Three stray dogs and $15,000 later
You find three of the saddest looking stray dogs in the middle of a hot August day in central Texas. What would you do? How would it affect you? This is my story of taking that incident as inspiration to do something that will have a positive impact…and how we’re now generating $2,300 each month to help animal shelters from California to New York.
My wife and I are animal people; we walk-the-walk and talk-the-talk, as they say. We adopt, rescue, and foster. We assist local feral cats and pay for their medical needs on a regular basis. We are serial volunteers for a number of local animal rescue organizations.
A few years back I had just finished a stint at a company where I created a prescription discount card program that was very, very successful. During those days we worked with some of the largest counties and cities and even publically-traded corporations in working with the program I had developed.
...we raised $15,000 that has been donated to a number of local humane societies or SPCAs from Long Beach, New York to Riverside, California...
On my last assignment for this company something happened while implementing our service in San Antonio, TX. I was visiting a local grocery store, an HEB supermarket on Military Drive, when I came across three stray dogs. Mind you this was the middle of the summer, the sun was shining and it was hot, very hot. The dogs were panting and desperately looking for shade. My heart sank. I was far from home, didn’t know anybody to call, and had few resources to do much. I went back inside the HEB and got some dog food and water and did my best to get close enough to them so they could get some relief.
The whole instance bothered me to my core. I had to do more so that day I stopped by the San Antonio Humane Society, made a good sized donation, and asked them to look into finding those dogs. Probably a little naive but it made me feel better…for at least temporarily.
But I wanted to find something that I could do, a long term solution. My wife and I volunteer at the Manatee County, FL Humane Society so I knew firsthand the challenges these organizations face. Rarely, if ever, do they get any money from local or state governments so they are always in need of donations (and volunteers, and dog walkers, and leaders, and, well, you get the idea). That’s when I got the idea for a program based on a prescription discount card (AxiaRx) that could raise money for local humane societies and SPCAs over the long term while at the same time helping folks save money (a lot of money) on their prescription drugs.
And so far, so good! Through the first year of the program we raised $15,000 that has been donated to a number of local humane societies or SPCAs from Long Beach, New York to Riverside, California and dozens in between; and in 2013 our donations are on target to exceed $30,000!
It is so gratifying as I know these organizations perform critical services in local communities. Services such as low-cost (sometimes free) spay and neuter clinics, adoption programs, law enforcement in some cases, and feral and stray colony management, such as Trap-Neuter (Spay)-Release, and many others are managed each day by local animal rescue organizations. That’s millions of dogs and cats are assisted each year by people the AxiaRx program is helping in communities across the U.S., animals that might otherwise not have a chance of survival. And it certainly isn’t always dogs and cats; horses, rabbits, snakes…the list goes on and on.
And my wife and I found our third dog, Logan, as a result of an animal rescue organization. Logan is great dog. Unfortunately his original owners gave up him after four and a half years and he was one hour from being put down. Enter Mary Lupi from Safe Haven Animal Rescue in Bradenton, FL who pulled him out and found him a great new home...our home! Safe Haven is just one example of organizations we hope to help with our program so they can save more Logans each and every day.
Use of the AxiaRx card is what makes this all happen. You can help us by Tweeting, telling your friends on Facebook or other social media about our program. We’re proud that on average 20% of the gross income generated from the card goes to these organizations; that’s before all the expenses that go into running a business. One of the first organizations we worked with, the Pennsylvania SPCA, asked what the percentage we would pay for our program; she was expecting one or two percent and was very happy when I told her it would be much, much higher than that.
Thank you for helping us tell the world about our program!
CEO, Stanton Health, LLC