The cat who walked in from the cold Special Story WORTH THE RISK Santa's Secret Wish
My Abandoned Angels!
JJ, My Rescue Dog
Home For Christmas
 Bookie & Mystic
Gone But Not Forgotten
Helping Hands "Kitten
Please add yours here
Please add yours here

The cat who walked in from the coldCats?!
No I always had a dog, which I loved dearly.
    No, being brought up in part of the country (farmer land) where cats were seen as vermin. Only useful to catch the little vermin (mice). 
      Do not misunderstand me but I did not know much about cats. I always was under the impression that dogs were the ultimate pets. They are... but they are not the only ones as I was soon to find out. 
      For some time I saw this white furry thing coming in and out of our garden. I noticed how beautiful he was, but, surely, I thought this cat must have an owner. He came in and out of our garden for several months, not being a nuisance at all.
      Then one lazy sunday afternoon I heard a cat sound in the back of the garden. I went over to see and there he was, looking very pityful. I noticed he was matted all over. It was obvious to me then that he had to be a stray. I made friends with him and soon he walked into our kitchen. There I noticed how thin he was. I decided there and then to adopt him. He must have thought the same because 3.5 years along the line he is still with me. 
      But that was almost not the case. 1.5 year ago, we had a problem with our fire place, an engineer came in to repair it. By that time he was with us for 1.5 year and he settled down a lot and was, and still is, friendly to people. He said hello to the engineer and walked off again. The next day I had this lady at the door and she was in tears. She showed me pictures of a cat and, yes, it was my cat in the pictures. She also informed me that he was a himalayan persian. ( I always thought he was a mixture). The engineer was her friend, and he told her he found one of her cats. What could I do, I asked her if she wanted him back. But she, wise woman as she was, said it would be better for him to stay with me because he looked really content and happy. 
      The story was that the cat ran off during moving house and they had been looking for him for 3 months. This meant that my cat had been straying for 8 months, poor thing. No wonder he was able to pluck a magpie out of the sky, (just one meter away from me). This was an amazing sight, but don't worry the magpie survived as rescue (me) was nearby. 
    Yes, he was very mistrusting and scared at the beginning. It needed some spade work but he is now the most loving, well behaved and trusting cat. Having a cat now as a pet and knowing how good pets they make I would like to have a stiff talk with those farmers who treat them like vermin. 
    But I have to go now, he is waiting for me at home. What a nice home coming!!!A.Bulter

Back to top

Special Story
This story is about Four very special dogs.
    One Golden Lab whom lost her home due to a new baby arrival.
      One Black Lab whom was tossed out because the owner didn't have the patience or time to deal with a puppy.
      A beautiful coal black lab whom we've enjoyed for four years now.To scared to bark when we first got her due to the abusive suffered by the previous owner. Now a warm loving, happy go luck pup whom we are so lucky to have entered our lives.
      Our last rescued dog we call Reginald ( Reggie) for short, was bought by the owner for $350.00 dollars. Reggie was bought for the purpose of hunting Coon's, when Reggie decided this isn't what he wanted to do with is life,the owner decided he needed to either shoot him or get rid of him some how.This is how Reggie a beautiful Pure Bred White Lab ended up at our house.
      The last dog I'm going to tell you about is a Golden Retriever named Dillion, not a rescued dog but the runt of the litter from my good friend. It was a great gift knowing that she intrusted me with one of her precious pups!
      Some people feel that animals have no feelings but I think they are sadly mistaken. Theres nothing so Loyal and Loving as a rescued dog!!!In short people always say they want pure bred dogs, and not a dog from the Shelter. All of the dogs I have are pure bred and three of the dogs I have came from unwanted homes, these are best animals, most loving due to the fact they are now loved, nurtured and given the respect they deserve for all they give to us! Shelter pets will give the most unconditional devotion to their families, I know I have three of them!!
Back to top

A number of years ago (1983-1987), I had the opportunity to play the character of Ronald McDonald for the McDonald's Corporation.  My marketplace covered most of Arizona and a portion of Southern California.
    One of our standard events was "Ronald Day."  One day each month, we visited as many of the community hospitals as possible, bringing a little happiness into a place where no one ever looks forward to going.

      I was very proud to be able to make a difference for children and adults who were experiencing some "down time."  The warmth and gratification I would receive stayed with me for weeks.  I loved the project, McDonald's loved the project, the kids and adults loved it and so did the nursing and hospital staffs.

    There were two restrictions placed on me during a visit.  First, I could not go anywhere in the hospital without McDonald's personnel (my handlers) as well as hospital personnel.  That way, if I were to walk into a room and frighten a child, there was someone there to address the issue immediately.  And second, I could not physically touch anyone within the hospital.  They did not want me transferring germs from one patient to another.  I understood why they had this "don't touch" rule, but I didn't like it.  I believe that touching is the most honest form of communication we will ever know.  Printed and spoken word can lie; it is impossible to ie with a warm hug.  Breaking either of these rules, I was told, meant I could lose my job.

    Toward the end of my fourth year of "Ronald Days," as I was heading down a hallway after a long day in grease paint and on my way home, I heard a little voice.  "Ronald, Ronald."

    I stopped.  The soft little voice was coming through a half-opened door.  I pushed the door open and saw a young boy, about five years old, lying in his dad's arms, hooked up to more medical equipment than I had ever seen. Mom was on the other side, along with Grandma, Grandpa and a nurse tending to the equipment.

    I knew by the feeling in the room that the situation was grave.  I asked the little boy his name--he told me it was Billy-- and I did a few simple magic tricks for him.  As I stepped back to say goodbye, I asked Billy if there was anything else I could do for him.  "Ronald, would you hold me?"

    Such a simple request.  But what ran through my mind was that if I touched him, I could lose my job.  So I told Billy I could not do that right now, but I suggested that he and I color a picture.  Upon completing a wonderful piece of art that we were both very proud of, Billy again asked me to hold him.  By this time my heart was screaming "yes!"  But my mind was screaming louder.  "No!  You are going to lose your job!"

    This second time that Billy asked me, I had to ponder why I could not grant the simple request of a little boy who probably would not be going home.  I asked myself why was I being logically and emotionally torn apart by someone I had never seen before and probably would never see again.

    "Hold me."  It was such a simple request, and yet... I searched for any reasonable response that would allow me to leave.  I could not come up with a single one.  It took me a moment to realize that in this situation,  losing my job may not be the disaster I feared.  Was losing my job the worst thing in the world?  Did I have enough self-belief that if I did lose my job, I would be able to pick up and start again?  The answer was a loud, bold affirming "Yes!"  I could pick up and start again.  So what was the risk?
    Just that if I lost my job, it probably would not be long before I would lose first my car, then my home...and to be honest with you, I really liked those things.  But I realized that at the end of my life, the car would have no value and neither would the house.  The only things that had steadfast value were experiences.  Once I reminded myself that the real reason I was there was to bring a little happiness to an unhappy environment, I realized that I really faced no risk at all...

    I sent Mom, Dad, Grandma and Grandpa out of the room, and my two McDonald's escorts out to the van.  The nurse tending the medical equipment stayed, but Billy asked her to stand and face the corner. Then I picked up this little wonder of a human being.  He was so frail and so scared. 

    We laughed and cried for 45 minutes, and talked about the things that worried him.  Billy was afraid that his little brother might get lost coming home from kindergarten next year, without Billy to show him the way.  He worried that his dog wouldn't get another bone because Billy had hidden the bones in the house before going back to the hospital, and now he couldn't remember where he put them. These are problems to a little boy who knows he is not going home.

     On my way out of the room, with tear-streaked makeup running down my neck, I gave Mom and Dad my real name and phone number (another automatic dismissal for Ronald McDonald, but I figured that I was gone and had  nothing to lose), and said if there was anything the McDonald's Corporation or I could do, to give me a call and consider it done.

     Less than 48 hours later, I received a phone call from Billy's mom. She informed me that Billy had passed away.  She and her husband simply wanted to thank me for making a difference in their little boy's life. Billy's mom told me that shortly after I left the room, Billy looked at her and said, "Momma, I don't care anymore if I see Santa this year because I was held by Ronald McDonald."

     Sometimes we must do what is right for the moment, regardless of the perceived risk.  Only experiences have value, and the one biggest reason people limit their experiences is because of the risk involved.  For the record, McDonald's did find out about Billy and me, but given the circumstances, permitted me to retain my job.  I continued as Ronald for another year before leaving the corporation to share the story of Billy and how important it is to take risks.

               -- by Jeff McMullen >>

Back to top

Santa's Secret Wish 
~by Betty Werth

On Christmas Eve, a young boy with light in his eyes

Looked deep into Santa's, to Santa's surprise
And said as he sat on Santa's broad knee,
"I want your secret.  Tell it to me."
He leaned up and whispered in Santa's good ear
"How do you do it, year after year?"

"I want to know how, as you travel about,
Giving gifts here and there, you never run out.
How is it, Dear Santa, that in your pack of toys
You have plenty for all of the world's girls and boys?
Stays so full, never empties, as you make your way
>From rooftop to rooftop, to homes large and small,
>From nation to nation, reaching them all?"

And Santa smiled kindly and said to the boy,
"Don't ask me hard questions.  Don't you want a toy?"
But the child shook his head, and Santa could see
That he needed the answer.  "Now listen to me,"
He told that small boy with the light in his eyes,
"My secret will make you sadder and wise.

"The truth is that my sack is magic.  Inside
It holds millions of toys for my Christmas Eve ride.
But although I do visit each girl and each boy
I don't always leave them a gaily wrapped toy.
Some homes are hungry, some homes are sad,
Some homes are desperate, some homes are bad.
Some homes are broken, and the children there grieve.
Those homes I visit, but what should I leave?

"My sleigh is filled with the happiest stuff,
But for homes where despair lives toys aren't enough.
So I tiptoe in, kiss each girl and boy,
And I pray with them that they'll be given the joy
Of the spirit of Christmas, the spirit that lives
In the heart of the dear child who gets not, but gives.

"If only God hears me and answers my prayer,
When I visit next year, what I will find there
Are homes filled with peace, and with giving, and love
And boys and girls gifted with light from above.
It's a very hard task, my smart little brother,
To give toys to some, and to give prayers to others.
But the prayers are the best gifts, the best gifts indeed,
For God has a way of meeting each need.

"That's part of the answer.  The rest, my dear youth,
Is that my sack is magic.  And that is the truth.
In my sack I carry on Christmas Eve day
More love than a Santa could e`er give away.
The sack never empties of love, or of joys
`Cause inside it are prayers, and hope.  Not just toys.
The more that I give, the fuller it seems,
Because giving is my way of fulfilling dreams.

"And do you know something?  You've got a sack, too.
It's as magic as mine, and it's inside of you.
It never gets empty, it's full from the start.
It's the center of lights, and love. It's your heart.
And if on this Christmas you want to help me,
Don't be so concerned with the gifts `neath your tree.
Open that sack called your heart, and share
Your joy, your friendship, your wealth, your care."

The light in the small boy's eyes was glowing.
"Thanks for your secret.  I've got to be going."
"Wait, little boy,"  Said Santa, "don't go.
Will you share?  Will you help?  Will you use what you know?"
And just for a moment the small boy stood still,
Touched his heart with his small hand and whispered,  "I will."

~by Betty Werth>>

Back to top

My Abandoned Angels
This story begins with Nikki a beautiful female black shepard-lab mix, well Nikki first belonged to my former neighbor, Whom of which had tied her up to a shed in the backyard on a very short leash, Anyways I started noticing that my neighbor was neglecting to feed Nikki sometimes two to three days in a row so I took it upon myself to start feeding her. 

Well when I first started feeding her it was last winter.Around the beginning of April, this year my neighbor decided to move. Well I just assumed that she would take Nikki with her but sadly that wasn't the case. Two days after (neighbor) moved I heard whining out back when I went to investigate here was Nikki, tied up to the back porch without food water or shelter. To top it all off she was very very much pregnant in fact she gave birth to six puppies on Good Friday.

Well I was totally distraught because I had absolutely no idea on what to do. So I put the whole family in my basement and called around till I finally found somebody who was willing to help me find homes for these wonderful puppies. So needless to say I found great homes for all of the pups and ended up keeping Nikki myself. Since my experience with Nikki I have taken it upon myself to help other homeless and abused animals in my neighborhood and immediate area I may not be able to help them all but I wont ever give up trying!!!!!

Back to top

JJ, My Rescue Dog


My name is Barbara. Last year about this time, I was living in my sister's basement in a make-shift apartment, and working full-time on the night shift. I had just moved from Illinois and a bad marriage not long before, and had to leave my beautiful collie, Duke, behind because I had no place for him. (He stayed with his 'daddy').

I went on an errand one day, and before I ever reached my destination, I stopped at a Petco store. They were having a 'pet adoption' day, and because I have always loved dogs, I wanted to just pet the animals.

I did so, and was about to leave when I heard a whiney, sort of 'pitiful' cry, followed by a happy little yelp. I turned in the sound of the doggie noises, and saw a pet carrier that I hadn't noticed before. I walked to the pet carrier, and saw a gorgeous black and white cocker spaniel with the biggest, saddest eyes I had ever seen, wagging everything from his ears back, and PLEADING with me to pet him.

I did....and my heart melted. I went to a phone, called my sister, and got very 'dubious' permission to bring a dog home. I then went through the necessary paper work, and rescued my angel.

I honestly think that JJ singled me out of all the people in that crowd that day, because he knew we belong together. I think he knew exactly what he was doing when he summoned me to that cage he was in. He has been my friend, companion, secret-keeper and most ardent supporter and admirer ever since the first minute I loaded him into a shopping cart in the pet store and loaded it up with food, toys, treats, leashes, and tennis balls. He has happily adjusted himself to MY schedule, and if he's not sleepy when I am, he guards me while I sleep. He watches out for me.

I found out after I adopted JJ that he has had extensive training by his one-time owner, who abandoned him in her back yard when she moved. JJ is a 'therapy' dog, having completed all the required training. We often visit nursing homes in the area, and it's amazing to watch him 'work'.

I recently moved to an apartment, and it was well worth the extra money required to find one that would also accomodate JJ. I would no more have left him behind than I could have left one of my kids. Thank God there are some apartment owners who allow people to keep their pets.

If you would like to visit JJ, he has his very own web page. The url is:

Thank you for letting me tell JJ's story. I hope even just one other
person might read it and decide to adopt a rescue dog instead of
patronizing a pet store.

Barbara Lutz

Back to top

   Home For Christmas

     In the spring of 1999, I had to give my 5 year old collie away. She would be  in our back yard, which of course is fenced in, whenever a big truck would go past, she would race around the fence leaving trenches where she had run. All she really wanted was to chase those trucks and have a little fun. My neighbors complained to the point of the police fining me $100. each  incident. I thought that I was giving her to some wonderful people that lived in the country. Wow, was I ever misled. 

  Almost a year later I got a call from someone that they were called to look at a couple of collies. The collies were supposed to be in pretty bad shape. Standing in mud and feces up to there bellies. No fresh or even bad water to drink, and an old bone to chew on, no food. 
  This friend called me with her plight because the name of the one collie was the same name as the collie I had had. Also my collie had two blue eyes. She went to pick the collies, a male and a female. I called my friend the day after Christmas to see if she had picked them up yet. She said yes and that I was welcome to come check them out , however she did not think that the female was mine at first because of the condition she was in, the male was a lot worse. The male was a very tall male with matts so thick he had to be almost completely shaved down. He was a walking skeleton but with all that and the horrible condition he was in, he was the happiest pup I had ever seen, it was like he knew his life was 100% better now and that he would spend the rest of his life being well cared for and loved. 
Anyway when I went into my friends barn to see if the female was mine, I almost died, it was her, it was my Flashy. I had shown my friend Flash's picture before we went to the barn and she said she didn't think it could be the same dog.The dog in 
the picture was so beautiful and well groomed. I ran to Flash and down on my knees I went and I threw my arms around her neck and started to cry. 
  My friend told me to take her home, she could tell that Flash belonged to me and so I did. I brought her home brushed her out, cut matts out of her, cut her long toenails, and then came the bath. The water was so black and the fleas were too numerous to count. You could tell by the smile on her face that she was loving every minute of this wonderful care. Flash has put on another 
fifteen pounds and is looking beautiful. She gets bathed every two weeks and brushed daily, her feet are kept trimmed and she knows that she is beautiful. 
  I thank God every day for bringing her back to me and I am very sorry that she ever had to go through the hell that she did.
Back to top

Animal Story

Bookie and Mystic

We have two cats in our lives, Bookie and Mystik.
Bookie adopted us the week before Thanksgiving. He was a stray cat that followed my boyfriend home. He was the smallest kitten I ever seen - with a tail longer than his entire body! He is all grey with just two tiny spots of white, one under his chin, the other on his belly. We cleaned him up and fed him, took him to the vet to got his shots and to get him neutered.

He is the most wonderful cat in the world. So loving and sweet. But he seemed lonely so this past April we went to our local SPCA to get him a friend. How difficult it is to go there and be able to only adopt one! There were so many beautiful cats and so many kittens. We spent almost an hour there playing with all of them. We finally decided on this tiny little furball with the biggest mouth there! We took him home and named him Mystik. He is part Siamese and weighed only 4lbs. We scheduled an appt. at the vet to get his shots and to neuter him. The Vet told us he was neutered - he then said he probably had his shots too, but there was no way for us to be sure. So he received his shots plus had to get dewormed and put on medicine for a cold.  Since the SPCA told us he was found on the streets, we  just assumed he was also born on the streets. I can't believe this little guy had a home at one time. How anyone could have put him out is beyond me. He is a little ball of love! He purrs constantly - even when he is at the Vet! 

I feel so blessed to have these two beautiful cats as part of our family. When I watch them playing or just sleeping in the sun it gives me so much joy. There is nothing in this world I wouldn't do for my two furry friends. 


Back to top
Gone But Not Forgotten

     I had never been a huge dog fan. Not that I didn't like them, I just had never been around them much before. We always had cats in our family when I was growing up. That all changed in March '04. I adopted a Golden Retriever from the shelter. I did not pick her - she picked me.
     She was the only dog that didn't bark at me as I searched for a new companion. Instead, she watched my every move. At that very moment, I knew my life would never be the same.
     I named her Cheyenne. She was very quiet, timid and like her name, shy. I could not wait to bring her home. She seemed equally happy to have a new family. Although I was a little nervous to introduce her to my 2 cats, they seemed to adapt to each other quite well. Although Ruby is the smallest of the bunch, she likes to act like a bully. Danger could care less, as long as his dish has food, he's happy. You have to understand, he is 20 lbs.
     Every day I would take Cheyenne for a walk and try to teach her to fetch, which is rather ironic since she was a RETRIEVER!! She enjoyed going for rides and swimming in the lake. We would stay up late at night on the weekend, watch old movies and sleep in the next morning. Everyone loved her and she loved them...children, adults, other animals. She was never very far from my side. I couldn't imagine life without her; if only I had known just how short that time would be.
     In the spring of 2005, she was diagnosed with Lyme's Disease and kidney infection. I was devastated; I felt like a "bad parent." She was prescribed anti-biotics and had to eat canned food specially formulated for kidney disorders. She was getting better; little did I know it would be temporary.
     Over the next few weeks, her Lyme's count had gone down and the infection was gone. Suddenly, she started being especially fincky with her food and losing weight. I brought her back to the vet only to learn that she had cancer, which had shut down her already-weakened kidneys and her time left with my family was very limited.
     I brought her home for one last nite. The next morning I had to make the hardest decision in my life. Although her pain would be over, mine had just begun. She was only 4 years old. I think it is safe to say that the 15 months we had together was the best time of my life...and hopefully hers, too. If I had a penny for every tear I shed for her, I would be rich. However, every moment I had with her was priceless.
     She is buried under the shade tree where she would sit for hours and watch the "chippies." I planted flowers near her and watch them grow - just like my love for her. Although she is gone, she is never very far from my heart...or mind. I love and miss you Cheyenne. RIP.

Helping Hands "Kitten"
Hi Rhinelander Animal Shelter:
I don't know if the actual  shelter staff is involved with the story part of your website but this story should be added to the site:
One Thursday a few weeks back, we, the Vilas County Animal Shelter staff, were on our way to Channel 12 news in Rhinelander to do our "Homeward Bound" spot. On our way back through we stopped in to see Karen and her staff. One of Karen's staff members was  trying to bottle feed a kitten when  we went in. A few days before, a woman had brought a cat and her 1 kitten into the Vilas County Animal Shelter. Our staff member offerred to take the kitten home to our mother cat. Now, three weeks later, the mother is doing well and the kittens are growing by leaps and bounds.
Amy Leet
VCAS Volunteer
"Yesterday was the past, tomorrow is the future, and today is a gift. THAT is why they call it the PRESENT."

If you have a special story to share about your rescued pet,,,,,,,
Please submit your story here!


Back to top