June 2015
Homeplace & Community

Heart of Alabama: Save, Rescue, Adopt

Debbie Rappuhn playing fetch with Bella.  

Heart of Alabama: Save, Rescue, Adopt is a 501c3 non-profit organization with its own facility that takes abused, neglected and homeless dogs from the community and kill shelters. We formed our organization in 2009, and since then have saved over 3,200 animals. We started working out of the Florence-Lauderdale Shelter before we had our own facility, and dropped the kill rate there from 85 percent to 15 percent. In January 2013, we moved to our own facility and are a no-kill facility! We love what we do and, with just a handful of people, have saved more and more every day!

Our seven days a week start each morning with feeding all the animals, and cleaning their pens and playgrounds that are 75-by-20 all the way around the building where they play, run and swim in the pool all day long! While they play, we are doing laundry, washing dishes, giving vaccinations and wormers, and medicating any animal that needs treatment. We take them out one by one and take pictures and update our photos. Then we take care of any area around us that needs grass cutting, weed eating and other things like that. We never have enough hours in the day to finish it all! We have visitors bringing donations and bringing animals we have accepted, and then we start with all of their vaccines and wormer and weighing and pictures. It never ends, but it is the most rewarding work you will ever find!

  Bruce hands out treats.

We are trying to get grants to help us set up a food bank to help people needing assistance feeding their pets, and we are trying so very hard to start a low-cost spay/neuter program because, if this area does not get a handle on this problem, there will never be an end to the numbers of unwanted and neglected animals in our community. That is the No. 1 answer that can help this growing problem.

We run on volunteers and donations only. We do not get any help from the county or city, just wonderful people donating. We also work on grants from bigger companies to help with the things we want to start. This is difficult, but everyone who gives loves animals and wants us to save as many as we can. That is a great feeling!

The thing we are most proud of is that our place is a happy place. The animals have so much room to run and play, and so much love that this is home to them and they are happy. They have buddies to play with and so much love and care! A favorite time for them is when we go free running in the woods. To actually watch this is the most exciting thing I see. They are carefree and happy! The first thing people say when visiting is how happy the pets are. Yes, that makes us happy!

hasra would love to give you a tour of our facility to see what we do and you can donate if you would like.

Heart of Alabama: Save, Rescue, Adopt courtesy post page, Butch hasra page and our Thank You page are all on Facebook! Visit Hasra.org to donate!