Meet Furry Hearts!

Let us introduce ourselves! Get to know our organization, our mission, and get answers to some of our FAQs.

Furry Hearts is a 501c3 organization based in Cedar County, a rural area in southwest Missouri.

Other than 2 municipal pounds, our county had NO organized rescue groups, shelters, or any other resources to assist stray, abandoned, or unwanted dogs in our community. Unless a dog was lucky enough to find an animal lover who had space for them to stay, they were likely to be shot, hit by cars, or to die of starvation. Not only is this devastating for the dog, there was also the risk of the dogs harming wildlife, livestock, pets, or even people.

Two very determined women with a goal began to try to help and as their identities became known, the calls increased. They gather up the dogs they can, provide medical care for those needing it, coordinate the placement of them in approved rescues all over the U.S. and arrange transport to the rescues. The effort has been successful in saving hundreds of dogs who otherwise would not have any help. In 2018, they obtained a 501c3 non profit status, which will make it easier to help even more dogs in need.

In 2018, this organization networked, placed, and transported 154 dogs to participating rescue organizations outside of our immediate area. As of June 30, 2019, the total number of animals helped was 155. This does not include the dogs currently in foster homes, or waiting for rescues to tag them. This is ONLY the animals that had completed the process and were successfully placed and transported to rescue organizations.

Why does Furry Hearts keep mentioning DOGS saved? Do they not help other animals? Furry Hearts is willing to do our best to assist any animal in need as time and resources permit. However, our primary focus is on dogs, simply because one small group of volunteers is not capable of being in 100 places at once. In 2019, we have assisted in cat rescue as well, with 27 of our successes being cats.

Why doesn’t Furry Hearts adopt directly to new owners? We know that there are AMAZING dog owners here in our area. We know many of them. We might even know that you are one of them. However, due to time, space, manpower, and financial resources, we do not typically do direct adoptions. We work to place our dogs in rescues outside of our community to make sure that the dogs are fully vetted and neutered, and that new homes are screened and follow up can occur. Cooperating with other rescue organizations that have more resources available lets us assist more dogs from our community. We are definitely not attempting to remove ALL dogs from our community, there are many dogs looking for homes that do not cross our organization’s path. If you are a local looking to add a dog to your home, please check local classified ads and Facebook groups, or tell your friends, neighbors, or vet that you are looking for a new friend. It won’t take long for you to find many dogs in our area that would love to be your new companion.

I called you about a stray dog, why can’t you immediately come get it?? Furry Hearts is completely volunteer staffed and donation funded. We do not have an official kennel set up, our dogs are all housed and cared for by volunteer fosters. Sadly, there are many more dogs in need than we have foster space for. We do our best to help every dog that we are asked to assist, but that doesn’t always happen instantaneously. If you have a dog that you need help with, please be prepared to be asked the following- Have you posted the dog online or asked your neighbors if they know who the owner is? Can you or one of your friends keep the dog safely contained for a few days to let us try to figure out how we can best help? There is a period of time that should be allowed for an owner to find and claim a dog that has been misplaced. If an effort has not been made to find the owner, we can get into serious legal trouble if we place it. Since we do not have extensive kennel spaces waiting for us to fill them, we may not be able to house dogs for the period of time needed.

Why aren’t “you people” doing more? We would love to be able to immediately pick up and care for every single dog in our community. Sadly, there are very few volunteers in our group, and way too many dogs who need our help. We rely on donations to cover vet bills, dog food, and transportation expenses, when donations are not sufficient, our leadership volunteers are faced with covering these costs out of their own pockets. If you would like for us to be able to help larger numbers of animals, please consider donating, or volunteering as a foster or a transporter.

To learn more about our organization, or how you can help, please feel free to contact us today.