RADCLIFF, Ky. — A beloved pet rescue in Hardin County is growing, thanks to a local businesswoman with a heart for animals.

What You Need To Know

  • Forever Homes for Paws is more than doubling its space

  • The pet rescue also serves as a pet day care, boarding and grooming facility

  • Founder Toshie Murrell estimates the nonprofit has facilitated around 1,000 adoptions since she started it out of her realty office in 2015

  • The rescue will hold its annual PAWS United Pet Expo on Saturday, April 23

Toshie Murrell started Forever Homes for Paws in 2015 out of her Network Realty office on Dixie Highway.

She was inspired to help animals after a mission trip to Honduras. While there helping people in need, she noticed no one was doing anything for the stray, starving dogs in the area. She came home to Kentucky and promptly got to work.

For the first year, Murrell housed dogs in the office until she could buy a former child day care space to convert into a pet shelter.

The charity has grown a lot since then. Murrell estimates about 1,000 pets have been adopted out of the nonprofit. It also serves as a pet day care, boarding and grooming facility.

“It’s actually been a great combination,” Murrell explained. “A lot of our boarders, our groom dogs, our day care dogs originated from here as a rescue that was adopted by pet parents that were already coming here for day care or boarding, and then they would see them and say, ‘I might try them.’”

Murrell and her team are in the process of more than doubling the size of their facility—it will grow from 3,600-square-feet to 7,600-square-feet. Murrell estimates the total cost of the expansion to be around $450,000.

Murrell’s goal is to not only help animals but also their owners.

“We’ve taken care of a lot in the community that are on low income, disability, or just especially during COVID. Finances were tight, but their pet was sick,” Murrell explained.

To fundraise for the shelter and create awareness for other pet rescues in the area, Forever Homes for Paws is hosting its annual PAWS United Pet Expo in Radcliff on Saturday, April 23.

The pet expo will feature ten different pet rescues from several counties. Animals will be up for adoption, and Nolin River Wildlife will also be there with its well-known ambassador, Boone the Raccoon, who uses a wheelchair to get around. An assortment of vendors will also have booths for those browsing the expo.

PAWS United Pet Expo will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. ET Saturday at 2855 Centennial Ave. in Radcliff. Organizers are asking for either a monetary donation or a donation of pet food or cat litter for entry.