How does a kitten rescue start?
Perhaps someone at your work asks for a home for some feral baby kittens they found. You, who have a soft spot in your heart for animals, agree to take these babies home. However, you did not realize that baby kittens require feeding every hour, maybe every two hours. Thus the saga begins.
This same woman, Dani Ryan, volunteered at the Seal Beach Animal Care Center. She was then approached by the Maine Coon Adoption Rescue, out of Oakland, CA, because they needed a volunteer in South Orange County.
While working for a company that had an employee base of over 600, she decided to send out weekly emails featuring “Pet of the Week.” Her HR person often checked with her to see if this was working. Needless to say, with over 600 employees, homes were found for the “Pet of the Week.”
As a graphic designer she wanted to create a name for her new-found rescue by advertising the name on her license plate and in 2000 she requested “MEOOW” for her plate. Unfortunately someone had already taken the name…thus MEOOWZ was created. The thought then struck her, wouldn’t eyes look awesome in the two Os and so MeoowzResQ was formed.
She and another friend hooked up with the Orange County Animal Shelter to rescue baby kittens that required bottle feeding. The shelter had a policy that if the baby kittens that required bottle feeding were not picked up by 5 PM, they were euthanized. So..she would make it a point to be down there before 5 PM to rescue these unwanted babies. Her friend, Judith, would bottle feed the babies at all hours of the night and, when they were old enough to be adopted, Dani would take them and find homes for the kittens.
It was Friday, April 20, 2001, her birthday, when she was asked to come down to the shelter and pick up a litter of kittens. To her surprise, when she arrived there were 21 babies that would be euthanized if she did not take them. What would she do? She took them and she and Judith saved each and every one of these 21 kittens, with not a one dying.
In 2002, Rosie, Nhadia and Jenna joined the organization. More volunteers followed in 2003. The first year through Petco, 200 kittens were adopted. Each year, more volunteers came on board and more kitties were saved. MeoowzResQ incorporated in 2007 and received nonprofit status in 2009. The number of kitties saved each year now exceeds 2500 with more than 25,000 saved over the lifetime of MeoowzResQ!
At any given time, we have 500-1000 cats and kittens in foster homes divided up among the more than 160 fosters that MeoowzResQ has in its circle. We are forever grateful for our wonderful fosters and their commitment to care for and save as many cats and kittens as they can. Without them, there would be many more at the Rainbow Bridge.