Army veteran uses stimulus check to help hard-to-adopt shelter dogs find their forever homes

Ralph F. and Lenny. Photo courtesy of BWAR

Press release from BWAR:

When Korean War army veteran, Ralph F., woke up on April 29th, he discovered an extra $1,200.00 dollars in his bank account. Funds from the United States Treasury and funds, according to Ralph, that he wanted to put to use helping shelter dogs.

“Ralph pulled up out front of Brother Wolf and told me that he wanted to use his stimulus check to help harder-to-adopt dogs find their forever homes,” said Leah Craig Fieser, Executive Director of Brother Wolf Animal Rescue in Asheville, NC. “What a wonderful thing to hear at 9AM! We got to work putting together a plan to help our long-stay and/or medically challenged dogs find adoptive homes.”

Ralph and Fieser decided to split up the funds among six special dogs. Brother Wolf has waived adoption fees for each of the six dogs and, thanks to Ralph, these dogs’ adopters will get a $200.00 dollar custom care package from The care package will be tailored to fit the specific needs of each dog and to set the dog up for success in their new home.

“What a wonderful way to incentivise adoption, especially right now as Americans are facing financial hardships,” said Fieser. Brother Wolf will follow the same adoption protocols that they would for any other adoption. “Our goal is to find a loving home for each animal in our care. This is a creative way to highlight certain special needs dogs and help get them into homes. We’re so grateful to Ralph’s generosity in using his stimulus check to help animals in need.”

Brother Wolf Animal Rescue is one of the only shelters in their region that has remained open for adoptions during COVID-19. The animal welfare organization is conducting adoptions by appointment in order to follow social distancing guidelines, as well as sanitation and disinfection protocols, and has seen great success. In April 2020 alone, Brother Wolf placed 135 animals into homes. “Even amidst a pandemic, we’re doing everything we can to save animals’ lives because that’s why we’re here,” said Fieser.

One of the six special dogs, Rusty, was adopted just two days after Ralph’s visit! The other five remain available for adoption. Adoption applications can be completed on Brother Wolf’s website

The Six Special Dogs:

Billie: Originally adopted in 2011, but returned to the shelter in 2019, Billie is a 13-year-old lab mix with age related health issues including arthritis that will require lifelong medication. Billie’s custom care package will include food, an orthopedic bed, and a jacket to keep her warm in chilly months.

Katie May: Rescued from a rural, overcrowded shelter where she faced euthanasia, Katie May is 11 years old and has joint and kidney problems which require a prescription diet and medication. Her custom care package will include prescription diet food and an orthopedic bed.

Lenny: A two-year-old shepherd mix who finds the shelter environment to be very stressful and is struggling with some anxiety. Lenny loves to run and play! His custom care package will include a harness, leash, toys, and a crate or bed.

Queenie: Queenie is a super senior at 14 years old. She was previously living with an overwhelmed caregiver who was unable to give Queenie the medical attention she needed for her skin issues, dry eye, and arthritis. Her custom care package will include prescription diet food, a bed, harness and leash.

Rusty: Rusty’s previous owner took him to the shelter because he wasn’t succeeding at learning how to hunt raccoons. He is a 7-year-old redtick coonhound who is very friendly. He finds the shelter very stressful and is still learning housetraining. Rusty’s custom care package included a special collar and leash, crate, toys, and food.

Ty: Ty’s previous owners were unable to treat his chronic leg lameness. He is currently on diet management and progressive exercise to help his condition, as well as pain medication and anti-inflammatories. Ty’s custom care package will include prescription diet food and an orthopedic bed.

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