Get to Know: Greyhound Friends of New Jersey
In August 2018, the Healthy Paws Foundation announced the third run of our grant initiative, The Healthy Paws Rescue Race, funded through our “Every Quote Gives Hope” program. Six organizations were selected to participate and “race” to the finish line, and the winner was chosen based on the number of votes they received. Healthy Paws gave a grand total of $70,000, divided among six nonprofits, and every organization received at least $5,000. Here’s the story behind our $12,500 winner, Greyhound Friends of New Jersey (GFNJ).
GFNJ is a non-profit organization dedicated to placing retired racing greyhounds into responsible, loving homes. While GFNJ is predominantly a greyhound adoption group, they also help some non-greyhounds in need of rescue from high-risk situations by providing them with a safe haven.
“GFNJ is well known for taking in former racing greyhounds with injuries or illnesses that other organizations are forced to turn down because they simply can’t afford the veterinary expenses,” explains Jacqueline Howard, Board of Trustees member at GFNJ. “As GFNJ stands proudly committed to our ‘Turn No Greyhound Away’ policy, we’re ready to help any new greyhound who needs our help. This includes dogs who have experienced race injuries, like broken legs, short term illnesses, like infections, and chronic illnesses, like megaesophagus and even cancer. We’ll never, and have never, euthanized a dog because of costs.”
One such pup they didn’t turn away was Apple, aka The Greyhound Made Well by Innovative Therapy. She came to GFNJ from a Florida racetrack at two years old. She’d broken her leg in her last race, and while the racetrack veterinarian cast her leg, it appeared to be unstable when she arrived at the organization. She was immediately admitted to a nearby animal hospital for evaluation.
The veterinarians determined that bone fragments were causing issues in the leg and the recommended treatment plan included hydrotherapy at a pet physical therapy clinic, PetPT. “There, Dr. Howe-Smith has a full-service therapeutic pool and physical therapists to help dogs and other animals like Apple,” explains Howard. “And Dr.Howe Smith is renowned for this innovative approach to healing for dogs!”
Apple was being fostered at the time, and her temporary pet parents took her to PetPT for frequent water therapy sessions. It was then, after a month of therapy, Apple was cleared for adoption. “She was a favorite among our supporters because of her resilience!” says Howard. “As soon as she became available, Apple was adopted by a loving family that included another greyhound. Her leg completely healed and she’s now where she needs to be: home.”
GFNJ has many success stories of placing greyhounds and other pups in loving forever homes. The work can be very expensive, however. “In 2017, our veterinary expenses were over $100,000 and are projected to increase in 2018. We’re able to afford these expenses through vigilant and constant fundraising and through generous grants from organizations like the Healthy Paws Foundation,” says Howard. “Our veterinary budget also goes toward the spaying and neutering of every dog prior to adoption, along with full dentals and preventatives, such as de-wormers and flea and tick repellants. The grant awarded to GFNJ will help us continue our mission and staying true to our commitment of no greyhound ever being turned away, including those who need extra love and care through medical support.”
Visit the Healthy Paws Rescue Race page to learn more about the other participating organizations that qualified for grants and check back here on the blog to read about each organization!