STREET TALK

Karen Lively, rescue and web site coordinator at the Knoxville Animal Center

The YWAC is so fortunate to work with so many reputable, responsible rescue organizations. About 125 groups (local, regional, and national) have met our approval requirements, and take animals from us fairly frequently. Many groups are breed-specific (such as Tennessee Valley Golden Retriever Rescue, East Tennessee Border Collie Rescue, Collie Concern, etc.). Some are size-specific (Small Breed Rescue of East Tennessee) and some groups take in animals of various sizes, shapes, ages, and breeds. Groups also exist to take in and

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Q:  How did you know you wanted your work to be with animals?

I've always loved animals, but had never really considered working in the animal field. It was after I graduated college with a Mass Communications degree, then worked in the business world for quite a few years, that I realized I wanted a career where I could make a positive difference in the world, and have a real sense of contributing to something important.

 

Q:  What does a rescue coordinator do?

I have a couple of different jobs here at the Young-Williams Animal Center (YWAC). Part of my job is maintaining our extensive animal shelter website ( www.knoxpets.org ). We post photos and descriptions of all of our adoptable animals, and update it three times a week. More than 60 percent of our adoptions come as a direct result of someone seeing a pet posted on our web site.

Another big part of my job is coordinating rescue. That means keeping an eye out for shelter animals that might be good candidates to go into rescue organizations, non-profit groups that take in pets and keep them until they can find homes for them. I spend a lot of time networking with rescue groups, contacting them about animals in our shelter, and looking for new groups for us to work with.

 

Q:  How many rescue groups are there locally? And what do they do?

The YWAC is so fortunate to work with so many reputable, responsible rescue organizations. About 125 groups (local, regional, and national) have met our approval requirements, and take animals from us fairly frequently. Many groups are breed-specific (such as Tennessee Valley Golden Retriever Rescue, East Tennessee Border Collie Rescue, Collie Concern, etc.). Some are size-specific (Small Breed Rescue of East Tennessee) and some groups take in animals of various sizes, shapes, ages, and breeds. Groups also exist to take in and reptiles, ferrets, guinea pigs, hamsters, just about every kind of pet you can imagine.

 

Q:  Any specific rescue experience that really touched your heart?

We have had so many wonderful and rewarding rescue success stories over the last four and a half years. Some that come to mind are mature dogs who have been sent to senior retirement settings to live out the rest of their days being loved and spoiled [through program called Knox Paws], tiny puppies who have gone into rescue with their moms in order to have some time to grow strong and healthy, and blind and deaf dogs who have been placed in rescues that are familiar with their disabilities and are able to spend the time necessary on appropriate training

 

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