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Kelley Blair proves one person can make a difference over and over again

Tater is a young chihuahua/terrier mix in need of a foster home.  If you can foster this dog, please email Upstate Animal Rescue at
Tater is a young chihuahua/terrier mix in need of a foster home. If you can foster this dog, please email Upstate Animal Rescue at
Upstate Animal Rescue

What can one person do? Far too often, people don’t take action when they encounter a troubling situation. Inertia sets in as they second guess whether or not they can truly make a difference.

These three cute puppies are just a few of those rescued by UARSC, fostered in volunteer foster homes, and then adopted.

The reality is that one person can make a huge difference, not just on those directly impacted by their efforts, but by those who hear about it and are inspired into action because of that person’s efforts.

Take Kelley Blair, for example. Blair is the director of Upstate Animal Rescue, which rescues dogs and cats from high-kill shelters in upstate South Carolina.

If anyone lives in the middle of nowhere, it’s Blair. Her rescue is based in Townville, South Carolina, yet through a vast network of volunteers and an even larger social network, Blair’s impact on the endangered dogs and cats is not limited by geography.

On a recent day, Blair was actively networking in an attempt to locate missing dogs in both Columbia and Greenville, SC, to help with the plight of eleven dogs in Wythe County, VA who have been confined to a box-like structure for five years, to save a 15-year old Maltese in Baldwin Park, CA, and to save a mother dog and her five puppies in a high-kill shelter in Mullins, SC.

Blair spends most weekends with Upstate Animal Rescue hosting adoptathons at Petsmart stores in Anderson and Greenville SC.

Paradoxically, Blair’s biggest issue is not finding homes for the dogs, puppies, cats, and kittens her rescue saves. The biggest issue is finding foster homes where these homeless pets can stay for a short time while they are prepared for adoption. The pets pulled from shelters sometimes need to be quarantined to make sure they are healthy, evaluated to make sure they don’t have training or behavioral issues that need to be corrected, puppies and kittens may need to grow for a few weeks until they are big enough to be spayed or neutered, and some pets may need a safe place while they undergo heartworm treatment or have other medical issues addressed.

Blair encourages anyone interested in fostering, whether long-term or short term, to contact her via Facebook or email at

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