November 23, 2016 - 3:23 pm

Partner of the Month: Animals Allies – The Story of Water Lily

Hi! Meet Water Lily….

Meet Water Lily

Water Lily, a small black and white kitten, was brought to Animal Allies of Duluth, MN in August of 2016. Upon arrival, staff listened to the story of how this kitten was found: broken and abandoned.

The young lady who brought in the kitten explained that while she was driving, she noticed an animal trying to crawl out of the road and onto the nearest sidewalk a couple of feet away. She pulled over to help and when she got closer she realized it was a small kitten. She was able to catch the kitten and take it to a veterinarian as the poor little one was obviously injured. Initial x-rays revealed fractures and displacement on both front legs, requiring surgery to correct. This stray kitten needed help: she was brought to Animal Allies where she was named Water Lily.

More about Water Lily in a moment…


Animal Allies

Animal Allies Building


Animal Allies of Duluth, Minnesota was originally founded by Miriam Carlstedt, who came home from teaching one day in the 1950’s to discover a box of kittens had been left in her driveway. She placed an ad in the paper to help find homes for them, and a lifelong mission of caring for stray and abandoned animals was born.

Since that time, Animal Allies has grown to become the premiere animal shelter and rescue center in the northern Minnesota area. Through our network of partnerships, we serve the entire state of Minnesota, as well as surrounding states and parts of Canada. In addition, we often arrange to transport and care for animals from overcrowded shelters in the southern United States.


Watch a short video and learn more about us.


Animal Allies opened our new facility in 2009 – since then over 11,938 homeless animals have been adopted, and we have achieved our goal of zero euthanasia of any healthy/treatable animals in our community to-date, including feral cats – an achievement not currently matched anywhere in our state. Since 2009, our spay/neuter program has sterilized over 38,838 animals.

In addition, Animal Allies brought curriculum-based humane education programs to more than 10,281 young people in 2014 through local schools, youth groups, birthday parties and camps in Northern Minnesota. Our humane education program focuses on the core values of respect, responsibility, kindness, citizenship, empathy, integrity and honesty.

At Animal Allies, we strive to ensure a lifetime of loving care for every pet by reducing over population, increasing adoption, and fostering humane values. We are committed to giving every animal a chance – whatever that might look like.


Water Lily

Which brings us back to Water Lily…

Water Lily 2

At the shelter, Water Lily has been bright and alert despite her injuries. Animal Allies reached out to ask for donations to cover the cost of necessary medical treatment: her injuries were extensive and would require in-depth rehabilitation and treatment estimated at over $5,000.

Thankfully our community answered! We are happy to report that Water Lily was able to begin her treatment and start the long road to recovery.

Saving Water Lily was made possible by generous donations to the Healing Hearts and Paws Fund. This fund exists to help those animals that require extensive medical treatment and care, above and beyond what the shelter can routinely provide. Thank you to all who helped Water Lily by donating to this fund.

You can still help animals like Water Lily by making a donation today. Click here to donate to our Healing Hearts and Paws Fund now. Thank you for your support!


Live Streaming Cameras Help Change Our World

Being located in Northern Minnesota, one of our key challenges is our geographical service area is quite large – covering multiple states and parts of Canada. It is not uncommon for people to drive several hours to surrender or adopt an animal from us. This makes it difficult to stay in touch with our service community and for potential adopters to know which animals might be available for adoption.

Since the installation of our live Kitty Cams which were generously donated from MeShare, the response from our community has been tremendous. We have had so many calls from people letting us know how much they love watching the kittens playing on camera – some from as far away as California. We have even had people call from a couple of hours away and ask us over the phone if they could adopt a kitten they were watching on the camera at that very moment. The whole experience for our community just feels much more engaging and interactive.

Check out the cat level cam live:


It Gets Personal…

During the installation of the cameras, we worked out a way to put one of the two cameras down at “kitty level” by using a clear acrylic dome attached to the wall with super magnets. This took several days to install and test to get it right.

During my time spent in the “kitty condo”, one little kitten in particular became my shadow, and was always there watching and wanting to help. You can see him here checking it all out and making sure I am doing everything correctly.

Zobi Watching 1

Zobi Watching 2

After a few days, I emailed my wife a picture of my new little buddy. Her immediate response was, ”When are you bringing him home?” It turns out he was the same kitten she had been watching and had grown to love just by watching him play on camera.

So here is Zobi – the newest (and definitely the most active) member of our family. That’s the power of live camera streaming – you can fall in love and save a life from a thousand miles away. Our deepest thanks to MeShare for making this all possible.

Zobi Closeup


The MeShare Animal Cam Program periodically gives away WiFi live streaming cameras to ALL eligible animal shelters and rescues across the US. If you are from an animal shelter/rescue please fill in the camera request form. If you’re not please send your request to Wayne at [email protected].

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