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Pay It Forward: Four Paws Pet Adoptions


Four Paws Pet Adoptions in Rexburg was started 16 years ago, because the founders say a local shelter was euthanizing 90 percent of its pets. It was started by Bob and Bobbette Carlson and their daughter Jodi Johnson.

"Because I love what I do and there was a need. I've always wanted animals. I was never allowed a pet, growing up. And when I saw what was going on in a shelter, it broke my heart, and I thought, 'I'm going to make a difference,'" said Bobbette.

"We, my mother, my aunt, and I, were new members of the Rexburg Lions Club and they were looking for a good project," said Johnson.

Johnson is now the president of Four Paws. It is a cat-only facility. They are the middleman between a pet being left to stray or dropped off and finding a good adopted home. Currently, they have 88 cats that need a good home. It's a busy and expensive 24/7 operation.

"We see that they get the medical care that they need - the spaying, the neutering, the vaccinating, de-worming, dental if they need it," said Johnson.

Both Johnson and Carlson believe it takes a entire community to care for pets. Their message to the public is to get your pet spayed or neutered.

"We can't rely on just the city shelters and rescue groups," said Carlson.

Time to "Pay It forward."

"I use the word pound because that's what it was at that time. It was a small building. It was not pet-friendly, and things have picked up a lot since then," said Johnson.

"Jodi, how are you?" said Kory Carling with Mountain America Credit Union, as he walked in and interrupted the interview.

"Good, how are you?" said Johnson.

"Good. I'm Kory with Mountain America Credit Union."


"You and your organization have touched the hearts of many families in our community, and what a cool concept - taking care of animals - and we're here to help you. I'm here today to 'Pay It Forward.' I've brought with me today $500 in cash that I know you'll put toward good use and continue to rescue these animals. So it's our pleasure to be a part of this with you," said Carling.

"Thank you, Kory!" said Johnson.

"You are more than welcome. Great job. What a cool organization you do," said Carling.

"Thank you. We appreciate that," said Johnson.

"Absolutely," said Carling.

"We'll take all the help we can get. It's a lot of work and it's very, very expensive. Last year, we spent $73,000 taking care of animals," said Johnson.

"Wow!" said Carling.

"And the majority of that is medical; spaying and neutering, dental work and that kind of stuff, so this will go to good use," said Johnson.

If you are interested in adopting a cat, Four Paws Adoption center is at 119 South 4th West in Rexburg. It is open 10 a.m. to noon, Monday through Saturday.

"Pay It Forward" airs the second Wednesday and Thursday of every month. If you know of a nonprofit organization or someone who deserves to be recognized for their contributions to the area, click on "Pay It Forward" on the right side of our website and fill out the form, or send an email to Eyewitness News anchor Todd Kunz at

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Todd Kunz

Todd is an anchor for Eyewitness News 3, Local News 8 and Fox 5.


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