Rallying to support Bandaged Paws Animal Rescue Association, donations to the shelter have now exceeded $9,200 following a break-in at their facility on Saturday. Bandaged Paws posted to its Facebook page on Sunday to inform the surrounding community that the front door of the facility had been shattered, and a lobby window had been broken. Roughly $800 cash was also reported missing from the facility.
Estimated damages put the cost of repairs between $2,000 and $2,500, including replacing the stolen cash. Natasha Arsenault says she was relieved that none of the animals had been harmed or taken during the robbery.
“Thankfully it looked like they didn’t even interact with any of the animals or anything like that. Everybody seemed happy and healthy like they normally do,” she says.
“We were quite thrilled with that being the overall outcome; being an animal rescue, our animals are of the utmost importance to us, so the fact that nobody was injured or even disturbed was a great outcome in the whole scheme of things.”
Arsenault says, in addition to the donations raised by the community, Blackrock Custom Homes offered to make a donation of $2,400. In another post to their Facebook Page, Bandaged Paws reached out to thank the owners of No Frills for their donation of a “mountain” of paper towels, hand sanitizer, bleach, detergent, gloves, and garbage bags.
Apex Security, Hi-Tech Business Solutions, and Wapiti Alarms & Automation also all reached out to offer assistance raising security around the facility. Pasifika Security Services will soon be starting night patrol, House of Glow purchased an alarm system, MC Upholstery bought an outdoor camera, and Steven Novakowski donated two motion sensor cameras.
Arsenault says she and her team can’t thank the community enough for turning the disaster on its head over the weekend.
“We’re just floored’ it’s been amazing. our community has always supported us so much and they really came through [for us]. It was a really bad morning and it turned out to be a really good day in the end,” she says. “Grande Prairie is notorious for making something not so great into something amazing. Our community always steps up and we’re very, very thankful.”
Adding onto the weekend of support for the shelter, Bandaged Paws took in an additional 40 new cats into their care over a 36 hour period. Bandaged Paws says some of the donations in excess of what IS necessary to repair the facility will be going towards the medical needs of the new arrivals.