Above, Ryan Porter and his daughter Emily of Hainesville play with a puppy at Reach Rescue in Mundelein. – Joanne Levine/ REACH Rescue
It’s tough enough being a puppy mill puppy. But it’s even worse being a puppy mill puppy born with a malfunctioning liver as a result of over breeding. Just ask Huey, an adorable six month old Cavapoo puppy (Cavalier spaniel/poodle mix) who—lucky for him—was rescued by REACH Rescue of Mundelein just in time.
Before then, this fuzzy little fella was passed from puppy mill, to dog broker, to a family that returned him when they realized he was sick, to a “free puppy” post on Craigslist, to Waukegan Animal Control. REACH Rescue—which routinely rescues dogs and cats from Waukegan as well as local and southern kill shelters—pulled Huey, knowing he’d require expensive surgery in order to survive.
“We knew we’d have to do some aggressive fundraising,” says REACH Rescue co-founder Cindy Geers. “But he is such a sweet puppy, and he deserved so much better. He had his surgery mid-May and he is doing wonderfully. Without it, he’d have died, but now he’ll be able to have a normal, healthy life.”
REACH Rescue—which routinely rescues dogs and cats from Waukegan as well as local and southern kill shelters—pulled Huey, knowing he’d require expensive surgery in order to survive.
To date, REACH has raised $5,700 of the more than $6,400 vet bill, one small donation at a time. For the volunteers at REACH, it’s all in a day’s work. REACH (Rescuing Each Animal for Caring Homes) Rescue, Inc. is a volunteer based not-for-profit 501 © (3) no-kill rescue group. They are a coalition of rescuers, foster home parents, vets, humane societies, humane investigators and shelters that advocate saving the lives of homeless animals.
Their mission is to rescues dogs and cats that are stray, abandoned, relinquished, abused, neglected, or have run out of time at public shelters and scheduled to be euthanized as a result of overpopulation. REACH attempts at all times to bring animals and people together.
“We knew we’d have to do some aggressive fundraising. He had his surgery mid-May and he is doing wonderfully. Without it, he’d have died, but now he’ll be able to have a normal, healthy life.” – Cindy Geers, co-founder of REACH Rescue
A unique aspect of REACH is the primary way they fund themselves.
Whiskers and Wags is 5000 square foot upscale resale furniture and accessories shop where 100% of the profits from the sale of gently used, donated items fund the life saving efforts and medical needs to maintain the rescue organization. Next door is a 2900 square foot adoption center where on Saturdays from noon – 4 p.m., many of the 40 volunteers bring their rescued foster animal. There, they meet members of the general public who may be interested in providing a permanent home for a dog or cat that has been evaluated as a suitable family pet. Almost unheard of in pet rescue circles, the average stay for a rescued pet is an amazing 17 days!
REACH was founded by Cindy Gears, Patti Bianco and Suzanne Solin and was incorporated in 2011. Their idea was that the furniture resale store would support the rescue. The women are hoping many more area residents will become aware of REACH when the new Jewel food store opens later in the year in their strip center.
Long Meadow Shopping Center is at Route 176 and Midlothian Road, 1126 West Maple in Mundelein. The resale shop is open from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. T-F and weekends until 5 p.m. www.REACHrescue.org