CNN Heroes has honored humanitarians that have made positive changes for their communities for many years.
This year, Sherri Franklin was honored in the Top 10. Sherri Franklin founded Muttville, a rescue group for senior dogs.
At the event, this video was presented by Neil Patrick Harris, Anderson Cooper, and Kelly Ripa:
Sherri Franklin's story demonstrates her passion as a true animal lover. Her story begins twenty years ago, when she volunteered at the San Francisco Humane Society. Here, she walked and cared for many dogs.
Franklin spent 5 days a week working with the Humane Society, and she began to notice something: the older dogs tended to be ignored. People favored the younger pups, leaving the senior dogs to lose hope and be put down.
Franklin decided to create the Muttville Senior Dog Rescue in 2007. She opened this out of her own home, and brought in senior dogs from the shelter
These dogs were cared as if they were Franklin's own pets until someone came along to adopt. In less than 10 years, Franklin, volunteers, and fosters have been able to place 4,000 senior dogs into loving homes!
The rescue that Franklin runs is entirely cage-free. The facility has couches, beds, and toys. There are grooming suites and veterinary stations for the dogs to receive medical care, vaccines, and microchipping.
Occasionally, dogs will be discovered to have terminal illnesses. Rather than putting these animals to sleep, Franklin began the “Fospice” system.
The dogs with terminal illnesses are placed with families that understand the needs and the circumstances. All medical expenses are paid for by Muttville for the remainder of the dogs' lives.
At this time, there are 40 dogs in Fospice, and more than double that ready to be adopted! Check out the available pups on the Muttville website.
Muttville recently began a new program known as “Seniors for Seniors”. With this program, seniors in the community are matched up with senior dogs. The adoption fees are waived a welcome kit is given that contains a harness, collar, leash, bowls, bed, starter supply of food and medications, and even home modifications as needed (for instance, a doggy gate or stairs!).
Should a senior citizen taking part in the program become ill, overwhelmed, or pass away, Muttville will gladly take back the dog are care for them. This makes the program risk-free and can alleviate concerns the senior citizens may have in case of an emergency.
While Sherri Franklin did not win the top CNN heroes honor, she has made animal lovers proud all across the globe.