Dobby was one of the most pitiful cases Cathy Wood had ever seen. The tiny Dachshund puppy had been left in a box on the steps of the Athens, Georgia, animal control department. A terrible case of mange had left him hairless, and an accident left him minus a front leg. Dobby didn’t exactly look like he’d be adopted any time soon, or ever.
“So we took him right away,” says Cathy, the chairman of Circle of Friends Animal Society pet rescue. “Our mission is, we save the ones that are left behind.”
No Pet Is Passed Up
Circle of Friends Animal Society, or CoFAS for short, has made it their business to take the animals no one else might take. CoFAS gets them the medical care they need and gives them the love they deserve through a network of caring fosters and adoption programs. They must be doing something right: Since 2007, this small organization, based in Greensboro, Georgia, has rescued more than 5,600 animals.
“We couldn’t have done it without donations and the PetSmart Charities grant,” says Cathy. CoFAS has no shelter of its own; all the animals they rescue stay with fosters. Every weekend, they go to adoption events at PetSmart stores, hoping to find their new pet parents.
“We’re based in rural Georgia,” explains Cathy. “Even arranging for meetups is hard, because our fosters are spread out over seven counties. The adoption events we do at PetSmart stores gives people a place to meet the animals.”
PetSmart Charities Grant Funds Vital Work
The organization was started in 2007 by a group of friends who’d worked with other animal rescues and wanted to do more. “We pull animals whose hold time is up at the local shelters,” Cathy says. “Other organizations don’t want to put resources toward dogs that have heartworm, for example. But we know that with a little treatment, animals with heartworm, or maybe missing a leg, can live long, happy lives and be someone’s best friend.”
Donations and grant money from PetSmart Charities fund those treatments, as well as food, a spay/neuter and vetting program for people with financial challenges, and the occasional surprise expense.
“Our catmobile died!” says Cathy, speaking of CoFAS’s feline transport van. “We use that van every week to bring cats to adoption events, and we didn’t have the thousand dollars to repair it. Don’t you know, that was the day we got the PetSmart grant.”
Dobby Is Now Living the Life
With a lot of luck and dedication to saving the ones that might get left behind, Circle of Friends Animal Society keeps taking on needy cases like Dobby. “The shelter said, ‘You’re the only group we trust to take him,’” Cathy said, “so we did.”
They got him fixed up and posted his picture on Facebook. Nobody was really sure how it would go for a little dog missing a front leg…until they got a call from a woman who told Cathy she could relate to Dobby. “She was born with a malformed hand,” says Cathy. “Now Dobby’s got his own Facebook page and he’s living a fabulous life and being spoiled rotten.” All thanks to a Circle of Friends.