Owners of a Kagel Canyon horse ranch are operating more than just stables – they are also saving cats and dogs. Golden Years Dog Sanctuary is a nonprofit effort run by Paul and Susan Friend LeTourneur at their ranch, Goldspirit Farm.
Susan Friend had a lifelong dream of living on a horse ranch, so she established Goldspirit Farm in February of 1999. She met Paul a year later and he joined her in offering boarding, training and riding lessons, while Susan continued to compete in eventing, jumpers and dressage.
Over time, the couple learned that the area where they lived was a dumping ground for unwanted dogs, so they established Golden Years Dog Sanctuary, which is dedicated to saving senior and at-risk dogs from shelters. Kagel Canyon is located in unincorporated Los Angeles off little Tujunga in the Silverlake/Sylmar area.
“We seek out the old, sad, sick, never-going-to-get-adopted dogs and give them a last great life,” the website says. “In some cases, they only have a couple of months remaining, but many 12-year-old dogs have lived an additional two to three years.”
They also foster and save at-risk cats and kittens from local shelters with a goal to save as many lives as possible.
During the day, dogs have “free range” in the stable area where two stalls have couches and dog beds for their use. They sleep in a “dogominium” with an insulated roof and walls, air conditioning and heat, plus custom dog beds and carpeting.
Golden Years has a mission – to enrich lives by offering a good home to senior and at-risk dogs; to empower change by thinning out the population at animal shelters; and to educate owners about spaying and neutering pets.
The nonprofit’s website points out the many opportunities for the public to get involved and help them with the cause:
Feed and socialize cats
Foster animals at the shelter
Donate blankets, beds or food
The public is invited to an Open House to celebrate Golden Years Dog Sanctuary’s 20th anniversary on Sunday, April 28, 2019 from 1-4 p.m. at Goldspirit Farm. There will be food, drinks and a raffle supporting the nonprofit.
Goldspirit Farm is located at 12682 Kagel Canyon Road in Sylmar. Call 818-834-1272 or visit GoldspiritFarm.com or GoldenYearsDogSanctuary.com.