The shelters we work with down south have significant financial challenges that seriously impact their ability to provide veterinary care for injured or sick animals. The Kachka Fund will help us continue to financially support our shelters so that their animals do not lose their lives simply because they are sick of injured. In 2015 ARF paid over $37,000 in veterinary bills for our animals
My husband Chris and I had always wanted a dog, but the timing was never right. Chris was in the Navy, and then worked shift work. I had a demanding job and a busy schedule. One thing became clear: timing would never be perfect, but the perfect dog might just be waiting.
We didn’t pick the youngest dog. Kachka wasn’t a puppy. He was four, found without a home somewhere in Mississippi. And in retrospect — we didn’t pick him. He found us.
We expected that Kachka would fit well into our busy lives — we like hiking, the ocean, being on the go, being social. Kachka loved some of those things, sure, but he wouldn’t run (and we’re marathoners). He didn’t move quickly. He wasn’t interested in playing ball. What he relished most of all? Long, leisurely breakfasts. A lounge on the couch. A stroll through the woods enjoying the wind. He wasn’t the dog to fit our on-the- go lifestyle. He was the dog meant to show us the joy in slowing down, in savoring the moments in between.
And after 3 short years of finding joy in life’s smallest moments and minutes, we lost Kachka unexpectedly, his life cut short by a medical condition we didn’t know about. We remember our final morning with him, his tail wagging as we took our time having breakfast together.
We are beyond thankful to Animal Rescue Front for giving our family the most wonderful gift we’ve ever received — a dog who helped us become a family, and a dog who reminded us what it means to truly live in the moment.
Our hope is that we can help other families slow down and experience life’s everyday joys with a dog by their side, wagging their tail and expecting nothing in return.
Tatiana Kuzmowycz, Chris Mason & Kachka
Chris McLaughlin’s life’s purpose became clear when the floods of Katrina receded. The toll the disaster took on the lives of the animals of the Gulf Coast ignited a passion and purpose that continues today. “ARF’s work will live on because of the lives we met, the lives we saved, and the lives we lost.” …Read More
Nick Wright lives in New Hampshire, with his wife, Kristine, and their two children, Henry and Olivia as well as four dogs, Bam-Bam, Little Bear, Boo and recent addition, a blind pup named Rosie. Bam-Bam, a Great Pyrenees, is the canine equivalent of Eeyore, and will happily keep any bare feet warm in the winter. …Read More
Jan Mitchell resides in Boulder, CO and has been fostering animals for her local humane societies and rescues since 1991. She met Chris in New Orleans while doing post-Katrina animal rescue work and she has worked with rural farmers in a small village in Ghana since 2001 teaching gentle handling of their working animals. Eventually, …Read More
Dr. Schutzengel began her veterinary career as a student in Italy and then continued her studies at Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y. from which she graduated in 1984. From 1984 until 1996 she worked in multiple small animal and emergency clinics throughout Virginia and Maryland as a “relief vet.” In that capacity she provided both …Read More