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Friday, August 24, 2018

Home Van Pet Care Project News - August 2018


Needed:  A new home for Smokey and Angel

The two lovely young dogs pictured below are Smokey and Angel, who are up for
adoption by Home Van Pet Care Project. They are brother and sister and must be
kept together.
Angel
Smokey
Smokey and Angel were brought into Dignity Village when they were just about 3
months old. The person who brought them in was careless and irresponsible, and eventually abandoned these little ones. Before they were further abused or
abandoned, we were able to take custody and place them in a foster home.

The foster parents are a couple of the best dog trainers and most loving caretakers
that we have known. They love these pups but have a couple of dogs already and
really want the best for Smokey and Angel. These brave dogs have comforted and defended each other through a very difficult part of their lives. We will be sure they
make a safe transition into a permanent home.

The dogs are about 6 months old now.  Smokey, a neutered male, weighs about 30 pounds and Angel, a spayed female, weighs about 25. They are house trained and
walk well on their leashes. They are fully vaccinated, they are well fed, and their
coats are shiny. They have not been tried with children or cats, but they are friendly
and get along well with other dogs.

Please contact Elizabeth at 352-246-2727 if you would like to meet the dogs.


Wanted:  Reliable volunteers

Home Van Pet Care Project needs good regular volunteers for several jobs.
Job 1:  Weekly.  Pick up pet food from the North Main Street Publix on any day, and
take it to HVPCP's storage unit by noon on Wednesday.

Job 2:  Weekly.  Around noon every Saturday, bag food in the storage unit and load
it into the HVPCP vehicle for later transport to Dignity Village.
Job 3:  Monthly.  Help with the Sunday afternoon veterinary clinic and food
distribution at Dignity Village, which is usually but not always the third Sunday of
each month.  The clinic runs from 2:00 to roughly 4:00.  Before the clinic, help bag
and load food into the HVPCP vehicle, then go out to Dignity Village and help other volunteers with distribution.

Volunteers might occasionally be asked to bag and load pet food on Wednesdays to
fill in for other volunteers, and/or to help with food distribution downtown at 2:00 on Wednesday or at Dignity Village at 2:00 on Saturday.  We encourage friends to
volunteer in pairs and fill in for each other as needed.

If you are interested or for more information, contact Elizabeth at 352-246-2727.

Our Wish List

Our list is long and we hope you continue to support us. 

For our Disaster Preparation Project and for use when relocating to an inside home:We will provide pet food from our regular supplies, but we would like to supplement this with some canned food.  Mighty Dog small cans are good for the dogs, and Fancy Feast small cans are the kitties' favorite.  We would also like to include some bottles of water and light-weight plastic pet food and water bowls. Also, we need new or gently used duffel bags and backpacks. These help people carry their pet food home without getting wet or spilling, and would be very useful when moving or in emergency evacuations.

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

Dry dog food, especially Purina Dog Chow in green bags.  Dry cat food, especially Purina Friskies Seafood Sensation in blue bags.  Fancy Feast canned food for cats because they love it, and Mighty Dog for dogs, because they love it and because the cans are small and can be used all at once, no refrigeration required.

Thank you for all your donations and for supporting us with your good wishes.
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 20, 2018

Home Van Pet Care Project News -- Jan to June 2018

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.

Help Us Make the Match!

A generous donor has offered to match any funds we can raise between now and the Fourth of July up to $1000.00!  You can donate online (securely, of course) using the button below, or mail a check payable to Home Van Pet Care Project, Inc. c/o Elizabeth Howard, P.O. Box 14305, Gainesville FL 32604.  These funds will feed a lot of hungry pets. Please help us make our match.
Donate Now

Pet Food Days

Wednesday is our big pet food day.  It starts with a mid-morning pet food pickup, then re-bagging larger bags into four pound zip-lock containers, then loading everything into our vehicle.

Downtown distribution: Precisely at 2pm each Wednesday we park and distribute pet food behind Lynch Park, off S. Main St. in downtown Gainesville. Most of our clients there are housed, but very low income, including several veterans provided with V.A. housing, and some people who rent rooms or have help from family. There are several people still living in wooded areas around town, with and without permission. More people here have cats and are cooperating with Operation Catnip so all the kitties can be spayed, neutered, vaccinated and fed. Most people come on bikes, so we see the pets only at home visits, which is something we enjoy doing.

Dignity Village:  On Saturday afternoons we go to Dignity Village/Grace Marketplace.  Here we mostly do see the pets, and check on their well-being. The pet population seems to stay around 20 dogs and 6 cats, as people are always coming and going.
A downtown kitty at home..
Rocky, a Dignity dog, invites us to visit inside his tent.
All and all we are currently distributing 400-500 pounds of pet food weekly. Some is purchased with the aid of grant money from the Wagmore Foundation, our principal supporter, but we also get food from local agencies and individuals.  Quite a lot is donated by bringing it to one of our drop off locations, listed at the bottom of this newsletter. Thrifty Critter gifts us with canned foods and various supplies and has shared the proceeds of a garage sale with us.       
Our truck, loaded up for deliveries on Wednesday morning (left) and after our trip to Dignity Village on Saturdayafternoon.

More about Dignity Village

In March, puppies descended on Dignity, three of them with people who unfortunately didn't give them very good care. Within two months we had taken two of them into foster care.  Fortunately, we were able to have them vaccinated, spayed and neutered and are considering permanent homes.

Also in March, we were visited by people we call the "scammers." Someone's mother had accumulated too many dogs so they decided it would be a good idea to dump some of them with the homeless community. Luckily, they selected responsible individuals and avoided anyone who might be abusive. These little dogs are safe and loved in their adoptive homes at Dignity:
Lola
Zeta
Since the beginning of 2018,  EIGHTEEN new pets have come in to Dignity, and several into Grace. All are welcome at our monthly veterinary clinic, and we have managed to keep everyone vaccinated, spayed and neutered.

Our Wish List

Our list is long and we hope you continue to support us.    

For our Disaster Preparation Project and for use when relocating to an inside home: Empty, clean kitty litter buckets, that we will pack with a supply of dry and canned dog or cat food as well as food and water bowls. We hope everyone gets a home soon for themselves and their pets.  Also, we need new or gently used duffel bags and backpacks. These help people carry their pet food home without getting wet or spilling.

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

Dry dog food, especially Purina Dog Chow in green bags.  Dry cat food, especially Purina Friskies Seafood Sensation in blue bags.  Fancy Feast canned food for cats because they love it, and Mighty Dog for dogs, because they love it and because the cans are small and can be used all at once, no refrigeration required.
 

Some final thoughts

The Home Van Pet Care Project has survived and prospered over the years due to wonderful supporters and volunteers.  We continue to work hard with some amazing new volunteers:  Trey and Paola bagging the pet food, Kiernan helping wherever needed, Ann and Paul helping with their van and carpentry skills, and our wonderful Dignity volunteers Ramona and Keith, who help with everything including with education and fostering.

Even so, we need more help! The only way to stay ahead of the wind is to have more volunteers.  We especially need a flexible person for Wednesdays who can learn our whole routine with pets and people.

A wish for all of us:  as I was driving around Dignity Village on Saturday, John Lennon's "Imagine" started to play on the car radio. I turned up the radio and stopped the car, windows down.  There were four women who gathered around and we listened to "... I hope someday you'll join us, and the world will live as one." What better wish could we have for each other?

Thank you for all your donations and for supporting us with your good wishes.
Donations can be left at any of these locations:

Sissets Home & Patio3429 W. University Ave., Gainesville, 32607, 352-224-5192
Micanopy Animal Hospital306 US-441, Micanopy FL 32667, 352-466-0067
The Groom Room1232 NW 50th Ave., Gainesvill, 32609 352-377-8591
All Cats Healthcare Clinic1034 NW 34th 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 & Patio3429 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.


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.

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Home Van Pet Care Project News - Holidays 2017

Holiday Thoughts

Holidays can be difficult for anyone, but they are especially hard when you are homeless. Many homeless people can recall when times were better – or worse. If left unattended these feelings can lead to increased anxiety or deep depression.  At Home Van Pet Care Project we try to help by taking extra good care of the pets of our homeless friends during the holidays.

Each year we have two "parties for the pets", okeep it simple but heartfelt. We fill little bags for both dogs and cats and include canned foods, treats, and toys. There are also cookies for the people.

Wish List for Pet Parties:  Fancy Feast chicken or fish, Mighty Dog all flavors. Both these items come in small cans which can be used at one meal and don't require refrigeration. We have kitty treats but need treats for the dogs. They like all the Milk Bone types and probably plenty of others. We also need safe toys.  We like interactive types for the dogs and those little laser lights to chase for the kitties, but anything is fine except feathers.

The Running Line Project at Dignity Village

We provided some extra safety for the dogs recently when we were able to install "running lines" for dogs at several campsites. We've done this before so our "installation crew" is experienced. This never fails to cheer up both dogs and people.
KZ hangs a line.
A Dignity Village resident with happy dogs.
These running lines give the dogs a lot more mobility when they are tethered. They work better if the dog wears a harness rather than just collar, so we also contributed some harnesses.
Snaggletooth being fitted for a harness.
Legend in his harness.  He also got a running line installed at his campsite.

Best Wishes from Pancake


Pancake got his Christmas gift early -- a home to live in with his mama after a year of being homeless!  Pancake hopes that everyone will have a home very soon.  He also wants to thank everybody who donated Friskies Seafood Sensations (his favorite) during the year, or donated money so that HVPCP could buy it.  He wants to remind you that we can always use bags of Seafood Sensations for the kitties and Purina Dog Chow in the green bag for the pups.


Every day we continue with feeding, and also we join in to provide a monthly veterinary clinic at Dignity Village for vaccinations. We provide transport for  spay/neuter that is carried out by the Veterinary Community Outreach Program at the UF College of Veterinary Medicine. Once the dogs and cats have received their veterinary attention, we provide county tags and microchips.

Special thanks go to Thrifty Critter, whose donation provided folding fabric water bowls, contributed to the cost of running lines, and more. We also thank Art Stockwell and the Grace Marketplace Charity Foundation for their contribution to the Running Line Project.

We provide a lot of leashes and like to replenish those as well as all sizes of collars and harnesses.

Thank you for all the donations and for supporting us with your good wishes.

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 from this site.  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 & Patio3429 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 Projectas your beneficiary on Amazon Smile.



Thursday, November 2, 2017

Home Van Pet Care Project News - Fall 2017

After the Storm

Hurricane Irma came with a vengeance, but the pets and their owners at Grace Marketplace/Dignity Village were prepared.  Thanks to Jon DeCarmine, residents with pets were allowed to hunker down in one of the concrete block buildings on the Grace campus. Home Van Pet Care Project provided dog crates and cat carriers as well as plenty of pet food and treats, bowls, extra harnesses and leashes, plastic bags, towels, and kitty litter pans.  HVPCP stayed in constant contact with Grace staff advocate Travis Middleton and others.  Dignity Village resident James H. was a tremendous help in facilitating the setup and communicating with other residents.

Protecting pets during the storm required a huge effort from Grace management, Alachua County Animal Services (ACAS), the Red Cross, and local animal rescue groups.  ACAS and the rescues were able to provide safe places not only for local pets but also for pets of families evacuating to Alachua County from other parts of Florida.  Any pets turned away from emergency shelters as well as lost and stray animals were held at ACAS during the storm.  ACAS is at capacity most of the time, hurricane or not.  We were happy that HVPCP was able to provide housing and carefor the Grace/Dignity pets leaving open spaces for other animals at such a critical time.


Jewel and Bella were among the dogs that sheltered safely at Grace.

A happy ending for Baby Girl

Baby Girl is an emotionally abused pup acquired from two Dignity Village
residents. She was extremely scared and untrusting, for good reason.  Linda
at the Groom Room took her in and worked tirelessly with her for many
months, trying to convince her she was safe and would no longer be
teased and yelled at.

John and Elsie
Even so, Baby Girl was still over-timid and
considered a poor prospect  for adoption
until an extremely patient gentleman named
John came along.  John spent nearly two
hours at the Groom Room gaining the little
dog's trust before getting her into his car.
Baby Girl, now Elsie, is living near Jacksonville
with John and his wife. Living with her new
humans and her new doggie sister Gigi,
another HVPC rescue, Elsie is finally happy.

Please support these local businesses


Many thanks to two wonderful women who provide temporary shelter and TLC to our animals who need it most:  Linda at the The Groom Room (1232 NW 50th Ave, Gainesville, 352-377-8591) and Louise at Sun Kiva Kennel (352-481-3082).  
Patti Carnuccio, proprietor of Patti Can! and carpenter extraordinaire, keeps our cat shelters in good repair and constructed the world's best cat porch complete with cat door and screened runway. 352-562-9382.
Anita Yaguda Kinsey, proprietor of TyTy Computer Services, keeps our computer (that she donated to us) running with great patience and good instruction. 352-222-3815

And even more thanks...

We appreciate every donation and all your kind thoughts. We always need pet food, and primarily use Purina green bag dog food and Purina Friskies Seafood Sensation. Everyone likes canned food, and we use a lot of Mighty Dog as the small cans are just right for a meal, no refrigeration needed. Likewise, the small cans of chicken and fish flavors for the kitties.
We need to start thinking of cooler weather, and of those little soft blankets that are so well loved as well as toys for the holidays. The interactive toys for dogs, where the dog holds one end and person holds the other, are great. We would like to gather some of the foldable water bowls that can be  easily carried while walking. We can always use food bowls and water bowls for both dogs and cats, and collars, leashes and harnesses.
Thank you very much for everything.


Donations can be left at any of these locations:

Sisset's 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., Gainesville, 32609 352-377-8591
All Cats Healthcare Clinic, 1034 NW 34th 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 on this blog.   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.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Home Van Pet Care Project News - Spring 2017



Our Ten-Year Anniversary


The other day at Dignity Village a precious little black dog named "Bear" peed on my foot.  I’m sure it was a “thank you” for the food I had brought him. It made me laugh and I was glad I had worn my oldest shoes. A day when I can laugh and feel grateful is a good day in my book, especially a day when I’m distributing pet food to dogs and cats of our homeless friends.

Unfortunately when I returned a few days later, I learned that Bear had been stolen. He is a six year old, neutered, long hair black Pomeranian. He was with his owner all his life. He is not at Animal Services. It is a sad fact of homeless life that “things” (including living beings) are stolen. Try to imagine that you leave your beloved pet tied at your campsite while you go into the dining hall (no pets) to eat. When you return, your little dog is gone. Part of our job is to help keep pets with their people. Could you volunteer to befriend a person and her or his pet? Perhaps you could offer “pet watch services”. Let us know.

It’s hard to believe that ten years have gone by for Home Van Pet Care Project, and of course it has been an education for our group. We go downtown and we go to Dignity Village to distribute pet food and supplies. We re-home pets in need, but only when this is clearly the best alternative. We work with a monthly clinic at Dignity Village where pets receive vaccinations and are picked up and taken for spay/neuter. When that is done, we buy each of the animals a County tag. We are still a small project, but we can do a lot thanks to your donations and gifts of financial support, goods, time and caring. We thank you very much for helping the animals.

Now we'd like to tell you a couple of stories about the work we do.

Shadow's Story

Home Van Pet Care Project works to make it possible for pets to stay with their owners.  We've seen over and over again how pets and people take care of each other through good times and bad.  Such is the case with Heart and Shadow, a man and his dog we've known since we started ten years ago.  The two are inseparable, and have managed to get by with a little help from Home Van Pet Care Project.

Recently, Shadow, a black lab mix, started getting lethargic and thin.  Heart thought it was old age and was struggling to accept the fact that he might not have his best friend and companion much longer.  However, when he took her to the University of Florida's College of Veterinary Medicine for testing, it turned out Shadow had swallowed a rope toy and it was blocking her intestines.  Immediate surgery was needed, but Heart had no way to cover the cost.  Happily, UF was able to discount the surgery and Home Van Pet Care Project was able to help pay part of the fee.  The dog is well and the bond between Heart and Shadow continues stronger than ever.

Jammer's Story


Jammer came to Dignity Village last Fall and was tied to a post 24/7.  He had no shade, nowhere to get warm, and nowhere to relieve himself except within the short range that his rope allowed. Needless to say, Jammer received very little affection or care.  After supplying Jammer with blankets, food, clean water and gentle hugs numerous times, Home Van Pet Care Project decided we needed to get this sweet big boy out of there.  Thanks to our friend Linda at The Groom Room, we were able to board Jammer until we could find a permanent home for him.  At The Groom Room, Jammer received food, clean water, a big yard to run around and lots of love. Jammer is now in a wonderful home and his family couldn’t be happier with him.

Here's Jammer before and after.  We know he's saying, "Thanks!"


Baby's Story


Baby, like some of the animals we meet, was not being taken care of properly.  She was taken away from her dog mom when she was only 7 weeks old -- way too young and against Florida law! Then she was tied out on a short lead and, of course, became a barker.  All she wanted was attention and she got it -- she was yelled at, kicked and teased.

Home Van Pet Care Project and Alachua County Animal Services monitored this situation for several weeks, hoping to convince the owners to surrender the little dog.  Finally, when they were able to move from Dignity Village to an apartment, Baby's owners decided they did not need a barking dog.  We had told them that if they ever needed to find Baby another home, to please call us.  Thank goodness they did!  Now she is being loved and cared for until she is deemed ready for adoption, which may take a while.

BabyBecause of Baby's background, she has many special needs.  She is fearful of people, noises, and objects, but not other dogs. She needs people who will understand her, care for her and give her lots of attention. It would be great if she could have another dog to run around and play with. Baby is a tri-colored Terrier mix, approximately 9 months old and super cute!  She is spayed and is up to date on her vaccines.  She is not a candidate for a rescue group because of her personality.  Please contact us if you are interested, or know someone who might be. (Contact information is at the end of this newsletter.)

Spring and Summer Food Drive


These items are always welcome:
Special Needs:  People are asking for dog shampoo. It can be mild, not medicated.
Dry Dog Food:  Any size bags, we use primarily the Purina Dog Chow, green bag (not the “natural”)
Canned Dog Food: The small size cans of Mighty Dog have become a favorite. The whole can will be used and no need for refrigeration.
Dry Cat Food:  Purina Friskies Seafood Sensation, any size bags, long time favorite.
Canned Cat Food:  Small size cans are loved by all.

Donations can be left at any of these locations:

Sisset's Home and 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., Gainesville, 32609 352-377-8591
All Cats Healthcare Clinic, 1034 NW 34th 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 on this blog.   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.