Tijeras animal sanctuary owner nominated for Pay it 4ward award

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Tucked away in the Tijeras mountains is Sunflower Sanctuary, a hospice for older animals. The nonprofit uses volunteers to help with the animals and keep the property clean.

"And we had this as our service project, and we were so impressed. We went up here and worked and pooper scoopered, stuff like that,” said Pam Bonahoom, a volunteer.

After volunteering, Bonahoom said she was touched by the sanctuary’s owner, Cynthia.

"And we were so impressed with her and her loyalty and enthusiasm that I decided to nominate her for Pay it Forward,” she said.

Pam told Cynthia she wanted to donate some dog food, but she didn’t tell her KOB 4 would be tagging along.

“We would love to pay it forward to you because you are so deserving,” Bonahoom said.

Over 12 years, Cynthia Dares has helped hundreds of animals, with a focus on older ones that couldn’t find a forever home until they came to the sanctuary.

"Because I love animals and there was a need for it—especially for old dogs. We wanted other animals and whenever someone calls us with a need, we take them,” Cynthia said.

Cynthia is currently caring for more than 20 animals, including dogs, horses, donkeys, and goats.

She said the $400 will help pay for food, vet bills, and snacks.

"And whatever else they need,” she said. “They get a lot of treats. They love the Costco treats."