Shreveport’s ‘No Kill’ Shelter Offers Alternative to Animal Control
Can you smell what this 'Elmo the Cat' is cookin'? Or better yet, 'Buddy' is dancing like Donkey from Shrek with his one ear up signifying, 'Pick me, ooh ooh, Pick me!' Both of these personality favorites and many more like them are waiting to be adopted into your home.
They say pets help people live longer, but truth is that we help animals live longer, too. When we take the time to love them and nurture them, that is. Our discarded pet population is increasing, and unless local adoptions increase, more of those given refuge will have to be euthanized or turned away.
Pet Savers of Shreveport doesn't want to see that happen. Their mission is to rescue, protect, and place abandoned and unwanted pets into loving homes to ensure less animals are euthanized. They offer a safe, no-kill alternative to pet control; however, providing these services can get rather costly. They also provide funds for neutering, spaying and other veterinary care to allow those adopting the animals to manage the proper care.
Pet Savers of Shreveport is a non-profit organization that operations solely on adoption fees and private donations to fund the cause. Currently, "Adoptions are down, and what we are doing here with our program is just a drop in the bucket," said Linda Shemwell, Founder and President of the organization.
At Pet Savers, Every day is adoption day. "We are blessed to have a network to help us, but we have to move them out as fast as we bring them in so we can accommodate the needs of all the animals," said Sandy, who is one of the volunteers at the shelter.
Proceeds from Darrell Chitty's Art and Design Gallery Opening Night Raffle went to the organization. Chitty plans on donating more from upcoming exhibit sales this fall because, "It is a cause I really believe in, folks. So, if you haven't already done so, or cannot do so at this time, please consider donating to their mission in the future," Chitty said.
"When I started this organization, I never dreamed it would be this big," said Shemwell. Relying solely on donations, the staff is mostly unpaid volunteers that believe in the cause. There is a really good thing going with the organization, but sadly enough, "Our facility is over capacity. We are currently licensed to house 75 dogs and 35 cats, but I cannot look into a pair of brown eyes when these people come in with hard-knock stories, and the animals have no where to go."
All total it is an expensive venture just to house and feed and maintain the kennels, somewhere around $10,000 a month just to accommodate them. We really need to move these adoptions through, but if we can't get them all adopted, maybe we could get volunteers that are willing to come in and foster these pets until we can find them a permanent home, Shemwell explained.
"It's sad, but everyone remembers us when they are looking to get rid of a pet. We need more people to know about us and our cause. Everyone is invited to come take a look at all the sweet, loving and happy animals out at Pet Savers, and adopt."
When adopting pets, they require an online application and screening to match the appropriate owner to the appropriate pet, and ask that you sign an agreement vowing to not only take the animal in, but to assume proper nurturing and care and financial obligation for the animals for an extended period of time so that they do not end up back at the shelter, or worse. Incentives to adopt include the assistance with spaying/neutering and each animal is vaccination current.
If you cannot adopt, please find a way to donate. The shelter takes material donations including canned food, bleach, dish soap, and dog treats. They will also accept donations by web, mail or in person. You can find out more info about making donations at www.petsaversshreveport.org or find them on facebook.
Pet Savers of Shreveport is located at 4380 Noyes Dr. just off Greenwood Road in West Shreveport.