A letter from Azure Davis, Founder & Executive Director

12 days ago, I put out an urgent plea for help with 5 puppies (what ended up being 6 puppies) who needed placement.
They had arrived at our rescue office in Princeton, and the gentleman who brought them in needed help. We were grateful that he asked for our help, knowing that he could no longer give them the care they deserved. These puppies, 4.5 months old and already 40lbs, were timid, fearful, and didn’t know how to be “a puppy.”
Their living conditions and the environment where they were raised didn’t allow them the space they needed for exercise or the socialization a puppy needs. We noticed a couple of them would spin in circles continuously when excited, most likely because this is how they would get their energy out in their previous, smaller space. We are not set up to house dogs on-site, and unfortunately, we had nowhere to place them at the time, as we only have a few kennel runs at our office to house the animals who come in for surgery days. They aren’t intended for long stays, and we don’t have staff to check in on them after hours or over the weekend.
We didn’t want to say no to these puppies in need, but we had limited resources at the time. It put us in a really tough situation, but we decided to take the chance at taking them in and hoping the animal lovers in the community would rally together with us and find placement.
Needless to say, it was a success! Thanks to so many of you sharing the story, we were able to find fosters, AND even some adopters, for all of them within a day! Even after 14 years of running the rescue, I continue to be blown away by how amazing our community is. At Ruff Start, we don’t always have all of the answers or the resources, but together, we can, and on this day, we did! Thank you for making this possible!
I wanted to share some updates and the impact that was made by everyone coming together. Here are all six: Diego, Mario, Peach, Zumi, Kirby, and Brutis, living their best lives, coming out of their shells, snuggling with their humans, learning to trust, and being treated the way they should be. They will never know what it’s like to be neglected again.
To continue this type of work and continue to be a resource people and pets can rely on, we need donations. On average, each animal that comes into rescue costs around $350 between vet care and supplies. That is $2,100 just for these six puppies. On average, we rescue around 250-300 animals each month. That’s nearly $100,000 each month that we need to raise to continue this important, lifesaving work. We do not receive state or federal funding, so our entire mission rides on the compassionate, generous, and incredible individual donations that we receive from our amazing community.
We understand this is a huge ask, but we see the love and passion we all carry together to ensure these animals live full lives. We saw it last Monday with these six puppies, and we continue to see it every single day by working together. I am hoping this plea will reach MORE animal lovers and, together, raise more donations to continue this incredible work that I know we can accomplish together. Every dollar adds up. Thank you for your support and for believing in RSR!
-Azure Davis, Ruff Start Rescue Founder & Executive Director