Cochise Canine Rescue is located in Southern Arizona. We adopt throughout the state of AZ

Did you know: While many dogs can live to be 15 years old or older, at "shelters" dogs over 6 or 7 are considered "seniors" or "aged" ... and that is often an excuse to  euthanize the animal. Older dogs male GREAT companions...They are calmer, quieter, less  destructive...and ever so appreciative of your love.

Won't you consider adopting a Senior companion??


Sybil Erden - Benson AZ - June 24 2013 - revised March 18 2015

I am often told that what I do, working with animals, would be the "dream job" of the person I am working with. But the realities are far more difficult than one might imagine.

The animals we live with are the least cared for self-aware beings on the planet. Non-profit organizations for children, the poor, the elderly, establishments such as schools, food banks, hospitals, even environmental issue...all have a fair number of public and private grants provided by humanitarian foundations, and people can readily identify with the suffering of their fellow humans. But in our society animals, even companion animals, are the discarded, the forgotten.

With arguably 6 to 8 million companion cats and dogs discarded at so called shelters and as many as 60 to 80 percent of these animals never leaving alive...thoughtlessly "put-down," killed, annually....with billions of animals slaughtered away from our sight and thought for food...then adding the fact that exotic animals in the top three or four most lucrative forms of illegal trafficking in the world (along with drugs, guns and human-trafficking) is still surprisingly difficult to convince people that these lives have value and are worth the time, effort and most critically, funding, to save.

We in rescue are, for the most part, not wealthy. Many of us work two jobs in order to establish our facilities, while others liquidate what assets they have, whether homes, retirement funds or bank accounts. All of us have made and could be working for and making far more money that we will ever see doing the day-in-day-out work we do.

We are motivated. Each of us has compassion for the animals we care for, and often for many other species besides the few in our care. We recognize the individual spirit, the self-aware sentience in the eyes of the animal...and we connect.

Of necessity we wear many up poop, washing blankets and towels daily, preparing specialized diets, dealing with people needing immediate help, caring for sick animals throughout long nights. We become de facto veterinary technicians....often the first or only medical care available in emergencies.

Today as I write (June 2013) I am sitting in a coffee shop in Tucson, an hour and a half from home, waiting for two dogs to be spayed and neutered at a low-cost clinic. My husband, who I used to do everything with, has to remain home and will be feeding the animals. "Babysitting" he calls it...

Before I left this morning I had to give three dogs their morning medications. (March 2015: This is up to 16 dogs...the majority of the animals in our care.) While my husband let out and fed the chickens, donkeys and sheep, I cooked up a pot of rice for a dog with a sick tummy.

We learn how to run an expensive and under-capitalized business. We study fund-raising, grant writing. We interact with corporate foundation heads. We write and speak about the animals in our care.

Human relationships suffer. Marriages dissolve as the animals take precedence over a spouse. Old friends fall by the wayside until all the friends and associates are in the animal welfare world.

Emotionally we suffer a personal toll. We grieve with each suffering animal that comes into our rescue. We weep for each one that passes until all the tears are gone... They are our best friends, our family, as much as our biological families are.

Rescue work is 24/7. This job is so much more than 8 hours a day. Whether it is a rescue or the care for a sick animal, working on fundraising, traveling to do a "home check"...our time, our lives are completely intertwined with the sanctuary, the rescue, with and for the animals.

We are the animals' only voice.