The Milo Foundation's Sanctuary in Mendocino County—283 acres of woods, meadows, creeks and hills—is home at any moment to hundreds of critters, most of them in transit from shelters to their forever homes, but some of them permanent residents.
In addition to hosting occasional work weekends, Milo welcomes, by prior arrangement, day or overnight visits by families or groups of friends to help out with projects and also to help out with walking dogs, socializing and brushing cats and horses, and generally providing the resident animals with human interaction. Not to mention helping out with routine maintenance chores around the house and barn, whacking the weeds, mowing the lawns, and just pitching in with the things that need to be done to keep Milo's work going.
There's definitely nothing fancy about the accommodations, but there's tent camping, with one or two canvas tents already set up, and visitors welcome to use their own or camp in their cars. Barbecuing is allowed (in designated areas during fire season), and a BBQ, refrigerator and bathroom facilities are available. Children must be supervised by adults, except for brief periods in the cat yard.
Dog-friendly dogs are welcome, and there are many trails where they can go off leash if their recall is good.
Milo suggests these items as good things to bring along on your visit:
IF CAMPING, ADD THESE TO THE LIST
- Extra socks, clothes, and at least one extra pair of sturdy closed-toe shoes. (No flip-flops or open toe, slip-on sandals allowed when walking dogs, going in with horses/mules or doing any work.)
- Lightweight long sleeve shirts, long pants/jeans. There is poison oak in areas (and on some of the dogs).
- Swimming suits if a trip to the Eel River is on your list! Also there are the creeks on the property…
- Hat, sweatshirt or similar as the temperature drops in the evenings.
- Work gloves.
- TECNU if anyone is prone to poison oak.
- Any tools you think helpful for clearing, gardening, building or fixing things!
- Sleeping bags, pillow, whatever needed for comfort—though days are warm the temperature does get cooler at night.
- Flashlights (and spare batteries). Lantern.
- Easy-on shoes (no bare feet!)
To arrange your visit, contact Marc, Melissa or Lynne at email@example.com or 707-459-4900. The Milo sanctuary is out in the boonies east of Willits, and you'll need emailed directions before you head out!