Sunday, January 24, 2016



Have you ever wondered what happens at Rikki’s Refuge during a snow storm?

First we have to plan ahead.  Think of the disaster if there was not enough people there to take care of the animals, to feed them, to give them fresh water, to take care of any who are sick. 

Everyone must arrive early in the morning if it’s a regular work day for them, or by noon on Friday if it was supposed to be a day off and they probably won’t be able to eave until Monday.   So be sure to bring sleeping bag and nums to share. Where else can you enjoy the storm as much as camping with the animals to make sure all is well. During the night and storm they will need waters filled frequently - ice, snow, no matter what, they must have fresh water ... like that stuff that isn't frozen... snow accumulation will need to be brushed off the roofs of their houses to prevent a heavy build up that could be disastrous, routine check ups to make sure everyone is well and no one has found a way to get into some kind of trouble, like a silly rooster gets out and goes up a tree, so bring your LONG extension ladders please. Routine breakfast, dinner, check ups, meds and cleaning in buildings will need to be done -- you will be exempt from mucking yards that are covered in snow .... but boy oh boy .... will you have fun cleaning up all that poo when the snow melts nuf to get to it !!!

Then we have the prep work, like filling all the beds with warm straw and stocking up on the nummy chow ..... YOU are what makes Rikki's awesome and make us able to prepare..... it cost $534 on Friday to fluff up all the straw beds for everyone big and small .... $800 to get in hay for everyone to eat during the snow storm that's coming .... $640 in cat food to last thru the storm ..... and we even bought nums for the others too !!!!   $120 in gasoline to run the generator in case of power being out .... and all kinds of other expenses .... Friday was a very expensive day at Rikki's ..... if you didn't need quite that much extra for the storm .... would you help us out just a bit ? .... Thank you

The sky is falling, the sky is falling .... Oh no says Robert the rooster who is hanging out on the deck and doesn't want to go in the house at chicken city ..... but he's not liking the wind that's whipping up and the piercing ice crystals coming down ... paws crossed no ice builds up on anything and breaks it .... the one supply we forgot and had to run out for after the snow started was cracked corn for the roosters, chickens, ducks, geese and emus ... we stuffed the vehicle full and had to come up with a little over $300 to get away !!!!    If you' had to skip a nice dinner out, a trip to the theater, or what ever cus of the snow .... would you consider donating just a buck or two of your savings to help us feed them birds ? Thank you so much, www.RikkisRefuge/FeedMe

It's cold and we need canned nums to build up fat ... never thought I'd hear mom say that !!!! Canned cat food of any kind for most of us, fancy feast for me and some of the picky eaters in the hospital, canned dog food for Duke and his friends, probios is desperate, we've been out for over a week now, it helps us all have good poop .... and a few other things we really need right help .... you can help pleaz???

Shop from my store or go in to amazon by clicking on their logo on my store and they'll give me a donation each time you do .... no cost to you !!

Prefer to buy elsewhere? You can ship to Rikki's Refuge, 10910 Barr Ln, Rapidan VA 22733.

Or you can help me figure out how to pay for a whole PALLET of kitty nums --- that is 202 cases .... at ONLY $6.84 a case .... sounds like a real bargain .... we were able to pick up a portion of the pallet that had come in on Friday in preparation for the storm ....  but we do have to get the whole $1,381.68 together by Wednesday if we’re going be able to get this special price!!!
if you'd like to chip in for a case ...

This has been the kind of weather that makes me so thankful for you wonderful folks who voted for us in the Toyota FOUR WHEEL DRIVE vehicle contest !!!!      It's doin good .... without you .... we'd just be stuck in the snow with no where to go and no way to get last minute supplies in !!!

Running for the hay truck .... $800 of hay just dropped off .... with all the grass covered with snow .... it's all hay and grain for breakfast, lunch and dinner .... and the midnight snack too !!!!   It's lots of snow and that means big bucks to get all the animals thru it safely and happily .... will you please help? .... Thank you ...  

Calvin is running to make sure he is first in line for hay and treats! THANK YOU for ensure that we have enough for Calvin and all his buddies here at Rikki's Refuge during this snow storm and for the

What’s all the fuss about ?  It’s lovely wet weather !!!

Kiki hoping this isn’t going to be just a tease of a storm ... let it snow let it snow let it snow !!!!

Night falls and snow keeps falling.

Sanctuary Manager, Doug, as well as our staffers Jessy, Shaun, Maddie, and Daniel bunk down in the Life Center for the night.  I doubt they miss the days when it was “find room to roll out a sleeping bag in the 9th Life Center with the critters” !!!

One person won’t get to sleep ..... 

Doug will be up all night making sure every single animal is safe and protected.    He’ll freshen supplies, make sure every one has fresh - unfrozen - water throughout the night, plow out areas where the snow is drifting high ......   it gets so windy and cold that he needs frequent breaks to go inside and thaw out his beard .... then it’s back to patrolling the property and keeping everyone safe.

It’s important to make sure the buildings have power all night .... and to be ready to fire up the generator if necessary. 

Really caring about the animals means 24 / 7 and it’s not weather related ... and it certainly doesn’t work around your schedule ... you have to work around the schedule the planet gives you ....   you can care all you want ... but if you’re not there making safety and protection happen ... well .... it just wouldn’t be worth us being there at all, now would it !!!!   Having animals is a serious commitment.  And a serious expense.  We’re a team, you and us !!  We make the commitment, you cover the expense !!  Together we make it happen !!!

Dawn breaks .......

Buildings are inspected for damage.

Thank goodness our new - and under construction - Medical Treatment room is standing .... it had not been in a stable state for a heavy snow load, roof half ripped off for remodeling ....  volunteer Mary spent several days before the storm shoring things up so we wouldn’t lose the room. 

First snow storm for our new Office Trailers.

Kiki says, well this IS better .... but could we get some SERIOUS snow here ?

Not to worry Kiki ....  it will keep snowing another 16 hours !!!

Our young lady, Chicken Little, got to experience her first snow. Suffice to say, she is not a fan. She froze in place for a minute, pecked at it once and then ran to the door and waited to be let back inside! She has remained there the entire afternoon.

We are able to help and care for Chicken Little because you have always cared about us!  Thank you for making sure that this little lady had enough food to get through the snowstorm and that she’ll have enough to get thru the winter ahead. www.RikkisRefuge/FeedMe   And even though she doesn't understand that she is one of them, she will share with her bird friends at Rikki's!

As Opie sat by the window and watched the snow fall ....  all day  .....

Watching this snow has me so worried .... everything is covered .... EVERYTHING ...... the door to the storage pantry has snow piled and piled up against it .... no one is digging it out .... what will happen when the food in here is gone .... I'm a stress eater ... and it's going fast .... and I look to the driveway beyond .... and it's impassable .... how will the supply trucks get thru .... what will happen when the food in here is gone .... I'm a stress eater ... and it's going fast .... I look on the news and I see the tractor trailers stuck on the roads .... they can't travel .... they can't come to restock the food .... what will happen when the food in here is gone .... I'm a stress eater ... and it's going fast .... this snow is so very stressful ..... how would I face the end .... slow starvation ... or freezing as I try to walk to the fancy feast store in snow over my head .... what will happen when the food in here is gone .... I'm a stress eater ... and it's going fast .... doesn't the US postal service promise to get thru snow or shine or something like that ? Oh so YOU can save me !!! just buy some nums in my store and da nice mail man will bring them to .... he likes to come visit me ... and I bet his jeep can make it down the driveway !!!! Love, Opie
PS if you prefer works too !! Thank you for keeping my belly full rain or shine, flurries or feetz of snow

Did we get any produce in today?  Or is it hay and grain AGAIN ?

And the snow and wind lasted all day Saturday and into the night .......   Shaun, Maddie, and Daniel hunkered down in the Life Center again for the night .... Jessy called for a ride out and her dad came and picked her up in a big truck ....  Doug stayed up on night patrol .....

And when the snow stopped in the night, Doug and Kiki made one last check that everyone was safe and sound and snug in bed and they finally got some sleep.

But not for long ....  sunrise on pristine white snow comes early ...

Someone commented on how lovely the oh so quiet and still snowy mornings are ...  but NOT here !!!

It’s far more intensely loud here than usual -- everybody -- just everybody oinking, cawing, crowing, mooing, bleating for breakfast .... usually it's only the meows and woofs while the others dine on grass and brush and bugs first thing in the morning !!!!

A peacocks view of a snowy morning at Rikki’s Refuge !!!

Soon the buildings would be teaming with folks coming to work ....  but no ....   nobody else showed up ....  leaving all the work for our heroes Doug, Shaun, Maddie, and Daniel ....

And Joe, who joined the team to help with the dig out.

Beauty loving the sunny snowy day !!

The ducks happy to play in the pools again .....

And the cows still mooing for that produce truck ....   sorry guys, I don’t think it’s going to make it today !!! 

As Sunday came to a close, Shaun, exhausted, left to head home. Doug, Daniel and Maddie, seriously dedicated to the animals, continued to bunk in to see that they were safe and sound and cared for until roads were clear and others could come to work. 

As Monday now dawns, bitterly cold, our true heroes, only three strong, Doug, Daniel and Maddie are prepared once again to take care of all the animals, despite the work load increasing as helpers drop out. 

Join me in giving these three a big hand !!!!! I will guess that by tomorrow, things will be getting more back to normal !! 

Everybody at Rikki's Refuge is all safe and sound ....  all cuz YOU make this DREAM called Rikki’s Refuge possible ... Thank you for your continued day to day support !!

And here’s a real easy way you can help fed the animals for FREE !!  VOTE ... tell everybody to vote every day ... it's really quick and easy ... help us win 5,000 meals !!!

If you can't come help shovel us out ..... will you send us some nums ??? .... this is hard work and we need nums to keep up the strength .... we're shoveling out so we can get in everyone's door or gate so they have fresh clean water and all the nums they can eat ....


Don’t forget to SAVE A LIFE TODAY  
Rikki’s Refuge
PO Box 1357
Orange VA 22960