About the Tara's Babies Sanctuary
Tara's Babies Animal Welfare began in the days following Hurricane Katrina, when Jetsunma Ahkon Lhamo, a recognized Buddhist Teacher, witnessed the devastation and suffering on television. Jetsunma, whose life is a display of compassion, was grief-struck by the plight of the people and animals, and called her students to action. A small group of her MD students worked to assist people left homeless, while a group from Arizona went to rescue dogs from the toxic environment of New Orleans. One of Jetsunma's nuns, Dr Pema Mallu, worked as a triage vet with Best Friends, providing medical care to the animals as they arrived straight from the disaster area.
While the on-site team rescued animals from the mire, another team in Arizona quickly built emergency pet shelters at Dakini Valley. This former ranch had originally been purchased as a place of retreat, because of its unique beauty and location, neighboring 3 million acres of pristine wilderness. The remoteness and its calming energy made it a perfect place to house fearful and confused animals, uprooted from everything familiar.
Around 120 dogs and a few cats were either driven or airlifted to this new sanctuary near Payson. With the support of countless volunteers and generous donors, the animals were cared for with constant love and kindness. Of the 120 dogs rescued, 15 were reunited with their people, 100 were adopted through us or other rescues, and 5 are still at Taras Babies Sanctuary, two of these probably for the rest of their lives. Three of the cats were reunited, the others went to new loving homes.
Since the Katrina experience, Tara's Babies has evolved from a temporary rescue operation into an organization committed to saving the lives of dogs on death row in overcrowded shelters, through rescue, adoption and providing life-long care for dogs that cannot be adopted.
A Day at The Sanctuary
Every day, every dog receives the basic care of food, fresh water and human interaction. For every leash-trained dog, there is a short morning walk. Afternoons may include grooming, playtime, longer runs, home visits, a ride in the car or walks at the creek. Feral, or unsocialized dogs who are fearful of people, are introduced to being on leash, and then participate in the daily walks. We use the Dog Whispering approach, teaching the dogs that people are pack leaders, which is extremely effective.
A couple of the dogs at the Sanctuary, due to unpredictable and aggressive behavior, will remain at Tara's Babies Sanctuary for the rest of their lives. These dogs also receive optimal care and daily walks by volunteers familiar with their behavior.
Daily checks are made on the health and well being of all the dogs, and appropriate intervention provided as needed.
Most importantly, the dogs are loved and this is reflected in their happy demeanor.