HAIRBALLS AND HAPPY TAILS
HAIRBALLS AND HAPPY TAILS
The newsletter of thanks from grateful animals
to their beloved rescuers brought to you by
to their beloved rescuers brought to you by
Duke Thomas Peabody and Vincent D. Cat
at a Time
portraits compliments of artist Wayne H. Morris
You can make Duke’s and Vincent’s job easier
We are the Happy Animals of Rikki’s Refuge
who so thank you for giving us the gift of our lives and the tools to build our Refuge. We represent all the animals, the world over, whose lives have been saved by kind and loving people just like you. Thank you for being an animal rescuer.
My friends, let’s bow our heads in memory of 9/11
Everyone, of every species, at Rikki's wants to thank the brave men and women of every species who help keep us free day after day. It’s a hard job and you put your life on the line for us. Thank you! Thank you everyone.
Meet and Greet Vincent at Dulles Expo Center
Saturday the 10th from 9 am - 5 pm and Sunday the 11th from 9 am - 4 pm
Get Your Photos with Vincent
Buy Christmas Ornaments Designed by the Animals
Rikki’s Wear T-Shirts and Sweat Shirts
Special Treats for your Pets
Catnip Candy’s Cat Sacs
Donna’s Doggy Pulls
Natural Organic Doggy Treats - vegetarian available
Kitty Care Items - Doggy too!
Vincent’s Favorite Pill Popper
Best Litter Scooper Ever
Watch Vincent compete in the Agility Trials
All this and MORE at
Find out WHY Vincent wants to be on the label?
Click on Vincent on the Label of Fancy Feast above, and be sure to vote EXCELLENT! You do that by clicking the cheezburger furthest to the right, the five cheezburger rating of excellent, you should see EXCELLENT when you hover over the right most cheezburger.
Tell ‘em what you think of Vincent and Lou Gato’s creation !!!!
Help Vincent tell Purina
Fancy Feast - NOT just for Fancy Cats !!!!
When Disaster Strikes
Will we be ready?
The earthquake in Mineral, Virginia was only a few miles away.
It was a beautiful day, everything was going smoothly, we had no clue what was about to happen. Suddenly a huge deep and loud growling sound erupted out of the earth. We were all shaken up. Real shaken up. The humans and the animals alike.
near the epicenter
and damage small
We are still being rattled by aftershocks. 27 times so far since the “big” one - we’ve been shook up. And the fear of what comes next has crept into our bones. more about the aftershocks
The building next door to Studio C, where Vincent had his Bissell photos taken, was damaged beyond repair. watch the Levi Building coming down.
Two of our employees had damage to their homes. Roads were blocked off by debris. Grocery stores closed. Post Offices closed.
What would we have done if our local grocery and feed stores had been damaged bad enough to be closed? With virtually no food, no supplies in reserve, living each day hand to mouth and hoping for enough donations to put food on the table ..... one day, just one day of not being able to get to the post office, to the bank, to the store ....... would mean certain disaster.
And then came Irene
Thankfully the refuge was spared. Moderate rain and heavy winds. Nothing like our friends 50 miles away in Richmond. Or in New York
Huge swaths from Virginia to Vermont were without power for over a week. Many of our facebook friends kept up until their cell phone batteries died, then we waited to hear that they and their pets were ok.
Grocery stores were closed. Where do you go to buy the days food for almost 1300 animals when trees are down, roads are closed, electricity is off, stores are closed? Where? What would we do?
Days Later Rain and Wind Whipped Through
Tearing Down Trees and Damaging Fences
Monday night an unexpected storm cam thru, dumping 3.4 inches of rain, causing huge rivulets of runoff, scouring out holes under fences and buildings, damaging the driveway. 50 + mph gusts of wind blew down trees, damaged fences, toppled climbing toys and shade covers.
The Need to Plan Ahead
These events of the last couple weeks have really driven home how urgent it is for us to plan ahead. Especially as we’re headed into winter with possible snow and ice storms coming.
It’s just not OK for us to always be in a state of need, a state where, if donations don’t come in one day we’re short on supplies, a state where we worry terribly every month .... will we make it .... or will this be the month we begin to slide down hill on the way to closing like so many other sanctuaries, shelters, rescues are doing each month.
Thankfully the animals don’t live in fear every day of not having enough to eat, not having enough for medical care, of the fear of having to close.
Summer is always tough with donors and volunteers on vacation, busy with their own lives, not enough left over for their regular donations. This summer has been particularly tough. We have huge bills waiting that are demanding payment.
We’ve barely made a dent in the Wildlife Legal Defense and Survey Fund. Wouldn’t it be a shame to lose the land and the lives of the animals we fought so hard for because we can’t pay the bills? A small fraction of the 1,000 people we’ve asked to contribute only $28 have been able to help. Is there any chance you can help today? Contribute Now
It costs $570 a day just to buy the food for all the animals. Close to 1,300 animals of 22 species. That’s a lot of eating. No one’s being overfed. We rarely have enough donations to have more than a day or two in stock. I can hardly dream of the comfort I’d feel if we had a two week supply on hand in case of disaster. Not just a two week supply to use up in two weeks. But to be able to always have that two week security blanket.
A two week Security Blanket for all the animals would cost $7,980. Do you have the means to survive two weeks without help? Without your daily help, we don’t. If you could spare even ONE DOLLAR to help us put that SECURITY BLANKET over the animals it would mean the world to us.
Only $6.14 would cover one animal with love and warmth for two weeks!
Please help the animals, if it’s possible for you to spare even a little.
Rikki’s Refuge, PO Box 1357, Orange VA 22733
Thank you, thank you so much for every cent you are able to spare to help the animals.
Tommi’s Last Chance
Tommi was a shy and socially awkward 8 month old puppy when she came to Rikki’s Refuge.
Dogs like Tommi rarely survive in the world of rescue. They’re the sad stories. The ones nobody could help. The ones never chosen. The ones left behind. The ones never loved. The ones left to die, to be put to death, and thrown out on the garbage heap.
Rikki’s Refuge is set apart from the rest because we exist to give dogs like Tommi another chance. At Rikki’s, our dogs don’t have to perform for adoptors, they don’t have to “prove” their worth, they don’t have to die when no one takes them home.
At Rikki’s, dogs like Tommi live out their natural lives in comfort, peace and happiness, loved every day by our staff and volunteers.
Judged only as a living being who deserves respect and life.
Tommi passed away Sunday morning after spending all but a few months of her 13 years, happy and loved at Rikki's Refuge.
She originally came as a group of four from the Fredericksburg SPCA, shy puppies, not able to be adopted. Until a week before her death she lead a very happy and healthy life. Though she rejected (wanted to eat) any roommate and had a kennel to herself, she seemed happy and enjoyed running and playing in her run and the playground.
Being half short lived giant doggy, St. Bernard, and half long lived smaller dog, beagle, 13 years was probably an expected average. She passed away from cancer.
Not one to remain idle, as soon as Lena returned from the burial, she said, "More doggies, please?"
Knowing what a struggle Beth's having at the Orange County Shelter in these times of little money and many animals being dumped and doing her darndest to remain no-kill --- and because we fully believe in working in our own backyard --- Lena's dreams were soon fulfilled.
Five new hounds are now happily playing at Rikki's. Our runs are huge, and though Tommi's personality necessitated she be the only occupant in her run, they are certainly large enough to save several lives at once.
The most personable of the gang is Moose, a great big huge adorable old bloodhound!! Just wait till you meet him.
All of these are candidates for adoption events. Mostly older hounds, but very lovable. One is younger and even has excellent training, but hates living indoors.
Some may even make the grade to mascot. I'd love to see Moose running around. With a set of antlers around Christmas time ......
Your SUPPORT is what make it possible for us to save dogs like Tommi and Moose! Thank you for SAVING LIVES!
What Sets Black Cats Apart?
Did you know that the black cat is the last to get adopted from shelters? Often they are not even put on display, but instead, sent straight to the euthanasia room?
Superstition. Fear. Culture. Lack of education.
At Rikki’s Refuge we believe all have a right to life, regardless of their color, their species or their age.
And so we set out to do something to bring awareness to the world, yes the entire world, about black cats.
Volunteer Wayne H. Morris (you’ve seen a lot of his art work at Rikki’s) began a social awareness campaign Black Cat Appreciation Day.
Click on the black cat to join the event!
In record time, this event on facebook had 35,000 followers and had been picked up worldwide! People all over the planet were featuring black cats for adoption, dispelling the myths about black cats, saving the lives of black cats.
Shelters the world over had special promotions on Black Cat Appreciation Day, free and low cost adoptions, free or low cost speuters.
The event was promoted on facebook, on the news and here’s Wayne H. Morris speaking about it on radio!!!
This Kitten Was Featured
on by Black Cat Appreciation as in desperate need of a home. She had “a short expiration” in a gassing shelter.
You pulled together to save her and four of her friends. Jenna drove most of the day and brought two black kitties and three others to Rikki’s Refuge, arriving in the dark of the night in the pouring rain, just so Rikki’s Refuge could save their little lives.
Sherry read about the rescue on Black Cat Appreciation, and came to Rikki’s that very night to adopt little black Jynx. She reports in, “Hi, Vincent figured I would let you know how Jynx is doing. He seems to be doing really well, he loves to talk, is very playful, and a little speed demon - he is a flash running all over the place. Say hi to all the other animals for us (a special hello to Velcro from Taylor)”
These kitties are safely at Rikki’s Refuge now and are awaiting the purrfect adoptive home.
All the kitties are much happier now - these photos were taken at the high-kill shelter they were in.
Mac and Cheese - a pair of sisters that will never be separated. Not after what they've been thru. And you'd agree with me if you saw them clinging together. Still a little on the wild side. In need of a loving, understanding home, where they will be cherished forever.
Big Boy, the most gorgeous guy around!!! Look at those tom cat jowls!!! All “fixed” up and ready to go! Big Boy does test positive for FIV. Do your research - he’ll make a great companion.
Mickey is just the absolute love bug. About a year and a half old, neutered male, double negative.
In addition to the five kitties rescued by Rikki’s Refuge thru this event, dozens of others were rescued by individuals and organizations across the globe.
Rikki’s Refuge, acting locally, teaching globally!!!
Thanks to your kind and generous DONATIONS !!!
There are 6 fun designs to choose from! Black Cat Appreciation Day! Get yours now! 100% of the profits go directly to Rikki's Refuge in Orange, VA to help save more kitties!
Click on your favorite design for details, or go to http://www.zazzle.com/katgal2005
Do You Prefer Dogs?
They get the same bad rap as black cats, and we’re working to help them too, click on the black dog to join the fight to save them.
You Ain’t Nothin’ But A Hound Dog
To many dogs like Navigator, being an old hound dog and being homeless is a recipe for not getting out of a shelter alive.
Lucky for Navigator and 40 dogs at a time, Rikki’s Refuge doesn’t care who your mom or your dad were, they just care that you need a home. Many of our dogs are old hounds, many no longer “any good” at hunting or breeding. Considered worthless. Dumped at pounds and shelters. Left to be put to death.
The lucky ones, like Navigator, come to Rikki’s. Here they learn what it’s like to be loved again. Or loved for the first time for many. Many spend the rest of their natural lives with us. A few are chosen for adoption.
Navigator was one of the double lucky. After three years at Rikki’s Refuge, Navigator was chosen as someone’s special doggy!!! He’ll be living happily after with volunteer Cindy.
Your donations are what makes it possible for us to care for dogs like Navigator for three long years until their forever home is found!!!
Could We Beat the Clock to Save Chiquita?
Chiquita is a lovely gentle ten year old girl. Loved by her family for 9 ½ years, she was foisted off on a friend when they moved. The friend didn’t really want Chiquita, but took her in so her owners didn’t worry about what was to become of her. Little did they know ......
Chiquita fell in love with the man of the household. And he with her. They were inseparable. But the lady of the house didn’t like that. She was jealous of the attention Chiquita got from HER man. She was mean to Chiquita. Yes, to an innocent, loving, gentle, little kitty.
It will take some time and love before Chiquita doesn’t cringe when you reach to pat her. Especially women.
The saddest thing in the world is to see an animal cringe fearing she’ll be hit again.
Never never again Chiquita.
Chiquita’s rescue was a difficult one. We’d asked the owners to keep her until Rikki’s Refuge had room available and while we looked for a new home. We found a foster in Norfolk and arrangements were made to pick her up on a Friday. It turned out to be Irene Weekend and our volunteer and friend in Norfolk had to evacuate with her pets and couldn’t make the trip to DC that day.
She asked if the owner, who’d been threatening repeatedly to kill poor Chiquita, would keep her until Tuesday. NO, was the instant reply. It was after 1 pm on Thursday and if that “beast” wasn’t out of her house by 6 pm that very day she’d kill her.
Impossible for our Norfolk person to make it to DC to save Chiquita. Would this poor animal be killed before Rikki’s could scramble and find someone else close enough to get to her in time?
NO, lucky for Chiquita, Martha was in the DC area and leapt in her car and rushed to save Chiquita. As soon as the call came in that Chiquita was safely in Martha’s car, the dozen of us working on saving Chiquita let out a deep sigh of relief!
Another kitty saved!!! Chiquita is waiting transportation to Michigan to her new forever home, where she will be loved and cherished for, we hope, another ten years!
From Vincent D. Cat
I need your help. Mom's working on getting us approved for International CFC and working on some other grants now too. We need YOUR testimony.
How do you see Rikki's Refuge benefiting HOOMANS?
How do you see Rikki's Refuge benefiting the PLANET?
Finish the sentence, "To ME Rikki's Refuge means ....."
Answer all three or just one. A few words. A sentence. A paragraph. A story. Tell me now!!!! Please email me Vincent@RikkisRefuge.org.
Good Safe Solid Reverse Mortgage
Remember Callie’s Cats? http://rikkisrefuge.blogspot.com/2011/08/callies-cats-need-help.html
Three cats desperately in need of a place to stay until November!!!
Thanks to Rikki’s Refuge, these kitties are safe and sound, being cared for by one of our friends!
One more way Rikki’s Refuge saves lives and provides Happy Tails!!!
are a special breed of humans, generous of spirit, full of empathy, perhaps a little prone to sentimentality, and with hearts as big as a cloudless sky ~ John Grogan
Looking for a job?
Orange County Animal Shelter (Virginia, right down the road from Rikki's) is hiring two part time positions 540-672-1124 if interested.
Rikki’s Refuge is hiring one full time position, 540-854-0870 x8 if interested.
Learn how Martha the Pig got HIS name?
Artist, composer and musician Leon Thompson of Leon's Auto Parts in Leon, Virginia (near Culpeper, best parts place around!) tells why he outbid everybody to win the Name that Pig contest!!!
Despite being a boar (boy pig) Martha loves her name and comes when called!!
F R I E N D S
(F)ight for you. (R)espect you. (I)nvolve you. (E)ncourage you. (N)eed you. (D)eserve you. (S)ave you.
YOU are my FRIENDS!!!!
I'm on my way to the Cat Show - I hope you are too!!!!
September 8, 2011
PS: Please help me, I need YOU to keep the Refuge Running.
The Fine Print
Rikki's Refuge in Orange County, Virginia, is a 367-acre, no-kill, all species, peaceful sanctuary supported solely by donations from kind and loving individuals just like you! We help farm animals, domestic animals, and wildlife. Over 1200 individuals of 22 different species now reside at Rikki's Refuge. Please continue to help us help the animals. To learn more about Rikki's Refuge go to http://www.rikkisrefuge.org/, http://www.rikkisrefuge.blogspot.com/, and http://www.flickr.com/photos/rikkis_refuge .
We survive on donations from kind and loving people, just like you. We live on a shoestring and make it on less than one dollar per day, per animal. So if you can spare a couple of bucks to buy a few meals, please go to http://www.paypal.com/ and use our email address of firstname.lastname@example.org . We do accept checks, money orders, cash and stuff, too! Thanks for your support. Rikki's Refuge, PO Box 1357, Orange VA 22960
Your donations directly support the Critters of Rikki’s Refuge. Rikki's Refuge is owned and operated by Life Unlimited of Virginia, Inc., an IRS 501(c)(3) not-for-profit Virginia Corporation. Federal Tax-ID 54-1911042. We hold membership in all Combined Federal Campaigns in Virginia #77674, Commonwealth of Virginia Campaign #3163, PetsMart Charities #1377, iGive, Benevolink, paypal.com (email@example.com), your donations provide direct support. A financial statement is available upon written request from the State Office of Consumer Affairs.