Happy Tails indeed

Happy Tails indeed

Event raises record-breaking $170,000 for C.A.R.E.4Paws

By: Santa Barbara New-Press, Annika Bahnsen

Photos by Kenneth Song / News-Press Photos

Published May 23, 2023

C.A.R.E.4Paws — a Santa Barbara County nonprofit that keeps animals out of shelters and improves quality of life for pet families in need — hosted its Happy Tails Celebration and Fundraiser Sunday at the Music Academy of the West.

The Montecito event highlighted the work that the organization has been doing in the community and features personal stories and memories from some of the pet owners they help.

The event featured guitarist Michael Holland, who provided background music for the crowd to enjoy. Additionally, there were lots of food and drink to partake in, including local wine from La Lieff Wines, craft beer by Rincon Brewery, as well as C.A.R.E.4Paws’ featured “meowgaritas.”

The main fundraising portion of the night was a live auction where attendees could bid for various baskets, experiences and fun animal-related items. Specifically, some items offered were animal portraits, a VIP tour with the National Disaster Search Dog Foundation or a flight on a search mission finding lost dogs. Donations were often tripled, which gave multiple buyers the opportunity to experience something they wanted.

The fundraiser raised close to $170,000, a new event record, according to Isabelle Gullö, C.A.R.E.4Paws’ co-founder and executive director. She told the News-Press that $100,000 was raised directly at the event and the rest was raised through sponsorships.

There also was a matching grant from the Sparacio Foundation, and the organization matched $50,000 during the auction event. This helped encourage those at the event to donate and bid.

According to Ms. Gullö, the money will go directly back to the organization, “helping thousands of pet families in need in the Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo areas.”

Recently, C.A.R.E.4Paws expanded to San Luis Obispo with its Mobile Clinic, which allows more families to be assisted on-the-go with whatever pet needs they may have. The money raised will help support this area of the organization.

“Thanks to the wonderful support for C.A.R.E.4Paws’ Happy Tails event, we will be able to help thousands of pet families in need, keeping animals healthy and with the people who love them!” exclaimed Ms. Gullö.

The event also featured multiple people talking about their “Happy Tails,” sharing how the organization has positively impacted their lives. “It is really heartwarming,” said Ms. Gullö.

The event was a success, and Ms. Gullö alongside the entire organization is thankful for the support.

If you would like more information on C.A.R.E.4Paws, visit care4paws.org.

email: abahnsen@newspress.com

PetSmart Charities donates to improve access to veterinary care through C.A.R.E.4Paws

PetSmart Charities donates to improve access to veterinary care through C.A.R.E.4Paws

By: KEYT Andrew Gilles

Published May 16, 2023

OCEANO, Calif. – C.A.R.E.4Paws has received a grant from PetSmart Charities for $120,000 to address gaps in veterinary access in Oceano.

“Oceano is a community that has chronically been without access to pet care of any kind,” said Isabelle Gullö, Executive Director and co-founder of C.A.R.E.4Paws, a nonprofit organization that assists pet families lacking resources in Santa Barbara and SLO Counties. “A large percentage of animals entering SLO county shelters come from Oceano and similar communities, and many of these pets are relinquished due to a lack of resources. The PetSmart Charities funding will allow C.A.R.E.4Paws to provide needed veterinary services through our mobile units to improve quality of life for Oceano pet families and keep animals in their homes.”

In 2023, PetSmart Charities announced a $100 million commitment over the next five years towards improving veterinary access for historically excluded communities.

man holding a family pet at the C.A.R.E.4Paws mobile clinic

“Most people today consider pets family, yet 50 million pets in the US struggle to access even basic preventative care such as spay/neuter procedures, vaccinations and annual exams,” said Kate Atema, Director of community grants and initiatives at PetSmart Charities. “While this issue affects families in nearly every community, those who have been historically excluded from human social services are most in need of pet services, too. We’re proud to support this innovative approach that meets the unique needs identified by those living in the communities themselves.”

On Jul. 9, C.A.R.E.4Paws will launch its first free Pet Wellness Clinic at Oceano’s Parks and Recreation Department on 1655 Front Street.

“The bond between pets and humans is an incredible thing,” said Gullö. “C.A.R.E.4Paws’ goal is to keep pets healthy and with their families for life by ensuring that Oceano’s community members have continuous access to veterinary services. We are truly grateful to PetSmart Charities for this opportunity.”

For more information about C.A.R.E.4Paws visit care4paws.org. For clinic questions contact info@care4paws or call 805-968-2273.

Ava Vasquez’s successful foodraiser!

Ava Vasquez’s successful foodraiser!

Our volunteer Ava Vasquez did it again—and some! 👏🥳 Just like last year in April, Ava coordinated a weeklong pet food drive at her former elementary school, Santa Barbara’s Vieja Valley Elementary. She raised more than 800lbs of food with the help of the school’s student council, which is double the amount from 2022! We thank Ava, students, parents and teachers at Vieja Valley Elementary for the incredible support for pet families in need. We love the video by WinkFace Photography! #care4pawsdrive

High school student, Ava Vasquez, hosts Pet Food Drive for C.A.R.E.4Paws in Santa Barbara

High school student, Ava Vasquez, hosts Pet Food Drive for C.A.R.E.4Paws in Santa Barbara

By: KEYT Staff

Published April 21, 2023

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – A high school student is hosting a pet food drive at her former elementary school Vieja Valley for C.A.R.E.4Paws.

Directors of the organization are hoping the community will participate in this generous food drive.

Last year Ava Vasquez was able to bring in nearly 500 pounds of dog and cat food.

The food drive benefited pet families in need across Santa Barbara County.

This year, the Vieja Valley Student Council is also getting involved to help with the drive.

Organizers expect even more food to be collected.

Wendy Domanski is C.A.R.E. 4Paws’ community programs coordinator.

“It’s becoming more challenging and hard to make ends meet so shelters throughout the country and Santa Barbara is full and the last thing we would want is a beloved family pet to be surrendered to lack of resources,” community programs coordinator Wendy Domanski of C.A.R.E.4Paws.

To learn more about how you can help, click here.

Partnerships for unhoused pet families

Partnerships for unhoused pet families

We are pawsitively happy with our first wellness clinic for pet families experiencing homelessness, cohosted with The Street Dog Coalition (SDC) and Central Coast Partnership for Animal Welfare (CCPAW) in San Luis Obispo. About 30 dogs and cats received vaccines, flea treatment, wellness exams, nail trims and other services by SDC’s Dr. Alex Gomes and our technician Becky Clement. CCPAW handed out leashes, collars, pet beds and other supplies and Shower The People provided mobile-shower services for the two-legged. Going forward, we will continue to cohost events for the unhoused once per month throughout Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties.

Rolling into the future!

Rolling into the future!

For two years, C.A.R.E.4Paws has been fundraising for a brand-new, 37-foot mobile clinic to augment our two existing and older, 26-foot veterinary vehicles.

We are so excited share that—thanks to the generous support of our community—we have met and even surpassed our fundraising goal!

The new, larger clinic-on-wheels rolls out in May and will allow our organization to help more animals over a larger geographical footprint.

We invite you to participate in an “inside look” at our new mobile clinic on Sunday, May 21, at the Music Academy of the West during C.A.R.E.4Paws’ Happy Tails Celebration & Fundraiser.

Tonka the dog, shepherd mix

Now we continue fundraising to grow and sustain our Mobile Community Medicine & Spay/Neuter Outreach program and the critical pet wellness services it provides for pet families in need. You can help by becoming a sponsor at one of many levels.

C.A.R.E.4Paws Mobile Clinic with a man holding a black and white puppy

A big, heartfelt thanks to the amazing supporters of our brand-new mobile clinic and to everyone who joined us at La Lieff Winery in Santa Barbara on March 12.

Going the distance!

Going the distance!

We are on a roll to curb pet overpopulation. Spaying/neutering prevents unwanted litters, suffering and pet homelessness. It reduces the risk of deadly cancers and pyometra infections and can improve a pet’s behavior too! That’s why C.A.R.E.4Paws’ mobile clinics provide spay/neuter surgeries for free or at low cost for families in need. In 2022, we altered a record 2,336 dogs and cats, a number that we aim to surpass again in 2023! Visit our clinic services page if you need help to alter your dog or cat.

Care for community cats

Care for community cats

Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties are home to many colonies of community cats, populations that grow incredibly fast unless you spay/neuter these kitties. C.A.R.E.4Paws helps curb overpopulation by altering several hundred community cats annually through TNR (Trap, Neuter, Release). A big thanks to ResQcats for sponsoring some of these surgeries and to Sarah Ganschow, our cat-loving veterinary clinic assistant, for her excellent TNR work! #nationalspayneutermonth, #tnrworks

Bringing pet wellness to communities in need

Bringing pet wellness to communities in need

Every time we roll out our mobile units, we host a walk-in Pet Wellness Clinic with low-cost vaccines, flea treatment, dewormer, microchips and nail trims for dogs and cats. These services help keep pets happy and healthy and prevent outbreaks of disease. In 2022, we helped 10,000 dogs and cats during our walk-in clinics, in addition to the 3,000-plus pets assisted with spays/neuters and medical care inside of our clinics. We microchipped a total of 2,763 pets!

We can only do this important work with the community’s support. Please know that your gift will help keep us rolling!

Ensuring lost pets find their way home!

Ensuring lost pets find their way home!

In 2022, we microchipped 2,763 pets for free! This means over 2500 dogs and cats now have a permanent ID if they ever get lost. Microchips are a wonderful way to help our four-legged friends find their way home. A big thank you to our microchip sponsors: Santa Barbara County Animal Services and Lompoc’s CAPA. C.A.R.E.4Paws offers microchipping year-round for just $10 and, during all Lompoc clinics, the chips are FREE thanks to CAPA.