We have all seen animals that we fear may have been abandoned. We feel sad for them, of course, but most of us do not or cannot go the extra mile to make sure that they are safe and loved. This story celebrates a couple whose actions make sure the neglect stops with them.
Lynn Campbell and her husband, Dal, operate a two-person, self-appointed animal rescue. Even though they have placed dogs and cats on both coasts and places in between, Campbell says that rescuing animals really began with one small parakeet. “Larry Bird” was found dining with the family’s chickens when Dal captured it and brought it into their home. “Larry” not only became a beloved family member, but also served as entertainment and watch-bird rolled up into one. He loved to listen and dance to rock music, and would announce visitors with a very vocal “Someone’s Here!” He even reminded their younger son to wear his seatbelt when going out with friends!
Through the years, the Campbells have experienced some exciting rescues. One, a “wolf” dog, became very attached to Lynn. Even though the feeling was mutual, she knew the city was not the best place for him. She located a couple who had a female wolf dog and the necessary permits to care for and raise them. “Wolf” was loaded up and delivered to his new home to the delight of everyone. A Bengal cat also found its way into their home. This domestic/Asian Leopard cat cross was nicknamed “Hoover” by Dal because of its huge appetite. A visiting couple who had heard about the unusual cat came to take a look and “Rajah” was on a plane the next morning going to his new home with them.
The Campbells have six cats of their own- all strays, of course: KayKay, a beautiful grey and white female tabby; Oreo; Mama Reese, a tortie (tortoiseshell); Mama Reese’s son Lyle, an orange tabby; and Dash, a very large pixie bob who intimidates the other cats because of his size. Amigo, a Norwegian Forest Cat, was another stray who captured their hearts with his big green eyes and long black hair. After being diagnosed with kidney failure, Dal gave him an IV under the skin every night for seventeen months before his kidneys shut down. Saying goodbye to their special friend was the hardest thing they had ever done.
Campbell says that they are finding more and more animals that are dumped and left behind. These animals are afraid, hungry, and thirsty with no place to go when they find them and take them into their home. Her job is to care for them and build trust while finding their forever home. “It can’t just be any place,” she laughs, “It has to be a better one than I can provide!” (Which explains the six stray cats currently residing with them.) Some of these placements take just a few days, but many stay for a longer time with them. Whatever it takes, the Campbells feel that helping animals in need is worth all the effort.