Our story begins with Edna Jackson, who opened her Critter’s Pet Supply shop in Crossfield in 2006. Soon after, she rescued a local stray and let him live in her store. His name was Thomas, and he is now our mascot and still lives happily in our shelter.

Over the next four years, Edna took in all manner of animals who were dumped literally on her door step. From dogs tied to her door after hours, fish left behind during a move, to even a small kitten tied up in a plastic garbage bag left at her door step – Edna saved them all.

The need for an animal shelter in the Crossfield area was apparent. Edna reached out to the community, friends and family and soon Tails to Tell Animal Rescues Shelter Ltd. was born. We opened our doors in September of 2010.

Tails to Tell is a registered Alberta charity (Reg. No. 852483312RR0001) and is governed by a Board of five volunteers who oversee the operations of our shelter, work with committees, as well as plan for the future. Our shelter is operated solely by volunteers; there are no paid staff. This means that 100% of all funds donated goes directly to the care and housing of our rescues. These volunteers govern, plan, care for residents, maintain the shelter and raise the much needed funds to allow us to continue our rescue efforts.

Since opening, hundreds of animals have been and continue to be helped. Any numbers stated for a year do not include animals found and returned to their owners.  Thanks to our wonderful supporters who not only supply monetary donations, but also dedicate their time volunteering and their homes fostering needy animals.

Our Mission:

At Tails to Tell, our mission is to rescue sick or abandoned animals, provide the medical care they need and further provide shelter, food and care until they can be adopted to forever homes. We are a nonprofit charity run 100% by volunteers and funded by donations.

Tails to Tell Animal Rescue Shelter Ltd. was founded with several key beliefs:

No Kill

When animal rescue organizations us the term “no kill”, it is describing the practice of not routinely euthanizing animals in order to make space for more. We will only euthanize an animal for medical reasons and only after every effort is made by our veterinarian to save the animal. Whenever an animal crosses the rainbow bridge, they are not alone. We insure someone from the shelter is with them. The animal is then cremated and ashes returned to the shelter so they may be scattered and be free to join the others who have also crossed that bridge.

Injured and Sick Animals

It is immoral and unethical to turn away an injured or sick animal.

Regardless of our moral and ethical stance on this issue, we are a licenced holding facility and as such are mandated by Alberta’s Animal Protection Act. Under APA legislation, no animal in need of medical attention will be turned away or referred to another holding facility.

Spay / Neuter and Vaccinations Policy

In an effort to help combat the worldwide over-population of companion animals, such as cats and dogs, we insure that all our animals are sterilized prior to or shortly after being adopted (kittens and puppies). While this can be a costly procedure, the costs of subsequent litters from unsterilized pets are much higher. In just three years, one unneutered male cat and one unsprayed female can produce as many as 382 cats.

Vaccinations are important to help control the spread of disease and reduce our veterinary costs. All of our animals are fully vaccinated before they are adopted to forever homes. This is a value added service to our adopters as well.

Our shelter is a communal living environment. All our residents are spayed or neutered, as well as vaccinated prior to entering the general population.

Communal Living

The majority of our adult or adolescent cats live in a free roaming environment. Our belief is they become more social with other cats and humans. Communal living allows exercise and play time, as well as getting used to human approach and touch – on the animal’s terms. New mothers, new arrivals, sick or injured and kittens are kept in another area of the shelter until they are able to join the general population.


Adoption Policies

While our primary goal for our rescued animals is to find them a new home, we also want to ensure they are being adopted to a responsible and pet-friendly family. We make every effort to find out as much as possible about the prospective adopter, home situation and match the family with an animal that is best suited. For example, if there is a dog in the home, a shy cat would not be the best match. If there are children in the home, we find a resident that runs to children when they enter the shelter. Often times we are not aware of our rescues’ past lives. Observing reactions to different people entering the facility can provide some insight to what the best possible scenario would be for a new forever home.

We also follow the “trial period” method of adoption. This gives families up to seven days (can be extended) after the adoption to decide whether the animal is right for them. They can return the animal for any reason during that time, and receive a full refund. Keep in mind that it could take more than seven days for an animal to feel this is their home. Patience is key. When you meet a resident in the shelter, remember that although they appear happy, the shelter is still stressful and perhaps that resident has only known life at the shelter.

Tails to Tell Animal Rescue Shelter Ltd. Board Members

Edna Jackson Owner and Shelter Manager
Lionel Jackson Owner and Board Member
Les Szirka Board Member
Cheryl Blackley Board Member
Penny Makortoff Board Member


Thank you!