Camille Isaacs takes a look at the selection of animals available at the shelter.
Allan Detrich Enlarge
WAUSEON - Their motto is: “Saving God's creatures four paws at a time.”
Nancy Romanczuk and Jody Goins started Animal House Rescue here almost a year ago to give unwanted dogs and cats another chance at a happy life.
The organization takes animals from about a dozen humane societies and pounds in Ohio, Michigan, and Pennsylvania. They target shelters where animals that are ill or have not been adopted within a certain period of time are put to sleep.
“The majority of animals we get are on euthanasia lists,” Ms. Romanczuk said.
Animal House Rescue recruited 10 foster homes that keep dogs until they can be adopted permanently. Ms. Romanczuk, Mrs. Goins, and one other volunteer provide foster homes for cats.
The foster home volunteers pay for food and supplies, while Animal House Rescue covers veterinary costs with money from donations and adoption fees.
Ms. Romanczuk said dogs spend an average of a week in their foster homes before being adopted, while cats may stay for several weeks.
“Within two weeks, they found homes for seven or eight animals we gave them. That's just great,” said Rachel Tennyson, shelter manager at the Lenawee County Humane Society in Adrian, Mich.
The Lenawee County Humane Society does not euthanize any of its animals, but Animal House Rescue takes dogs and cats that have lived there for several months to allow the humane society to accept new animals.
“They do a really good thing down there,” Ms. Tennyson said.
Animal House Rescue takes its foster animals to adoption events at malls and pet shops around the area almost every weekend.
The group also publicizes its animals on a Web site, www.animalhouserescue.petfinder.com.
Animal House Rescue charges adoption fees of $120 for puppies and small dogs, $100 for large dogs, and $65 for cats. All the animals are spayed or neutered and given necessary shots before they are put up for adoption.
Since they started, Animal House Rescue has found homes for about 35 cats and more than 500 dogs.
“They come out and take quite a few of our dogs,” Fulton County dog warden Peter Skeldon said. “They seem to be having good luck finding homes for them.”
Mrs. Goins said Animal House Rescue hopes to start a program to spay or neuter dogs in the county's pound at a discounted price. The group is negotiating with Total Pet Care in Maumee and Countryside Veterinary Clinic in Wauseon.
Both founders of Animal House Rescue run the program in addition to holding full-time jobs. Ms. Romanzcuk is an assistant director of a pre-school and Mrs. Goins works for a realty firm.
“We have long-term plans for Animal House Rescue,” Mrs. Goins said. “We aren't going anywhere.”