The holidays are the perfect time to share a gift with pets in an animal shelter or rescue group. Jolene Heath, from Heath’s Haven Rescue, shared the 10 holiday gifts for your favorite shelter. It is full of ideas that will make life better for the animals in their care. Heath’s Haven is one of my favorite rescue groups for disabled dogs. The nonprofit organization rescues, rehabilitates and finds new homes for dogs with neurological and mobility problems.
You might be surprised to learn what they recommended for the list.
“This time of year can be a little difficult with the dogs being indoors more than usual and we are always looking for ways to keep them entertained,” said Jolene Heath. “Any kind of mentally stimulating toys are always great to have on hand. During the winter we do 8 loads of laundry every day because the dogs are indoors so practical items are appreciated too. Here are my recommendations for the perfect holiday dog gifts.”
Jolene’s 10 Holiday Gifts
- Stimulating dog puzzles
- Kong toys and bones
- Laundry detergent
- Washable mattress pads
- Cozy blankets and beds
- Leashes and collars
- Healthy treats and biscuits
- Toys – squeaky, plush and chewable
- Gift cards
Heath’s Haven also suggests that pet lovers who shop on Amazon check out the Amazon Smile program where people can designate their favorite charity to receive to receive 0.5% of their online purchase.
The story behind Heath’s Haven Rescue
Heath’s Haven started in October 2010 after Jolene and her husband adopted a disabled puppy named Phoenix. At 6 weeks-old Phoenix had been abandoned in a box outside a pet store. The temperature was 105 degrees that day. Little Phoenix was found unconscious, severely dehydrated, and unable to her hind limbs. A rescue group took her in and then her sent her to the University of Missouri School of Veterinary Medicine for an evaluation. A complete workup was performed on Phoenix, but they could not diagnose why her rear limbs were weak.
Phoenix was sent to live with a foster family in hopes that she could one day be adopted. Jolene saw Phoenix’s picture on a website and knew she had to bring her home.
The couple bought a dog wheelchair for Phoenix and she quickly adapted to running in it and chasing the family’s three other dogs. Jolene took the puppy for further medical evaluations, but like the first tests, the diagnosis came back inconclusive. The veterinarians were only able to confirm that Phoenix was not in any pain. They were not confident she would live long.
Phoenix proved her doctors wrong. She continued to live a long and happy life. The experience spurred Jolene to save other dogs with neurological and mobility problems. She founded Heath’s Haven Rescue which takes in dogs from across the USA and around the world. Every dog receives a complete medical evaluation and the treatment and rehabilitation they need for their particular health problem. And eventually each dog is adopted into a special family they can call their own…forever.