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1,047 animals given a better chance in 2017

Friday, 12 January 2018. Posted in Shootin' the Breeze

More than hugs and cuddles happen at A Better Chance Animal Rescue, as animals receive the care they need and deserve. Here, dog trainer Amy Plummer comforts one of 10 dogs rescued in Manitoba in November.   Photos by Kelly Lepine

1,047 animals given a better chance in 2017

By Georgia Dale

In a follow-up to last week’s article about the puppies rescued on Dec. 23, we thought we should provide some additional information about the important work done by A Better Chance Animal Rescue throughout the year.

ABCAR is a 13-acre sanctuary east of Pincher Creek. This site provides temporary respite for animals rescued from neglect or abuse while they await their forever homes. The ranch also provides a permanent home for 20 dogs who, for one reason or another, require a lifelong sanctuary.

But most of the dogs and cats rescued by ABCAR don’t remain on-site. Instead they are sent out to caring foster homes, just as the Christmas Eve puppies and their mother went home with Christy Pool and John Clarke.

Foster homes for the rescued pets serve multiple purposes. First, they enable ABCAR to use their resources very efficiently — and given that they rescue about 100 animals per month, efficiency is vital.

Second, foster homes emulate the family home so that, from the moment they are rescued, dogs and cats are getting ready to adapt to life in their forever homes.  

It’s difficult to envision the numbers, but with over 1,047 dogs and cats rescued in 2017 and 872 adopted, it is clear that not only is ABCAR providing an indispensible service to animal-kind but also that they probably have a lot to offer humankind.

Where do all of these animals come from? ABCAR rescues animals from all over the province and beyond. They collaborate with shelters and organizations in Lethbridge, Medicine Hat and Drumheller, and have even gone as far as Manitoba on rescue missions.

In October, ABCAR  joined up with shelters from Vancouver, Thunder Bay and Winnipeg to bring several young dogs to Alberta from a site in Manitoba where there remain hundreds of homeless dogs and puppies.

Staff are also working to rehome about 50 cats from a private residence in Lethbridge, where an owner, who died suddenly, had been rescuing cats for years. ABCAR also collaborates with No Kill Animal Association in Lethbridge in a catch-and-release spay and neuter program for stray cats in North Lethbridge.

It’s safe to say the staff and volunteers of ABCAR had their hands full in 2017, and they expect 2018 to be similar, as they continue to reach out to organizations in the Prairie provinces to help animals in need.

Another remarkable thing about ABCAR is that they receive no external funding. They raise the money to cover costs such as vet bills of over $10,000 a month, food and equipment, all through the costs of adoptions and private donations from individuals and companies.

If you are interested in getting involved, ABCAR can always use a helping human hand as a sponsor, foster home or volunteer. To see what kind of contribution you can make, visit www.abetterchanceanimalrescue.com.

Volunteer Trish White and ABCAR owner Melanie Glen, below, get kitten hugs from some orphans dropped off at the shelter during last fall’s Kenow fire.