by Jojo Lorentson
I have been speaking with a wonderful woman named Marge, a fellow animal lover like myself. She and her wife started Home Run Pet Care as a pet sitting service in 2010. In that time it has grown from a passion to care for animals, into a thriving and successful business: all based on the simple value of honoring and treasuring those family members of ours that happen to be furry.
Inspired by their love for caring for other animals and pets, these intrepid women started a donation pet supply drive every year: Operation Santa Paws. They would put together donation boxes and drop them off at local pet stores around Nashville.
So why choose the Christmas season to operate the drive? Very simple, Marge believes that no matter how small your business is, there is always a way to give back and help others, especially around Christmas. Animal Rescues have always been important to these women, and with the creation of Operation Santa Paws, this is a way for them to help the rescues in their own neighborhoods. During this time of year, donations tend to be few and far between for any charity, especially when everyone is focusing on getting everything ready for the holidays. Even though there are still donations being made toward adoption shelters and rescues, all those loveable furr babies that are out in the cold looking for a warm place to sleep are not going anywhere. This is where Operation Santa Paws comes in to help.
They began the drive in 2012, six years ago, and it’s still running, and running strong. They never expected their pipe dream would grow so large so fast. Her words about the growth and outpouring of support from the community are thus; “The community support for Operation Santa Paws has been tremendous, and the pet supply drive gets bigger every year. I love how excited everyone is to help the animals!”
The part that really makes her proud of our communities is the amount that people care about the animals and want to help.
She goes on to say, “Part of what makes it so special is that it really is a community effort. What makes it such a huge success is all of the fantastic, locally owned, small businesses that come together and participate as drop off locations. Combining that with the Tennesseans that are so generous with their donations. When we work together, we can do amazing things for our community.”
If you’re curious about helping out, with not just donations, but with time. The founding women put all their spare effort and time into this Operation every year, helped as able by their ten sitters currently in the Home Run Pet Care business. As well as by friends who drive to the drop off locations and bring the supplies back to Marge and her wife, to sort and send off to their final destinations. The organizations that truly need these supplies.
This year the Operation will be taking the donated goods to these rescues; Middle Tennessee Boxer Rescue, Nashville Pug Rescue and Volunteer State Doberman Rescue.
These rescues can use so very much help. Those wonderful pups take a lot of caring for. So, Marge has a list here of what she needs from us all.
The list includes, but is not limited to;
- Dry Dog Food
- Greenies Dental Chews
- Milk Bones
- Peanut Butter (You know those puppers love their Peanut Butter)
- Kongs and “Tough” Toys
- Seresto Flea Collars
- Oral Flea and Tick Prevention
- Dog Beds and Blankets
- Collars, Harnesses, Leashes
- Pet Carriers and Crates
- Paper Towels (You’d be surprised how messy pups get)
- Puppy Pee Pads
- Stainless Steel Food/Water Bowls
- Gift Cards for Pet Supply Stores
They are always taking donations online via http://www.gofundme.com/operationsantapaws2018. More details can also be found on their website homerunpetcare.com and on the Home Run Pet Care Facebook page.
“Great!” you say, now you know WHAT to donate. Now, WHERE you ask? The donation sites are all five Nashville Pet Products Stores, Animal House Vet Clinic, Baxter Bailey&Company, and both Nashville Holistic Pets in Franklin and Nashville.
Throughout the last six years, Operation Santa Paws has helped 18 different animal rescue groups. Last year they brought in over 10,000 pounds of pet food and an abundance of beds, toys and supplies to needy animals in our communities.
This year, let’s help them double that. Aw, hell, let’s triple it and help these furbabies in need.