Home for the Holidays – December Sanctuary Update

Hi Everyone!

Home for the holidays! It’s a common theme for this time of year. And it can bring a special sense of warmth and comfort. The concept of home is central to what Our Companions does, whether it’s finding homes, creating homes, or saving homes. That idea of a place of safety, security, comfort, and love is crucial to our lives and the lives of those furry friends we care for. But those ideas and concepts can take many different shapes at different times. I’d like to talk a bit about some of the ways that we at sanctuary think about home.

To Wavy Gravy, home is anywhere there is a comfy bed!

I often talk about how we work to provide a “home-like” space at the sanctuary for the dogs and cats to recover, heal, and thrive during their time with us. Much of that can be accomplished with the physical environment we’ve built. Giving the cats full rooms with couches, beds, and blankets, and giving the dogs individual spaces with comfortable crates and living rooms with comfortable furniture, all goes a long way to making the sanctuary a home for theses dogs and cats while they’re staying with us.

But even more than the physical characteristics of home, we work hard to implement the emotional aspects of home. The dogs and cats get time for both exercise and for quiet socialization. They get regular interaction with familiar faces, and even some special touches, like when the dogs go for field trips to local outdoor settings. While the sanctuary may never truly be home for the dogs and the cats, we do our best everyday to get as close as we can to a real home for them while they’re here.

Niles likes to call the carrier in Lindsey’s office home!
Found has a stray, this could be the best and only home Scout has ever had!
Ortega’s room has plenty of comfy beds for perfect naps!
Ricky says “Home is where a couch is!”

And while we often talk about providing a home for the animals, I feel like the Our Companions Sanctuary provides a bit of a “second home” for the people as well, both the staff and the volunteers. I’ve had several volunteers over the years tell me how coming to the sanctuary is the best part of their week. It’s a time for them to relax, enjoy the company of great people and animals, and feel the unconditional acceptance the dogs and cats give. Many volunteers who have maintained regular weekly visits over a number of years move about the place with a level of comfort that makes me smile. They often know where to find things better than I do.

Of course we also do our best to make the sanctuary a home for our staff as well. Many staff have commented that they didn’t even know a job like this was possible. It’s so fulfilling to see how connected the staff get with the dogs and cats, and how supportive they are of each other. Especially at this time of year, it’s fun to see the little holiday home touches the staff add to the cottages. And I like to think that the way we allow the pets to be who they are, while still helping them improve, may inspire all the people here to allow themselves and others to be who they are, while still looking toward doing better. It’s what home is all about.

Staff member, Courtney P, getting snuggles with Daisy Mae
Volunteer Mary explores the trails with Daisy!
Roary immediately made himself at home during his home visit with his new adopters
(He goes home next week!)

Ripley’s Corner Office

Hi Everyone!

Home is where the food bowl is! That’s how the saying goes, right? Sounds right to me. I would just like to take this opportunity to thank all of the volunteers for the dogs, the cats, and the facilities maintenance for making this place feel like home for me and all the other furry friends at the sanctuary. I’ve been here for a while now, but I’ve never gone a single day without a comfortable bed, a scratch on the head, and yes, several bowls full of food. All of that is thanks to your dedication to our mission. I’ve seen from my office window hurricanes, blizzards, and now a pandemic, but thanks to your support, I’ve never had to worry about having everything I need to be healthy and loved in this this temporary, or in my case, not-so-temporary, home.

Thanks so much!

And of Course…Adoptions!!

December was a quiet end to the year with adoptions. On the dog side, our tiny princess Daisy Mae went home, making room for boisterous boy Scout to join the gang. On the cat side, picture purrfect Sweet Potato found her way home just after Christmas.

Thank you all so much for whatever way you support us and our mission. We couldn’t do it without you.

Jon Phillips

Sanctuary Director

[email protected]