Why Toolbee exists

I created Toolbee so I can build hat I hope will be the world’s largest group of sanctuaries, rescue teams and free veterinary clinics for homeless animals.

We will start here in Israel where we have 2+ million cats and dogs on the street, many of them urgently needing medical care, food and a safe living space.

Money / salaries

Toolbee is registered as a for-profit business because this was the fastest way to get started, but after the product launch I will hire a lawyer and see what the best options are for taxes, etc. I expect switching to non-profit may be the best option. Either way the goals are the same.

I currently take minimum wage for my personal uses because I don’t need any more – but every one of my staff earns more than that. I may take a larger wage in the future if needed, I just have no desire to waste money on fancy cars/houses/etc.

My cats

These are my little furry buddies. I have 12 right now.

Rescue operations

By my calculations there are around 10 million deaths of stray animals here every year, mostly kittens and puppies under a few weeks old. The ones that make it to adulthood then only average a 2-3 year lifespan – because of injuries, illnesses and nasty humans. (if you want to get a feel for the problem, you can look at any one of the hundreds of Facebook groups here dedicated to animal rescue/donations/adoptions – be warmed, it is very grim to view – for example here is a public one.) As far as I understand, the population at the end of each breeding period goes back down to around 2 million survivors. The situation is grim in every city – and even in the more well-funded cities like Tel Aviv there are cats surrounding basically every single building – many injured in one way or another.

One of the first steps is hiring veterinary staff for a large scale neutering program (this means doing operations to prevent the animals from making babies). Without this, any effort we put into food and medical care will only magnify the problem for the next year, rather than solve it. Without neutering, no amount of money will ever be enough. Well-fed cats and dogs can make 10-15 babies per year, so the growth would be massive.

Based on data from a program in Florida I have estimated we will need around $7 million to “fix” all 2 million street animals here within 2 years. This will take the massive strain off the animal rescuers and allow us to provide care for the animals that exist.

Our vets will then be able to help the thousands of injured and sick animals found every day. And if there are no more being born on the streets, by the end of the current generation the problem will be essentially solved. I’m sure we’ll have other projects to focus on after that.

The goal is to take in as many animals as possible from high-risk areas, as well as take in any that need help due to injury or illness. Some others are best left where they live if the area is fairly safe and they are already being fed, in which case we’ll just focus on providing medical care.

The plan is to fund many tiny sanctuaries in private gardens or other land belonging to people who already work in animal rescue or who really want to get involved but don’t have the budget for it. Having lots of tiny sanctuaries has many benefits over larger ones.

• No need to pay for land, so more funds can go to other uses.
• Much easier for volunteers, vets and rescuers to reach, because there are more locations.
• Very low risk of illnesses spreading to a large group of animals.
• Easier separation for special needs animals.
• Less problematic in lockdowns, as each micro sanctuary already has a person living there.

This will likely be a big part of the operation. Many animals love being with human companions. Cat-cafes in cities could be a good way to get adoptions.

The biggest cost in sanctuaries is the food. For example if we take in 100k animals, and purchase food in bulk, it’s still likely to add up to around $12m per year. My plan is to ask for monthly donations from people who bring in an animal to cover that animal’s food and flea treatments (around $10 per month). This spreads cost of food between thousands of people and provides a lot of stability. Many animal lovers in Israel already spend much more than this because they feed the street animals.