Animal News

The Herald News – Joliet (IL)
September 30, 2007 | Kim Smith

BRAIDWOOD – Making a Difference Rescue now has a Braidwood address.

Resident Brucetta Lee has teamed up with Liz Bagley, of Channahon, to provide no-kill services for cats and dogs found wandering around the city. Bagley is founder of the organization.

“I am a breast cancer survivor,” Bagley said at a city council meeting. “I cherish all kinds of life.”

Lee has been working as a volunteer taking in strays. Her work saves the city the costs charged by Will County Animal Control to pick up the animals.

Last month, Lee asked the city to foot the bill for a scanning device used to track implanted microchips now being inserted into pets. Since then, the company that makes the devices donated one for her to use for free.

The microchip is a tiny computer chip which has an identification number programmed into it. The device is small enough to fit inside a hypodermic needle and is injected under the skin of pets. Installing the microchip is mostly painless for animals and lasts a lifetime.

Avid, a Norco, Calif., company makes the scanners.

“You scan the pet between the shoulder blades,” Lee said. “Veterinarians install the chips. When you get the reading you can call a hotline to identify the pet’s owner.”

If the owner is not found, the organization tries to find the animals a new home.

“I do not go out looking for animals, the police bring them over. I do my own vet care paid for out of our own pockets and I am going to feed them,” Lee said, “No dogs get euthanized.”

City Administrator Andy Gallette said it is important for residents to know that Lee is not charging anyone for her services.

“This saves both the city and the residents,” Gallette said.

Recently, neighboring Wilmington signed an agreement with Will County Animal Control. Animal control charges $100 a call between the hours of 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on weekdays and $150 a call from 4:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. or on weekends and holidays. Emergency only calls from 12:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. cost $250.

Recently, Commissioner Mike Grace toured Lee’s home. He told officials said he was very happy with her setup.

City attorneys are working on an agreement between Lee and the city that would not hold the city liable if an animal injured Lee or her property while doing her rescue work.

Reporter Kim Smith can be reached at (815) 729-6067 or at