The turn of the year is welcomed by most. It’s an opportunity for a fresh start and new resolutions- whether to lose those extra 20lbs you put on last year, to spend less time dabbling in electronics and more time enjoying the outdoors, or, in our case- to help our community go No-Kill! When the BWAR staff, volunteers, and board of directors recommitted to our founding mission to help our community end the senseless killing of orphaned animals, it was not done without serious consideration. Could this really be possible, or is it just easy to talk about, but never going to happen?
Well, my fellow animal loving friends, I am here today to tell you that I firmly believe that helping Asheville become a No Kill community is not only possible, but it will be a reality! Many of you know my personal story, and how and why I founded BWAR back in 2007. Our creation was one out of absolute necessity. I had always lived my life in a kind of a bubble- the bubble that makes you believe that when animals go to an “animal shelter”, they are taken care of, then placed into a loving home.
When I found out that the leading cause of death in healthy animals in our country was animal shelters killing these animals, I was appalled. Why didn’t I know this?
How could I be led to believe that our shelters were saving these animals and only euthanizing those that are truly suffering or dangerous? I soon found out that this portrayal of our nation’s animal shelters was, of course, intentional and not a coincidence. After all, the vast majority of people in this country love animals, and certainly don’t want to see them die. If they knew that shelter killing was the leading cause of death in healthy animals in our country, they would be up in arms.
I never planned on staying in Asheville. I have always had a little bit of gypsy blood in me- wandering the country as a traveling RN, and had thought that sweet ol’ Asheville would just be another notch under my belt before I moved on to somewhere else. Boy, was I wrong. This community was like no other community I had ever lived in. It sucked me in and I had fallen in love. And the animals needed me. They needed me, and they needed an organization like BWAR to help save them.
The same reason our new Executive Director, Paul Berry (at right), and his family moved here. He knew that Asheville was a community of people that cared about animals, cared about each other, and wanted to be a part of it. What we have here is real. What we do at BWAR, everyday, is real.
Fast forward 7 years from BWAR’s creation and we have a very aggressive, but attainable goal of helping our community becoming No Kill. Some would say it is too aggressive- but I say, as long as a single animal is losing his or her life in our community because of something that is amenable to medical care, surgery, time, rehabilitation or just some good ol’ TLC, it is too much.
Let us remember what the definition of euthanasia is “the act of humanely ending the life of an animal because it is irremediably suffering.”
Ending the life of the dog who spent his life on a chain, at the hands of humans, and has never known the soft touch of a kind hand, or the warmth of being inside a loving home is not ok. This dog, who needs to learn how to trust again, deserves to live. And so do the cats and dogs with medical issues, or those who are too old or too young for adoption, or too shy to be handled right now, or too traumatized from a life of abuse and neglect. And with our four point plan, dogs and cats like this will be given a second chance.
We hope that this compassionate community of people who love and care for each other, and love and care for the animals, will rally behind us and help us help our community go No Kill. Your help is needed now more than ever.
For the animals,
President and Founder
Brother Wolf Animal Rescue is a 501(c)(3) Tax Deductible Corporation | EIN: 20-8787719