On behalf of all her feline and canine friends at SOAR, our very own Sandy wishes all of you a most Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.  And for all furry friends past and present, we echo this “Christmas Morning” wish, author unknown, with thanks to Gisela and Jeannine…


I wish,                                                                                                                                               For every dog searching trash cans for breakfast,                                                           a filled bowl with his name printed in bright letters.

For every dog who slept fitfully last night, chained in a frozen yard,                     a soft, warm bed                                                                                                                           with a person snoring gently nearby.

For every shelter dog, spending Christmas morning in a soiled run,                     a forever home,                                                                                                                             filled with sounds and smells of family.

For every “Christmas” puppy given today,                                                                         a tolerant, caring owner who won’t abandon you                                                           as you grow into a real dog.

For every ailing pet,                                                                                                                   enough money for your owner to pay the bills                                                               to make you well.

For every lost dog,                                                                                                                       a clear, safe road, and well marked path,                                                                           to lead you home.

For every old and tired friend,                                                                                                 a warm fire, and a soft bed,                                                                                                     to ease your aches and pains.

And for every Heart Dog at the Bridge,                                                                               a moment when you know that you are remembered today,                                       missed again, and loved forever.

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Baby Bear and Boo-Boo Find Homes

Baby Bear Adoption Boo Boo Adoption

BABY BEAR                       AND                BOO-BOO

Baby Bear and Boo-Boo have headed off to separate Wilmington homes with their adoptive moms.

We are extremely happy for Baby Bear, as she has worked hard with us in making the transformation from the cowering Border Collie mix of a year and a half ago to the happy, adoptable young lady of today.  We are really going to miss her spirit and her boundless energy.  Many of her kennel neighbors, past and most recent, are all the better for having had Baby Bear as a dedicated playmate.

Many of you might not recognize Boo-Boo, as the Shih Tzu mix has never graced our Dogs page.  The little guy came to SOAR about two months ago suffering from eye, yeast and urinary tract infections.  Medication, veterinary care, and lots of love have gotten him into good enough condition to be made available for adoption.  Like with his recent “office house resident” predecessors Chipper, Romeo, Chomper and Owen, his wait would be short.

Happy trails to you two “underdogs.”  Go with the wind.

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New Arrivals


and Lola…Lola121614

Two-year old Benji and one-year old Lola made their debuts at SOAR this week.  They come to us from Brunswick County Sheriffs Animal Protective Services.  See their profiles on our Dogs page.

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We had a visit from the Oak Island Presbyterian Daycare on Monday and these mini Christmas Angels brought all kinds of food and toys for the cats and dogs!

photo 2  photo 1

They got to hang out with the cats and dogs for awhile.  Caesar had the girls fascinated with his crazy cat antics!  And Lyla had hearts in her eyes for this cutie!  He looks pretty smitten with her too!

photo 3 (2) photo 5

It was so much fun to have them with us!  And THANK YOU for your donation to SOAR and for your work with these sweet children and teaching them about loving and caring for animals!

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Partners In Animal Welfare


SOAR Director Cathy Robbins Fitzgerald (center) accepts a check from Paws-Ability board member Mercy McCurdy (L) and Paws-Ability President Janie Withers.  The check covers costs we recently incurred for non-routine medical care for one of our dogs and for state mandated upgrades to the dog kennels.  Paws-Ability is a 501(C)(3) organization that provides funds to assist area animal shelters and rescue groups in meeting extraordinary expenses such as those we recently incurred.  To learn more about the important work they do or to become a Paws-Ability member, visit their website at

Thank you Paws-Ability for helping us help our furry friends in need.

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Brothers Casper and Blizzard and then Duke were adopted in the last 10 days.



Congratulations boys.  We hope you enjoyed your stay with us as much as we did.

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Cami Joins Toes

Our sweet tortie girl Cami followed Toes across the Rainbow Bridge today.


Cami ~ F ~ 1/1/1999 ~ Declawed

“Cami the Cams” was about 16 years old – second oldest to Toes among the SOAR cats.  She was with us almost two years, having been abandoned in the beginning of 2013 at the doorstep of Four Paws Veterinary Hospital.  Ironically, Cami’s final stop in her life’s journey was to be at Four Paws.  We took good care of her – lots of brushes, “Greenies” treats, and freedom to roam the cattery.  She paid us back by letting us be her friend.  Now she has her ultimate freedom.  See you with Toes, girl–some sunny day.


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Goodbye Old Friend

Our dear friend Toes had to leave us this past Monday.  She was about 17 years old.  Toes, as cats will do, had been hinting of late at it being “her time.”


 To the end, the often contrary Toes loved being held.


The sun shined brightly on Toes in her final days.

Toes came to SOAR in 1998.  She had 7 kittens, all of whom, like her, were polydactyl (having extra toes).  She spent many years as a yard cat, followed by a ‘stretch’ in the old office area of the cattery, and then finally a couple of years in the cattery itself.  She got lost under structures and behind walls and endured thyroid surgery.  She dined on the finest of wet foods.  Toes was not afraid to use her toes.  What she most wanted I think was to be left alone, but if  you were quick enough and had just the right technique, you could hoist her up against your shoulder with minimal fuss.

I believe this is the first time for anything Toes on our website.  Toes being Toes, she would be the last to be bothered by such things.  Besides, in her 16 years with us she was known and loved by more than any other.  We will surely miss her.  Some sunny day, girl.

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Happy Thanksgiving!

Last year it was SOAR dog Jaspa who did the honors.  This year, honors fall to three of our distinguished “yard cats” – members of our highly skilled team of parking lot greeters

Yard Cats4

- to give thanks to their friends and caretakers at SOAR, and to all of you SOAR supporters.  We hope you have much to be thankful for too.

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Shoes for SOAR

Check out the information about our shoe collection for $$ on the events page!!!!

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Our boy Sammie is seen here in a recent photo assuming his favorite position as lord of one of the cattery’s back rooms (ladies in waiting April and Anderson are in the background).  The girls are now interviewing new candidates for top cat honors as Sammie has officially abdicated and as of last Saturday has a new home and some nice humans as his devoted subjects.  The then 6-year old Sammie came to us from Cary, NC with housemate Cassie back in April 2012 (Cassie was adopted this past January).  To be sure, Sammie has lived a pampered life at SOAR – maybe a little too pampered as evidenced by the distinct sag in his mattress in the photo.  Perhaps the change in scenery will inspire him to lay off of the treats.  Congratulations boy.  We’ll miss you!

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THE CALENDARS THAT IS!!!  Here is a sneak peak at our cover models for the 2015 Cutest Pet Contest Calendar!  And just let me tell you – the competition was fierce this year!  The judging panel had an extremely difficult time deciding on the featured pets!  Here are just a few of the competitors!  Get your calendar now to see all of the entries as well as the chosen monthly pets!


Calendars are available NOW at SOAR as well as Grape & Ale - 8521 East Oak Island Drive.  After Friday, November 21st, they will also be available at Joannes Loving Touch Pet Grooming 5008 East Oak Island Drive.  Calendars are $15.00 each and all proceeds go to benefit SOAR!  They make awesome Christmas presents for the pet lovers in your life!  So get one today!!!!!!

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SOAR Dogs Get A Break

Our dogs will be toastier this Winter in their new K-9 Kondos seen below.

New Dog House2

 New Dog House

SOAR’s Board of Directors approved the purchase of 12 “kondos”, and they are now ready for occupancy – just in time for this November chill.  They feature zinc-plated steel exterior walls and a 3/4″ layer of foam insulation in the steel floors and in the interior walls.  The ceilings get a full one inch of insulation, which is where it is needed the most.  The kondos are “chew-proof”, cannot rot or rust, and are easy to clean and disinfect.  Accessory wall-mounted heaters can be added should we one day add a power source to the kennel area.

The bottom line cost to us, after applying our animal rescue discount, was $4,665.00.  The money for the kondos plus some new tarps for the kennel perimeter fencing came out of our “kennel fund.”  The Board agreed that providing these accessories for our dogs was completely in line with the fund’s overall objective of bringing them added comfort via the eventual “all-weather” conversion of the outdoor kennels.  The conversion initiative is alive and well, and the kennel fund balance, post expenditure, remains a very healthy $46K thanks to all of you who have supported us with your contributions in recent years. We look forward to your continued support, and to the day when we have enough money in the fund to commence construction activity.

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needs a hug

Lyla was happy to have her buddy Duke back to play with and showed him how much with a great big hug!  Unfortunately Duke is back at the rescue with us – not because he was bad (he’s a sweetheart and an awesome snuggler), or not because the person that adopted him didn’t adore him!  It was because the landlord didn’t want a big dog in the rental house!  Well – sometimes things happen!  But we gladly took Duke back until we can find him his new “furr-ever” home!  Until then Lyla will keep handing out hugs!

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sand 2 suds 3

Just in time for Christmas! Superior Portraits will be at Sand2Suds Pet Grooming on Oak Island,  Monday November 10th from 12-8pm. Go by and sign up for a time. There is a $15.00 session fee due when you sign up. At that time you will be given a certificate for a free 8×10 of your choice. They will be offering several different settings incl. Christmas and fall. Also offering different packages to choose from incl. Christmas cards. And the best part…. all proceeds made by Sand2Suds for the session fees WILL BE DONATED TO S.O.A.R! So go on in and get some great pictures made and help our local no kill shelter! Please call with any questions you may have. — at Sand2Suds Pet Grooming. 910.278.1111


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Say Goodbye To Duke

Seems like we were just saying hello to the boy!  Oh well, here he is with his new dad bidding us a fond farewell.

Duke Adoption

Happy days, Dukie.

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Happy National Cat Day!…

…And in recognition of this important day, we are spotlighting young brothers Casper and Blizzard.


These two cuties are almost 6 months old.  They have been with us since they were little babies.  Their mother, Angela, and four other brothers and sisters joined us in May of this year.  We have been chronicling the family’s journey to adoption over these recent months (07/14 – “Angela And Merlin Find Homes”; 07/18 – “Angela’s Kittens”; 08/06 – “While They’re Young”), and now it has come down to Casper and Blizzard.  We hope it will soon be their time.  See more about them on our Cats page.

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zeetlegoos SOAR Image

A splendid Autumn day it was for us and our featured pals at Zeetlegoo’s yesterday.


Dave applies a firm hand to an excited Ollie as he and partner in crime Baby Bear ready to meet and greet their adoring public.


While our pretty little tortoiseshell, Dixie, looks on in complete nonchalance.

Postscript: We had one fewer passenger for our return trip to SOAR, as Ollie, by golly, got himself ADOPTED.  Hooray for you boy!  Go with the wind!

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Say Hello To Duke

Duke has just joined us from Animal Protective Services…

Duke102414 …Please visit our Dogs page to learn more about young Mr. Duke.

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For many of us at SOAR the 2014 Major League Baseball playoffs and World Series aren’t our only source of ball playing entertainment these days.  When it comes to that, we have a couple of girls who can put on just as good a show right here in our exercise yard…and they can do it any time of the year!  They are 6-year old Baby and 8-year old Dixie, two SOAR veterans (Baby is closing in on 5 years with us; Dixie on 6) who obviously have plenty of life left in those lookalike bodies.  Each of them on their own would make a fine addition to at least a moderately active family.  And the two together….well, that would be doubling your fun…


Dixie (L) and Baby queue up for the ceremonial first toss.

Sparkie-Dixie100714                                         Baby1007143

The girls report back for more (and more) duty, completing many fetch-and-return runs. Our throwing arms usually give out before the girls can reach their running limits.


 Energy spent, Baby proudly displays the tools of her trade…


                                          …While Dixie prefers to snack on hers.

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SOAR’s Wonderful World Of Cats

Dinah1003142                        Dinah100814

OK, so it’s no Taj Mahal…                                       It still beats this dump!


 Take it back – I ordered wings, not legs.


 Still think cats don’t have hierarchies?


A lonesome bag of “Greenies”…


Oven Roasted Chicken – my fave!


Arrggh…I hate these darn bags!!

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OLLIE, By Golly

This is young Mr. Ollie who arrived just about two weeks ago.  See Ollie’s story on our Dogs page.

Ollie0930142 Ollie0930143

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Poor Lyla — she’s going to have to get a new boyfriend (09/16/14 Post – “Love Will Find A Way”), as the dashing Mr. Owen has found himself a nice new home.  Owen dropped by the shelter today with his adoptive dad…

Owen Adoption

…to brag on his exciting new lifestyle as a beach boy.  Awesome, dude!  Just don’t forget your friends back at the shelter.  Stay in touch.


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We invite you to visit our SOAR People page and meet some of the men and women who make up the SOAR team.  We have more faces and names to add so check back with us from time to time.

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Honor Grad Ziggy


Visit our Honor Grads page for the Ziggy story.

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