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Old 06-25-03, 09:19 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Before I start this post I want everyone to know that I'm not doing this to get free pets or anything else that would personaly benefit me in any way, except in the pleasure of helping the animals!!!
With that said, I am seriosly thinking of opening a chain of rescue/shelters and Foster homes called T.E.A.R.S. Texas Exotic Animal Rescue Shelter. The basic idea is that is a bunch of rescues, shelters, and exotic animal foster homes operating in and around texas all working together. I couldt keep that many animals maybe a few small snakes and lizards no lizards bigger then 2' and no snakes bigger then 8' and very few of that but that would be just me, We would have a "league"[referring to a previos post by a member] of shelters and such that would seriosly improve the life of many animals. Even though I couldt help much with the animals, I'm fairly good business man despite my age and one hell of a insprational speaker I've been told and won awards for so I could help out with the books and sponsors and fundraiser and such like that. Pending on the ADVISE I get from this site and some other things I will begin contacting animals shelters and rescues and trying to find very descent foster homes for the animals. I know there are many more little things and some big things to work out or I havet said here out of forgetfullness but feel free to ask any questions and I would love to answer them. I would love to play a signifant role in saving animals lives and I ask everyone to remeber that this will not only be me so I'm only getting in over my head a little bit.LOL, but I love a good challenge escpeccialy when the odds are against me. But so far I havet found any everyone I'v talk to has been really supportive and friendly, though might have just have been being nice. Which is why I have came to this, I have noticed that you people are VERY "Honest"!!! Thanks for the advice cant wait to hear and to answer any questions. Thganks again in advance!!!
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Old 06-25-03, 09:54 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Does no one care to post on the subject? Did something I say offend anyone? Because if it did it was not meant in anyway to. I would just really like to hear everyones advice. Really!
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Old 06-26-03, 09:06 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I think your idea is a great one! Doing rescues and adoptions of animals that are no longer wanted or mistreated is quite a job to undertake but from what you wrote in your post it sounds like your plans are going in the right direction

Doing such a project alone I think is an overwhelming task, to organize a group of people to do this together sounds like a smart idea to me.

I personally don't have any experience with rescues but some members here do and can give you more specific advice.

Good luck with your project

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Old 06-26-03, 09:21 AM   #4 (permalink)
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You do have a good idea. One that many of us do without it being "official". I have met some people on this site & one other that all keep in touch. If we hear of a rep in need ( or almost any animal, for that matter ) we let one another know & then the closest person picks it up & we get it to whoever is most experienced/set-up for it. Often these critters just 'foster' with us. Many people that call or bring me animals have just 'heard from someone else that I took theirs'. This leads to animals being dropped off at times without me even knowing (i.e. left on doorstep overnight). My best advice is give it a shot but be prepared. Once the word is out you could be swamped with various animals in all sorts of conditions. I only take aquatic turtles myself (supposedly) but have been given everything right up to an old 1/2 deaf & 1/2 blind pony;who,I'm pleased to say, lasted another 5 years on my neighbors farm & started all 3 of their daughters riding & now each girl has her own horse ! Not all rescues/fosters have a happy ending though, so be ready for that , too. I have had critters not even make it to the vet as they came in such bad shape. Having vets lined up is often the biggest hurdle to overcome. I recently lost one of my personal pets during a move as I was not able to get to the area & set up a vet ahead of time. The next biggest problem I have encountered is animals out of my province. I am just getting to know good rescuers in other provinces but transportation between us is a problem. Some critters aren't in good enough condition to ship & sometimes, sadly, it is just too expensive. One idea I had that I am working on implementing is making use of truckers. My uncle is a trucker & has a few of his own trucks & drivers. They are helping me set-up a little 'trucker network' to move around some critters. This will obviously be restricted to those well enough & those that can travel that way but it is a help & will leave more money for those that have to go by air. Another thing to keep in mind is that your foster homes must be prepared to be permanent homes , too , as some critters just never leave. Remember that it isn't a good idea to give them away when looking for permanent homes. An adoption fee , if not a sale price , will weed out those impulse buyers & those only interested in things that are 'free'. These are not good people for your animals, especially those with previous problems, as they rarely give proper care or keep the pets long term. You say you want to call your 'league' T.E.A.R.S. That name says 'exotics'. That is a very broad field from parrots to foxes to emus to llamas, etc. etc. & that is just some of what I have dealt with by being known as a "kind & caring animal lover". Your 'league' will need farmers & ranchers willing to help with barn & pasture space if you really are to succeed. Not to mention people with land upon which to set-up all the various types of hutches, cages, ponds, tanks, etc. etc. to house any possible kind of incoming feathered, furred or scaled friend. Then you must find feed stores willing to order the strange feeds you may need at a moments notice as you may not be able to get the critter to a foster home right away. I have a wonderful farm supplier that will have almost anything the next day (even camel milk for 2 orphaned foals at my friends stable, bless him). These foals were even considered exotics as their breed (forget what it was) is rare outside of "Old Europe". I also have a small zoo & a wildlife park within a couple hours drive from me that will help when they can (within reason). They have food, housing, vets, quarantine facilities, etc. etc. & have even kept some animals themselves permanently. Those places are HUGE helps if you can get them. Anyways, there is sooooo much to consider, plan & set-up that I could go on forever ! ( Except that my toddler isn't smelling very well at the moment. Pheeeew!!!! ). I'm sure I've given you at least a couple things to think about for now. Contact me if you want or if I may be of more help. Dar.
P.S. I forgot : licenses & restricted or protected animals & permits - check 'em out & get 'em !!!
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Old 06-26-03, 09:30 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Monkeys- I think you have a great idea there, and a cute name for your organization.

I run a reptile rescue in Albuquerque, New Mexico, (Samba's Reptile Rescue SambasReptileRescue@Hotmail.Com)
and let me tell you... it is NOT easy! First off, there are legal matters, you have to get your non-profit registered with the state (this is so you will be able to legally ask for donations, seek certain benefits from the government, and are easy to reference should someone need your assistance).

Secondly, most of the animals you will receive will be difficult to find homes for, and you'll get more then your fair share of sick reptiles. The most common and most difficult animals to place are probably iguanas, large pythons (Burmese, Retics, Red-Tailed Boas, etc.) You'll also get your share of animals who won't appreciate anything you do for them (rewarded with bites, whips, etc.) You have to find a herp vet (and when you are a recognized organization you may be able to find one who will provide discounts). You will need to know the husbandry of many different species, how to recognize medical emergencies, etc. You will also find it helpful to know how to assist or force feed an animal (this is something you WILL see, not possibly).

There is so much involved, so I would suggest you get to know how shelters and such work, learn about your native species (you will be working with those as well... and in TX you have some venemous snakes and Gilas there). There is an organization called the 'North Texas Giant Snake Rescue' (if I recall the name right). You should contact them for advice. These are nice folks who have fought hard for the privilage to rescue animals, and are aquaintences of mine.

I hope all this info helps, it's somewhat condensed, as I have limited time right now. If you have any questions, feel free to post them and I or someone else will do our best to help you. Good Luck!
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Old 06-26-03, 09:43 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I think you better be independently wealthy if you really pursue this. You will get very little funding, people will drop off burms by the dozen and you will not be able to place them. And the people getting reps from you will expect everything for free and will run it right back soon as they make it sick.
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Old 06-26-03, 11:01 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I think it is a good idea, as long as you are prepared for the very hard work and tedious time it may be before you can get it started! As long as you get a few other organizations and business helping you out, it should work out all right.
All the best of luck to you and I hope that your T.E.A.R.S (once going) helps lots of sick and abused animals.
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Old 06-27-03, 01:34 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I do think its a good idea, its a wonderful thing to try and help sick animals! but not at your age... unless you have a very steady and high income, there is no way you can come close to paying for the supplies, UV lights, cages, food, not to mention vet fees and medication.
Don't forget that you won't be able to keep 2 animals near each other until they've both been given a clean bill of health... that's a lot of room in your house to take up for jusst one sick animal!
Also, you mentioned the only thing you would take would be small lizards and a couple smallish snakes... unfortunately those rarely need rescuing. They are relatively easy to care for and dont take up much room, and so people dont often get rid of them just like that.
You'll most often see burms and retics, and green iguanas. Some torts, crocs, caimens, etc. All of these need a LOT of room... more than you could imagine! It isn't really fair to say "well, i can keep this rainbow boa, but not this burm" or "sure i can take this leopard gecko, but sorry idont have room for a green iguana". I know you arent in this to get free animals, but you are expecting to recieve animals most people dont just give away.
When you're making lots of money and on your own and established (not getting ready to move out or go to college as you will in a few years), have a wife that likes reptiles, then you could get to building a facility and taking in sick animals that really need rescuing - the burms and iggies. For now, though, I'd suggest you volounteer a other rescue agencies... that way you could provide homes for animals you CAN house (they sometimes get in smaller animals that you could take), and you'll be devoting your time to an already-established rescue center that will really appreciate your help (they need it!). Or even the humane society! Doing that, you'll pick up skills, legal tid bits, license info etc that you can later put to use when you can afford (in time and money) to start up a rescue center that can take in the animals that really need rescuing.
Oh, another thing that desperately needs doing is straightening out petstores! yarg. You could visit petstore in your area and try to improve the conditions in them. There are some great articles written up in these forums that will tel you the best way to go about making a difference. Even if the biggest change you can make is convincing the store to cary caresheets to give out with animals, you'll still have made a difference.

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Old 06-27-03, 01:55 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Okay, I do have several ranchers and farmers in my area and othe rplaces in texas that have said they could take some animals. I have a local feed store that can order me the food and a pet store that has also agreed to donate supplies. I am going to get hold of the north texan rescue and another in las cruses NM I have heard of. I am also going to try to contract the zoo in D/FtW and in abilene to ask of their help. ZOe, I said I could't take the large animals others in T.E.A.R.S. would be able to. I have alredy found many willing members just in my area. I, will charge an adotion fee of course but I will only charge as much a the animal is actually worth. Unlike some who ask $100.00 for a BP but I'm sure if they are willing to help the animal and take care of it they will pay the fee. I am trying thougfh to find a rep vet I live about two hours from lubok and am hoping to find one there but there are closer towns that are bigger then mine and I tink are sure to have a vets. One of which is MIdland TX if anyone knows where that is, ITs also where the presidient of the US was born and raised, though I'm not particualy proud of. But if anyone knows where that is couyld they tell me where a good vet around there may be. I cannot have a rescue wothout a rep vet as I'm dure everyone on here aggrees.
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Old 06-27-03, 02:21 PM   #10 (permalink)
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That's good to hear that you are going to organize this. Just be sure that the farmers and ranchers know what they are getting into. Some species can be sensitive and others dangerous. These people really do need experience and knowledge before YOU should let them take anything to foster. If something happens to one of them by animal you arranged to have there, (and since you are the head of this operation), you could be held accountable for numerous citations, possible medical bills, fines, etc. Make sure you think this through very carefully, and don't forget to register for non-profit status. As I said before, there are many benefits to doing this, and you will be 'legit'. I strongly encourage you to contact those reptile rescues for advice and assistance. These people have been rehabilitating and adopting out animals for many years, their experience could be priceless for you. Good luck, again, and keep us updated!
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