Spotlight Forrest & Jenny’s Place

posted April 15th, 2010 by
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By Carol Arkison
AUTHOR OF THE SADIE MAE BAIRD BOOK SERIES

Forrest and Jenny, two neurologically challenged cats, inspired the name of this little-known non-profit organization.
Forrest was a feline version of a childhood “Forrest Gump” and Jenny, well she was just Jenny. Under “normal” circumstances, Forrest and Jenny would have likely been euthanized but someone with compassion intervened and adopted Forrest and Jenny, who turned out to be very affectionate and loving companions.

Forrest and Jenny’s Place specializes in the rescue, rehabilitation, and adoption of special needs animals. Karen Luhring, the organization’s director and a 20-year veteran of the SPCA, emphasizes that literally thousands of animals are euthanized annually in Tulsa (as well as nearly every other city across America) because they have minor physical defects and/or treatable conditions. “We want to give these animals the opportunity to have quality lives in caring home environments,” Karen states. The organization offers discounted spays and neuters through a partnership with Acadia Veterinary Hospital, discounted vaccinations, critical care to injured animals, and is working diligently to educate the public and directly address the pet overpopulation problem.

Aggressive spay/neuter programs could cut the number of animals euthanized by half in less than five years.

Having no shelter building, Forrest and Jenny’s (F&J’s) depends upon a volunteer base of foster parents to assist in the care and rehabilitation of the animals rescued. F&J’s keeps their adoption fees low to allow people of all socio-economic levels the opportunity to enjoy pet family members. Lots of animals come to F&J’s from local shelters, many with amputations and respiratory problems, and frequently pets from the elderly arrive with particularly challenging grief and mourning issues, taking up to three months to rehabilitate. The animals move through F&J’s care quickly but often require extra love, devotion and attention of foster parents.

F&J’s “Bones and Fishes” feeding program is a particularly special project. Donated food is distributed to elderly and low-income individuals who are unable to afford the cost of pet food. Currently, 30 families are enrolled, again allowing those less fortunate to enjoy the benefits and delights of pet ownership. The organization also provides temporary foster care for the pets of cancer patients and the elderly who need care for their animals while hospitalized and/or recovering from illness.

Like so many other organizations who are struggling in our challenged economy, Forrest and Jenny’s need donations of time, money and pet food (pick-up can be arranged). All donations are 100% tax deductible and checks can be made payable to “Forrest and Jenny’s Place, Inc.” F&J’s also needs volunteers to assist in cleaning and maintenance of cages at the adoption center in PETSMART┬« on 41st Street, to assist with adoption events and fundraisers, and participation in the foster care program. To learn more about F&J’s, please visit their website at www.forrestandjennysplace.org or call Karen Luhring at (918) 836-9069 or (918) 853-6386. Forrest and Jenny’s is the “little train that could” within the animal rescue community.

Their multi-layered mission is well depicted in the logo, again inspired by cats and dogs who found refuge in the services afforded them by Forrest and Jenny’s Place. The bus driver, Joxer, a kitty who had been hit by a car was rehabilitated and adopted out to a forever home. The blind cat, “Stevie Wonder,” was kept in foster care until he was adopted by an apartment complex as the “office pet.” The little dog, Poppy, was born with deformed very-short front legs and the smoking cat, Picabo (pronounced peek-aboo and fondly named after Picabo Street, the alpine skier), was severely burned and dumped at the shelter. Each of these animals and dozens of others owe their life, love and vitality to F&J’s.

Please consider contributing to the wonderful work of Forrest and Jenny’s Place.

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