What Was Follow Your Heart Animal Rescue’s Inspiration?
Follow Your Heart Animal Rescue (FYH) was born within a sad moment in founder, Debbie Varner’s life when her mother, Farlene, passed away. She took her mother’s love of animals to heart and began saving the lives of animals in desperate need of a chance, a home, and medical care. As a result, the rescue has become a successful rescue organization today.
How Does Follow Your Heart Animal Rescue Help Homeless Animals?
Follow Your Heart Animal Rescue is a 501 (c) (3) organization with a simple mission that is to save animals. They are an all foster based rescue in Mesa, Arizona. By foster, we mean loving people who willingly take in these beautiful creatures and do their best to provide them with safety, security, and love. Currently, there are 10 unpaid board members, some of which have full time jobs, in addition to their services to the rescue.
Throughout their history, the rescue has saved thousands of dogs and other animals from euthanasia, many of them simply because of their breed, age, physical disabilities, and illnesses. Even though they take in puppies/dogs and other animals who are in good shape, the focus is on saving those who are most likely to be thrown away feeling abandoned and unloved. Finally, this organization was founded on the principle that all life is precious and should be given the chance to be loved, cherished, and cared for.
Follow Your Heart Animal Rescue’s mission is to reduce the number of homeless and euthanized pets by rescuing the ones whose lives and/or well-being are at risk. The rescue provides them with the basic needs and care then places them with loving families. Furthermore, one of the goals is to eliminate the stigma of “un-adoptable” brought on by breed, age, and physical condition.
The rescue works toward creating a world where every animal can enjoy a loving home. One goal is to provide a way for the public to find their perfect family addition. In order to fulfill this mission, Follow Your Heart engages in the following activities:
- Foster Program…Animals are rescued from shelters and placed in temporary foster homes to save them from being euthanized. During this time, animals will be provided with proper nutrition, shelter, and analysis to determine appropriate long term housing.
- Adoption Services…The organization works to find each animal that is rescued a forever home that is willing and able to make the long term commitment to a family pet.
- Public Education…The rescue provides education on responsible pet ownership in order to reduce abuse and neglect. Thousands of animals are killed each year due to these issues.
- Medical treatment…Animals rescued are provided proper medical treatment as needed through the Follow Your Heart Hospital.
What Are the Goals of Follow Your Heart Animal Rescue in 2021?
The goal of Follow Your Heart in the year ahead is to continue the foster program, adoption services, education program and providing medical services to those animals in need.
The rescue is adapting to the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic by adhering to national guidelines to protect the health and safety of its staff, the animals in its care, and the community. They have come up with a system to conduct adoptions with minimal person to person contact.
How Can the Public Help?
The best way the public can help is to adopt, donate, foster, and volunteer. Also, people can go to Facebook and Instagram where posts on the dogs up for adoption/foster are provided. Right now, the rescue is in desperate need of dog fosters.
Adoptions During the COVID-19 Pandemic
The animals up for adoption can be done on the online store. Paperwork and pick up will be by appointment. After you have adopted a dog/pup online you will receive an Email from the rescue explaining the pick up process. You can contact the rescue if you have questions.
Follow Your Heart Animal rescue is proud to think “outside the crate.” We will get through this pandemic together, as one world. Let’s love more, be kinder, and have more understanding and less judgment. We are the rescue that love built.
Normal Adopt Process: Go to the website to see the current list of available animals that will become available soon. The intake of animals is always changing, so be sure to check back regularly. All of the dogs are available at the rescue’s adoption events. Furthermore, some dogs are available through our Pop Up Program (new dogs and pups every Thursday at 7 pm) located at the Healthy Paws Market. The rescue also hold adoptions at PetSmart located at 857 N. Val Vista Dr. Ste 106 Gilbert, AZ 85234 from 12:00-4:30 pm Saturdays.
Even though the rescue asks for an adoption fee, they do not expect to recover veterinary and other expenses completely. All animals coming into rescue receive a full spectrum of vaccinations, are spayed/neutered, and any injuries or illnesses are treated (mange, distemper, kennel cough, urinary tract infections, old injuries, etc.).
New dogs will be added every Monday and Friday at 7:00 pm.
Donations are always welcome. They are tax deductible. You can make a one time donation or set up a recurring donation right on the website. All major credit cards and PayPal are accepted. Also, you can also donate to help owners care for pets via Venmo to Follow Your Heart Hospital using the words Donation-fyh.
The rescue often depend on fundraisers and on the generosity of supporters. Donations are tax deductible. You can also donate items from their wish list. Please visit the website for an up to date list.
Foster homes are the difference between life and death to an animal in need. One of the most important and rewarding jobs that an animal lover can have is to serve as a foster home for an animal before he or she is placed permanently in a loving home. Since Follow Your Heart Animal Rescue does not have a shelter facility, they rely on foster parents to care for rescued animals. Please consider joining the team.
If you have ever said, “It’s so sad, but there is nothing I can do,” that’s not true. On the contrary, you can do something without making a lifetime commitment or taking on additional financial responsibility. Becoming a foster parent can be challenging. At the same time it’s always rewarding.
The foster program provides you with the animal’s medical care, food/treats, bedding, grooming, and training. Also, throughout the year, FYH provides orientation training sessions. In addition, with the support and help of other volunteers and experienced fosters, you will be helping to save the life of an animal in need.
Please check out the “Needs a Foster“ page on the website.
Volunteer if you enjoy helping. Do you need volunteer hours for school or for your job? The rescue provides a great opportunity for you. Nothing beats the feeling of seeing an animal in need find his/her forever family. In fact, knowing that you have helped them on their way to a better life is an amazing accomplishment. To sum up, join our volunteer team!
Some benefits of volunteering are:
- Increase awareness to the plight of homeless animals and the animal rescue mission
- Learn through service
- Gain self-confidence
- Discover your strengths and talents
- Expand your social circle
- Prepare you for today’s workforce
Project Embrace and Place
Project Embrace and Place safely re-homes pets and can help provide veterinary care to deserving pet owners for their fur babies. Also, all animals in this program are brought up to date on the necessary veterinary care they need to be adopted responsibly. Finally, the program helps out in specific circumstances when good pet owners can’t provide the veterinary care their pets need.
Follow Your Heart Animal Hospital
Follow Your Heart Animal Hospital is a non-profit organization run by a team of skilled professionals who are guided by compassion, optimism, integrity and love. Therefore, they have an uncompromising desire to assist animals in need. They are committed to preventing unnecessary euthanasia regardless of the situation.
The hospital is an advocate for animals. As a result, the well being, happiness and health of animals is the driving force of their organization. The hospital empowers their clients, volunteers and community with knowledge through educational outreach in order to prevent animal disease and overpopulation. At the same time, they endeavor to improve the quality of life in the community through compassionate philanthropy.
Follow Your Heart Animal Hospital takes care of all your pet’s needs. The prices are reasonable and fair.
Our services include:
- Wellness Exams
- Sick Exams
- Dental Prophylaxis
- Humane Euthanasia
- Tigg Pen
Hours of operation: Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 8-6 and Tuesdays 10-5
Healthy Paws Market
Healthy Paws Market is a local business in Mesa, AZ. It is part of Follow Your Heart Animal Rescue. A portion of the sales gives back to other rescues to treat Parvo at Follow Your Heart Animal Hospital, which is located next door to the market.
The Healthy Paws Market is closed during this COVID-19 pandemic. Please follow the market’s Facebook and Instagram pages to stay up to date on changes or when the market re-opens.
The prices of the items they sell are comparable to their online competitors and much less than larger pet supply stores. Most importantly, when you make a purchase at Healthy Paws Market, you are helping give back to the community.
Healthy Paws Market strives to provide quality items for people and pets. Most of their companies they buy from donate to a variety of rescues and causes.
All your healthy pet needs (and more) in one place:
- Vast assortment of nutritious foods
- Great collection of pet supplies
- Veterinarian recommended CBD oils
- Unique finds for the pet lovers home
- Low cost vaccination clinics (coming soon)
Tues-Sat: 10am – 6pm Sun: 12pm-5pm
You can also buy items at the rescue’s online store.