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From the Board of FTH

How do you summarize an entire year full of achievements, milestones and so many (mostly) happy stories ? Inevitably we’re going to miss some in this write up but we have to say that they all start with our incredible base of supporters – from our amazing fosters who keep on opening their homes to rescued dogs until they are adopted, to our incredible volunteers who help drive the FTH van (or their own vehicles) on rescue trips, to those unsung heroes who clean the van and all the crates (and they can be nasty) after every rescue trip, to our talented photographers, to those other volunteers who help out in so many other ways at meet&greets, gala, baseball tournament, garage sale, reunion, etc, and to those individuals and business partners who support FTH through their donations and fundraising work.

We also have to acknowledge the wonderful volunteers at Northern Reach who have helped so many of these dogs start their journey to their forever home. And the dedicated staff at Barrie Vet Hospital, especially Dr. Pauline van Veen and Dr. Mudde, who have provided such excellent care for each of the FTH dogs. And the people in the First Nations communities who have welcomed our clinic teams, brought their dogs to a clinic to be spayed/neutered, or who have surrendered dogs in the hope of a better life for them.

FTH was the grateful recipient of a couple of sizable grants that enabled us to purchase some much-needed supplies and equipment for our fosters, as well as fund 2 of the veterinary clinics. Our business partners donated supplies (collars, leashes, etc) and large amounts of dog food which we were able to share with northern communities.

And last, but not least, the over 500 individuals and families who adopted a rescued dog and provided a forever home for them!

Some of these stories were captured in the FTH blog (have a look here: While numbers don’t really tell the story they help put the year in perspective. Here are some numbers from 2018:

– 556 – dogs rescued
– 520 – dogs adopted
– 65 – dogs adopted in one month (November) !
– 2,422 – TOTAL dogs adopted since day 1
– 68 – dogs in foster care
– 35 – ‘official’ rescue trips*
– 316 – dogs transported via ‘official’ rescue trips*
– $11.3K – cost of ‘official’ rescue trips*
– $25.2K – cost of flying dogs out of remote communities
– $18.1K – cost of emergency vet care in Thunder Bay
– 4 – veterinary clinics
– $36.8K – cost to run veterinary clinics (incl. medical supplies of $14.8K)
– 200 – dogs spayed/neutered at vet clinics
– 2.3% – admin expenses as % of total expenses (incl. insurance)
– $149.2K – total veterinary costs (incl. clinics, emergency)

*official rescue trips = typically made in FTH van; excludes volunteer drivers who take 1 or 2 dogs

To all of you who have helped make this possible, the board says “Thank You” and have a safe and happy New Year!