About the ABR Rescue Funds


Funds not designated for a particular area, and those designated for the General Fund, will go to assist dogs and foster homes most in need. You may also designate funds to help a particular state by writing it in on the Donation Form.


If you would like to help, but can’t foster or adopt, be a Brittany Buddy! Some rescue dogs need a little extra help. An otherwise healthy dog may come to rescue with heartworm or some other easily solved problem, but it isn’t so easy to solve when funds are tight and there are many dogs who need help. Often older dogs stay in rescue simply because they’re older. Many volunteers cover the extra expenses themselves, but that makes continued volunteering difficult. Visit the Buddy page to see the dogs currently in need.


Donations to the Mo-Kan Fund will be used in the Kansas/Missouri area to assist the many Brittanys who are rescued there every year. It’s not at all unusual for us to have 10-12 purebred Brittanys available at any one time in those states. This region has been more difficult for ABR to work in than any other in the country, because there are so many Brittanys in need, but fewer people who are willing to volunteer, and far too few adopters. We don’t feel the need to save every one — some dogs are older, in poor health, or have bad temperaments, but MANY of them are young, healthy, and have years of companionship to give. We have found it necessary to send them out of state to other foster homes or board them while waiting for a foster space to open up. Donations to this fund will help with their veterinary costs, the cost of boarding them and helping with their transportation to safe care. Your assistance will guarantee the safety and ultimately, the survival of many happy, healthy young Brittanys finding themselves in need of homes in these states. Please designate the Mo-Kan Fund on our Donation Form.


As so often happens in rescue, we got a call from a local shelter about a dog needing adoption. This was a 10 year old male Brittany, which we later discovered was a fully trained hunting dog. Something about him caught the attention of the shelter worker…this dog did not belong there. Unfortunately, all our foster homes were full, so unless we could find a home for this dog, we would have to let him go. Miraculously, a home was found. We had the shelter neuter him, and give him his rabies shot, then took him for his heartworm test and physical. The bad news came back a couple of days later; Jake had third stage heartworm. His prognosis was not wonderful. The question became whether or not we should treat him. I contacted his prospective home and gave them the bad news. We found another dog for them, but they were grief stricken. They decided to name thier new dog Jake as a tribute to the dog they could not take. But we still had to make the decision about old Jake’s treatment. Jake had served someone faithfully for many years, and in the end we made the decision that we could not just throw him away. There was something about him. Even the vet who found the heartworm would have taken him. We found a foster home and someone willing to provide funds, and we began treating Jake’s heartworm. We knew the prognosis was not good, but death was certain without it. We began thinking that perhaps Jake could get a Junior Hunter title, or that perhaps a club member could hunt over him during the club Pheasant hunt in the fall. Despite our best efforts however, Jake could not tolerate the treatment and he died. He was buried in Denise’s yard in a place where the birds always sing.

His life and death haunted me. Surely there were many Jakes out there. Older dogs who wound up on hard times, with lots of life left to them. Perhaps, I thought, if there were funds available to do just a little extra for them; funds for lab tests or to defray the cost of medication, or for an x-ray…a fund to help with the little extra costs that older dogs sometimes incur…foster homes and even permanent homes might be found that would be willing to take on the responsibilites for these dogs. And so I came up with the idea for the Jake Fund.

This is not a fund geared toward heroic life saving treatment .. this is a quality of life fund, extra monies so that the old dogs do not have to be thrown away .. so that they can live out their days in peace and comfort. Monies donated to the Jake Fund would go to foster or permanent homes willing to adopt an older Brittany. They are to be used to help individuals who adopt an older dog to defray the cost of long term medication, diagnostic lab work or x-rays, special diets, heartworm treatment, etc. Often these older dogs have only a few years left to live, yet these years can be productive and joyful both for the dog and the owner. Brittanys are often the Peter Pan’s of the dog world, never growing up and remaining playful and engaged right up til the end. Older Britts have much to give for those willing to seek what they have to offer.

We have established a $300 lifetime cap per dog on these funds. They can be used for Britts 7 years and older, all funds must be applied for by the foster or adoptive home.

–Judy Booth, Jake Fund administrator

See some of the dogs currently eligible for the Jake Fund on our Buddy page.


Dale C. Ellis, along with wife Myra-Dawn, was an ABR volunteer in Southern California, and recently an enthusiastic newcomer to field trials. On September 16th, 2001 there was electrical storm at an Arizona field trial. Lightning injured ABR’s friends Paul Doiron (professional handler) and Hank Hartnek (former ABC director), and took the life of Dale Ellis. Myra-Dawn requested that anyone wishing to show their repects make a donation to rescue rather than sending flowers. The Dale C. Ellis Memorial Fund will benefit American Brittany Rescue’s efforts in Southern California. For more information, contact Susan Kerns.

ABR Southern CA Coordinator, Susan Kerns writes: “Although they could not foster any more after their puppies were born, I could always count on Dale to run down to the Riverside Shelter (or any other in the area) and bail out a dog. He was the one who saved Misty the six month old puppy who was thrown over the fence by her owner. The Doirons own a kennel and donated space for Misty until we could get her into a foster home. Now Misty is the only child of a couple that completely dotes on her.”


This fund is dedicated to Stuart Roe, who tragically passed away, and is missed dearly by all who knew him. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife Michelle and their 2 Brittany dogs, Ginger, who was “Stu’s Girl”, and hunting companion, and Jethro, who Stu and Michelle rescued and adopted from a shelter in Northern California after they heard a plea on the radio from American Brittany Rescue. Stu touched a lot of people with his “one of a kind personality”, and those who knew him can honestly say he had a heart of gold. American Brittany Rescue is something Stu believed in, and by donating a gift in his name to American Brittany Rescue, it would be a great way to honor and remember our friend.

Cheers to you Stu!


The Kitty Murphy fund provides medical assistance for dogs who come into rescue. These funds are not to provide extraordinary care for dogs who would be better served by letting them go. Instead, it allows rescue to help dogs like Suzy who came to ABR less than a year old. She had been hit by a car and her broken leg was never treated. It was disfiguring and painful. After surgery to repair her leg, Suzy was placed in a loving home where she is living a normal life as an active companion.

Kitty Murphy passed away on October 30th, 2003. This fund has been set up in her memory and in her honor. Kitty was a past president of the ABC and is largely responsible for the existance of American Brittany Rescue. A New Jersey shelter called Kitty in 1991 about a brittany in their care. Kitty not only arranged for this Brittany to be rescued, but she also recognized that while many other breeds had rescue organizations, Brittanys did not. Kitty Murphy and Ann Murphy began American Brittany Rescue in New Jersey after the rescue of this dog. Late in her life, Kitty rescued a blind dog who was spoiled and doted on.

But Kitty wasn’t just important to rescue. Long before rescue, she was important in the Brittany world. Joan Warshefski of the North Jersey Brittany Club wrote:

“When nonbelievers said top winning show dogs were pretty but couldn’t run in a field trial, Kitty set out to prove them wrong. She turned to us (and other friends like Lyle Johnson, John Ivester and Ron Stevenson) to finish her beloved show dog Sequani’s Dana MacDuff. Duffy hadn’t seen a field or a bird in his 7 year show career, and it was left to my husband, Harry, to finish him on the old Del Val grounds in Coatesville, PA. I can still remember the tears in her eyes when she was presented with the blue ribbon. Kitty already had more ribbons than any of us could begin to imagine ……… but this was the blue that finished Duffy as a field champion and proved to everyone that a top show dog could be a field dog as well. We owe much to Kitty …… but especially that the Brittany is a dual dog……

Much will be written about her and her efforts on behalf of the American Brittany Club, but in all that she was a true friend of both us and the Brittany. Her last companion was a Brittany Rescue dog. God bless you Kitty ……… I have always said that if there is a heaven, it must be as we dream it ……. green fields with our Britts running free, pointing birds, with our loved ones riding as handlers and gallery into the sunset …. and, of course, the dogs are always steady with a winning performance Duffy, you have waited a long time for Kitty to join you……. to run free of pain ….. in the fields with you once again…….. Rest well Kitty, you are among good friends and loved ones who are welcoming you with open arms”


Jim Sargent lost his long battle with brain cancer on 1/13/04. He and wife Sandy have been avid Brittany lovers for many years and have been very supportive of the Susquehanna and Anthracite Brittany Clubs. They were active in the show ring as well as field trials. Jim is remembered there as a big guy with a joke and a smile and he dealt with his disease with a combination of courage and humor.

Sandy Sargent is a past ABR board member and long time supporter of rescue, giving her time, her expertise as a vet and her services to rescued dogs. She has asked that donations be made in Jim’s name to ABR and/or to the National Brain Tumor Foundation. Our thoughts and prayers are with her and their families.


… Hero with a big heart. ABR icon. He left behind a legacy of pure love, dedication and countless happy hearts. He wasn’t just a good man, but the best man. Dave was the biggest hero there was to all our dogs. The bar has been set so high, that we can only hope and try to approach his dedication and absolute giving heart. …

Those are just a few of the comments made by those who gathered at the ABR message boards to grieve the loss of Dave Powers, long-time ABR Montana Coordinator. Dave provided his wisdom to readers of the ABR message boards, ABR volunteers, and other state coordinators. Dave was learning behavioral modification from Susan Overfield (www.overfieldkennel.com.) He sponsored Boss Dog clinics with Susan as fundraisers for ABR. His partner in rescue and wife, Diane, said that it was in this new knowledge he was learning that brought a huge twinkle in his eye and excited him the most.

Dave enjoyed seeing an unwanted and untrained Brittany bloom into a well mannered valued companion. The Dave Powers Memorial Fund provides funding for additional training and support to Brittanys who need to learn manners or basic obedience. The lifetime cap is $300 per dog on these funds. All funds must be applied for by the ABR foster or adoptive home.


Napoleon was fortunate and much blessed to live to his ripe old age of 17.3 yrs. without sickness, disease or handicaps. His owner recognized that seniors who come into rescue are often not as fortunate as Napoleon. The purpose of this fund is to help these senior dogs to stay alive in foster homes or Sr. Retreat ( when one is available) until their death so they don’t need to be prematurely and unnecessarily euthanized. Napoleon spent his life in Northern California and this fund specifically assists seniors in that state.


Born in Sherman, Texas, Fred graduated from Austin College with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in 1952 and achieved a Master of Science Degree in Chemistry from Texas Tech in 1954. He married his childhood true love, Betty, and moved to Katy as he began over a 50-year career in the oil industry with Humble Oil (later Exxon Production Research Co.). They ultimately settled in Houston where they built their lives and many friendships. Fred enjoyed his work and was well-respected in his field writing many papers, receiving multiple awards and recognitions, achieving patents for his inventions, and serving as the long-time Chairman of the American Petroleum Institute Committee on Oil Well Cementing.

Fred’s career took him and Betty to various parts of the world. Later in life they went to their weekend farm where they enjoyed memorable gatherings with family and friends, fishing, hunting, gardening and bird watching. Fred and Betty were also extremely active in the Texas Coastal Brittany Club for well over 30 years.

Both Fred and Betty served as officers and board members for many years, attended club functions and were generous with their monetary support. Fred loved working with his Brittanys and enjoyed hunting tests where he ran his Brittanys and judged occasionally. He enjoyed shooting skeet and spending time with his hunting friends at his deer lease in the hill country.

Fred passed peacefully on March 21, 2015 surrounded by his family in Houston, TX. Betty, Fred’s wife of 58 years, passed before him after a lengthy illness.

INTERNATIONAL FUND (Overseas Brittanys)

1. Program Conception and Pilot Project

In early January 2017, an ABR board member was contacted through a Facebook post regarding a Brittany in need in Spain. Although that particular dog was ultimately rescued by a UK group, it brought about the question, “Can we and should we be helping Brittanys outside of the U.S. and Canada?” A Board discussion of that question revealed that we may have a new opportunity to fulfill our mission by rescuing dogs from overseas and placing them into loving forever homes here in the U.S. As we look deeper into the possibility of rescuing overseas, we are learning just how bad the situations are for dogs in many other countries. It’s an epidemic of overpopulation and cruelty- dogs being abused, beaten and poisoned to death simply because they exist- which may be a matter of uncontrolled breeding as well as the dire financial crisis experienced by these countries.
American Brittany Rescue has a 25 year proven track record, and thousands of adopters who have relished the opportunity to rescue our Brittanys and welcome them into their homes. We can leverage our experience and successes to broaden our mission and provide safety and care for Brittanys who need someone to advocate for their well-being (and life). There are many rescuers overseas who want these dogs to be saved but do not have the resources. They are willing to work with us to accomplish that mission.

To test out this potential program, the ABR board established a pilot project to begin exploring the possibility of ABR International program.
Through networking with Above and Beyond Setter Rescue we were put in contact with Mary Willis. Mary has helped bring many dogs to the US from European countries. She connected ABR with several dogs in Greece, 3 of who became our pilot project last month.

2. Pilot Project Definition and Planning

Project Charter – to mirror that of ABR’s mission – to take in stray, abandoned, surrendered and/or impounded purebred Brittanys, provide them with foster care, health and temperament screening, an opportunity for any necessary rehabilitation and to assure their health and placement into new homes. In order to fulfill this mission, ABR’s volunteers remain flexible and adaptable to current and future business environments and they remain dedicated to the organization. ABR’s mission statement can also be viewed here: /index.php?module=pagesetter&func=viewpub&tid=3&pid=7

Scope – ABR will coordinate rescue opportunities through one board-authorized point of contact (ABR International Coordinator, Nancy Hensley) with international shelters, independent rescuers, and international rescue groups for the pilot project and not to the detriment of our ability to serve USA/Canadian Brittanys.

Budget – The funding needed per rescue mission will vary depending on location of the Brittanys, and number of people and dogs travelling. A specific fund will be established to support the pilot project.
Schedule – ABR plans to conduct a rescue mission roughly every 2 months in various countries (most likely within Europe) – timing depends on number of volunteers willing to travel, the country visited, medical requirements, planning flights, and organizing foster care in the U.S.
Resources – Required resources include: dogs, in country rescuers, in country transport, flyers, U.S. fosters, U.S. transport, funding, crates and supplies.

3. Pilot Project Description

ABR plans to conduct a series of 3-6 rescue missions most likely within Europe with volunteers deploying from various locations throughout the U.S. (preferably near a major airport). Our first mission took place in February with the rescue of 3 Brittanys from Greece. Greece currently has over 1,000,000 stray dogs, many of which are hunting breeds, including the popular Brittany. Volunteers will have an opportunity to discuss previous missions with a traveler, will receive a written debrief of any prior trips taken and/or be connected to partner organizations (such as Setter Rescue volunteers) to gain knowledge of the locality, travel insights and recommendations. All necessary arrangements for the dogs (transportation, medical, paperwork, etc.) will be conducted by Mary, our ABR International Coordinator Nancy Hensley, and individuals of the rescue organizations of other in-country point of contacts. Volunteers will be responsible for booking their trip (flight, hotel, transportation, etc) as well as for bringing the necessary dog-related items with them- crates, accessories, etc. Volunteers will be reimbursed for their expenses upon completion of the mission.

4. Project Performance

ABR Board members and volunteer project managers (travelers and state coordinators involved) will evaluate project status and progress as resources are used to perform the scheduled rescue missions. During this pilot phase, project managers may need to adjust schedules or do what is necessary to keep each individual project on track.

5. Pilot Project Close and Board Decision

After each pilot rescue mission is completed, volunteer travelers will provide a verbal and written debrief to the ABR International Coordinator and ABR board members (written) so new knowledge can be passed on to future travelers and a full evaluation can be made of the individual rescue mission and the pilot program as a whole. Upon completion of the pilot program, the ABR board of directors will evaluate the overall success of the program and determine if ABR will continue the program on a permanent basis, including assessing and allocating resources and funding (and fundraising) requirements.