Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Reek Havoc Beginnings

One evening in the Fall of 2012 while sharing a bottle of wine (or two!), philosophizing on what we want to be when we grow up, we were silently ambushed into an olfactory uproar by Amy's sweet Yellow Lab, Otis. Amid the match lighting and magazine waving, we joked that there must be a better way for pets and their owners to live in fragrant harmony. That was the beginning of Reek Havoc.

Jill & Amy, co-owners, Reek Havoc

We're Amy and Jill, two Midwestern gals who love pets and the relationships they share with their humans. We enjoy creating, sharing some laughs, and having fun in our work. We have worked together on and off since 2001 at two online art companies and decided to give our own business a go. We're both Jacks (or Jills) of all trades; Amy brings a diverse background in the arts, merchandising, and marketing, while Jill brings her knowledge of writing, marketing, and design. 

And we both count our pets among our family members. Amy's fur babies include Oonagh, the 18-year-old Muppet mix and grand patriarch of the pack. Found in a dumpster (!) at only a few weeks old, she is living proof of the power of love, laughter, and second chances. Otis, the 13-year-old yellow lab, goes big in everything he does--affection, play, sympathy, and, um. . . flatulence. Pixie, the 3-year-old Yorkie/Schnauzer/Poodle mix, brings up the rear, although always from the front! Another rescue from a tough situation, she has firmly settled into her role as the pampered princess.

Jill's family includes 13-year-old yellow Lab Ferris, aptly named after the movie Ferris Bueller's Day Off because she's just a little bit naughty and would totally ditch school for a day, but is ultimately a lovable sweetheart. Icarus, the social black cat, came to Jill's family as a rescue a few years back. He's missing half an ear due to frostbite when he was out on the mean streets of Madison, but we think it makes him look handsome and distinguished.

We believe the world is a better place with pets, and wholeheartedly support the work and mission of pet rescue organizations. That's why we're pleased to donate money from sales of our candles to Underdog Pet Rescue of Wisconsin. Check 'em out--and thanks for your interest in Reek Havoc!

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Why We Love & Support Underdog Pet Rescue

Many of you know that Reek Havoc donates $1 from the sale of each candle to Underdog Pet Rescue of Wisconsin, and here's why: They're an awesome nonprofit pet rescue organization located on Madison's east side, with a core of volunteers and foster families that are truly devoted to improving the lives of pets, many of whom might otherwise be put to sleep at kill shelters because they're deemed "not perfect." Their mission is to find permanent homes for these pets.

This past Saturday, my youngest daughter and I had the pleasure of attending Underdog's monthly Coffee and Canines event. For those interested, Coffee and Canines happens at Underdog's storefront, 231 South Fair Oaks Avenue in Madison, the first Saturday of every month from 9 am-Noon. Foster families bring many of Underdog's adoptable dogs and cats for you to meet in person, plus you can enjoy coffee and Batch Bakehouse treats.

While we were there, we chatted with a number of foster families, petted lots of sweet dogs and cats looking for their forever home, and witnessed the best of Underdog in action. During our time there, one of the volunteers brought in two dogs who had been transported from Alabama. One was a mama Bassett and there was another small black-and-white dog. Lauren, Underdog's Executive Director, explained to me that they used to only take dogs from Wisconsin, but soon shelters outside the state learned about Underdog and started transporting dogs there as space is available. Underdog works with various transporting services to get the animals to them, where they're then checked out by a veterinarian, and placed with foster families while they wait for their "furever" home.

We're thrilled to support Underdog through the sales of our candles -- but they're always looking for direct donations and foster families to help rescue more animals. If you're interested, check out their website, where you can make a donation online, inquire about fostering, or see information about the animals awaiting adoption. Or stop by the next Coffee & Canines event--you won't be sorry you made the trip!