DENVER, Colo. (CBS4) – Call it a cat-tastrophe. The water heater at Rocky Mountain Feline Rescue recently busted, so the shelter had to bust its bank to replace it.
“It’s not a luxury, it’s a necessity,” said Cari Dicke, RMFR’s Foster Care Coordinator and Board President. “A lot of things we do require hot water, like mopping the floors. We need to have hot water in the product we use in order to kill off the bacteria and viruses.”
RMFR began rescuing homeless, abandoned and neglected kittens and cats in 1982, and some of the appliances in their Denver facility have been around just as long.
“We had a 20-year-old hot water heater that held about 50 gallons,” Dicke said. “Suddenly one day we didn’t have any hot water.”
Dicke explained the lack of hot water made it next to impossible for the shelter to operate effectively and maintain a healthy environment.
“We have dishes that we wash, industrial washers that run constantly and everything has bleach in it,” she told CBS4’s Kelly Werthmann. “We have to wash our hands frequently, so hot water is a must. Plus, we do a lot of bathing with the cats and they don’t appreciate a cold bath.”
After weeks of no hot water, the shelter had to buy a new water heater and it came with an unexpected $4,000 bill.
“We needed a commercial hot water heater and we also needed to install it up to code. The installation 20-years-ago of a home-size hot water heater in this place is very different than putting a new one in now. So that came with an added cost,” Dicke said. “We work on a very tight budget because we rely on donations.”
Now, the shelter is really in need of the community’s support to cover the pricey yet necessary repair.
“It’s not very sexy because it’s an appliance, but it’s something that’s very, very important,” Dicke said. “We hope the GoFundMe will help us recoup some of those funds.”
If you would like to donate to RMFR’s GoFundMe, click here.