The HS has been running the county’s shelter for over 20 years and many volunteers have worked tirelessly trying to find homes for the thousands of unwanted dogs and cats within the county. Despite their efforts; however, many of them have had to be euthanized over that time period because they could not get them out quicker than they got them in.
It is just recently, that the hopes and dreams of so many people’s efforts in the past and present have finally come true thanks to the many connections made with rescue programs which are accepting Logan County’s animals and adopting them out.
“It is difficult, but well worth it,” said Humane Society director Delana Hoots of the transports which are made up north almost each month to either Chicago, Pennsylvania, New York or Vermont.
A transport is when Humane Society volunteers load up a cargo van with animals, which have already been vaccinated and pre-approved for adoption and travel sometimes hundreds of miles one way to deliver them to the rescues, which in turn adopt them out.
“A lot of times these animals are adopted before we even get them there,” said Hoots, who through email send the rescues photographs of the animals beforehand.
In the month of December, the Humane Society saved 100 dogs and are working on another 100 for January.
“Our kennels are almost bare, which is something we have never seen before,” said Hoots.
Each of the rescues the Humane Society send to have been personally checked out. “We traveled to these rescues and looked them over extensively,” said Hoots, who also relies on other Humane Societies throughout the United States who utilize the rescues. “We keep in contact with other sheltering networks to assure the validity of the rescue programs we use,” said Hoots.
Sometimes the Humane Society hooks up with a “train” which are other shelter’s traveling north and coming close to Logan County on their way through. The Humane Society animals will hitch a ride of sorts if there is room available.
Local adoptions have risen in the past year as well. More people are coming out to the shelter and adopting than ever before. Sickness at the shelter is being held at bay thanks to the recent Humane Society policy of vaccinating all the animals before they are allowed into the general population. “One of the best things we have ever done is implementing a vaccine policy. This helps keep down sickness in the population which creates a healthier environment,” said Hoots.
The cat population is still posing a problem at the Humane Society. Right now there are not enough cat rescues to come close to becoming a no-kill at Logan shelter. “We have one rescue right now foe cats but they can’t accept as many as we get in,” said Hoots who hopes to change that in the future.
The Humane Society has discussed a “Catch and Release” program, which some communities have been trying. The idea is to spay all female cats that come into the shelter and then release them back into the community. It has been proven that within five to ten years, the community’s cats will stop producing. Cats, unlike dogs, can catch mice to eat and are scavengers that can survive on their own. The Humane Society has not decided to implement the program as of yet.
“I cannot thank the county enough for their continued support of the shelter and the Humane Society,” said Humane Society president Gail Guiling adding, “When we came to the county two years ago and told them something needed to be done or the shelter was going to have to be closed because the building was falling down and the Humane Society was underfunded they responded quickly.”
The county has purchased a new shelter building located on Morgantown Road behind the recycling center. The stone house is large enough to hold offices, puppy and kitten rooms, quarantine space, euthanization room and bathing. The indoor/outdoor kennels will have to be built on and will cost an estimated $150,000. The Humane Society already has $100,000 donation from a unanimous individual and another $7,000 paid to the county by Teen Court who is temporarily using the upstairs portion of the building.
The county applied for a grant with the state but is not optimistic about any money being allotted for the shelter since the state announced it’s recent budget woes.
Discussion of the new shelter is on an upcoming agenda of Fiscal Court. Magistrate Jo Orange and Judge/Executive Logan Chick have expressed their desire to move forward with the project.