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McDonald County rescue seeking foster homes for rescued animals

"I'm your Huckleberry Rescue" foster homes full

Mcdonald County Shelter Foster
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Mcdonald County Shelter Foster

MCDONALD COUNTY, Mo. - Toni Fitzpatrick has been fostering animals for a little more than a year for I'm your Huckleberry Rescue. 

Fitzpatrick says, "I started out with five dogs that their human died, so I did hospice with five. And then now I'm working my way into having a litter."

Fitzpatrick is also the Vice President of the rescue, as well as the foster coordinator.

Right now, she has her hands full with a litter of nine 22 day old puppies and their mom. 

"Puppies in the first four weeks are pretty easy because momma does everything. It's the next four weeks that they're very time consuming,' Fitzpatrick jokes. 

For the past two years, I'm your Huckleberry Rescue has worked to reduce the stray animal population in McDonald county and parts of northwest Arkansas.

Beverley Bartley, President of I'm you Huckleberry Rescue says they started the effort out of necessity.

"McDonald county is particularly bad. Unfortunately there's no animal control in the area.. so that seems to have fallen to us," she explains.

The rescue is made up entirely of volunteers who pay for everything out of pocket.

In the last twelve months, they've rescued more than 200 dogs that have either been dumped, or were rescued from neglectful situations. 

Normally, Bartley will take rescued dogs in for a while to determine their demeanor, then they are taken to a foster until they can be plased in a new forever home, or taken to a no kill shelter in Kansas City, Colorado, or even California. 

But to do that, they rely on volunteers to foster animals because they don't have a permanent shelter of their own.

Fitzpatrick says "I think the last count was ten dogs that are waiting to come in. We can't even have anybody come in and help anybody right now, because we don't have fosters."

Bartley says, "At this moment, we desperately need foster homes. We need people to step up and take these animals into their homes if they can."

So, while the litter of puppies are in a good home.. the rescue needs more residents to open their homes to other pups like them. 

Fitzpatrick says donations are also a big, and costant, need. 

By the time they feed a dog, and get it vaccinated and fixed, they put around 130 dollars into the dog -- not including the cost to transport them to another shelter. 

But their adoption fee is only 100 dollars.

Fitzpatrick explains, "The donations help us be able to feed them, give them vaccinations, get them fixed. And then beds, toys.. whatever we can provide to the fosters to make sure the foster doesn't have any kind of financial obligation. We're always happy to accept whatever you can give."

Officials at the rescue urge people to always spay and neuter their pets to keep stray pet populations down and lower the need for what they do.

If you want to be a foster, or even adopt a dog from the rescue, just follow this link

I'm Your Huckleberry Rescue Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/HuckleberryRescue/

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