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2015 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Refurbished Pets of Southern Michigan

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animal Protection & Welfare, Animals

Mission: The mission of Refurbished Pets of Southern Michigan is to assist abandoned, homeless or unwanted animals by placing them in qualified, suitable, and approved foster or permanent homes; to rescue abandoned, homeless or unwanted animals by removing them through legal means from unsuitable environments or shelters. To improve conditions of any animal in need, and help to facilitate their adoption to qualified, permanent homes; to educate the general public about rescue programs, responsible dog ownership, and the prevention of pet overpopulation and to consider the adoption of animals from their local shelters or rescue; to work with governmental agencies to implement positive changes in all aspects of animal reform at local and state levels.

Target demographics: dogs in shelters that would otherwise be euthanized.

Direct beneficiaries per year: 57 dogs

Geographic areas served: Rescue

Programs: Founded in 2007 RPSM has made a serious effort to effectively aid in the reduction of euthanasia rates at many animal shelters. In 2008, the RPSM Correctional Companion Program began. In a partnership with the Coldwater Prison Complex, RPSM endeavors to find homes for dogs in shelters that would otherwise be euthanized. Dogs selected for the Companion Program are carefully screened for temperament, trainability, and adoptability. They are fully vaccinated, spayed or neutered prior to enrollment in the program. Once they arrive at the complex, they are assigned to specially trained inmates who are responsible for their training and day to day care. Upon completion of the program, the dogs are ready to receive a canine good citizen certificate (CGC) and available for adoption into an approved home.

Community Stories

14 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I met Koda through RPSM in June of 2015. She had learned the basics for becoming a service dog to help out with my dysautonomia. She came along with letters and advice from the trainers she had been working with, which were incredibly helpful in helping her have a smooth transition. In addition, volunteers and new friends from RPSM have kept in contact to check in with us and answer and any questions that come up. Koda is so much more incredible than I ever could have asked for. She is patient, good with people and other animals, gentle, obedient, a great companion, and incredibly intelligent. Her first alert was within our first 24 hours of working together, and she hasn't let me down since. She loves riding the trains, will"place" under tables in restaurants patiently, and is an essential part of what has been dubbed "Team KJ." Thank you, RPSM, for my best friend and guardian angel! She is a champ!

1 Cathy93

Volunteer

Rating: 5

A much needed charity. Great way to help unwanted dogs find forever homes.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Refurbished Pets in Cold water, most amazing group of people so caring and loving. They match you and make sure its a equal fit, my dog is so special to service work I can't even begin to say more, they go above and beyond to help.. I am so in love my second set of hands ..they deserve this..

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I love working with dogs, and their individual personalities amaze me. When I read that Refurbished pets was looking for foster's I immediately did my research and fell in love with their program. Each animal is spayed or neutered, up to date on shots, and most go through a ten week training program! I now foster for this program and I am blown away by the people I am meeting that are involved. They all are truly a caring and loving group! The prison program not only help the dogs get a second chance at finding their forever homes, but give the prisoners a second chance too. I give this program the 5 star rating and wish it went higher because of all the rescue programs I have knowledge of RPSM blows them all out of the water. The board memebers and the people involved give their all and in my eyes get 100%!!

1 Jessie W.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I love that I'm able to help RPSM in ways I never thought would be possible! I'm disabled and unable to work because I get dizzy a lot when standing for any amount of time. When I found out I could help by doing work from home, on my pc, I was overjoyed at the opportunity to help out a great group of people and a great program! The dogs, trainers, and volunteers all benefit from this great program, and I'm so happy to be a part of it!!

Previous Stories
1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I recently started volunteering with RPSM after moving to Michigan. I think it's great that this group is able to save the lives of so many unwanted dogs because they ended up in shelters because they lacked the training to be a 'desirable' pet. With the help of trainers at the prison in Coldwater, we are saving the lives of many men and dogs.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I learned of RPSM by accident when I was searching for just the right addition to my household. I saw a dog that I fell in love with from his picture. I started inquiring about him and found out HE WAS TRAINED TOO!!! The more I learned about RPSM, the more I respected their roll in helping unfortuante animals get a chance at forever.

After I adopted my big boy and he got all settled in, I contacted RPSM to let them know I (we) would like to open our home to other animals in transition. We (my 2 dogs and I) feel it is only right to share our good fortune and blessings with others.

Fostering will lift your spirits and warm your heart. It's not a life-long commitment, just a very important one. Think about becoming a foster parent with RPSM. You will be glad!

Comments ( 1 )

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Refurbished Pets of Southern Michigan 08/09/2014

Thanks so much for taking the time to review us and thank you for volunteering with RPSM!!

1 Jennifer336

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been fostering dogs for RPSM for 8 months, I have never seen or heard anything like this before and I absolutely love it. Everyone I have meet that helps with the program go out of there way to help anyone or any animal. I couldn't ask for a better program to volunteer for. I especially love getting to meet new people and animals. I think the program not only helps the animals but the prisoners as well.

Comments ( 1 )

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Refurbished Pets of Southern Michigan 08/09/2014

Jennifer, Thank you so much for your review and for volunteering with RPSM, it is greatly appreciated!!

2 Michele65

Volunteer

Rating: 5

A fantastic organization that really cares about the animals. The prison program has changed so many prisoners lives soo amazing. I foster for RPSM and i plan to continue for years to come.

Comments ( 1 )

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Refurbished Pets of Southern Michigan 08/09/2014

Thank you Michele for all that you do for RPSM and for writing a comment about the work we do, it is greatly appreciated!!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I started volunteering for RPSM a little over a year ago and I am so glad I did. I already had 3 dogs, but knew there were so many others out there that needed someone and wanted to find a way to help them too. As luck would have it, I saw a post on Facebook looking for volunteers for RPSM and I thought it would be perfect. I am proud of every one of the dogs that RPSM has been able to make a difference in the lives of. Seeing how the dogs make a difference in the prisoners lives and how the prisoners make a difference in the dogs lives makes me see what a positive thing this program is. The group is wonderful and I have not only found a group that does positive things for people and dogs, but I have also found some very good friends and wonderful people. As long as I am able, I will continue to volunteer.

Comments ( 1 )

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Refurbished Pets of Southern Michigan 08/09/2014

Thanks so much for taking the time to write a review and for volunteering with RPSM!!

chensell

Client Served

Rating: 5

My husband and I adopted Gracie June from RPSM last August. He says that she is the "perfect" dog, and she's pretty darned close! The training she had in the prison really facilitated her transition from the streets to coddled home. RPSM screens potential adopters carefully to determine suitability of homes, owners and pets. They do education about spaying and neutering. What really attracted me to the program though was the rehab potential for the incarcerated trainers. This could be something that really turns their lives around. This is an amazing group, totally devoted to their cause. I also do occasional volunteer work for them and wish I could do more.

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I was introduced to RPSM by a friend who was adopting a dog. Both of my elderly dogs had passed away during the previous year. I had started looking at rescue organizations and when I learned that RPSM worked with rehabbing prison inmates as well as dogs, I was sold! The difference the dogs make for the prisoners and that the prisoners make for the dogs is truly a God-thing. After adopting our Gracie through them, I became a volunteer. This is the only rescue group that I know of that rescues people and pets!

Barb V.

Client Served

Rating: 5

RPSM is the best ! They seriously care about the pets they rescue and adopt, and that love shows in the wonderufl animals and the happy people who adopt them. The prison program is fantastic, a definite win, Win, WIN for everyone. I highly recommend this program to anyone searching for a wonder new addition to their family, and wish that more people could foster and adopt rescue animals.

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I had lost my best friend of 12 years, Zeek, and was looking at pet finder. The sweetest little face caught my eye. He was Buttons, a RPSM rescue. I knew I wanted him, so I filled out an application. It seemed crazy at first, the references, vet check, and even a home interview. The more I went through the process, the more sense it made. There are too many bad people out there who abuse dogs, and some are, well, basically ignorant of what a pet entails. They are a member of the family, and require love, attention, discipline and vet care. The fence requirement almost ended it for me, but the meeting with Kathy B. changed that, she realized I knew what I was doing and also that "Buttons" now Butters, had the qualities that would fit with me and no fence. It seemed like forever while I waited, the updates from the prison helped, and man was I ready when my adoption day came ! I have had wonderful experiences with RPSM, their compassion and concern for the animals is the tops, and Kathy B. was, and is, a wonderful foster (and now a great friend, she probably gets sick of my calls and pic posts...lol). Diane was very helpful with the updates also. It was well worth the wait, and almost a year later, Butters and I are both happy and healthy, and fence free, and I have met wonderful people with the same compassion for fur kids as I have. Wish I could do more. I am glad I could hook up Sheri and Penny and Barkley, I will continue to try to match people and pets. I think if everyone was as intuitive as Kathy with the fence issue, more would possibly be adopted, but I do understand the concerns.

Mindy V.

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I have volunteered in a few ways for RPSM. They really do try everything to help as many animals as possible. They are actually taking in one of my mothers dogs into their prison program this week.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My Mother was looking for a dog since hers had passed away. I found a dog for her through this group and the dog and my Mother are great together. This group is a good group that not only helps the dogs but also the people in prison too. The dogs can than be placed in homes and have basic training needs completed. Wonderful program.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Volunteering for a 100% non profit organization that rehibilitaes not only unwanted, death row dogs, and prisoners that train them and enable the dogs to be adopted is one of the most rewarding things I have ever done in my life! This program does not cost our taxpayers a dime. It is funded by fundraisers, grants, and wonderful donations. The adopters of the trained dogs are thoroughly questioned to ensure provided our well trained, totally vetted dogs a forever home. Far too many dogs are euthanized yearly due to many reasons that are superficial at most. The dogs, after being trained are wonderful and the inmates doing the training find emotions that they never knew in their lifetime. A win-win program for all concerned.