Tough times for squirrel shelter

(NBC) - The sour economy is putting the squeeze on a Florida animal shelter.

Karen Clark runs "Lovely Lita's Sheltering Tree Foundation."  It's a rehab facility for injured or abandoned squirrels.

"We keep them. We take care of them. We feed them and clean them. All of the things that you do for a pet," Clark said.

Clark started the work 12 years ago when she found a lone squirrel.  Now her love of squirrels has her taking care of dozens of them at a time.

Still, love isn't enough to keep Clark's dream alive.  She is on the verge of a financial crisis that threatens to shut down the facility.

Clark says it costs her $2,000 a week to feed the critters and the recent recession has cost her donations.  Since squirrels are not an endangered species, she can't get any federal grant money.

Clark hopes the community will come together and volunteer to help her raise the sick and injured squirrels before it's too late.

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