When Sundance, the favorite cat of Clovis residents Doug and Lorraine Johnson, was killed by a hit-and-run driver, the two decided they’d seen enough cats abused, abandoned and injured with no one to care for them, Doug said.
In 2002, they formed the Sundance Ranch Feline Sanctuary, a private non-profit corporation dedicated to rescuing unwanted and uncared for felines. Today they house 53 cats in foster homes in Clovis and Portales, including one three-legged cat and one that is deaf, he said.
Sundance Ranch is endorsed by the American Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Albertson’s food stores, according to its Web site.
The Johnsons, and the volunteers who participate in the sanctuary, work to find new homes for their animals and the cats they take in have to pass a fairly rigorous in-take protocol, including a vet check, and they recognize there’s a limit to the number they can help at one time, Doug said.
One of the group’s projects is the “Cat Fancy Mansion.” Doug and Lorraine have bought a piece of land in Curry County and hope to build a 2,500-square-foot building to house rescued cats. The “mansion” should house about 100 rescued cats, complete with running water, central heating and air, windows, beds, a play area and a screened-in outside run. Doug estimates it can be built for about $10,000 plus materials donations.
For more information, check www.sundancesanctuary.org.
Reporter’s notebook was compiled by CNJ staff writer Jack King. Suggested items may be mailed to editor David Stevens at P.O. Box 1689, Clovis 88102. The e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.