Amazing animal rescue in Arkansas - KATV - Breaking News, Weather and Razorback Sports

Amazing animal rescue in Arkansas

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MOUNTAIN HOME (KATV) - Every now and then you meet someone who you know was destined for her work. Janice Wolf was born to rescue.

"The first animal I rescued, I wasn't even three years old yet and I rescued a pelican off the beach in Key West. I just always was the person people would bring their orphan birds and things to," said Janice as she strolled calmly towards a zebra named Barcode who lives with her at Rocky Ridge Refuge.

Wolf has always loved animals, especially the ones that to others may have seemed unlovable. With a background as a veterinary tech, she studied how animals can be used in therapy to help people, but she eventually decided that her heart was inclined to focus on the four-legged.

"They're grateful. They take the help, and they move on with it, whereas people, not so much generally," said Wolf.

Dogs born without legs, pigs blinded by abuse, even animals with severe emotional impairment - Wolf sees past their defects into the creatures they could be, with just a little help from her.

"Some of the best animals I see have come from the worst circumstances," said Wolf.

Wolf points to animals like Sequoia, a dog suffering from what looked to be a hopeless case of mange. She treats the animals with homeopathic remedies that she's developed over the years. 

Her home has long been a menagerie, but it wasn't until one unique creature moved in that her life's work started getting a lot of attention.

"I had a very famous animal. I didn't expect it, but I ended up with Lurch, an African watusi, who ended up being Guinness World Record holder for the largest horns, and that brought attention," recalled Wolf.

It also brought a lot of requests. People began asking her to take in exotic or abused animals from around the world.

"I turn down 50 a day because I'm just one person with very limited space and time and energy. Every day my heart breaks," said Wolf.

Janice says she's slowing down with age, but she gets a lot of help around the house.

"They help each other. It's an animal group home. We all kind of work together. The one rule we have here is that we all have to get along," laughed Wolf.

Take Cheesecake the capybara for example. For years, this world's largest rodent has played foster mom to litters of abandoned puppies.

"She takes care of them. She disciplines them. They never miss their moms because she just becomes surrogate mom," said Wolf.

However, Wolf doesn't just take these animals in, she works hard to find them a good home and an even better life, if you can imagine one. Remember Sequoia, a dog so eaten up with mange others thought she was beyond hope? Today Sequoia is happy, healthy and headed to a new home.

"She's going to Towson, New Mexico, in a couple weeks. She's going to have a great life, and so that's what you do it for," said Wolf.

For those she can't adopt out, exotics like Barcode, she tries her best to make their lives full with goats for friends and a loving family.

"You rescue, and you try to give them the best life you can, the best natural life you can," said Wolf.

It's a lot of work for one person, but Wolf has started looking for a successor. However, it's pretty clear that this woman who rescued a pelican as a toddler will continue her work in some capacity for the rest of her life.

"I don't want to give it up totally until my last breath because, I mean, this is why I get up in the morning. I've never had my own family. So, this is my family, and so I'll have something, I'll be helping something until I just can't move," said Wolf.

Click the link to learn more or to support Rocky Ridge Refuge.
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