Animal rescue shelter in Dubuque County to close - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Animal rescue shelter in Dubuque County to close

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By the end of the month, stray animals like cats and dogs outside Dubuque city limits, won't have a shelter to go to.

"The county has no place to go with their animals, if we don't take them, there's no place for 'em," said Vicky Ruefer, director of Whispurring Hope Animal Rescue. 

The animal shelter in Dyersville is soon closing its doors because the bills are stacking up. Besides occasional donations,  Ruefer and her husband pay for the operation primarily out of pocket. The non-profit is contracted with Dubuque County to pick up stray animals in unincorporated areas. 

"Just the building is $1,200 a month, that's a lot for anybody to come up with in donations, and then our vet bills, our vet bills run in the thousands, over $10,000 most of the time," she said.

At any given time, the shelter has about 100 animals. Ruefer says its been stressful.

"I pay most of it out of my pocket, whatever don't get funded, I pay for and its becoming a hardship."

The non-profit plans to continue its mission of saving animals and helping them find homes, but it may now be a greater challenge. They plan to find foster homes for the rescued animals.

"I would still love to find a small building in Dubuque that is donated just to use at least, just a small building to house the animals, that would be a huge help for us to continue what we're doing," 

Ruefer mentioned something like a garage with running water would be adequate. 

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