Pet Tips ‘n’ Tales: Join the HEROS = Patient Pet Advocates


Eugene, Oregon’s Patient Pet Advocates (PPA) began with kindness, a leash and good intentions. Hospice nurse and a social worker, Thea and Ruth, were asked to take care of a dog after their patient’s death. One dog became many as fellow Hospice workers sought them out to aid patients who had no one to take care of their beloved pets. Their non-profit organization blossomed as demand escalated.

“Our mission is to assist those with terminal or life-altering medical conditions with their pet needs,” said Leah PPA’s executive director. “We take pride in finding loving homes for their special companion animals.”

To date, PPA has assisted over 300 animals with rehoming, transportation, grooming, walks, and supplies.

“The knowledge that we help relieve a client’s stressful situation keeps us going,” said Leah PPA’s current executive director. “Many times, our clients and their families tell us how relieved they are knowing the pets are safe.”

PPA recently provided Cooper a Bernese Mountain dog, free temporary foster care while his owner was hospitalized with COVID-19. He initially went to live at her mother’s home until she too caught Covid. He was then transported to a foster family giving the ladies peace of mind and time to regain strength.

NOTE: both women have recovered.

Volunteers visit veterinary clinics, senior living communities, medical offices, etc. leaving brochures educating people on PPA’s services.

“Short-term fosters arrive when a client cannot take care of their pet due to a temporary medical situation, recovery from surgery or medical treatments,” said Leah. “Fosters help in emergency situations when an owner passes away, and a pet must be removed immediately. We are always in need of foster volunteers.”

When another client’s cancer pain became unmanageable removing her ability to be independent, she turned to PPA for help. Worrying about her two best friends, Pomeranians Sophie and Santana, weighed heavily on her mind. She had no one to care for her long-time furry companions. She contacted PPA and they told her about the variety of their services. Ultimately, she surrendered her dogs, so that they could be placed in a new home.

While in a PPA foster’s home awaiting the perfect adoptive family, the former owner received updates on how ‘her friends’ were doing and was notified when they were adopted. She was relieved knowing about their new home and that her companions would receive excellent care for the rest of their lives. It helped lessen her stress, giving her time to think about decisions regarding her health.

Yes, her own future was uncertain, but she knew that her two best friends had a bright future ahead.

Our volunteers are thankful to help relieve a stressful family situation,” said Leah. “Many times, families say how relieved they are finding someone willing to help. Our organization gives them peace knowing their animals are being cared for in a way that they wanted. This is what we love to see and it’s the fuel to keep us going.”

TIPS

Volunteers are an integral part of all PPA operations, from office help, transportation, brochure distribution, to animal fostering. They welcome monetary and in-kind donations.

Give purpose to your life. PPA is looking for pet foster homes to provide them with time to heal or training before moving on to their permanent homes. Can you open your home to one of these special animals?

Contact [email protected]  or go online to patientpetadvocates.org. 

Comments from friends who proofread the stories: “What a great idea! I’m sending this article to friends,” Adrienne in Connecticut.

“After this article, hope there will be more of these PPAs around the country and world,” said Carla in Cottage Grove.

Tell us your pet memory, adventure or humorous event!

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Cottage Grove Humane Society for Neuter/Spay Assistance Program: 541-942-3130

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