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2016 Top-Rated Nonprofit

STARelief and Pet Assistance

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animal Protection & Welfare, Animals

Mission: STARelief and Pet Assistance mission is to provide life-saving veterinary care, pet food, emergency boarding and foster care to pets whose families are struggling with financial hardship. Join us. Company Overview STARelief is a group of volunteers dedicated to keeping pets & families together during hard financial times. We do this by providing free life saving pet food and veterinary care, as well as assisting families with spaying & neutering their pets. Our goal is to lessen the amount of animals that are left behind or relinquished to local animal shelters. We donate pet food to low income, seniors, disabled & the homeless with pets. In these difficult times, many families are faced with the hard decision of giving up their pet, because they can no longer properly care for them. This accounts for most of the 3-4 million pets that are destroyed in shelters each year in the United States. STAR hopes to decrease this burden on families by supplying food and supplies. Families should not have to choose between feeding themselves or their pets. We are one of the only organizations of our kind in the area & the need for our help keeps growing each week. As animal shelters fill up and as families struggle, STAR Pet Food Pantry is committed to making a difference in our community in a whole new way. We service the Westchester, Fairfield and New Haven counties. Description STARelief and Pet Assistance is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to keeping pets happy, healthy and in their homes.

Results: Donated over 24,000 pounds of lifesaving pet food. Provided over $63,205 in veterinary care to pets in need. Prevented over 317 animals from being surrendered to local animal shelters.

Target demographics: Seniors on a fixed income, Low-income, unemployed, pets of domestic violence, current and ex-military personnel, and people with disabilities

Direct beneficiaries per year: 216 individuals and families

Geographic areas served: National Organization

Programs: Pet Food Pantry Home For Life Veterinary Grants Pets For Military Vets Safe Pet Foster Program

Community Stories

79 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

7

Donor

Rating: 5

I am so impressed by the love, dedication, and hard work of STAR. My sweet cat Honey was rescued by STAR from a terrible hoarding situation of many cats and dogs living in atrocious conditions. She is an absolute joy, and I am so grateful that she was rescued and now with my family.

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

BEWARE of the adoption process here. I found an older dog on line, fell in love with his sweet eyes, and was told by the Managing Director they were accepting applications for this particular dog. I then filed the application and emailed it to the Director who acknowledged receipt. Long story short, I was strung along for two weeks between the Director and the woman fostering the dog. The foster even set up the date and time for the meet and greet. After numerous follow-up's on my part and apologies for delays on their part, I was told via a text at noon the day before the meet and greet that the dog was adopted and good luck with my search. Although they indicated I was being considered, they never even checked any of my references nor did they call my vet to verify that we are good pet parents. The foster told me they were sorry if I felt I was treated unethically, but they always make the best decision for the pet. How on earth do they make those decisions when they don't even check or verify the information on the application. The game they played with my emotions was inexcusable. I fell in love with a dog, lead to believe I was being considered and then dismissed with a curt instant message.

Wouldn't you think that if there was something on the application that caused them concern they would let you know instead of leading you on? Shame on them!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am a Marine Corps veteran of the Gulf War. Just 3 months ago I was provided with a companion dog to help me with some serious issues. His name is Red. In the short time that Red's been with me my life has improved 100%. Unfortunately my current situation is one over very little income.

Red started rubbing his ears, so I looked and by my untrained eye I could tell he had a pretty bad ear infection that was causing him pain. I started to panic.... I called several vets to see if they would work with me on the costs, or accept payments. No luck.

I happened across Starelief while scouring the internet. I completed the application and was contacted the next day. The day after that, Red was receiving medical care to the tune of $300+ which Starelief took care of!!

I can never thank them enough!

Scott in West Haven

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

I was told that they weren't in any position to assist me even though they accepted applications.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I feel so blessed to have found this organization that lovingly helped me get my adopted shelter cat her exams and shots so we can both be relieved and I feel they should be given huge kudos for their support and customer service!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

November 10, 2016.

God bless the great folks behind the veil at STARelief org. and the generosity of all who donate to this great program. Special thanks to the board for their compassion and expertise in recognizing when a familys plea is dire and genuine.
I am a disabled veteran and my pension was terminated leaving me with only 133 monthly income. I have a family of five that includes myself, wife, son, 5 yo Eskie "Levi", and cat. With limited income i was unable to provide flea treatment for my pets and as it turned out Levi eveloped a severe reaction from fleabites and began knawing at his back pulling hair out in clumps. His situation was extreme so I had to act fast.
I went online first to diagnose > flea dermtitus - allergic reaction to flea saliva.
Next I tried to find home remedies that would help at all with some good success.
I was able to make his head gear to prevent anymore self mutilation and creation of any more open sores.
I found that Benedryl would help relieve some itching and i could use the extra betadine from my surgery to clean and disinfect his wounds until healed enough to clean with baby shampoo.
He was now infested w fleas and his sores looked infected. So again i go online and find our pets saving grace. . . STARelief org!
Without Starelief our "Levi" would still be suffering without
the proper medical attention that provided relief from the pain and discomfort of his condition.
Also equally important is the HUGE sigh of relief felt when our feelings of anxiety and helplessness were lifted just by knowing your pet will be comfortable and healthy again!

> Thanks!! TEAM #STARelief
> Grandiose Appreciation,
> Frank, Jordan, Kimberly
> Pets "Levi", & "Stormy"
> Famiily in Need

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

Dear Heather and Shamika and everyone at StaRelief,

My name is Skye, you knew me as Reese. I am writing to say thank you for giving me such a great life. I hear my new mom and dad talking all the time about how much they love me and how amazing their life is now that I am a part of it. They are the best! I go for long walks every day (sometimes 2 miles, usually 4 miles), I get to go to work with my mom every day, dad plays with me when we get home, they take me to the dog park on the weekends so I can play with my friends and be a dog.

Mom tells everyone I am really good at my job as a therapist, that I make everyone smile that comes to see us. Everyone talks about how gentle and smart I am and well trained I am. I guess so, all I know is that mom tells me what she wants me to do, I do it, then I get a belly rub or a treat. Pretty sweet deal for me if you want to know the truth! Anyway, I got to thinking that none of this would have happened for me if it hadn't been for you guys, so thank you. Doesn't seem like enough, but I really mean it. We wanted to help out more, maybe give another dog like me the chance I had, so mom put a check in the mail for you today (I helped her mail it!).

Mom is sending some pictures of me at work. It looks like I lay around a lot, but mom says it's gotta be exhausting for me to be so darn cute that she doesn't blame me one bit. (Like I said, pretty sweet deal!)

I hope you guys are around a LONG time and are able to help a lot more dogs (and people too). Mom says you guys made her world more beautiful when you gave me to her. I'm thinking you changed my world for the better to be sure! Thanks again!

4

Client Served

Rating: 5

When my cat Joey was sick, STARelief stepped in and helped my Joey out. I had to use their vet which was a good idea. Anyway, they saved my cat Joey life. Thank you STARelief!

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

Thank god for STARelief and Pet Assistance. Without this organization, my pet Henry would not be alive today.
They are the most kind and caring people in the world.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

STARelief is amazing! nothing else to say. They saved my pets' life.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

What an organization,Thanks to Stareleif,all 4 of my dogs had the chance to be spayed and neutered as well as recieving wellness checks and shots,we could not have afforded the service otherwise,this made a difference in our lives and our pets.You will find good solid people here who are genuine in wanting to help and doing it.Thank you from the bottom of our hearts

3 catmandude

Donor

Rating: 1

As you may be aware, many websites contain fake reviews made by either members of the organization seeking funds, paid 'reviewers' and/or their friends, family members, etc.

Based upon my recent, ABSOLUTELY AWFUL, first-hand experiences with STARelief and its executive director, Heather (detailed below), ONE MUST SERIOUSLY QUESTION THE VALIDITY OF ANY/ALL POSITIVE REVIEWS re: STARelief on this and/or any/all other websites.

In lieu of any available NEGATIVE star ratings (-5 stars wouldn't be a low enough review for STARelief), I give STARelief THE LOWEST POSSIBLE REVIEW AVAILABLE.

IN SUMMATION:

PLEASE donate your funds to a verifiable, REPUTABLE organization (i.e. NOT STARelief).

My experiences are detailed below re: the absolute hell that I was forced to experience over the course of the past +/- 2 weeks in my failed efforts to obtain ANY assistance - let alone TIMELY help from STARelief.

As a DIRECT result of across-the-board failures and COMPLETELY AVOIDABLE delays by STARelief and executive director, Heather, my beloved 4-years-young cat, Joey, suffered immeasurably and unnecessarily - then had to be euthanized - FAR too prematurely.

If that wasn't bad enough:

Never receiving payment confirmation to the vet clinic of the paltry, belated, $100 ALLEGED grant, I emailed STARelief 12 days after being approved for the ALLEGED grant - simply requesting email confirmation of payment to the vet clinic.

Instead of providing the reasonably requested confirmation - again: 12 DAYS AFTER THE FACT, Heather withdrew her NON-EXISTENT grant, knowing full-well that STARelief WOULD thereby STIFF my ELDERLY (86 & 90 YEAR-OLD) PARENTS out of reimbursement for any of the $266.95 that they were FORCED to place on their credit card - as a DIRECT result of Heather's COMPLETE and UTTER FAILURE to 'step up to the plate' in a TIMELY manner - or, more accurately: AT ALL.

Rather than utilizing any LEGITIMATE criteria - i.e. for no VALID reason, Heather's decision was based upon her ornery disposition and clearly biased attitude - which was quite evident throughout the entire hellish, grueling, time-wasting and ultimately fruitless application process.

Prior to her decision to retract her paltry $100 grant (that, as it turned out, never existed in the first place), it was CLEARLY explained to Heather (via the email grant payment request confirmation) that my elderly parents are on extremely limited fixed income AND that my 90 year-old Dad is suffering from dementia - which will soon require substantial eldercare costs.

Made no difference, whatsoever, to Heather - as she continued her pattern of sheer callousness by first, retracting the paltry, ALLEGED grant - in a most-condescending and patronizing manner, no less - then abruptly told me (via the same email) to never contact her again. Does it GET any better?

It goes without saying that no human being should EVER treat ANY others in such a manner - whether or not under the guise of 'volunteer'. There's simply no rationale - and NO EXCUSE - for such behavior.

As such, I STRONGLY advise that any and all who may consider donating to this - at best: poorly run (dis-)organization, or at worst: complete sham and/or scam to RUN - not walk away - and FAST. Your (and my future) donation(s) will be FAR better utilized in most ANY organization OTHER than this disgracefully botched operation.

And if there's any justice in this world, it will come in the form of ZERO additional donations to this despicable (dis-)organization - as well as a full-scale investigation + shut-down of its sham operation by the state attorney general's office. An appropriate prison term hopefully awaits, as well.

How Heather can even GLANCE at her own reflection and/or sleep at night is beyond comprehension.

For your reference, below is the copied, pasted and edited email sent 9/14/16 to STARelief executive director, Heather - which speaks for itself:

*************************************************************************

After this email, I won’t ‘bother’ you again – as my next email will be via formal complaint to the CT State Attorney General’s office (copied on this email) re: the absolute SHAM / SCAM OPERATION that you’re running in Stamford. I’d refer to STARelief as an utter joke – but it would be far too complimentary and there’s NO humor in taking advantage of ANYONE – let alone those in legitimate need.

Additionally, I will post online reviews and comments reflective of my DISGRACEFULLY POOR experiences with you and STARelief – on every available ratings website – including all non-profit review sites - ensuring that NO ONE else receives such despicably callous, un-empathetic, unsympathetic treatment by you as did I.

Unlike you and/or the dis-organization that you claim to ‘run’ – I’ll be 100% transparent:

You never had ANY intention of helping me – PERIOD...

Instead, you took every opportunity to deny my VERY REASONABLE – AND approvable application for financial aid. As admitted by your webmaster, Andy, your online application is rife with tech (AND procedural) issues. As you’re well-aware, the tech issues wiped out my entire first application – on which I worked for several hours (for ALLEGED EMERGENCY care – no less). In addition – as mentioned, you require documents that in many cases (such as mine) do not exist – AND you require ‘estimates’ for vet care.

While I fully understand the need to qualify and quantify applications on the basis of financial need, NO ONE should be denied simply because he/she doesn’t collect unemployment, food stamps, etc. – that’s absolutely absurd. There are other ways to prove that a need exists – however, your website remains shortsighted in its requests for information that may not exist. And worse – it doesn’t provide the applicant any alternate means to provide such information.

I offered to provide you with legitimate, alternative proof of my hardship – yet you failed to take me up on my offer. You then asked me if I would consider driving to Stamford to visit your ‘discount’ vet – then ‘pulled the plug’ on me for simply – and reasonably - asking to check online reviews for your vet (after just being horrified while reading reviews of my 2 most recent vets – as I LONG-awaited your follow-up).

First of all – note to (your)self – and this just in... (as if you didn’t already know): vets are neither car dealer service shops nor home improvement contractors. As such, vets don’t provide ‘estimates’ – especially for emergency pet care. Get real.

Secondly – your definition of ‘emergency’ is more than a tad ‘off’.

How can you claim to offer financial aid for ‘emergency’ pet care (for ‘emergency’ medical treatment for my bleeding and dying cat, Joey – the circumstances of which you were well-aware at that point), then:

A) require that your ungodly, longwinded application process be completed PRIOR to one even receiving ANY (ALLEGED) consideration for EMERGENCY assistance, then...

B) make me wait several HOURS to speak with your webmaster, then...

C) require that I re-apply to even be considered, then...

D) unfairly deny approval due to documents that don’t exist, then...

E) ask if I’ll consider your discount vet, then...

F) make me wait OVERNIGHT – AS MY BELOVED CAT, JOEY LAYS SUFFERING, then...

G) unfairly deny approval AGAIN – claiming that it wasn’t an emergency because I checked online for vets who handle emergencies – and their reviews – ALL WHILE AWAITING YOUR REPLY, then...

H) you disappear off the face of the map (AND fail to return the detailed voicemail that I left on your cell phone), then...

I) make me wait several MORE HOURS – AS MY BELOVED CAT, JOEY LAYS SUFFERING, then...

J) spinelessly – in your ‘stead’ (or – more accurately: as you hide under your desk) you have Amy email ‘approval’ of a (very lame), ALLEGED $100 grant (coupled with the threat that if I didn’t accept by day’s end, she’d (ALLEGEDLY) give it to someone else, then...

K) after I email Amy (well-before the day’s end) with my acceptance of said (lame) offer, the ALLEGED grant $ is NEVER sent to [the vet], then...

L) only after I email you to request confirmation that the grant was paid to [the vet], as promised, (shockingly!) you reply with a withdrawal of your ALLEGED ‘grant’ – 12 DAYS AFTER THE FACT?

Instead of doing the right thing (including returning the voicemail left on your cell phone), you cowardly had Amy CLAIM that you were ‘on vacation’. Did your cell phone voicemail go on vacation, too?

Do you make a habit of offering such ALLEGED ‘emergency’ pet care aid – stalling the process long enough so that the affected – and beloved – pet suffers needlessly to near-death (especially when you’re well-aware of the circumstances) – unfairly deny the approval (not once – but twice) – then go ‘on vacation’ without notifying the applicant – mid-process – as the pet is, by then, near death?

As Lincoln stated: ‘You can fool all of the people some of the time and some of the people all of the time, but you can’t fool all of the people all of the time.’

2 Barbara265

Donor

Rating: 5

I was a volunteer on a project with a family that was housing multiple cats with litters in a run down home that eventually got condemned. Someone suggested I reach out to Starelief to get some assistance for the kittens. After assessing the situation, Starelief not only helped with the kitten litters but worked with their vet to get the Mom's neutered & also provided much needed medical assistance for some of the other cats. They also helped with food and cat litter since the family was in obvious need. It's been a few years since our first introduction and all of the cats have been relocated with their help (either tangible or simply being pointed in the right direction).

4 Lynne45

Client Served

Rating: 5

Hi this association was extremely helpful when we first got our dog we adopted from another place. They helped us get a low-cost neutering as well as Initial shots in the first year.

6 Marjorie5

Client Served

Rating: 5

Four years ago our dachshund, Bindi, needed back surgery. As we were struggling with her expensive surgery bills, STARelief helped us with some of the costs. To give back for their assistance, I have a minimal amount deducted from my checking account each month. A small amount does add up over time and can greatly assist STARelief to help other animals and their families.

Marjorie Swarts
Client Served and Current Donor

4 Jim_168

Client Served

Rating: 5

We adopted two young cats from STARelief and have continued to support their efforts via charitable contributions for several years now. STARelief does fabulous work for pets who need assistance. These are truly remarkable folks!

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've volunteered with STARelief and Pet Assistance for over 3 years and I can honestly say that this is the most organized, dedicated and fun non-profit I've ever volunteered with. Everyone is completely dedicated to keeping pets happy, healthy and home! Also important is that everyone in the group truly likes working together and everyone pitches in to help each other. Great group with a great mission!

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2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have worked with or donated to several organizations over the past few years and STARelief & Pet Assistance has proven to be one of the best. A group of dedicated volunteers give their time and energy to helping people keep their beloved pets healthy, happy and home rather than surrendering them to shelters (or worse, euthanasia) due to lack funds. STAR's mission helps alleviate the burden of overcrowding in shelters and is an important one, especially since many of the pets they help are elderly and would likely have trouble getting adjusting to shelter life. STAR is small but they do a tremendous amount of great work for the size and funding of the group.

2 bow wow

Volunteer

Rating: 5

It's so rewarding to help an organization that keeps pets out of shelters and in their homes. It's not just the pets STARelief helps, it's also the pet owners. And that is amazing.

Previous Stories
1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This is my third year volunteering for STARelief. The work we are doing is amazing and so rewarding. The smiles on our clients faces when we show up with pet food for them is priceless. I love this organization

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1

Client Served

Rating: 1

I am absolutely 100 percent grateful for the help i have gotten for my 6 (now 4) cats i have chosen to bring inside from outside where i found them. I had two females, 4 males, and a ton of kittens were being cranked out. I just couldn't afford the vet bills for the spay/neuters, and i was going through a rough time because i had just gone back to school, raising 3 kids and 6 cats on loans, so i got help with feeding my kitty's as well. Again, don't get me wrong, i appreciate the help. What i do not appreciate is the insanity i have encountered with the woman who came out to help with the cats. I will not name names, but someone came out to transport the cats to and from and to drop off food. At first everything was great, she said i could get all the cats fixed etc... When she brought one female, and two males to the vet one day, she came back with one. Apparently, the female was pregnant and she gave permission for her to be boarded at the vet, without even asking the owner first. (Me...) One of the males was given away for adoption, and this was afger she asked if i would consider it, and i answered with : "sure, i'll CONSIDER it." I wrote her many emails about the fact that we want that cat back, that i discussed it wit my kids and we want him back, but to no avail. The cat that was boarded? I asked repeatedly when i can get her back, when can we visit....all answered with vague "soon, or when the babies are born..." after a while i just waited, waited for her or the vet to tell me when i can get her. Then, i find an email in my box saying i have abandoned her and her babies and to not accrue any more charges in boarding at the vet (which i never even granted permission to have done!) she and the babies have been give up for adoption. I am LIVID. and sad. She is my pet. I love that cat, my kids love her, and this nonprofit has just swept her away...why? Could it be i was being judged the entire time by this woman who drives a really nice car and lives in a really nice house and had to come to the side of Stamford that no one likes to visit to see me? to help me? who told me point blank that 6 cats are too many? I think so. But it doesn't matter. What matters is this woman stole my cat. I had been in contact with the vet, i had been visiting her just days before i got that email, and i'm told i have abandoned her? And seriously, how do i hold her accountable???I can't figure out who is in charge of the place. Just be careful. Get the help u need but don't believe anything these people say.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Thank you STARelief! Gypsy was unfortunately diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time, and a newly formed tumor of melanoma. I wasn't sure how I was going to try and pay for more vet bills, but between STARelief and an anonymous donor I was able to get my baby dog back into good health. From the start to end of applying for a grant with this organization I was completely calm, and offered assistance and sympathy when I needed it the most. This is a wonderful thing that is hard to come by these days. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your help with gypsy's surgery. She is fully recovered as of today, stitches are out, and she is completely cancer free now. I hope STARelief is around for a long time, as well as the staff.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Because of STARelief we still have our loved dog. We thought her diagnosis was a death sentence because of the cost. She is still with us, 2 years post surgery and I can't thank STARelief enough for giving our family this time with her.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

STARelief is aptly named. The Pet Assistance has enabled me to keep my rescued Great Dane fed and well-cared for. For over 20 years I have rescued Great Danes. Recently I acquired chronic health issues that have prevented me from working. At 71 years of age, I was extremely worried that I would no longer be able to feed two giant breeds. The older one is no longer with us. But the younger female that I rescued over four years ago remains my companion and I do not fret. STARelief rescued me and my rescues! I am ever grateful for the CARE.

4

Client Served

Rating: 5

Star has been nothing short of amazing and a god send for me and my furbabies all six since we just had one pass away. We are struggling financially as life happens as it always does and we found ourselfs in a pinch and star swooped in and help me save my fur babies and care for them and provide for them the way all fur babies should be. we are very greatful for every bit of help we have received and hope one day we can pay it forward! Thank you guys so much love The Hart family-kristina,mitchell,diva,scruffie,mya,freddie,piper,and baby

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

They are honestly the best organization you can donate to. The team really does care about the safety and health of pets. This is my favorite place to volunteer!

1 Robyn24

Client Served

Rating: 5

My daughters service dog needed her teeth cleaned and STARelief stepped in and helped make that happen. She needed 8 teeth pulled and had a couple stitches but is doing great and thanks to STARelief Baby is no longer in pain. She can do what she does best and focus on my daughter and helping her! Thank you everyone who made this happen. Your tireless dedication has helped so many animals including ours! Keep up the great work and know you are appreciated!!

3 ezawy

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Honored to be able to volunteer and help at STARelief! From STARelief's exceptionally dedicated Executive Director, Heather, to their programs that tackle the 3 main reasons owners surrender their pets at animal shelters, to their Pets for Military Vets Program for veterans, this is an organization that makes an impact in the Fairfield County community and beyond. The mission, the care and assistance that STARelief provides is unmatched and I'm grateful to have a small part in helping them make a difference. -Lizzy

2 Julia55

Client Served

Rating: 5

Without financial help from charities like this one I could never have gotten my Service Dog the lifesaving surgery she needed. I can't thank STARelief and Pet Assistance enough for their help. Pheona is still with me and still making my life worth living. I am so grateful, we owe her life to them.

2 Kerri8

Donor

Rating: 5

I have supported and help STARelief for a many number of years. Heather, Pam and the team do wonderful things in the community and help when hope seems lost for pet parents having money issues. They have provided food to pet parents who are having issues affording their own, they step up and help with medical payments when pet parents seem like hope is lost due to a bad injury to a beloved family member, their pet. I can't thank them enough or praise them enough for all they do in the community! I will continue to support this organization in all ways I can because I believe in their mission!

1 Daniela7

Donor

Rating: 5

AN AMAZING ORGANIZATION IN OUR COMMUNITY!!! CAN'T SAY ENOUGH GREAT THINGS ABOUT ALL THEY DO!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Heather and STARelief helped me in my time of need. I was having trouble paying for dog food and they were there to help me. Delivered two bags of food to my door. Ever grateful to this wonderful group.

5 Katy15

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

STARelief saved Teddy's life!!! I have worked in the veterinary field for 30 years. I am a veterinary hospital manager. I have often run into clients that want to do what is best for their pet but are unable to cover the entire cost of their care. This week a young couple with a toddler came in with an injured beloved kitty. A fractured arm was more than they could afford right now, the father was losing work hours soon. They responsibly discussed their financial situation before coming in and at every point of their pet's visit. When I was able to call STARelief and get a donation for them it gave Teddy a shot at life. They committed to the other half of his care and now Teddy is home in recovery. STARelief is thorough, prompt, caring and responsible. It gave me an opportunity to save a kitty's life and make a family happy. THANK YOU STARELIEF!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have had the opportunity to volunteer my services for STARelief and Pet Assistance special events throughout the year. You could not have a more endearing organization for me to spend my time with. Helping animals is such an important part of my life and passion. Volunteering at STARelief comes naturally and brings me such joy!

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

Helping at STAR Animal relief is the most rewarding part of my life.Animals and People in need have been helped in deep meaningful ways.Helping a person make their pet well or keeping them home and not giving them up is at times a life changing event for a person.The staff and volunteers as good dedicated people.I am proud and pleased to be able to help. What we need most to deliver the help and services is simple ,donations and volunteers.Please help.Thank you.Peter Suchy

Board Member

Rating: 5

I have been a Board Member for STARelief since it first started, and I am truly amazed every day by the dedicated pet owners that reach out to us for assistance. It takes courage to ask for help, and I commend all of the people who have set aside their own pride in order to be able to keep their pet at home. I feel honored that I am able to be a part of an organization that helps both humans and their pets. Animals are such an amazing part of our lives, and it is so wonderful when pets get to be happy, healthy and home with their humans!

Previous Stories
1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been volunteering with STARelief and Pet Assistance since it started, and I continue to be proud of the amazing work being done for pets and their owners. It truly is an honor to work with such dedicated volunteers who donate their time to keep pets happy, healthy and home! We pride ourselves in providing as much support and assistance as possible, to be sure that both the animals, and the humans that love them, are cared for! The community support that we have received has been amazing!

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1

Donor

Rating: 4

I have both volunteered and donated to STARelief. The mission of helping to keep pets in their homes really fills a need. In tough economic times there is help for those who find it difficult providing for their pet. The STARelief Pet Pantry fills this gap. Also the work that STAR does in helping with veterinary costs is a welcome resource for needy pet owners.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been volunteering with this organization almost from the beginning. I am so proud to be part of something that does so much for the animal community. Every single person that is part of STARelief is so dedicated to helping these animals, and with each success story I feel more grateful that this organization is here for the animals and their people.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have volunteered for several nonprofit organizations and I've finally found one where I plan on staying. With a fantastic mission and strong future goals set in place, I know that this organization will grow in their success in helping families and their pets. Amazing volunteers and already a very rewarding opportunity for me!

2

Board Member

Rating: 5

I serve on the board of several non-profit organizations but none has been as rewarding as that of STARelief. Seeing the good work that STAR does to meet the needs of people who, in most cases, would have to surrender their pets to a shelter (or worse!), it fills a tremendous need. The volunteers are a totally dedicated group of individuals who go above and beyond when helping serve clients. STAR fills a niche currently not serviced by most shelters....keeping animals in the homes.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I recently had a medical emergency with my Shar-Pei, Sasha. She had a tooth broken in an attack by a deer and it eventually became infected and needed extraction, but every vet I spoke with quoted me a price impossible to pay - starting at $800 for a simple extraction up to $3,000 for a root canal. I was devastated at the thought of watching her suffer because of lack of money and began looking for help.

There are many veterinary assistance organizations but most merely help you set up and manage your own online fundraiser. What we needed was a program with emergency funds available immediately for Sasha's painful tooth.

From the first contact onward STARelief handled my problem with the greatest care and professionalism. They were courteous, immediately responsive by phone and email, and expedited my application for funds during a holiday weekend.

They contacted my vet to verify the estimate and even notified me of my award on a holiday date itself. These volunteers went the extra mile to help a suffering dog, and without them I honestly don't know what we would have done.

The very next day Sasha was scheduled for surgery and the broken, painful tooth was successfully extracted. It was even worse than originally thought - splintered deep below the gumline - and a root canal would have been out of the question. Even the extraction was complex.

Sasha was sent home finally comfortable and pain-free with a neatly stitched gum over a missing canine tooth site. Her eating or chewing would not be affected at all. The difference in her behavior was immediate - she was wagging her tail, happy and full of energy again. She must have been completely miserable from the tooth.

I can't thank or praise STARelief highly enough for the wonderful resolution, service, and emergency award they provided Sasha - and over a holiday weekend to boot. Thank you for all you do, STARelief!

Melody1000

Client Served

Rating: 5

I live with my adult daughter with a disability and my Bichon Frise. I've had him since he was a puppy. Recently, he has been limping and had trouble going up stairs.

STARelief was such a big help! They covered medical expenses so he could get x-rays and medicine.

I appreciate their help so much!

1 felixlisa

Client Served

Rating: 5

StarRelief has helped us enormously these past six months to help get food and medical help for our beloved pets. Without their help we would not know how we would have provided for our three cats Simon, Bitsy, Oreo and our dog Max. Thank You So Much Star for the relief you have given us in out difficult time. Felix & Lisa and our four legged family.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Star has helped me out on two occasions. The first was my 19 year old cat who was terminally ill and then a few months later with my new kitten. From the very beginning and to this day that have always been extremely considerate, thoughtful and generous. They found a tiger tabby for me who is incredible. She's type A personality and super smart/witty and always amusing. I'm forever grateful to everyone at STARelief. Thank you!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been a volunteer for STARelief for over a year and feel honored to be a part of this devoted, hardworking organization. This group of volunteers work hard at their everyday jobs, then spend most of their free time helping with STAR. It's incredible to see how much we've grown in one year, and thrilling to think about where we'll be in the future. I've personally seen STAR touch the lives of many pet owners, and look forward to helping loving pet owners and happy pets. Congratulations STAR for keeping pets Happy, Healthy and Home!!!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

After my boxer was bitten by a copperhead during a run in the woods, I reached out to STARelief for assistance with his medical bills. I was fresh out of graduate school and had recently moved for a new job and was therefore BROKE and already stressed. The vet was able to save my pup, and STARelief was able to help us with the bills. Their staff was friendly and understanding, and they were able to help us QUICKLY, which was incredible. I would recommend this organization to anyone!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5


STARelief was able to help me get my beautiful puppy spayed at a reasonable cost to my family. They responded quickly to my needs, requests, and questions. They were extremely helpful and friendly.

1 Rocky C.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

What attracted me to STAR is its mission: keeping pets happy, healthy and HOME. There are so many wonderful organizations devoted to helping homeless pets find forever homes and that is also a wonderful purpose. But the unique aspect of STAR is that people who are facing financial or personal trouble are often put in the terrible position of giving up their pets who, let's face it, are family members, because they simply lack the resources to keep them at home. What is a more worthy purpose than helping someone already facing difficult financial circumstances than to keep their beloved companions by their side? The dedication of the STAR volunteers is also very impressive. I am very happy that I have had the opportunity to meet the organizers and other volunteers and give back to our community through these efforts.

1 ann.ticali

Client Served

Rating: 4

My dog is having surgery done on may 9 2013 and thanks to Stamford they where able to give a $200 donation. without there help this surgery would not be possible.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

i feel that any organization that puts time and effort into helping animals should be noted. especially STAR. the effort that heather and all the volunteers put towards helping people feed, and keep pets healthy is tireless. time and time again, they are out delivering food to a pet owner in bridgeport, picking up a dog and bringing it to the vet for a neuter, at the Pet Food Pantry to collect donated pet food. this all in a days work. bottom line, its all about the animals and these folks realize this!!!

Previous Stories

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Over the past year I have seen the work that STARescue has done. 28 pets have been adopted from their Pet Rescue Adoption Days. I've seen a number of bags of food given to needy people to help feed their pets. I've met many of their volunteers at their Pet Food Pantry. They are very caring and understanding about the needs of the pets in our communities. The animals in Connecticut need an organization as dedicated as STARescue is.

1 Dena G.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I would like to thank Stamford Animal Rescue, especially Heather for a unbelievably quick response to my request for help with Nikita's care that she so desperately needed right away. Just three weeks ago she was properly diagnosed and started treatment two weeks ago for her diabetes. In this short time she has gained back her strength, she is able to walk again and got the sparkle back in her eyes. I can't thank you and Stamford Animal Rescue enough for your support through this very difficult time. I will keep you updated on her progress.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

This review is in direct response to the change in my life that STAR (Stamford Animal Rescue) has been able to provide in my personal life. I reside in my home alongside my younger brother who has Moderate-Severe Autism and Neurological disorders. Throught his childhood, my brother has led a somewhat difficult life with the inability to interact well with others his age and lacked the social ability to reach out to any individual in his life! This changed two years ago in a drastic manner! A family friend of ours was the owner of three beautiful kitties! One was Blade, the other Princess, and the third, in particular, was especially attached to my brother, his name is TUX! Tux is a long-haired, black/white tuxedo Manx kitty! He does not have a tail. This fascinated my little brother to the extreme!! He was so intrigued by how soft and fluffy appeared, and most of all he was intrigued by his lack of a tail, which is a genetic trait of his breed. Tux was immediately attached to my brother. Our family friend decided that Tux would be better off in my home alongside my brother. It was settled, Tux moved in with cat carrier and litter box. He decided to make my brother's room, his own. Unfortunately, until this point in my life, I have had numerous expenses that were out of pocked, therefore, caring for Tux was somewhat of a burden! After a year I found out about STAR and through their Pet Food Pantry, I realized that Tux will not be a burden on our family. The kitty food and litter provided to us by STAR has truly allowed me to comfortably keep Tux in our family, because I honestly can not see a life without him in our household.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

The only way to describe the Stamford Animal Rescue is that they are sent from heaven! We were in incredible distress over the health of our beloved dog. We spent every penny we had on his care and had to make the awful decision to cut his care short due due to finances and brought him home against doctors orders. We were searching for help and found the Stamford Animal Rescue's link on the Humane Society's website. We wrote an email describing our situation and we got an almost immediate response. The compassion that we felt from someone we didn't yet know was just astounding. Our dog is receiving excellent care and is well on his way to a full recovery. We are eternally grateful to the Stamford Animal Rescue - they are true angels!

1 Staci3

Client Served

Rating: 5

Late last year we found a tumor on our cat Feona. She needed to be seen immediately. I contacted Stamford Animal Rescue to ask for help. Thanks to Heather and the wonderful people there, Feona was able to be seen immediately. Unfortunately, it was cancer and was too advanced for treatment. I was only able to find this out and decide on a course of action because of the generosity of the people at STAR. Since finding out Feona and I have had 2 months of quality time together. We were able to get pain medicine too. They felt like a friend at one of the worst times of my life. Thank you to everyone there....I wish there were more people like this in the world. It would be a better place.
Sincerely, Staci

1 Pat_26

Client Served

Rating: 5

I just want to say thanks again for helping my little chihuahua Charlie with the surgical removal of his eye. This is the best organization I has ever dealt with and the fast service was greatly appreciated. Thanks for your help from Pat and Charlie.

Client Served

Rating: 5

STAR has been helping me feed my cat and dog for 3 months now. I go to school in Norwalk at NCC and I live in Bethel. Each month I meet my friend in Norwalk at the school and she takes me to STAR - if not for them I would have to choose between feeding myself and feeding our pets. Thanks to STAR for helping us make sure our pets are fed.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I found Stamford Animal Rescue on Craigslist--what a fortunate find! I have 2 cats and I am feeding a stray. I am partially unemployed and it's been challenging for me all around. Knowing I don't have to worry about not having food for my pets is such a blessing! Melissa and the people at STAR are wonderful--they don't make the process difficult or embarrassing to obtain food. My cats really love the high quality food and I've shared this information with friends who were also in need. Thank you so much for all that you do! Denise

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Stamford Animal Rescue (STAR) was brought to my attention through a friend of mine who is an animal lover. I have two full grown cats, a juvenile kitten and a stray outside whom I feed. As you know kittens can eat you out of house and home and my two older cats (a voluptuous 13.5 lbs and a muscular mush 16 lbs) can eat and eat and eat. All my cats and stray are rescues. I can't see my life without them. When I approached STAR, I was hesitant, embarrassed that I needed help and grateful. When I entered the facility, the people were warm, giving and respectful. The food is greatly appreciated and needed. Thank goodness for people like STAR who can have us live with our precious furry family and give them the food they need with respect. Three cheers and a 5/5 star rating for STAR!!!

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

STAR Stamford Animal Rescue is an amazing organization. They helped my 2 dogs get the vet care and updated shots they needed last month. I was looking for some help to get the needed visit for them couldn't afford the high vet costs of taking both dogs in. Sickness struck our house last year so we really appreciated the help from STAR. Heather is amazing and contacted me right away and arranged everything for us. i hope one day to be able to give back so another family will get help in their time of need. I hope that STAResue will be able to continue their mission for a very long time

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am so proud to be a volunteer with STAR rescue. It is so amazing that an organization like this exits where no animal can be turned away that needs help. Everyone that I work with is so dedicated and caring. Its such a great feeling to know that STAR is making such a positive difference in so many animals and their families lives.

Board Member

Rating: 5

STARescue is providing a service unlike any other in the area; keeping pets out of shelters and at home with their caretakers, where they belong! By providing financial assistance and free food In less than a year we have kept dozens upon dozens of families together. I am proud to be associated with such a nobel cause

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am so proud to be part of this organization. Animal abandonment is a REAL problem in this country and it leads to overcrowding at shelters and to senseless killing of otherwise healthy animals. STAR's mission is to end animal abandonment. They work with many local rescue organizations and shelters. It is a joint effort. It can be done. Everywhere you look, you read something about animal adoption, people rescuing animals at high kill shelters, and people giving animals a loving home. It is amazing. Unfortunately, there are a lot of horrible stories too, BUT the word is getting out there - we are their VOICE and we need to do as much as we can to give them the love they give us so easily. I am so, so impressed of what STAR has accomplished already, in just less than a year of operations. I know with the public support, this organization will continue to do GREAT things for our pets.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Great organization!! Very concerned and caring! Helped me take in a cat that I wanted to adopt, but could not afford all of the medical costs!! Very, very impressed with the care and concern!!!! Thank you soo much!!!!

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I have known about Stamford Animal Rescue and the good work they do for sometime now, originally via friends who have experienced it firsthand. I've met Heather, STAR's founder, on more than one occasion and can vouch for her dedication. Even though I did not get my rescue pooch from STAR (they're a newer organization), I recently attended a fund-raiser for them. There can never be too many organizations caring for animals in need of human kindness. STAR is a genuine star in the galaxy of animal rescue organizations.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have had the privilege and honor to work directly with this organization as a their dog trainer & behaviorist. They go above and beyond their call of duty helping those in need on so many levels. Whether it be a senior citizen who can't feed her faithful canine companion because she had to choose between getting the medication she needs or feed her beloved dog, or the young mother struggling to make ends meet after being laid off. STAR is their to provide food for their precious pet if needed through their food pantry, making sure that animal gets to the Vet to get the medical attention it needs, it could be sending out a professional dog trainer like myself to help the family struggling with behavior problems with their favorite canine they can't bare to give up....the list goes on and on. STAR IS THERE TO HELP. They work hard to keep that furry companion in its home as well as striving hard to help that homeless animal find a loving home. They are truly a gift and an asset to the community by touching so many lives both human and animals. Please spread the word about this amazing organization!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Stamford Animal Rescue has been amazing! I was in a complete panic when my mother's dog needed an urgent foster home. I found Stars on the internet and am so very thankful. Heather emailed me back right away and I spoke with her the next day. Within a couple of days Peaches was in her new foster home. Heather and the volunteers at Stars are amazing, they were all very friendly, compassionate and understanding. I felt 100% confident that Peaches was in great hands. Peaches also got some medical care that she would not have otherwise been able to get. Peaches is happy and healthy and I can sleep well at night knowing she is in great hands and not in a shelter. I can't express how grateful I am to have found Stars, they are a great organization and I cannot say enough good things about them.