March 26, 2020

As Minnesota puts new orders in place, Ruff Start Rescue looks for ways to safely continue operating. The Stay Home Executive Order effective 11:59 pm March 27 – 5:00 pm April 10 and the Delay of Inpatient and Outpatient Elective Surgery and Procedural Cases during COVID-19 Peacetime Emergency Executive Order 20-09 effective indefinitely are orders that caused changes into how we operate. Thankfully, Ruff Start operations are essential, so we can continue saving animals through our foster-based network and make decisions that best serve our communities. 

During the two-week Stay Home Executive Order, in-person meet and greets and adoptions will not take place. Due to Ruff Start’s essential status, this action is not a requirement, but we felt that this is the right thing to do during this time-frame to keep people safe and healthy. Ruff Start is still accepting adoption applications and is looking forward to increased adoption numbers when this measure is reevaluated on April 11. Ruff Start is starting virtual meet and greets to introduce potential adopters to Ruff Start animals. Home visits will continue being accomplished virtually. Ruff Start is still able to take new animals in with stringent social distancing practices and cleaning procedures as well. 

Executive Order 20-09 has put spaying and neutering on hold to ensure medical units have the supplies they need to care for those that may have contracted the virus over the coming weeks. Ruff Start animals will be spayed and neutered once this order is lifted. We are still able to do routine vetting at the office by appointment, emergency surgeries, urgent dental procedures, and heartworm treatments.

Ruff Start believes in doing what we can to keep our communities safe while still saving animals in need. This requires getting creative with how we function. We will continue reassessing our operations as we move through this pandemic. Our team of fosters, volunteers, and employees have been handling these challenges exceptionally well which is supported by our mission to do whatever it takes to save at-risk animals.

We are so grateful to all of you that are on the front lines battling this virus and to those of you who are able to stay at home containing the spread. It is incredible what we can accomplish together. It is reassuring to know that you are there for us as we continue doing what we do best.

March 19, 2020

It is an unsettling time for us as we maneuver through the COVID-19 pandemic. Especially when we all thought 2020 was going to be our year! Thankfully, we will get through this together. Now more than ever, Ruff Start needs adopters, fosters, and donors. This pandemic is uncharted territory for the rescue and poses a threat to the animals that we are trying to save.

As we quarantine and socially isolate, one way you can help right now is by adopting or fostering. Taking in an animal might seem challenging during this time, but there are many benefits to having an animal (or two) in your life during stressful moments. Pets are known to help reduce loneliness, stress, and depression, so now might be the perfect time to add a new member to your family! Check out this blog post for more ways to help.

Ruff Start Rescue has put precautions in place with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to ensure we can all remain safe during the adoption and foster process. We are utilizing social distancing practices for meet-and-greets and virtual home visits before completing an adoption or foster application. Delaying may occur as our team works diligently to process your applications.

Can’t commit to fostering or adopting? We understand! You can still make an impact for animals in need by donating. Any amount will help the rescue stay afloat!

Ruff Start Rescue Precautions

The health of our volunteers, fosters, staff, and animals is our most important priority. Ruff Start Rescue is taking the following measures based on recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to ensure the safety of everyone involved with the organization. We will update these measures as we receive new information. Thank you for your understanding and patience during this process.

The office in Princeton, MN is closed to the public, fosters, and volunteers. Select staff are on-site to care for cats, set out supplies, and perform veterinary services. Ruff Start Rescue will continue operating off-site, electronically. Animals are still available for adoption and fostering at this time.

All events including the gala, wellness clinic, adoption events, dog training, and in-person volunteer orientations are canceled through mid-May.

Ruff Start is not accepting specialty cases including hospice animals at this time. Transports are being assessed at an hour-by-hour basis. 

Supplies for fosters must be requested (24 hours) in advance. Supplies will be brought out to fosters or available for pick up in the supply bin outside the Princeton, MN office. Supply homes throughout central MN remain open. If  a foster animal needs to be returned we request waiting until a new foster home is found. Social distancing practices are utilized for meet and greets. Home visits will be completed virtually.

Vetting will continue by physical or virtual appointment only. Urgent surgeries only will take place on Tuesdays and Fridays. Heartworm treatment will continue on Wednesdays and Thursdays. No foster entry into the building is allowed. Ruff Start is utilizing outside drop-off only. Rescue Disinfectant will continue to be used between appointments and procedures.

Virtual training sessions only for volunteers.