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Starting Over Animal Refuge Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animals, Wildlife Preservation & Protection

Mission: Canine rescue, rehabilitation and adoptions. all adults are saved from high kill shelters off of Deathrow. Our puppies come from all over but mostly stem from our very popular S.N.A.P program that offers a free spay on momma dogs that belong to the general public when they surrender their entire litter to our program. This gives puppies a chance to get the RIGHT start in life and be able to protect them for life. Helping decrease the numbers of unwanted pets in the US

Target demographics: Save hundreds of unwanted animals a year from death row , Craigslist and off some of the cruelest streets in the United States

Direct beneficiaries per year: Krewe de rescue , Dallas RRR (our dowdy ferry rd mission) we have worked with South Bark on rehabbing aggressive dogs and several shelters across the southern states

Geographic areas served: Ocala FL on a serene 10 acre ranch open to healing the broken and changing lives

Programs: Adoptions , rehabilitation and our famous S.N.A.P program that provides free spaying and neutering for owners who turn over their entire litter of puppies to help stop the cycle of unwanted animals and protect those puppies for life with lifelong contracts and monitored forever homes

Community Stories

341 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

13 Kristy26

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Melissa reached out to me about a month ago she offered me a service dog fo she offered me a service dog free of charge. My daughter which is 9 years old was being bullied in school everyda my daughter which is 9 years old was being bullied in school every day and was coming home crying and sad and didn't understand why she was being bullied. Melissa message me and said that she had a service dog that she would like me to take for my daughter to help her get through the emotional state she was in. Just her reaching out I'm in a lot to the family. Right now we are unable to have another dog so we were not able to accept her offer. But I would like to thank her for reaching out in a time of need. I have seen her rescue hundreds of puppies and get them adopted out adult dogs also. She goes above and beyond for her rescue.

Client Served

Rating: 5

We are so happy we were able to add a new member to our family. The little puppy we took home is a joy to behold. Just in time for Christmas!
Melissa answered all of my questions through text, because I live almost five hours away from Ocala, I wanted to make sure we were getting a healthy dog, that won't grow too, too big and doesn't shed. She told me how to hold onto the puppy until I got there, through a deposit in Paypal. Everything worked out perfectly and we feel so blessed!!

Kathleen4380

Client Served

Rating: 5

A got a puppy from Starting Over Animal Refuge in July. Our puppy was a dream to train as Melissa assured me she would be. She goes with me everywhere and is so well behaved. She’s being trained to be a service dog. We are so grateful to Melissa. Not only was she patient and understanding of our specific needs, she was a wealth of information. The adoption process was smooth and quick despite being in the middle of a pandemic.

I will be going back to get a companion for our little girl.

Previous Stories
1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Melissa picked the BEST and smartest puppy for me. My puppy, Shy, slept through the night and hasn't had an accident in the house yet. She's still super quiet, but has become a very playful puppy today. I can't thank Melissa enough. She is thoroughly knowledgeable, thoughtful and has made herself available for all my questions. I couldn't have asked for better service.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

The whole process was super simple. I was able to drive there and adopt Zuko with no hassle! Made my Christmas!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Was looking for a puppy for over 2 months and every other organization was super tough to get a hold of until I found Starting Over Animal Refuge the answered within a hour and was able to find our fur baby! The best part was not having to race there to make sure she wasn’t gone! Definitely an easy process and will definitely go to them to add another addition to our family later down the road.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Got an amazing puppy from here I highly recommend for anyone in search of a pet

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

Hi I just got this little cutie from them was such great experience after trying other places and getting ghosted and no response I found them and was about to get right throw to someone and set up a meet up the owner was super friendly and Patient as I look at all the amazing puppy's they had till was able to find the cutest Pit bull & catahoula mix that I couldn't leave without I would highly recommend them to anyone looking for a puppy or dog.

2 Breanna R.1

Client Served

Rating: 5

This nonprofit was amazing for helping me find my sweet baby puppy! They had beautiful land and really tended to all of the animals there. The owner was very attentive and answered all of my questions quickly, and I love how they make sure to hold the puppy you want instead of having to race for any puppy. I would definitely get any more pets here!

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

We were able to adopt 2 beautiful girls from Melissa she was very busy but took time to wash them up and get the harnesses on them. Thank you!! My daughters are soo in love with them as are we. They're vet visits have been great pups are healthy and happy.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

Melissa was very helpful with finding my first companion. Her responses on the phone were quick and professional. You can clearly see her mission at Starting Over Animal Refuge Inc, its to truly save these animals and give them an amazing life they deserve. Get in contact with her and save a pup today.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Melissa was so kind and considerate when helping us find the perfect pup for us. She has a beautiful rescue and cares for her animals well being. We had a very pleasant experience with her and would recommend her to anyone in search of their forever pup

2 Olivia L.4

Client Served

Rating: 5

My partner and I had been looking for a dog for quite sometime but had run into many obstacles with other rescues. We reached out to Melissa for a border collie puppy, who had already been adopted, but luckily there were more in the litter, so we ended up taking home one of the boys, which we named Haku. He was 8 weeks old, and is now 4 months old! He has already gained 10lbs, is so sweet- has no issues with people or other animals, and super healthy. He had some parasites in his feces but with puppies that is to be expected. A free neuter was offered to us through the rescue which we took advantage of. The entire process of adoption was completed within the day, and we couldn't be happier with him! A huge thank you to Melissa for everything she does and providing us with the sweetest baby in the world.

1 Hilary L.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

WARNING... stay away from this so called refuge. The owner M. simply sells sick animals. There's no proof any animals have been vaccinated or dewormed. The puppy a adopted from her over 2 months ago is till sick with every worm & giardia!! $500 for a sick puppy is criminal. The property is unkept & her house is filthy. There were 2 puppies I was interested in, when I asked about them she told me one actually has a skin infection. After seeing the place for myself I can understand how & why!! She basically flips puppies...buys them off of craigslist and turns a profit by charging too much and because of the conditions they are kept in are infected with every parasite known to man. She should be locked up & the place should be shut down. My puppy I got from her is till in & out of the vet's office. Costing me hundreds of extra money all because of her & the way she keeps them. I could have saved my money and bought from a breeder.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

We adopted a puppy from this rescue May 2021. The whole adoption process was easy and it's an amazing rescue. Melissa is amazing and cares so much about the animals that she helps. Our puppy, Truffle, is so amazing. Lovable. Playful. Our four boys love Truffle so much and he's completed our family. Also training has been the easiest puppy training we've ever done. He's 6mths old and fully potty trained. He listens to sit, stay, and come. Truffle just has the best personality. We highly recommend if your looking for a puppy definitely adopt from Melissa, Starting Over Animal Rescue.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

We felt really good about adopting our puppy from Melissa, we are very grateful for the work she does with the puppies and the adoption process was nice and smooth. I highly recommend considering Starting Over Animal Refuge if you're looking to adopt a sweet puppy.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

My husband and I adopted Gretchen (now Raven) today. All the puppies looked clean and healthy. We are grateful for her and the adoption process was great.

Shawn R.3

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

Visited today. The horses are beautiful with nice Statures. So many good looking and healthy looking pups and dogs. Highly recommend.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I'm very happy and love very much the pup I adopted! She's very happy and in good health. Thanks for the work rescuing her and help provided. I'm grateful.

2 Louann P.

Client Served

Rating: 5

We adopted our puppy from Melissa 4 weeks ago! Melissa is so knowledgeable and passionate about rescuing animals! We love our puppy and highly recommend her rescue!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

We got Skylar in 2018. She was an adorable puppy and is a gorgeous dog! SOAR staff members were very nice. We sat in the yard to play with the puppies while we decided which one should be ours. Skylar is healthy and has no medical problems. She is sweet and gentle.

5 Aussieme

Board Member

Rating: 5

To the person that had a hard time getting a hold of me here at starting over animal refuge inc. and in regards to the past 3 weeks of anyone who has possibly had issues contacting us or if any adopters had any issues (which we typically rarely have problems . 1 out of 100 pups will come back with complications it’s part of rescue ) but I wanted to apologize for any lack there of . I tragically lost my fiancée on Mother’s Day . Our family has been grieving and it’s taken me everything within to move forward. I had to keep going and pushing immediately but I was walking in a fog and I honestly just had nothing in me to be at my best or to be of much services to the public or even to the animals . I depended on others to get us through this / I just wasn’t available . I’m still working on putting my best foot forward but I’ve had to handle everything in laying half of my heart to rest. I wouldn’t wish this pain and loss on my worst enemy. So if anyone has fallen in the cracks I’m sorry . I almost followed him and it’s YOU clients and my adopters that have pushed me to stay. Knowing these animals need me . Knowing you need me because maybe you’re going through loss or mental health and you need a puppy to raise to be your lifeline . So let’s stick together and While I’m sorry if you feel like I’ve failed you at any point . I am only human and I do hope you all see there’s less the. A dozen bad reviews amongst hundreds of great ones . These animals need you just as much as they need me . Let’s stop failing each other and keep trying to make a better change in the world . Stay kind and remember to hug your loved ones everyday and let them know they’re loved .

Previous Stories
1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Do you want to see first hand where the puppy or dog is you adopt is kept? Instead of meeting at a store front or a pet store . Do you want to have a large selection of happy healthy puppies to choose from? If so this is the rescue to choose . This rescue ranch is beautiful! When you first pull up you’re left confused . It’s like a pot of gold in the middle of a neighborhood. You’ll be walked through a windy path dressed in trees and vines that opens up to what looks like heaven to animals . Beautiful fat shiny horses and friendly well behaved dogs that will meet and greet you with wagging tails . They don’t have a lot of adults because they focus on pediatric rescue and the puppies are kept in very well kept and clean kennels with nice designed floors . There’s room for improvement as everything else but the love time and amount of costs this rescue puts into the animals can be seen at first sight . They’ll take their time with you. Let you visit . Try to match you with the right puppy for your home . Don’t go expecting to get the puppy you seen online . So many more are there that are never listed so just let the puppy do the choosing and let them guide you . It’s the best experience! There’s a few negative reviews but treat them with respect and they will do the same . Lots of knowledge . Proper licensing . Good luck adopting . You know where your Adoption fee goes to when you visit .

1 Nicole A.7

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

I texted the main number asking if I could put a deposit down and meet with a pup I fell in love with online. They said yes but didn’t reply much after that. I followed up the next day to try and give them my information, etc., and they didn’t answer the phone, so I texted again. They beat around the bush AGAIN telling me the pup was available and I could meet him this weekend if they were home. They told me they’d “let me know” when I could come to the ranch for 3 days in a row and eventually ghosted me. Very unprofessional, disappointing and sketchy. Is this even a legit place? After reading the reviews, I regret even wasting my time reaching out for an adorable puppy.

3 Danielle A.2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I highly recommend this rescue organization. Melissa was so awesome from beginning to end. The whole adoption process was very quick and easy. I saw our puppy online on Friday night and reached out we drove to Ocala on Saturday morning from Oviedo to meet and adopt our little Chewie aka Wyatt. He is the sweetest puppy. You can tell she really cares about all of her animals. She has some beautiful horses as well. In the future I will definitely go through Melissa to find our next puppy.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

Starting over pet rescue and Melissa was very nice and sent us additions pictures of the pups she had available and we fell in love with Luna. Picked her up, and she’s the best dog! The experience was nice and Melissa made it super easy and was very efficient. I keep an eye out for a sister or brother and hopefully can return back some day soon!

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

Back in February of 2021, my partner and I got scammed by some heartless human over the purchase of a puppy. Having been through this, we were very cautious about what information that we gave to people, and we were up front in that we had a lot of questions. Melissa directed us straight here, where I was delighted to find all the glowing reviews of her work. She was very straight forward in that we should do our own research. This was the first thing that attracted me to her, she was very forthcoming and honest about her operation. And the reviews don't lie! Her ranch is vast, and she has some great facilities for horses, dogs, and every animal she rescues.
When it came to adopting our puppy, she informed us of how quickly the pups move, and we acted quickly - there was no high pressure sales situation, she was just honest about how quickly they moved. And we moved!
We had been filming a commercial in Orlando the day we were supposed to pick her up, and she was very flexible with the timing in which we could pick her up; we made sure to maintain a constant communication with her, and she was very accommodating the entire time.
When we arrived, we were greeted by her assistant, who went over some of the business things about our pup, such as the dewormer treatment, her updates on her vaccines, expectations of the adopters (us), and general recommendations for food and training. Then we met with Melissa. She is a wonderful human, devoting her life to rescuing all these animals. She took us to meet our pup's mother and two siblings, and we knew at once that we had picked the right one.
I would 10/10 recommend rescuing from and/or donating to Starting Over Animal Rescue, as Melissa and her work has made the biggest difference in my life this past year or so.
We are so happy to have met her and her Ranch, and we are so happy to have welcomed Luna into our lives. Many many loving thanks to Melissa and her wonderful team!

Andrew, Eric, and Luna

1 Billi O.

Client Served

Rating: 4

My sister and I had just bought a house, so we could finally get a dog. We'd been looking on line and signed up with Find a Pet. We both received a notification for "Charlie," and started texting each other at the same time that he was our dog. We contacted SOAR and made arrangements to pick him up a couple days later. Now called Mac, he's been a great addition to our family. Other than some delay in responsive communication, SOAR is doing a great service for rescue animals.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

My family and I are so so grateful for Melissa and our new puppy, Remington! We had such a great experience meeting him and Melissa and the process was very smooth! We love our little boy and recommend her to anyone looking for dogs!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Melissa and her staff spent a lot of time throughout the adoption process working with my husband and I and answered our questions regarding the puppies she had. We are very greatful to her and are thrilled with the newest four legged additon to our family.

1 Sandra D.4

Client Served

Rating: 5

Forever friend found!
My husband has been looking for weeks for a dog that can become my service dog one day.
I have Multiple Sclerosis and keeping my balance is somewhat challenging.
Melissa had a black and white pyradoodle puppy. He is adorable!!
The whole experience was great.
Starting over ranch is on a big property.
She has watch dogs outside that were excited to see visitors.
Our new puppy is healthy and happy.

1 Tim D.5

Client Served

Rating: 5

I originally called Starting Over to ask about a certain dog. After speaking with Melissa she believed that dog would not be a good fit for our family, but then recommended another puppy. We went out to the ranch and met our new baby. All the dogs looked happy and healthy. Melissa gave us lots of info about our pup and and some meds and instructions that we still needed to give. We felt great about everything and welcomed "Berlin" as the newest member of our family. On the drive home we were able to make an appt at the vet to get him checked out immediately. The vet said we have a very happy and healthy new pup. She also agreed with all the vaccinations and meds up to this point and said we don't need to come back for 3 weeks when his next shots are due. We are very happy with the whole process, Melissa, Starting Over and our cute little puppy.

1 Shaila D.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Melissa is AMAZING. I reached out to her about a puppy on the website and she responded so quickly letting me know that puppy wasn’t available but guided me to the perfect puppy for my boyfriend and I since we will be training our pup as an ESA and therapy dog. She was very easy to work with and when I got confused on the different options to adopt she made time to talk to me on the phone and explain everything. She gave me the option to pay by paypal or cash and even gave me clear PayPal instructions so I didn’t submit my deposit incorrectly. Once we got to the ranch I could tell all of her animals were well taken care of, happy and healthy! She walked us back to the ranch, got our pup and made sure to check it was our pup before returning instead of just picking one up. She chipped him, explained his dewormer, and everything it treated for. She also explained giardia and why it can happen. She assured us she hasn’t seen any evidence of it but still gave us instructions on how to help it and what to do and wrote it on our contract so we wouldn’t forget. Before we left she took a picture and told us to contact her if we have any questions. We are so excited to start our next chapter with this great pup! And I feel confident in returning back to Starting Over Ranch when decided to expand our pack!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

We were so grateful to find our boys. Melissa was awesome and answered us right away and was able to find us a beautiful pair of puppies that we love so much. For individuals who don’t understand how rescues work. It is common for puppies to have parasites and/ or to run into issues at times when we first get them. They are RESCUES and Melissa works hard to find these puppies good homes. So I was grateful for the opportunity my family had to take in these pups and support the cause! Thanks Melissa and SOAR!!!

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

We are so in luv with our pup Koda who we adopted with the name as Brindle. I would highly recommend this ranch for your next pet. They are friendly and super caring with the animals. Best place to find a rescue pet❤️

2 Genevieve Faith L.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

After adopting a Lab mix puppy, which was closer to 4 weeks rather than the 7.5 weeks stated and a super $500 dodgy, only cash payment. The puppy was pooping everywhere. He had a giardia parasite. Phoned her. She told me to bring the pup back because she saw that all the pups from the same batch were pooping the same ‘parasite’ poop. She then told me she would monitor my pup and give him meds for 24-48 hrs and I could then pick him up. Since we had named him already and my boys were completely attached, we tried to phone her the next day, nothing. She was out of town. There was NOBODY watching our pup. When trying to reach her, there was no answer. She left our pup with the other pups outside in a cage for 16hrs in 40 degree temps. Eventually with threat of law enforcement was able to get our pup back. Multiple vet checks later... This woman is giving puppies up for adoption at 5 weeks to get a quick $500. Puppies need to be weaned and be with their mother until 7/8 weeks to establish good behavior. Be warned. The photo shows my 10 year old holding him at ‘what should be 8 weeks old’... our pup then was unable to fully see. He was clearly much younger. They also told me to feed him dog food from a nearby feed store. It is all corn and no protein. When I mentioned ‘Blue Baby’, they said that it would cause cancer. Blue Babies first 5 ingredients are all meat products. Our pup is now 5 months old and 40lbs

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

We adopted Pookie who is now Mookie 2 days ago. Every one was so kind, offering advice, food, tips, to help make Mookie’s transition smooth and easy. We are head over heels in love with this 2lb dynamo. He is smart healthy and an overall love.

Thank you Melissa and Company once again for vetting and allowing us to give Mookie a place in our lives

2 Alyson Nina M.

Donor

Rating: 5

We just adopted a 8 week old puppy. He is sweet and loving and healthy. We are calling him Hopper after our favorite sheriff on Stranger Things. We had a wonderful experience with Starting Over Ranch. All the animals here are beautiful and clearly well cared for. I also really appreciate everything they are doing to help reduce the number of unwanted puppies out there! Thank you again!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

We had a wonderful experience, our sweet baby was very well taken care of. So fortunate to have people like Melissa and her wonderful Sanctuary for these poor pups that have really nowhere else to go. She finds good homes for these guys and gives them a second chance at having a loving home. Thank you so much for our little girl♥️

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I want to confirm what I said in my first review about going back to Starting Over!
When I wanted to add another dog to our family a few years later, a 1y/o female caught my eye on Starting Over’s page.
Knowing our family, Melissa ok’d a visit. She was a very special girl, and had been through a lot in her young life. We fell in love and Ava returned that love in full!
She has been the perfect companion most especially to my youngest son!
But every visitor to our home wants to take her home with them!!
I trust Melissa to give the needs of the animals in her care the highest priority! And I trust her ability to place them in the best homes.
To this day, if there were ever a reason I needed to ask for help with them, I know I can reach out and Melissa would be there.
I know she runs Starting Over with her heart and soul and it shows in the pets she adopts out!!

Previous Stories
1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Starting Over united my family with our beloved pup.The decision was emotionally challenging since we had lost our adored 14 yr old akita 6 months prior. We knew we coul never replace him, yet he left a huge void that could only be filled with long walks, warm snuggles and a reassuring presence. We were so gently guided guided by Melissa, who noticed right away our daughter has Down Syndrome. We also have 5 sons. Still Melissa lifted her up, brought her to where the appropriate pups were and said "she and they will decide who belings with you". After a while, one sweet girl stood out as being specially attentive and careful with her. We fell in love as a family and took her home. I'm continually amazed at how perfect she fits! Friends who came over noticed immediately, wondering how I'd trained her so fast. They said it was like she'd always been with us. So true. We love her and she loves us.
I would head straight back to Melissa if we decided to adopt again! I feel I can truly trust her judgment, being in the best intrest of animals, families, and organization. She takes amazing care of all animals entrusted to her... that's a CALLING not a job. That kind of care prepares the heart of a dog to be ready to find a family, no fear or worry, just open and ready to recieve love!

6

General Member of the Public

Rating: 2

This is not a rescue, they do the bare minimum if that for their puppies and many times adopt them out after only having them a few days.
Owner gets defensive when asked questions and then accuses anyone who doesn't agree or praise her of being a hater and being jealous of her.
I wouldn't trust this organization at all.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Awesome rescue. Takes care of every single animal as her own, saves the broken and unwanted. HONEST!!! Would trust her with my own, don’t miss out on her amazing rescue with lifetime knowledge. She stays true to her animals, and truly cares where they go. Not many rescues will actually take their adopted dogs that don’t work out back but she always does. Melissa is the kindest soul I know.

Client Served

Rating: 5

We adopted our sweet girl from Starting Over and it was the best decision ever! Melissa and her staff were extremely easy to work with and responded to my inquiry very quickly! When I went to pick up our girl (Taylor) I was pleasantly greeted and I was able to see that all the animals at this rescue were well taken care of. The adoption process went very smoothly. I highly recommend Starting Over Animal Refuge to find your next fur baby:)

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This ranch is amazing! We picked up our new pup Alyeska yesterday and fell in love with her! She’s been an amazing fit flr my family!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Thank you for bringing Fenway into our lives.

Fenway is an 8 week old Golden Retriever mix , and is happy, healthy, playful, and we just adore him.

The process to adopt him was very easy and you answered all of our questions even after we brought our fur baby home.

Thank you so much!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Melissa is wonderful! We stumbled across a puppy on the website from her in 2015. Having Deuce in our life has brought so much joy and love. Now just recently I was scrolling through Facebook and saw puppy pictures posted by Melissa. My husband anf I fell in love again and we now have Alita. She has only been with us for about a week, but we couldn't live without her. Thank you for both our little lights and loves!

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

We adopted our lil bit from Melissa for a second time. She is a wonderful care giver when it comes to animals in need. She is always intentive to make sure that the animal she is handing over is safe and secure in her new home. I forsee us returning again in the future for another addition to our family.

4

Client Served

Rating: 5

My family and I had been hunting the perfect fir babies to join our family for months! We finally found them at Starting Over Animal Refuge! We adopted a male- whom we named Dozer and a female- we named Lola and both have been amazing additions to our family! I have an 8yr old and 8month old and they both LOVE Dozer and Lola and the puppies love them! Both puppies do amazing with my two children! We can’t imagine what it would be like without them, especially now that we have had them for 6 months!

Melissa at Starting Over Animal Refuge was amazing! She answered all our questions and addressed a few concerns that I had. She knows her fur babies well and was able to help my family and I find the perfect fit for our family! She didn’t just let us meet and take the puppies, she made sure that the puppies also seemed to like us and that we would be a good fit for them! Which was the best part because it shows she cares about them and wants them to go to a good home and be happy!!

I would absolutely recommend Starting Over Animal Refuge based on the experience my family and I had!

Previous Stories
6

Client Served

Rating: 5

Starting Over Animal Refuge in Ocala was amazing! My family and I have been hunting for the perfect Canine addition to our family and we found 2! Melissa was so nice and so helpful and the best part, she was not pushy! This made the process easy and made my family and I more confident in our newest family additions. The adoption fee was definitely good when compared to so many places we had found. We could immediately tell that Melissa wanted to make sure that the puppies were a good fit for our family but also that our family was a good fit for them and that they would be happy with us. It was a great experience and I defiantly recommend Starting Over Animal Refuge in Ocala if you’re looking to add a rescue to your family!

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

A month ago I adopted my first ever puppy from Melissa. I was able to pick my puppy up same day and at a very affordable price after looking around for months with no avail. My puppy Ellie is the best thing to happen to me I absolutely adore her and it’s all thanks to Melissa!! And I think she’s just as happy to be spoilt rotten :)

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

We adopted a 8 week old german shephard/golden retriever/australian shephard (yeap he is a mix puppy) from Starting Over Animal Refuge. The adoption process was easy no issues along the way. We adopted Ace last week and well worth the 2 hr drive. He is the cutest and smartest puppy. Training is a process as expected with a pup-- we know he will learn quick as he is smart dog with great genes. We recommend this animal shelter as they go by their word and reputation. Thank you Starting Over--> Ace is a great addition to our family! We are truly blessed and happy to have him!

4

Client Served

Rating: 5

I adopted a 8 week old golden retriever mix puppy from starting over animal Refuge. The adoption process was easy. She explained and gave me the dewormer medication to give to my puppy (titan). I adopted last Tuesday October 27,2020. I drove two hours to pick my little one up and it was worth it. She takes you on a little pathway to get to the puppies. You have some cats that follow and meow as you walk which is adorable there really friendly and want pets from you. Then you get to where the puppies are and there in nice size kennels and there all playing, jumping around with a big size bowl with food . She also introduced us to the other pups she has and the horses. The whole experience was great. I definitely recommend them. She answered all my questions and concerns. She was very patient with me and my 2 year old son. Now we enjoy our new addition to the family!

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

We had lost our older fur baby months ago and felt we were ready to add a new love to our pack. This amazing group introduced us to Tonka after giving him a huge amount of medical treatment and loving care. Their mission is genuine and while friendly, very careful and professional. I appreciate that care, so you know that they are fostering and adopting out responsibly. Much better than so called societies. Thank you, Starting Over, for helping us add to our loving family.

2 Amanda Marie V.

Client Served

Rating: 5

We adopted a beautiful 8 week old puppy. They saved the pups from New Orleans during the hurricane.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

Sweet Melissa! An angel here on earth! This beautiful lady has dedicated herself to rescuing and adopting out soo many pets! She was wonderful to deal with. Open all Labor Day weekend long!

We lost our 11 year old rescued Irish Wolfhound, Clancy, 3 months ago and we were still heartbroken. I received an email from adopt-a-pet for a few of the puppies available out of a litter of 12 rescued from Louisiana.
I called on Sunday morning and Melissa answered right away. She was working diligently on adopting out 3 full litters of puppies. She texted me this precious picture of this male puppy and she interviewed me over the phone.
I spoke to my husband and showed him the photo. We drove the hour and a half to Ocala and met Melissa. We had already paid the $100 deposit on PayPal. She lead us to the kennels and introduced us to the puppy she had sent us the photo of. He was so sweet! We both held him, named him Finn and filled out the adoption paperwork. We paid Melissa the remainder of the adoption fee and we were on our way home.

It's now been almost 2 weeks and we are so in love with this beautiful boy! Finn is going to be a wonderful companion to us both!

Thank you, Melissa for your kindness and all the love you give these pets!!

3 Sue S.10

Client Served

Rating: 5

We just recently lost our great dog Jax and our hearts were broken. I decided to find another pup immediately, to some that is wrong. But because of that fact, we found Starting Over Animal Rescue through the internet. I had no idea they existed. I contacted her about 3 different dogs I saw and they were adopted. I said thanks any way and she told me she had 2 more puppies that were health checked and released by the vet. They were black lab pups who lost their home due to the hurricane that hit Louisiana. The whole transaction was based on trust. There was a non refundable $100.00 deposit and you saw the dog virtually because of the virus. She had to trust that we were going to give the pup a forever home. We drove 5 hours total to and from to get there. It’s not a fancy place but perfect for the animals. One of the workers told us about the different rescues she has done. She is all about rescuing. After a walk through a path under shady trees followed by her nosey but very friendly cats which were in great shape we were brought to the area where is the puppies were being housed in nice sized kennels. There were horses walking around a nice green pasture. The movie she sent me was of the 2 puppies playing in their water dish which I showed everyone at work. It was hard to chose which pup so we let the pup chose us because either way the other one was also going to be adopted that day. He chose us. The one who was pouncing in the water! They gave him a bath as we were signing the paperwork and gave them the rest of the adoption fee, they gave him another puppy shot and sent him home with worming medicine. She took a family group shot and we drove off with a black lab pup we named “Cooper". He fell asleep on the trip home in my daughter's and her boyfriend's arms. This was a great finish to a horrible week. Absolutely in love with this pup. I cant understand why people will spend thousands when there is so many “Coopers" out there. I send blessings on Melissa, her help, the ranch and the animals. This was so much more pleasant than a trip to the humane society. She takes this very seriously and you really feel great doing this!

2

Client Served

Rating: 4

The initial experience was extremely sketchy, requiring a $100 non-refundable deposit in order to even see the puppy in person via Paypal. However, after some back and forth texting I decided to trust her and things went smoothly from there after a brief call. I took the 2-hour drive up to Ocala to see my Husky mix (His name is Midas) and immediately fell in love. I was supplied with a brief overview of his vaccine history (I believe she administered them personally) and medicine to continue his deworming treatment. I have had Midas for just over 2 weeks now and he is a very smart, loving, and caring puppy. He is learning his tricks quickly and adjusting to his new home. We took him to the vet for a wellness check as well and he is in good health. Despite how shady the whole initial transaction process seemed, she is a kind and respectful person when you can meet her in person. If what you want is a cute puppy, that is what you'll get.

4

Client Served

Rating: 5

I adopted a puppy from Starting Over Animal Refuge and am so grateful to them. The adoption process was a breeze and it is evident my puppy was cared for and loved before I took him home. If I ever decide to take in another puppy I would 100% chose to do it through Starting Over Animal Refuge.

4

Client Served

Rating: 5

I’m forever grateful that I found this rescue! Melissa was kind and answered all my questions. I searched for months to find the perfect pup to join my family and I’m so thankful we found the one. She’s a sweet, loving, gentle, and calm puppy and I’m so glad I found her. I highly recommend this rescue. I will definitely recommend them to all of my friends and family!

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

Absolutely wonderful experience! We had been looking to adopt a dog for a few months when we found this place! Responses were prompt, and we were able to add the perfect member to our family! An hour and a half drive from were we lived but absolutely worth every minute. The time was taken to figure out who was the right fit for our current family and pets, and it was spot on.

1 Stacy T.2

Client Served

Rating: 5

We had a great experience with Starting Over Animal Refuge. As we saw puppies of interest, we reached out and usually received a prompt response. We drove 2 hours to meet a pup and she was sure to put him on hold until we were sure he would be a good fit. We were able to hold him, put him down and watch his personality, love on him and take all the time we needed.

Remy has been a perfect fit for our family. From 9 lbs. to almost 30 lbs. now, with more to grow. He’s smart, sweet and super handsome!

1 Lindsey W.2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I lost my 12 year old pup last year and decided that it was perfect timing to adopt a new dog during covid since I was out of work for 2 months. I adopted Kona and it was the best decision ever. She's awesome! The owner of the rescue was very professional, especially during this weird time. She followed all of the protocol for the covid-19. We are so happy to have to Kona as part of our family. She's perfect! I highly recommend this rescue!

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

We had a great experience with SOAR. Melissa was wonderful and very knowledgeable. We adopted our teacup Maltese on Christmas, 2019. The puppy is healthy and a great dog! We would definitely recommend this rescue to anyone looking to adopt a new family member.

2 Hanna M.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

No one else id recommend!! Bought a puppy from a “ breeder “ and right off the bat the poor puppy had Parvo & then pneumonia... Starting over saved her life. Eternally grateful. She is now a happy pup.

14

Client Served

Rating: 1

I sold her a litter of puppies off craigslist she immediately put them as rescued puppies...nope...that's a lie. She's a puppy flipper...nothing rescue about her, she's selling puppies for $400 that never saw a vet etc. Puppy flipper...plain and simple.
There is a Facebook page warning of her by real rescues.

Client Served

Rating: 5

My boyfriend and I adopted this amazing and handsome little man, Rusty a couple days ago. He was taken care of so well and brought back to the picture of health. I sadly did not have the pleasure of going with him to pick up Rusty, however he said that the facility was amazing and it seemed like a loving place. Thank you for taking such great care of our new baby so that we could make him part of our family, we could not be happier!!!

2 Lauren K.4

Client Served

Rating: 5

We had a wonderful experience with Starting Over Animal Rescue through which we met our forever friend Harper! The kind people at SOAR made it easy for us to take Harper home the same day we met her. Although we fell in love with Harper immediately, we were given time to meet her and make sure she would be a good fit for our home and lifestyle, and us for her. We would gladly drive the 2+ hours to Ocala to go through SOAR again.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

We had a great experience recently with Starting Over Animal Refuge! We drove from the Orlando area to meet the pup we saw online, and the rescue did not disappoint. Melissa was very attentive and allowed us to take the pup out to meet him and ensure he would be the right fit for our family. She allowed us to take our time with him and also provided a lot of information and tips for caring for our new puppy. Overall a great experience and would highly recommend if you are looking for a pup!