What was the Inspiration of Sol Dog Lodge?
The board members of Arizona Greyhound and Small Animal Fund came up with the idea of Sol Dog Lodge. They noticed that many families that had emergencies didn’t know what to do with their dogs. The board decided to extend their existing “Hearts at Ease” program for their own dogs and to include all dogs and the people who love them. This is how the “Capital Campaign” for Sol Dog Lodge came about.
The Sol Dog Lodge team, headed by the amazing Rachel Molyneux, demonstrated love, dedication, innovation, and mutual caring to support you and your dog(s) throughout this difficult year. The awesome team consists of Katherine Fisker, Shelley Harris, Terra Hockett, Chloe Stapley, Michael Trout and Nicole Whittington. Also, we gain great inner strength from our Sol Dog Lodge Board of Directors.
How Does Sol Dog Lodge Help Homeless Dogs?
The organization provides a gap that currently exists in the shelter system. They provide temporary respite services for dogs when there is a crisis in the human family. Often these dogs are given to local animal shelters. As a result, this disrupts the family unit, often permanently, and adds hundreds of dogs to the shelter population.
The Hearts at Ease program was developed in partnership with local social service agencies. The lodge will take in dogs temporarily to give much needed peace of mind to people who are in the hospital, rehab, or hospice. It will help those people affected by domestic violence and those who need behavioral heath care. Also, they will take in dogs for people living in senior living centers.
Heartfelt Hounds Program: The organization will match people with disabilities with a dog that can provide daily living help, emotional support, and residential therapy.
Community and Owner Education: Sol Dog Lodge will offer educational programs for kids and adults on pet wellness, socialization, behavioral cues, and how to have fun with their pets.
Services at the Sol Dog Lodge:
- Short and long term boarding
- Dog Day Camp
- Behavior modification and training
- Low-cost medical services
- Free spay/neuter clinics for low income clients
- Transportation services
- Educational Services
- Dog owner and family support
- Emergency foster and hospice services
- Meeting and workshop space
- Open Space Exercise and recreational area
- Specialty Products and gift retail
- Memorial garden and other tribute features
- Pond, walking paths, wildlife trail
The COVID Pandemic Effects on Our Efforts in 2020
This past year was unlike any other in our lifetimes. It was full of incredible challenges and changes, but also an abundance of resilience and spirit. The the wind beneath our wings was YOU–your love, flexibility, and loyalty. Each of you is truly a part of our Sol Dog Family. Your unwavering support and our wonderful clients and donors who stayed with us every step of the way, allowed us to continue to help community rescue and shelters during a trying year.
COVID had a profound effect on so many levels. Many families adopted new dogs and welcomed them into their family, we saw an increase in our Hearts at Ease program that helps people who need temporary care for their dogs due to illness, job loss, military deployment, domestic violence and other family emergencies, and finding and training service dogs for those who cannot afford one.
2020 saw positive changes and new ideas come to fruition.
We opened an additional training space in Marana (in northwest Tucson) 9665 N. Thornydale #140B.
Also, we transformed Day Camp into our new Paws and Learn Club (P.A.L. Club) that challenges your dog, both mentally and physically, so they go home balanced and tired after practicing important social skills.
For the fifth year in a row we won the Arizona Daily Star’s Reader’s Choice Award for Best Dog Day Care and Boarding! From 2020, we learned about our strengths and vulnerabilities, which have shaped our amazing future for 2021 and beyond. So, what does the future hold for Sol Dog Lodge? It holds innovation that will support current and new programs.
What Are the Goals of Sol Dog Lodge in 2021?
From 2020, we learned about our strengths and vulnerabilities, which have shaped our amazing future for 2021 and beyond. So, what does the future hold for Sol Dog Lodge? It holds innovation that will support current and new programs. Here is a peek into the future:
- Expand our training programs to include dog wellness and fitness training
- Bring grooming services to our Thornydale location
- Utilize the Thornydale location for rescues to stage meet and greets and other needs
- Lodging services will include more engaging programs tailored to your dog
- Expansion of our Hearts at Ease Service Dog training/placement,
- Canine Good Citizen (CGC) classes
- Support for the dogs of senior living in retirement communities
I know many of you supported our efforts to build our new four+-acre campus on Tangerine Road. The events of 2020 delayed our loan process and our fundraising efforts. The Town of Marana has supported us in the changes prompted by the pandemic.
Even though we lost time and momentum in 2020, it has inspired us to push forward harder in 2021 so we can realize the dream we have set out to accomplish: designed as an oasis for all dogs and the people who love them, the new campus will offer a comprehensive selection of services and programs from boarding to education to legacy care.
As we shine a light on the year ahead, we are incredibly grateful to our Sol Dog Team, rescue partners and clients. Our goal has been, and will continue to be, to keep dogs in their forever homes with the people who love them.
When the crisis is over, these people can be reunited with the dogs they love. There is a comfort knowing that their best friends will not be lost, abused, or euthanized.
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