In 2011, Terri Atkinson, the founder, was struggling with depression and anxiety. She was afraid to leave her house and began pulling away from the outside world. Then, while watching the local news on a September day, everything changed.
The news story was about a dog breeder being arrested for keeping dogs in horrible conditions. The video showed a tiny face of a shih tzu who was in terrible shape. Something in Terri stirred, and she knew that dog was meant to be hers. She contacted the rescue and within days, Princess Reagan Marie had joined the family.
Terri had always loved animals, and she was touched by how the pet rescue saved these dogs from an awful life. She was invited to volunteer with the rescue as a foster mom to dogs who were not ready to be adopted out to their permanent home. This new passion gave Terri courage to overcome her fears.
Just weeks after Reagan came into her life, Terri was driving all over Raleigh to help with dogs in need. She was putting herself in social situations. She was healing. She now says that Reagan rescued her more than she saved Reagan.
Over the last decade, Terri and her husband, David, have volunteered thousands of hours and saved hundreds of dogs. They are always drawn to the dogs who need care the most. They have saved dogs with missing legs, deformed kidneys, no eyes, one eye, missing an ear, no teeth, heartworm positive, saved from Korean meat markets, abandoned puppies … pretty much the ones that get dumped at the shelters and are unlikely to get adopted.
After so many years of working with numerous rescues, Terri is spreading her wings and creating a nonprofit animal rescue that specifically works with dogs in need of hospice care.
Welcome to Rainbow Bridge Hospice Rescue!