Angel’s Rest Animal Sanctuary to shutter thrift store in January

Angel’s Rest Animal Sanctuary (ARAS) has announced plans to close its thrift store at the end of January, citing its intent to expand pet-hospice critical care, rescue, foster, adoption and other social services as the reason.

Founded in 2009 as a hospice and sanctuary for homeless and sick dogs and cats, ARAS has developed a wide, regional and national reputation and is known for its selfless mission.

As the need for its animal services became greater, the Board of Directors and founders of ARAS decided to focus all of its resources on saving animals in need, rehabilitating as many as possible, and then matching them with loving families.

ARAS has recently aligned with Welcome House and other veterans groups in an effort to furnish pets to veterans, previously-homeless individuals, and the elderly. As part of this ground-breaking initiative, ARAS assumes all the logistical and financial responsibilities of having a pet. The lone requirement is that the recipients give the pet a loving home.

Additionally, ARAS will embark on community outreach to provide homeless people’s pets with much-needed supplies, blankets, food and minor medical care.

“We originally opened the thrift store as a means by which we could raise additional funds for the organization,” said ARAS Founder and President Perla Kinne. “And while we still rely heavily on donor, corporate and foundation involvement, with the impending termination of our current thrift-store sublease, we’re redirecting our resources back to our core mission of Saving Lives: One Companion Animal at a Time.

“The success of our expanded social programs will be directly related to the generous outpouring from our community.”

The thrift store, which opened in 2011, will not be accepting any more donations of merchandise beginning January 1, and will close permanently on January 31. The nonprofit rescue facility in Amelia continues to operate as it expands its services.

“Angel’s Rest has grown because our supporters value and recognize what we are trying to do,” said Kinne. “Our mission is and has been providing hospice/critical care to animals that are first in line for euthanasia due to their advance age or physical ailments. It has now been expanded to match as many rescued animals as we can with loving, forever homes which include those of the elderly, homebound, previously homeless and disabled.”

Kinne notes that rescuing pets in danger of euthanasia remains an enormous problem, but that strides are being made. According to a recent report by the ASPCA “an estimated 1.5 million companion animals are euthanized in U.S. animal shelters nationwide every year, a decrease from about 2.6 million in 2011.

Contributing to this reduction is an 18.5 percent increase in national adoptions.

An estimated 3.2 million shelter animals are adopted each year (1.6 million dogs and 1.6 million cats), up from 2.7 million adoptions in 2011.

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