Pet rescue resumes in area despite setbacks

Charmed Lives Pet Rescue, located in Carleton, MI is seeking volunteers to assist them in their effort to find homes for the many animals they help.

The pet rescue was founded in 2004 by Gwen Giznsky, who is also the President. This rescue is unique, in that it is a family effort. Gwen’s sister Katrina and mother Marge help her run the pet rescue. Katrina is a full-time student, as well as the Vice President of Charmed Lives Pet Rescue. 

Each family member has a particular breed of dog they prefer to work with. Gwen handles the larger dog breeds, such as German Shepherds and Katrina likes the Australian Shepherds, Border Collies and Rottweilers. Marge fosters the smaller dogs at her home in Monroe, instead of in Carleton. 

All breeds of dogs are taken at Charmed Lives Pet Rescue, depending on a temperament evaluation. The Giznsky family also takes an interest in special needs dogs. However, the space they have available is limited for these cases. 

This space issue has not prevented the rescue of doing their job though. Just this year, they have cared for three dogs with parvovirus disease, two that are heartworm positive and three other senior dogs that will stay with them until the end of their lives due to illness and age. 

 “The rescue was started because we felt there weren’t very good options out there for people who couldn’t keep their dogs,” said Katrina. 

As of December 2006 the rescue became a 501c3 non-profit organization. 

  “All donations and adoption fees go right back into the dogs. None of our officers take a salary from the organization,” said Gwen. 

The rescue has received kennel status from the Monroe County Animal Control, but becoming a state certified facility will be even better for the dogs. 

Outdoor kennels are where the dogs stay in the warm months, and they are brought indoors when the weather is cold. With the resources the rescue has, they have helped home over 300 dogs since becoming a non-profit organization. 

“We’ve been dog and cat owners ever since we can remember and wanted to provide second chances for other dogs,” Katrina said. 

While Charmed Lives is doing everything possible to help dogs in need, being a non-profit organization is not easy. In November 2008 the rescue bought ten acres of land in Carleton, MI, hoping to become a state certified shelter. 

Since then, the family has experienced some setbacks. Gwen and Katrina both lost their jobs in February of 2009. 

Before the sisters lost their jobs, the plan was to build a kennel with indoor and outdoor runs, an evaluation room and a training room. Kennels are also needed for the quarantine of new dogs. Currently, these building plans are on hold, but the family hopes to expand their space in the future. 

Charmed Lives Pet Rescue is working to help dogs that are in need of a better home, and could use the help of volunteers, especially with the struggles they have had this year. 

The rescue can be reached at (734)-242-4497 or visit their website at www.charmedlivespetrescue.petfinder.com

The rescue’s website has an area to submit information if anyone wishes to volunteer, adopt or make a donation. Also, there is a list of dogs available for adoption on the website. A short description about each dog is included, and sometimes a picture. 

Donations of money are welcome; the website also has a wish list of supplies that the rescue is in need of. 

The Giznsky family is looking for people who share their compassion for the dogs that are neglected, abused or abandoned to help their rescue in any way possible.