Friends rally to help fellow animal lover

Friends rally to help fellow animal lover

VANCLEAVE, MS (WLOX) - She's an animal caregiver with a heart of gold. A Jackson County woman who's fostered more than 300 animals over the past five years, is in need of a little assistance herself.

"Hey darling.  It's going to be okay. You are a cutie!" said Razi McCollough, as she held a small Chihuahua.

She's preparing to take home yet another foster dog. This Chihuahua has a bad hip and kennel cough.  But that's okay. It needs love, just the same.

"She's saved hundreds of animals. She just takes, whenever I say, 'Razi will you take this, it's a Razi dog', she takes it. She's just wonderful. I don't know what I'd do without her," said Maridee Mallette at the Jackson County animal shelter.

Razi began fostering five years ago, after her niece suggested it.

"And she asked me if I'd like to try it. So I did. I took one. And that was five years ago and about 300 dogs ago," said McCollough.

"If we've got a dog or car that needs help, we can always count on her to give it a home and help it get rehabilitated. She's valuable to us," said shelter director Joe Barlow.

But now this foster mom extraordinaire, needs a little help herself. A recent fire, that started on the stove, badly damaged her Vancleave home. Her first reaction was to get the dogs out safely.

"I think that's why I panicked so bad. Was thinking of getting them out and getting them to safety. But it worked out. I make a better fosterer than I do a volunteer firefighter, I can tell you that. That didn't work out too good," she recalled.

Her shelter friends are now collecting donations; giving back to the woman who's given so much.

"When her house caught on fire, had to do something to help her out, you know? Need to keep her going. We've got the GoFundMe going. It's on Facebook. We're at about 3,000, so we've got about $1,700 to go to get to the goal I was trying to get for her," said Mallette.

McCollough is most thankful, especially for her four legged friends.

"We do what we can for 'em, yes we do!" she said, as she lovingly held the new Chihuahua.

McCollough is currently caring for 11 foster dogs, along with seven dogs of her own.

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