When Lisa Haynes was known in another life as professional wrestler Lisa The Adjuster, she and her husband saved a starving, hairless stray with open sores they found on the streets of Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Much to Lisa’s surprise, none of the rescue organizations she called wanted the sickly pup. “She was in such horrible shape and there was no one who would help her,” says Lisa. “They would say, ‘No we can’t help, we can’t help.’ They would say ‘You shouldn’t put your money into her.’ It was so distressing.”

Lisa and her husband, Roy, kept the dog, cooking human foods and learning about nutrition to nurse the pup back to health. The experience so changed Lisa that she quit her job as an insurance adjuster– and her spot in the Wild Women of Wrestling league — and moved to Vermont. The couple bought two acres and in 1996 opened up a home-based rescue called Save Our Strays. The rescue focuses on taking in the dogs other shelters and rescues don’t want: pit bulls, or the very ill. Says Lisa: “We tend to take in more of the ones that are the throw aways.”

Due to the Haynes’ big hearts for homeless pets, Kim Barnett, a dog behavioral consultant and foster mom, recommended SOS to Halo. “What I admire about Lisa and Roy is, you get a sense that they are good, honest decent people,” says Barnett. “They are very sympathetic to urgent, needy cases and they will open their doors whenever they can. I’ve called Lisa several times now and have said, ‘Lisa, there is a pit bull puppy in the Philadelphia shelter on the euthanasia list, can you help me?’ And her answer usually is: ‘If you can get it to me, we can help.'”

Not all of SOS’s pets are so easily helped. About a year ago, SOS rescued a 10-year-old Cocker Spaniel, his hair matted in feces, his eyeballs dead. “Of course we wouldn’t refuse him,” Lisa says. SOS got the dog surgery costing $3000 to have his eyes removed. Says Lisa: “He was a hard to place dog.”

But a home for Stanley, as he is now known, was found on a farm with a goat named Barney; the goat has a bell hanging around his neck and the pair are inseparable, with Stanley following Barney. And whatever happened to the people who abused Stanley? “Not much,” she says. “Cruelty laws are not strong. They got a slap on the wrist.”

Lisa founded SOS in 1996. Two years she and her husband later built an addition onto the back of their house. Solely for the animals. The cats have an outdoor enclosure in addition to indoor accommodations. “We put the animals in a homelike environment,” Lisa says. “They have more space than we do.”

One of SOS’s new homeless cats has already benefited from eating Halo Spot’s Stew. The cat arrived with a respiratory infection and neurological problems, and she wouldn’t eat. After four days of not eating, Lisa took her to the vet, who could not find a physiological cause for the loss of appetite. “When the dogs or cats come here, sometimes they don’t want to eat,” Lisa says. “When we gave her the Spot’s Stew, she ate it in no time.”

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  1. I love what you’re doing for our stray animals. As a rescue volunteer, and multiple dog rescue owner, I appreciate the efforts of heros like yourself. Thx for being you. 🙂

  2. Another heartwarming story…Thank you for sharing.

  3. Jobi says:

    You did a terrific job on writing up the story of Save Our Strays. I am also working with an organization here in Florida called Save Our Strays. I think it is safe to say, anyone in this type of organization is exceptional!

  4. suz says:

    As a person that has rescued a Saint from Lisa & Roy, I want to say how fantastic I think they are. They give their whole heart & soul to the finding homes for their RESCUES, & FOREGO their own needs. They are a gift from God so that the beloved animals can be saved.

  5. Sabrina says:

    The fact that Lisa and Roy are so passionate for what they do is only the start to the good things about them. When we had a dog that needed medical help, they offered support and advice to help us through. Not many rescues would go out of their way to contact someone with ways to raise money outside of their shelter. This proves they truly are animal lovers and would help the world if they had the funding. With that being said, please make any donation to them that you can spare. It’ll come back in the end!

  6. Pingback: HALO ANSWERS AN SOS FROM SAVE OUR STRAYS RESCUE | Halo Purely For Pets Blog

  7. A. W. says:

    We adopted a rescue dog from Lisa and Roy about 3 years ago. Our dog was scheduled to be put to sleep at a shelter in North Carolina. Now, we can’t imagine life without him. The work Lisa and Roy do everyday is so amazing and inspiring. They truly deserve this recognition. Thank you for highlighting their compassion and generosity through this article.

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