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Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Home Van Pet Care Project News - May 2020

Our mission: To provide food for pets of homeless persons in our community; offer education on pet care and spay/neuter; assist with access to veterinary care;  foster respect for animals and the animal/human bond.
"Run to the rescue
with love, and peace
will follow."
River Phoenix
Dear Friends,

Like many individuals and groups, Home Van Pet Care Project has been caught short of time and funds by the Coronavirus. We are seriously in need of donations for our regular activities and also need special funding for the dog Levi, who we rescued in February.

Levi is boarded at All Paws Kennels, and we are sending them a big vote of thanks for all their help. It is through their skill and caring that Levi is walking well on a leash, will sit and accept a treat, and is people friendly, wants to play and is in need of a real home.

You can help by adopting, by fostering, by contacting friends, and by sharing on our FB page and by donating for his care. Contact information is below.
The Story of Levi
When we first learned of Levi's plight he was chained to a post in a dirt pit, his water bowls were perpetually turned over and he was poorly fed. Levi is only two years old, and had been kept on that chain for a year.

As attention was paid, people came to visit and Putnam Animal Services was alerted (Levi was chained near Melrose Fl.) We joined the visitors and soon became determined to free Levi. Within a couple of weeks, the owners were convinced to surrender Levi, and he was taken into Putnam Animal Services. After a few more obstacles Home Van Pet Care was able to take possession of Levi.

We boarded him briefly with a local veterinarian and now at All Paws where he has much more freedom. He's learning to walk on a leash without pulling and other good dog behaviors. No more chains for Levi.

Our goal is to find a "forever" loving home for Levi where his sweetness and energy will be appreciated. He should have a sturdy fence so he can roam freely. According to a friend who visited with Levi recently: "He's a typical pit. Rambunctious and silly. Needs socializing with people and dogs”. Needs lots of exercise and someone willing to do both. Adorable personality. Please get in touch if you are The One or if you have any other questions.

To learn more about Levi or to schedule a visit, you can call or text Elizabeth Howard at 352-246-2727.
Our regular duties as Partners with Grace, Humane Society and St. Francis Pet Clinic are curtailed due to Corona regulations. We do receive calls from former clients who need help at this time and potential clients needing various help. We refer and respond with pet food and information.

Pete Monte, our new Animal Care Coordinator at Grace has been doing a really remarkable job in making arrangements for Dignity residents with pets. Various solutions were found and several dogs and cats and their people are living inside the Temporary campground on Grace campus. We will be sure to keep you advised of the pet project at Grace as it all progresses.
CURRENT NEEDS:
  • Donations toward pet deposits (designate if you donate for this)
  • Cat carriers
  • Leashes
  • Dry Cat food: Purina Friskies Seafood Sensation any size bags
  • Canned cat food: Fancy Feast, small cans
  • Dry Dog Food, needs are pretty well supplied at present
  • Canned Dog Food: Mighty Dog, 12 to a package, or any number of cans
Any amount toward our project expenses is always welcome.
Donate Now
Donations can be left at any of these locations:

Sissets Home & Patio, 3433 W. University Ave., Gainesville, 32607, 352-224-5192
Micanopy Animal Hospital, 306 US-441, Micanopy FL 32667, 352-466-0067
All Cats Healthcare Clinic, 1034 NW 13th St., Gainesville, 32601 352-376-2287
Financial donations can be made by check payable to Home Van Pet Care Project, Inc., and mailed c/o Elizabeth Howard, P.O. Box 14305, Gainesville FL 32604; or by PayPal at our blog, http://homevanpetcareproject.blogspot.com. Money, food, and new or clean leashes, harnesses, collars, bowls, blankets and towels can be dropped off at Sisset's....A Fun Twist on Home & Patio, 3433 W University Ave., 352-224-5192.  For more information or to volunteer, call or text 
352-246-2727.
REG# CH38562.  A COPY OF THE OFFICIAL REGISTRATION AND FINANCIAL INFORMATION MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE DIVISION OF CONSUMER SERVICES BY CALLING TOLL-FREE (800-435-7352) WITHIN THE STATE OR VISITING FLORIDACONSUMERHELP.COM.  REGISTRATION DOES NOT IMPLY ENDORSEMENT, APPROVAL, OR RECOMMENDATION BY THE STATE.

Thursday, February 27, 2020

Home Van Pet Care Project News - February 2020


Our mission: To provide food for pets of homeless persons in our community; offer education on pet care and spay/neuter; assist with access to veterinary care;  foster respect for animals and the animal/human bond.
First, we want to thank everyone who contributed toward our annual Christmas pet party. We held the party in the parking lot at Dignity village, during our December veterinary clinic. I really think this was our best Christmas party ever.

We bagged and packed:
And then once again we loaded up our trusty Subaru:
Distributing the gifts was fun, and there were so many heartfelt thanks:
Thank you dear friends, for making this possible
As we let you know in the December newsletter, Home Van Pet Care Project will be focusing on working with the Wagmore/Grace Pet project in 2020. There have been many delays, but now it seems things are starting to move.

A couple of preparations for pets and their people entering the temporary campground soon:

People with dogs will have an extra space next to their platform and there will be an igloo dog house for the dog. There will also be a dog park and a supervised "kennel" area when owners must be away for short periods of time.
People entering with cats will be given a cat carrier to transport the cats back and forth from their tent to the Cat Room. Habitat cages will be provided as well as litter boxes, water bowls and food.
We will keep you posted as the work goes on.
As we often do, we have a pet needing to relocate:
Meet Jay!!
Jay is a 6 year old male neutered chow/lab mix that is looking for his forever home. He belonged to a resident of Dignity Village but now needs to be rehomed. He is currently at a foster home where he gets along with all the humans and other dogs. He is very affectionate, sweet, and loves to play! Sadly, he is heartworm positive but is currently receiving monthly medications to help kill the worms. If you are interested in meeting him please let us know and we will happily arrange it! Foster to adopt is also encouraged. Can't commit to a new pet but want to help? Please share this post to spread the word!
Comment or message for more info!
One last note, a sad note, as our dear friend Arupa Freeman passed away on December 22, 2019 after a long seige of illnesses. Arupa is well known for helping the homeless and hungry persons in our community. When we first started Home Van Pet Care Project, 13 years ago, we asked Arupa if we could go with her as she traveled around Gainesville each week serving soup and sandwiches to humans. She said "yes," and we began to go with the Home Van every week. We took our own vehicle, full of pet food, collars, leashes and other supplies and followed along behind.

Several years later, when we were ready to get our non-profit status, Arupa agreed that she would share the Home Van name with us, and we have called ourselves Home Van Pet Care Project, ever since. It is an honor and a privilege to be part of Arupa's work, for she loved animals as well as people.
CURRENT NEEDS:
  • Donations toward pet deposits (designate if you donate for this)
  • Cat carriers
  • Leashes
  • Dry Cat food: Purina Friskies Seafood Sensation any size bags
  • Canned cat food: Fancy Feast, small cans
  • Dry Dog Food, needs are pretty well supplied at present
  • Canned Dog Food: Mighty Dog, 12 to a package, or any number of cans
Any amount toward our project expenses is always welcome.
Donate Now
Donations can be left at any of these locations:

Sissets Home & Patio, 3429 W. University Ave., Gainesville, 32607, 352-224-5192
Micanopy Animal Hospital, 306 US-441, Micanopy FL 32667, 352-466-0067
All Cats Healthcare Clinic, 1034 NW 13th St., Gainesville, 32601 352-376-2287
Financial donations can be made by check payable to Home Van Pet Care Project, Inc., and mailed c/o Elizabeth Howard, P.O. Box 14305, Gainesville FL 32604; or by PayPal at our blog, http://homevanpetcareproject.blogspot.com. Money, food, and new or clean leashes, harnesses, collars, bowls, blankets and towels can be dropped off at Sisset's....A Fun Twist on Home & Patio, 3429 W University Ave., 352-224-5192.  For more information or to volunteer, call or text 
352-246-2727.

Monday, December 2, 2019

Home Van Pet Care Project News - December 2019

Our Mission:  To provide food for pets of homeless persons in our community; offer education on pet care and spay/neuter; assist with access to veterinary care; foster respect for animals and the animal/human bond.

"I woke up in between a
Memory and a dream…"
Tom Petty

 

We are now entering our 13th year.  We remain a small organization, with a handful of diedicated volunteers and a core group of supporters to whom we are very grateful.  Our budget is small and simple, with most going to the purchase of pet food and supplies, and transportation to get them to our clients.  Small donations keep us going.  Please consider donating to Home Van Pet Care Project this Giving Tuesday.  We promise your support will make a difference to people and animals in this community.

This year we helped many pets in many ways.  Here are a few:

Lucky's first owner died and when his next owner went to jail Home Van Pet Care stepped in. We're so grateful to Dr. Pearson and her wonderful staff at Micanopy Animal Hospital who kept Lucky safe and taught him some important behavioral lessons. Now he has a whole family to love him, and a fence and a yard where can run and play and never be tied up again!   You can tell by his smile that he knows!

Home Van Pet Care Project took in Harvey, a small, senior terrier, after he was abandoned by his owner. He was super sweet but scared of his new situation.  We found a good foster parent for him, and All Cats veterinarian Patti Gordon gave him a badly needed dental cleaning.  After a while, his foster mom found a permanent adoptive home for him with a wonderful man.  It was rough for a while but little Harvey's a happy boy now!
 

Dignity Village dog Zeus was bitten in the face by a water moccasin. Thankfully HVPCP was able to get him quickly to the Emergency Clinic at the University of Florida Small Animal Hospital where he got a dose of anti-venin. Here he is back home with his discharge instructions, looking nearly as good as new.  (You should have seen his face when it was REALLY swollen!)  His mom was so happy to have her good boy back safe and sound.

Changes coming in the new year

As 2020 begins, our focus will be changing somewhat. When the old Tent City closed years ago,  Grace Marketplace was opened.  Grace is a homeless shelter and service center with dorms and offices to assist with housing and other needs.  At the same time, many people moved to a new tent city that grew up surrounding Grace Marketplace that came to be called Dignity Village. Many of the people living in Dignity Village have pets, which up to now have not been allowed in Grace.

Soon Dignity Village will close and some of the residents will be moved onto the Grace campus where they can receive the same services as other residents of Grace.  We are happy to say that people with pets will be able to move there as well.

Grace is presently establishing a pet care area on its campus.  In the beginning there will be tents on platforms with space for an igloo-style dog house, a kennel type area with dog runs, and a dog park. Best of all, there will be a climate controlled cat room!

The tent area is temporary and emphasis will be placed on finding homes for former Dignity Village residents and their pets. The pet facilities at Grace, however, are designed to be permanent, so that newly homeless individuals moving to Grace will be able to stay there with their pets.

This is a huge project and  according to Jon DeCarmine, Executive Director of Grace Marketplace, "Grace will be the first pet-friendly low barrier shelter in North Florida in 2020."

Home Van Pet Care Project will be focusing on working with The Grace Pet Project in 2020. We are partnered with Humane Society of North Central Florida, St. Francis Pet Care, Grace Marketplace and The Wagmore Foundation. We are in good company and very happy to be able to help.

Our Wish List

Here is our wish list for Christmas and the new year for the pets.  We are asking for specific items since we are helping with a new start and need the basics.

Dry Cat food:  Purina Friskies Seafood Sensation, dry food 16 lb. bags
Canned cat food: Fancy Feast, small cans

Dry Dog food: Purina Dog Chow, 20 lb. bags
Canned Dog Food:  Mighty Dog, 12 a package or any number

Milk Bone Dog Treats, any size

Cat Treats

Water bowls and good bowls for dogs and cats

Sturdy leashes 5 or 6 ft.

And, of course, we always appreciate and make good use of your financial donations!
Donate Now
Donations can be left at any of these locations:

Sissets Home & Patio, 3429 W. University Ave., Gainesville, 32607, 352-224-5192
Micanopy Animal Hospital, 306 US-441, Micanopy FL 32667, 352-466-0067
The Groom Room, 1232 NW 50th Ave., Gainesvill, 32609 352-377-8591
All Cats Healthcare Clinic, 1034 NW 13th St., Gainesville, 32601 352-376-2287
Financial donations can be made by check payable to Home Van Pet Care Project, Inc., and mailed c/o Elizabeth Howard, P.O. Box 14305, Gainesville FL 32604; or by PayPal at our blog, http://homevanpetcareproject.blogspot.comMoney, food, and new or clean leashes, harnesses, collars, bowls, blankets and towels can be dropped off at Sisset's....A Fun Twist on Home & Patio, 3429 W University Ave., 352-224-5192.  For more information or to volunteer, call or text 352-246-2727.

Also, don't forget our Amazon Wish List!  Or designate Home Van Pet Care Project as your beneficiary on Amazon Smile.

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Home Van Pet Care Project News - June 2019


Dear Friends: Once again we must apologize for neglecting to send a timely newsletter. We will try to catch you up to date now.

Uncertain Future for Dignity Village

As you may know, the Home Van Pet Care Project (HVPCP) has been feeding pets of homeless and low income citizens of our community for 12 years now. That is our primary mission.  We go to downtown Gainesville and distribute pet food once a week, and we spend a lot of time at Dignity Village, the tent city that grew up around the Grace Marketplace homeless center.  Here is Dignity dog Zyless enjoying a snack.

Recently both City and County approved the closing of Dignity Village, under the direction of Jon DeCarmine, Executive Director of the Alachua County Coalition for the Homeless and Hungry. The Gainesville Sun did a good job of summing up DeCarmine's plan in a May 8 article.

There are 200-250 people living in Dignity Village at this time. Twenty to 25 people have pets, and we count between 25-40 dogs and a dozen cats. We are concerned about the owners and pets. Part of our mission is to nurture the animal/human bond. We don't want anyone to have to give up their pets so they can have a place to live.  HVPCP has been helping to transition Dignity Village residents by paying pet deposits and providing supplies.

Do you have a home for Lucky?

Lucky lived in Dignity Village for about six months. When he was first brought in, he was terribly thin and his coat was in poor condition.  With good care at the monthly Dignity Village veterinary clinic and good quality food from the HVPCP, he turned into a great-looking boy.  However, he was kept tied out most of the time. His first owner died and another person took care of him, but not very well. Finally we were able to take custody of Lucky.

Now Lucky is being safely being boarded but he really deserves a real home.  He's paid his dues.  He's a very good boy who richly deserves someone to love him and take good care of him forever.
Lucky is happy at the vet.
And he loves a belly rub!

The Challenge of Veterinary Care


St. Francis Pet Care and the Home Van Pet Care Project make a monthly veterinary clinic available to residents of Dignity Village and Grace Marketplace. Pets can get checkups, vaccinations, flea/tick and heartworm preventives, and referral and transport to spay/neuter where we supply a microchip.

I wish we could erect statues to Patti Gordon, DVM, who runs the Dignity clinic, and Molly Pearson, DVM, for their work every month at this clinic.  We should also give cookies and thanks to all the wonderful veterinary techs, community volunteers and veterinarians who make these clinics happen.

There are also times when we need services not available at the monthly clinics. Since the beginning of this year we have called on vets at the UF Veterinary Community Outreach Program, the Haile Plantation Animal Clinic, and the Micanopy Animal Hospital, all of whom were generous with their time and services.

We especially want to thank Dr. Hampton and the staff at Gainesville Animal Hospital West for their help recently. We had an emergency situation in which the service dog of a homeless woman was viciously attacked.  Everyone at GAH West was wonderful in providing excellent and compassionate care for this dog, even staying open for hours after their scheduled closing time. We appreciate their caring and expertise in a difficult and stressful situation.

And by the way...

Our own Project became homeless on short notice in March.  We had to relocate our downtown distribution place, which is now at the corner of SE 4th Ave. and SE 6th Terrace, right beside the Community Garden.  We also had to move out of our pet food storage and preparation place. Through the intervention of Home Van Pet Care Project volunteer Trey Anderson we have the temporary use of some space in a very convenient location. However, we need a permanent home soon.  We need at least 200 square feet of climate controlled space; a table or counter space would be nice.  We can pay a small amount monthly.  If you have or know of any space that might do, please let us know.

Our Wish List

As always, we need financial donations of any amount.  Gift cards for Publix, Walmart, Earth Pets or Pet Supermarket are also greatly appreciated.  If you donate to our Relocation Fund, we use those funds to help people moving out of tents and into housing with pet deposits and helpful items (collars, leashes, harnesses, food bowls and water bowls, cable "tie-outs.")

We need all sizes and strength of leashes, food bowls and water bowls for both cats and dogs, and plastic cat carriers.

We need dry dog food (Purina Dog Chow in green bags) and dry cat food (Friskies Seafood Sensation in blue bags),  Fancy Feast canned cat food for cats and Mighty Dog canned dog food.  We try to deliver the same type of pet food all the time so the animals don't have to adjust to different diets all the time.  However, we'll take any kind of dog or cat treats!

Thank you for all your donations and for supporting us with your good wishes.
Two of our Dignity dogs:  Smokey       
and Tank
Donations can be left at any of these locations:

Sissets Home & Patio, 3429 W. University Ave., Gainesville, 32607, 352-224-5192
Micanopy Animal Hospital, 306 US-441, Micanopy FL 32667, 352-466-0067
The Groom Room, 1232 NW 50th Ave., Gainesvill, 32609 352-377-8591
All Cats Healthcare Clinic, 1034 NW 13th St., Gainesville, 32601 352-376-2287
Financial donations can be made by check payable to Home Van Pet Care Project, Inc., and mailed c/o Elizabeth Howard, P.O. Box 14305, Gainesville FL 32604; or by PayPal at our blog, http://homevanpetcareproject.blogspot.comMoney, food, and new or clean leashes, harnesses, collars, bowls, blankets and towels can be dropped off at Sisset's....A Fun Twist on Home & Patio, 3429 W University Ave., 352-224-5192.  For more information or to volunteer, call or text 352-246-2727.

Also, don't forget our Amazon Wish List!  Or designate Home Van Pet Care Project as your beneficiary on Amazon Smile.