Cleft Pup Brigade (under Fred's Friends 501c3) specializes in cleft lip/palate puppies and special needs newborn puppies. We realized after being in rescue for a few years that there was a dire need for help with cleft puppies, as they are typically euthanized at birth since they cannot nurse. We are an educated group of individuals who tube feed these newborns around the clock and help them grow big and strong. They typically do not require corrective surgery, except for rare occasions; they can live perfectly normal lives and eat on their own once old enough. FOSTER HOMES and TRANSPORTERS ARE DESPERATELY NEEDED for these little ones, especially weaned puppies. We are happy to help train any and all, who are willing to help. Please complete our foster application and we will be in touch as soon as we can. PLEASE NOTE we are located in Northern California, with direct contacts in the Bay Area and Sacramento Area, however we work with a wide range of volunteers who help us transport from Nevada and all over California.
A brief history on how we got our name: Fred is an amazing Boxer, who has the kindest heart, gentle soul and amazing patience. He is so incredible with all the little creatures his Mom brings home and treats them as if they are his own.....His Mom couldn't do what she does without him and thus needed to make sure he was recognized for all of his hard work.
Thanks so much,
Cleft Pup Brigade Team
FRED-The Inspiration and Star of the Show Cleft Pup Brigade originally Fred's Friends was named after Rachele’s boxer dog, Fred; he is her angel. He helps care for all of the babies that come through his door, treating every one of them as if they were his own; with lots of kisses and lots of concern. Every one of them becomes his friend once they are old enough to crawl around and bite him. See Fred's Favorite Pics below! Fred even has his own Facebook Page! Check him out! Fred Fred The Boxer
RACHELE-Founder/Executive Director About 9 years ago Rachele, the Founder/Director of Fred’s Friends was given a tiny kitten, whom had been tossed into a Sheriff’s patrol car by some young kids. The Deputy had no idea what to do with this tiny kitten, so, like any of us would do he thought to take it to his local animal shelter. When he arrived with this pint size little creature the staff looked at him and said “If you leave that here it will be euthanized; it can’t eat on its own and it is under 2lbs.” Mortified, the deputy took the kitten to the next best place, a 911 operating facility, where of course, everyone offered to take this little kitten in and bottle feed him. Rachele’s best friend was one of these kind-hearted people and she brought the kitten to Rachele, knowing Rachele’s passion for animals . Rachele took him in, bottle fed every 3 hours and named him after the wonderful Deputy who saved him, Zooby. Zooby opened a door to a whole new world for Rachele, a world she never new existed, filled with so many unwanted litters of kittens and puppies that were being euthanized in our shelters everyday.
Since then, Rachele has taken in over 1000 kittens and a couple hundred puppies, all of whom have needed round the clock bottle feeding and care. She has lost numerous babies due to illness and unexplained causes. She finally decided after 5 years of rescuing on her own, that she needed to make a bigger stand in the community, she needed to get the word out to as many people as she could. She needed to start a non-profit animal rescue. And so began Fred's Friends. See Rachele's favorite pics below! Contact Rachele!
Liz grew up in a house that had adopted cats because they chose them. After years of volunteering at the local animal shelters, Liz knew she wanted to do more to help the many kittens in need. After settling into her new place that allowed pets, Liz and her husband decided they wanted to start fostering. Liz would foster the kittens that could no longer be in the shelter since they were sick. She learned fast to give them all the needed antibiotics and social interaction needed to make the kittens adoptable. Liz then started fostering Skittles who would hiss and scratch anyone who came near him. Knowing how important it is to socialize a kitten, she gladly took on the challenge. After a few days of unwanted cuddles and loves, Skittles started to purr and would not try and escape while he was being held. Skittles made such progress he was able to go back to the pet store where the organization had their kittens to be adopted. No one could believe he was the same cat. A few weeks later, Skittles came down with a cold and Liz had the opportunity to foster him again. Once back in the house, they knew Skittles needed to be part of their family. Once Skittles was over his cold, they were ready to add a brother to keep him company. That’s when Sam joined the group and they are constantly together. Once Sam and Skittles were big enough to help, Liz began fostering again. They are the best big brothers to the kittens that come into their house. See some of Liz's favorite pics below! Contact Liz!