Why We Can’t Have Volunteers

I’ve gotten a lot of messages from people local to Chattanooga who would like to visit or help with the animals at For Fox Sake. I appreciate every offer for help, from the bottom of my heart. I run For Fox Sake as a one-man operation, and wish it was possible to have an extra hand. But here’s why that’s not possible:

Tennessee state law is strict— for good reason— about the handling of “rabies vector species,” animals that are statistically more likely to have rabies. I chose to specialize in rescuing rabies vectors because there are very few rehabbers in Tennessee who are able to help these beautiful, sensitive animals.

Rabies is uncommon and every animal at For Fox Sake is vaccinated for rabies immediately. However, as a precaution, the state of Tennessee forbids wild rabies vector species from being exhibited, used as education animals, or handled by unauthorized personnel. This regulation exists not just to protect humans, but also to protect animals from being unnecessarily euthanized and to protect rehabilitators from being sued if someone gets bitten.

The other reason I can’t exhibit wildlife or have volunteers is more personal: For Fox Sake isn’t a stand-alone business, but a facility built, literally, in my backyard. Although I have cameras and a security system, I don’t feel comfortable inviting strangers into my home, especially at night, when the animals I care for are most active (and most in need of care).

I appreciate every single person who supports For Fox Sake, and the dedication of people who have offered to volunteer, but unfortunately, the only way to see the animals in my care is through photos, and the only way to personally help them is through donations.

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