my heart!

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have two cats, Midnight (Male, all black) and Sunshine (Orange and white). They are brother and sister, rescues that came from a farm in Toppenish, WA. They were about 7 weeks old when I got them. We have been inseparable ever since. Other than an ex-boyfriend, and a past roommate, it has just been the three of us. They really are my life, my joy, my babies. I have been struggling financially the past few years, due to some personal issues, lack of good job opportunity, debt, etc. When it came time to get Midnight and Sunshine spayed and neutered, I was wondering how I was going to afford it on top of all my other expenses. I heard about KCFOA through a lady I had done some work for. She happened to be one of the head volunteers/directors of KCFOA. Karen Johnson. With their help, I was able to get my babies not only fixed, but full exams, and vaccinations! Other than a modest co-pay, they covered the rest of the costs. I noticed after a while, that Sunshine was having trouble eating. I took her in, and found out she had Stomatitis, a form of gum disease/gingivitis. I was heartbroken. She's a trooper though. With KCFOA's help, I was able to get medication and check-ups at a reduced rate. A year or so later, my babies got fleas from a neighbor's cat. Grrr. KCFOA was able to provide me with diatomaceous earth, a natural cure for fleas (it's a white chalky substance that you rub in the cats fur, and it helps to suffocate the fleas). It took a while, but we finally got rid of the fleas. Thank you so much KCFOA. Without you, my kitties wouldn't have had the proper care they needed. You are a blessing, truly.

2 Kathy207

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have a miniature dachshund named Ginger. She has been a part of our family for over 9 years. We call her our little hot water bottle because she loves to cuddle and sleep very close to you. Our entire family even though we live in seep rate homes have shared in Ginger's care. Our love for her is immense! We have had many joyous years with her and we want many more. As sometimes happens our animals get some kind of health issue which can be very hard on our pets and on the family. We knew Ginger was in need of either a teeth cleaning and possibly some extractions. On her annual exam just 2 days ago, May 27th, 2015 her primary veterinarian informed us after a full exam that Ginger would need all of her teeth pulled. We had no idea how extremely bad her teeth had gotten until it was explained to us. The cost of the procedure was a whopping $700.00. I am a mother of 4 and have 2 beautiful grand babies and I live in low income housing. I knew I could not afford this cost and it was breaking my heart! Mount Stewart Animal Hospital referred me to Friends for Animals and I called them immediately the following day. I spoke with a very helpful lady named Memoree, a name I'll never forget! She was kind and we talked about Ginger and my family and all of the non options or options we had. We shopped around for pricing and procedures with other veterinary clinics and realized the veterinary clinic in which Ginger was examined was the best place for her procedure. The cost was still an issue. Memoree went above and beyond to help Ginger and our family find a way to make her dental health care affordable with a breakdown of help from the Friends for Animals non profit agency and a private Donor Gabe. The breakdown left our family owing $200.00 from the original price of $700.00. Memoree, Gabe and Friends for Animals, I will be forever thankful for your helping our family to continue to enjoy our sweet little Ginger and giving her a more happy and healthy life. Bless you all!!!

Review from Guidestar

2 Noella W.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have a good friend and neighbor. He had a beautiful, neutered Tom cat named Tomcat or just Tom. Tom started getting sick and as much love as my friend had to give him, he is older, disabled and on a very limited income. He took Tom in and it was found that Tom had mouth cancer. My neighbor did what he could, but the mess were expensive. I mentioned to him to contact KCFOA to see if there was any way they could help with Tomcat's medicine costs and they were thrilled to do it. Not only that, they took over the costs of his medical care and, at the end, they paid so that Tomcat could pass peacefully to sleep and not suffer. My neighbor once had five cats, now he has only the youngest. My neighbor recently needed cancer surgery. KCFOA paid so that his remaining cat, Brat, could get his shots so he could visit at the rehab home. Now my neighbor plans on refitting his house so that he can he can foster cats. What they did for him was a great gift.

8

Board Member

Rating: 5

I am a founding member and have served as an officer and board member with KCFOA for about 12 years. We started with a few volunteers who paid for all their rescue work themselves before we had enough money for a budget. Eleven years ago we helped lower the high euthanasia rate at our local animal control shelter from over 75% (yes, 3/4 of the animals there lost their lives in those times) to 2% in less than 6 months!! We have kept that up ever since. No adoptable pets ever perish there anymore. We began working with larger rescues with more adoptions and sponsored our own website. We have funded thousands of spay/neuters and many vet treatments and surgeries to benefit animals. When money was short, we asked for contributions for special needs. Many members financed animal help projects with their own money if needed. That still happens. I have never in my long life ever worked with such loving selfless people who literally devote their entire lives to promoting animal welfare. I weekly personally drive hundreds of pets to the larger Seattle area rescues every year. Other workers drive pets to low cost spay neuter clinics -including many feral cats. Our workers place barn cats where needed The combined efforts of KCFOA to spay, neuter, give medical help, rehome and adopt out pets, and move pets to where more adoptions happen has saved thousands of animal lives and give thousands of pets wonderful homes.

8

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

In 2014, my husband and I noticed an article in the local newspaper about a gorgeous yellow cat who was available for adoption through Kittitas County Friends of Animals. We contacted the organization and were pleased (and disappointed) to hear that this lovely cat had already been placed in a loving home. Within a few days, a volunteer called to tell us that there was another neutered male cat in need of a permanent family. We visited this darling, shy guy and immediately fell in love with him. At the time, we had out-of-town company staying with us and felt that it wouldn't be the best time to bring a new kitty home. One of the Friends of Animals volunteers offered to provide foster care for our dear boy (now known as Mister) for as long as necessary. Mister spend the next couple of weeks in her home and we were encouraged to visit him regularly, which we did. We feel that Mister benefited greatly by the patient care he received when he was rescued by KCFOA and also during the time he was fostered by one of their members. He has become a treasured member of our family, gets along beautifully with our three dogs, and we love him dearly. Kittitas County Friends of Animals has our undying gratitude and affection!

7

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been associated with KCFOA and a foster and volunteer for the last couple of years and have yet to experience even the least negativity or laxity from them. They are a passionate, positive, caring group of individuals working hard to do their very best for our county's animals in need.

My fosters have all been feral kittens that came to me in good shape, largely due to the considerate handling they experienced from the volunteers. They received appropriate veterinary care, were socialized in my home for an suitable amount of time, and happily went on to their "forever homes" via Homeward Pet on the West Side. This no-kill shelter plays a big role in the success of KCFOA's efforts to reduce the number of euthanasia procedures performed here by taking in our many rescues and making them available for adoption in a much larger market than we can provide. All the cats and kittens that KCFOA interacts with are given excellent veterinary evaluations and treatment. Their many foster homes provide the essential socialization skills they'll need for the next stage of their lives with people and other pets, as well as facilitating their access to veterinary care. The organization assesses which animals can safely go back to their lives as rodent-controlling barn cats after being vaccinated and neutered, as opposed to an indoor life and carefully decides their placement so it will be successful.

Every person that I have met through this organization has displayed much love for animals, energy for their welfare and boundless willingness to give of their time, their homes, their affection and their own money in order that none should suffer. They are well organized, thoughtful and creative in their pursuit of this goal and I have nothing but admiration for these people. I look forward to maintaining a long and satisfying relationship with them for many years to come and playing my humble part in the grand scheme. The giving of succor to helpless creatures in distress in a very worthy mission and I am proud to be associated with such wonderful folk. Long may they wave!

5

Client Served

Rating: 5

In the 1990's I adopted a feral kitten from next door to my apt. complex. Eli was one of a litter of four...the only handicapped one. I caught him and took him to the vet to have him treated so I could release him for Animal Contral to trap later - I thought he was just hurt. Dr Newschwander told me that Animal control would simply euthanize him, so I kept him. I did not want Eli! I had a deceased friend's elderly and borderline-vicious cat. I put Eli in the bathtub with milk replacer and a litter box and Boots had the rest of the apt.. Within a month Boots had to be euthanized due to advanced feline leukemia. Eli turned out to be the most wonderful cat that I ever owned!

Later I trapped one of the litter mates and delivered it to Animal Control. When I called to check on the kitten's status, I was told that it had been euthanized. I trapped the two other litter mates, turning them loose in my apt. even though my lease allowed only one animal. Luckily, the kittens were both afraid and extremely shy so whenever someone came to the door they took off for the hole in the box springs. I had to place my tenancy in jeopardy in order to preserve the lives of these two and Eli. [After they were tame they both were adopted by a family in upper county after they were spayed.] Animal Control trapped the mother and simply euthanized her as they had done to the first kitten.

Fast forward to the summer of 2014. I put in my request for a disabled kitten with KCFOA. On January 7th, I took possession of my adopted handicapped feral kitten, Willow who became Willy as soon as they checked out the nitty-gritty. I renamed him Job, as I felt he had definately earned that name! This was sight-unseen as Job had hidden when I visited the foster home in order to meet him! I wanted a handicapped cat because I too am handicapped. I do not feel that my worth or value as a person has altered due to partial paralysis from a stroke 14 years ago. Living with Eli in the 1990's taught me that cats are no different than me. I don't wish to be 'put down' by any form of that term - euthanasia or otherwise. Why should an animal be diminished in any way due to a handicap that is not of his own choosing or doing? [KCFOA obviously shares this philosophy!] Job was part of a very large "trap". His health was so precarious that he was not neutered, treated and released as the others were. KCFOA fostered him. He was born about mid-September of last year making him about two months old when trapped in November. He had about every feline 'scourge' one could imagine and is still dealing with a couple. After the foster mother delivered Job to me on January 7th, that was just the beginning of her assistance. She has helped me with food and litter until I could get to the store, there have been many trips to the vets' - some of which I accompanied Joby and some without me, she has delivered medication to me, been available by email and phone when I needed some advice, has provided information on adaptive equiptment for holding and carrying Job as I have the full use of only one hand and arm, has come to my apartment to see if Job needed medical care, helped pay some of the bills, etc..

I know two things that give me a great deal of comfort: 1] If I need assistance - any kind, all I need to do is ask for it from KCFOA. 2] If anything happened to me,I know KCFOA would step in and provide an appropriate home for Job, though I don't anticipate this need.

I kitten-sat between Thankgiving until after Christmas for a kitten the same age as Job. The kitten simply distroyed most of my many plants, climbed the inside of a lamp shade, etc.. One blessing that I have received from Job is that of peace in my house. I plan on building a ramp up to the window ledge as soon as Joby's balance stablizes after his ears clear up so he doesn't fall off. My catnip seeds have germanated for a garden for him. [ We plan on living well together and with enjoyment!]

I intend to become a volunteer! I can't express my deep gratitude to KCFOA for Joby. Due to the love of animals and the caring by the volunteers and byJoby's foster mother, HE LIVES! In the 1990's, I would not be able to write this review as there would be nothing to review! I cannot in anyway manage to express the gratitude I feel for Job's life...my life was extremely alone [I am 70], especially during the winter months, when, due to adverse weather and cold temperatures, I become very isolated in my apt.. [ My 'hidden' handicap, environmental illness,means that I have severe allergies to smoke and the scented product sprayed in the common hallway to mask the smoke and cooking odors, I simply do not leave my apt during the winter very much.] Again, thank you for Joby...and keep up the wonderful work!

Gamma Cat, March 23, 2015

6

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

KCFOA has done a great deal to reduce the numbers of homeless animals, as well as the kill rate in local shelters. They also reach out to other fledgling organizations in other places to help them get going, too. By networking with KCFOA ash other rescues through them we have begun to make a significant difference in Yakima, too.

They work closely with not only their own local shelter, but also with others throughout Washington state, and have a great network of volunteers who provide foster care, transportation, vet care and rehabilitation along with large-scale spay/neuter/vaccination programs for those unwanted animals who have been abandoned or live without love.

I would recommend this organization as a model to people in other places who wish to help the homeless animals in their own areas!

6

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Our family has worked with rescue organizations in several states over the years where we've lived. When we relocated to Washington, we were pleased to find one dedicated to not only helping rescue cats and kittens that otherwise would be euthanized or a nuisance, but in fostering them and finding long-term, loving homes for them. Our experience with the Kittitas County Friend of Animals has been positive, encouraging, and helpful. We decided to foster a kitten, who was feral and, if she hadn't been trapped, would have led a dismal and short life. We fell in love with her, adopted her, and she continues to thrive, thanks to the volunteers that take the time to invest in little furry lives. I am thankful for all those that give their time and talents to help save and love these sweet creatures who have so much love to give back.

4

Client Served

Rating: 5

I first got help in 2005 . They helped with advice,got help from other groups and help get many of my rescues fixed and forever homes.
I had been doing rescue in another area and was very grateful for all thier help and they care about all the fury friends. I think the area should be very happy to have them

6

Volunteer

Rating: 5

KCFOA has been diligent, accommodating and extremely helpful. While I am only somewhat involved as a volunteer, I know they are very conscientious and considerate and really have a heart for animals. I have offered to foster dogs, but there does not seem to be an excess of those in Kittitas County, so have only fostered cats to date. All of the tremendous amount of work done by this organization is volunteer. What a wonderful service they provide to this community! Where donations go is well documented. The people with whom I have worked have always been helpful and kind.

5

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have worked with KCFOA for at least 10 yrs. first as a client needing help with my feral cats and then as a volunteer. All members I have worked with have been helpful caring individuals. Their first concern is for the animals and go to great lengths to ensure they are treated humanely even the wildest ferals that you can imagine. As far as I know, we have always contacted the property owners before we attempt traping and have their full cooperation. If it is vacant property we closely monitor the traps. I personally, helped trap 22 cats and kittens from one barn last year. KCFOA found homes for 15 kittens and TNR the older ones. It is a great help to small rural towns like Cle Elum, Easton, Thorp and Ellensburg. Please help by donating time or money to this great organization.

5

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I have been a volunteer with Kittitas County Friends of Animals (KCFOA) for many years. For some of those years I was a board member. I have fostered kittens in the past; but, due to where I live, it is not so easy to foster. Through its fund raising efforts, the money raised goes to help animals in need. In most cases those animals are cats or kittens. But, dogs also get helped. KCFOA can always use caring volunteers to provide foster homes for cats and dogs.

The euthanasia rate at the local animal shelter has dropped significantly because of KCFOA. There is a successful T-N-R program in place which has helped to lower the number of feral cats. Kittens that are born to feral cats can sometimes be conditioned to live with humans if they are caught early enough. Also, since feral cats are conditioned to hunting for their own food, which usually means rodents, they can be relocated to a farm or ranch with a rodent problem.

KCFOA has been good for Ellensburg and Kittitas County. It will continue to be a good organization to have in the valley.