Happy Birthday to YAH Founder!


IF YOU EVER MEET MY DAD, there is a good chance he'll tell you the story of the very first dog I ever rescued. Not the story of Peaches, the very first Young at Heart dog, but the story of the ancient half-blind pug I found wandering down our street when I was about 5 years old. I lovingly named him E.T. for his giant, kind eyes, and wanted to keep him and love him forever. That is, until his family was so grateful to find him safe and sound. And then, I was happy that he had someone who loved him as much as I did. 

That first rescue dog was the start of many animals rescued, and my love of older animals ultimately led to founding Young at Heart in 2005. I was 27 when I started Young at Heart, and have had enjoyed many birthdays since (with lots of practice turning 29 over those years!), but this birthday is special. Today, not only am I turning the big 4-0 (gulp! I meant 29! 29!), but we are finally building our safe haven for senior pets. It's a dream come true. And I am so lucky that this year will be the year that I can finally walk through the doors of our adoption center, saving more lives than we ever thought possible. And that is thanks to every person who has ever donated to Young at Heart and supported this crazy dream of mine to save senior pets and find them loving homes. 

My birthday wish is to be able to help more senior pets like Bailey get a second chance to enjoy the the twilight of their lives. You see, Bailey is the newest addition to our sanctuary program. She's ancient, has lived a life where her needs often went neglected, and in recent years, has lived in a significant amount of pain. She has two old cruciate tears that no one ever did anything about, plus awful spinal arthritis. Upon rescue, she also had a urinary tract infection so severe that you could see the pus floating in the urine sample. YUCK! But her bloodwork looks pretty darn good, and with just a few rounds of pain medication and antibiotics in her, she became sooooo much brighter and comfortable. Her eyes softened, her ears perked up, and her tail finally began to wag. Bailey was figuring out the Good Life with Young at Heart!

Bailey has been with us for a few weeks now, and is settled in and doing well. She is happy to get any attention at all after living a life where she was an afterthought. So imagine how happy she is to now have daily physical therapy, pain meds that allow her to comfortably wander through the yard and nap with her new best dog friend, and to have a family that dotes on her constantly. It may have taken Bailey her whole life to find comfort and happiness, but now she has it with Young at Heart.

With it being my big 4-0 birthday, my wish is to find 40 friends to become Constant Companion donors to Young at Hearts so that we can help more senior pets like Bailey. I'd love for our seniors to have forty new friends that are willing to give up a couple of trips to Starbucks or brown bag a couple of lunches, and instead set up a monthly donation of $10 or more to Young at Heart.

Your monthly donation reduces the time we spend fundraising, helps us plan our operations, and – most important – allows us to rescue senior pets like Bailey that we would otherwise be unable to help. Knowing that we have your ongoing support means that we can confidently say yes to helping many more loving, amazing old souls that just need a second chance. It makes it easier to plan for our constant expenses like daily pain medication or high quality food, or regular expenses like blood work and vet exams. If you already donate monthly, THANK YOU!

If you would like to help save more senior pets like Bailey by becoming a monthly donor, click here to sign up: https://donatenow.networkforgood.org/YAHconstantcompanion

Thanks for making my - gulp! - 40th Birthday wish to help senior pets like Bailey get a second chance come true!

Dawn Kemper
Founder & Executive Director
Young at Heart


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