Home E In The News E ‘Have A Heart Humane Society’ Helps Tehachapi’s Pets In Need

‘Have A Heart Humane Society’ Helps Tehachapi’s Pets In Need

By Sheila Emery

legacy-img_6194

Gina Christopher, of Have a Heart Humane Society, and Sheila Emery with Dog Whisperer canned dog food.

Gina Christopher has been helping animals since she was a little girl, and her passion for dogs and cats has grown stronger each day.

As a young woman, people started bringing Gina stray animals as she helped her dad in his Radio Shack store. She would get the animals spayed and neutered and then put up notices around town to get them adopted. In 2008, Gina and her mom, Chelley Kitzmiller, started STOP — Save Tehachapi’s Orphaned Pets — which is still in operation today.

Tehachapi is a small city in the Tehachapi Mountains of Southern California; it is a small, rural community in need of rescues like this one.

At one point, Gina was on her way to losing her mind and marriage due to fostering 24 kittens in her home. The kittens were consuming her life and she could do nothing else but feed, clean and doctor them all day. 

It was at this time that Gina and Chelley had a revelation that would inspire Gina to start a new rescue. She realized that prevention was the answer. And from that moment on, they focused on prevention, spay and neuter, as well as pet adoptions. 

>
In 2010, Chelley and Gina started Have a Heart Humane Society and, in 2016, opened a thrift store called ‘Rescued Treasures’ that helps to fund the foster care program for 20 to 50 animals per month, and provides needed funds for low-cost clinics which have, from 2017-2019, spayed and neutered more than 2,000 community pets.

In 2010, Chelley and Gina started Have a Heart Humane Society and, in 2016, opened a thrift store called “Rescued Treasures” that helps to fund the foster care program for 20 to 50 animals per month, and provides needed funds for low-cost clinics which have, from 2017-2019, spayed and neutered more than 2,000 community pets. A unique aspect of Have a Heart is that people can shop for donated treasures in the store as well as view the dogs and cats that are up for adoption in enclosures in the store.

legacy-img_6200-2

Have a Heart Humane Society pet enclosures.

legacy-img_6197

Have a Heart thrift store, “Rescued Treasures.”

legacy-img_6201-1

Gina says that due to Covid, many people have adopted pets — which is wonderful news. However, this increase in pet adoptions has made it more difficult to find a veterinarian close by who is able to take on the increase in spay and neuter appointments. Instead of driving her animals an hour away, Gina now has to drive five hours round trip with 15-20 cats and dogs once or twice a month.

>
Gina now has to drive five hours round trip with 15-20 cats and dogs once or twice a month.

She says if someone gifted them lots of money she would pay for a full-time vet to do spay and neuter all day. Gina and her 40-50 volunteers are the reason that Dog Whisperer Productions donated several cases of Dog Whisperer dog food to Have a Heart Humane Society.

legacy-img_6186-1-2

Thank you Gina, and keep up the good work!

Visit Have a Heart Humane Society’s website here. Click here for ways to help!

legacy-300x250-watch-tv
Shop Dog Whisperer Products