Animal shelter benefits from donations

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The Socorro Animal Shelter/Adoption Center thanks city residents for the generous donations they have made on their monthly city utility bills. One year after the program began in September 2011, more than $6,000 had been raised for animals in the care of the shelter. During the first three months of the donation program, from September through November 2012, 134 individual city utility customers contributed $1,751.64. The generous donations in 2011 have made it possible for the city to add a new specific line item in the shelter budget. The city council-approved uses for the donated money include:

The Socorro Animal Shelter/Adoption Center thanks city residents for the generous donations they have made on their monthly city utility bills. One year after the program began in September 2011, more than $6,000 had been raised for animals in the care of the shelter. During the first three months of the donation program, from September through November 2012, 134 individual city utility customers contributed $1,751.64. The generous donations in 2011 have made it possible for the city to add a new specific line item in the shelter budget. The city council-approved uses for the donated money include:

  • Emergency veterinary expenses.
  • Medical expenses for such treatable and/or preventable conditions as ringworm and parvo.
  • Cleaning and grooming products such as shampoo that would make an animal more adoptable.
  • Scheduled veterinarian visits.
  • Spaying and neutering of animals featured in the Defensor Chieftain’s Pet of the Week column, thus reducing adoption fees and making adoption more likely.

The Socorro shelter — a facility serving both the city of Socorro and the county — is located south of town off Highway 1. Our shelter is an open-admission or open-door shelter, which means that no animals are turned away.

On the day I visited shelter director Alfred Jojola and shelter manager Juliet Montoya, I was greeted by Aslan (named for the noble golden lion from “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe”), a well-mannered orange cat and permanent resident of the shelter. I talked to Alfred and Juliet about how the donations are helping the lost, strayed and owner-relinquished animals in their care.

Vaccinations, particularly for newly admitted puppies, are a high priority. The shelter must continually fend off serious conditions, and the donations help to pay for the arsenal of tests, vaccinations, other medications and disinfectants that must be used to maintain a healthy shelter.

Spaying and neutering are common medical procedures that help dogs and cats live longer and healthier lives, contribute to better pet behavior, enhance the adoptability of dogs and cats, and eventually decrease the number of feral cats and unwanted puppies and kittens admitted to the shelter.

Alfred says, “Neutered animals find permanent homes more quickly.” This is due in part to the lower adoption fees for neutered animals. The eventual goal is have all adopted animals spayed or neutered before they leave the shelter.

A Socorro County Sheriff’s deputy recently brought an injured dog to the shelter. Thanks to our community’s generous support, the dog had its wounds stitched and received needed medication from a veterinarian under contract to the shelter.

Well-groomed dogs and clean facilities go hand in hand toward attracting that one owner and permanent home each dog and cat so desperately wants.

All who have contributed to the shelter on their utility bills deserve a huge “thank you.” Through your generosity, the animals have a better experience to look forward to — a shelter with continually improving conditions and adoption center where they find that one happy, permanent home. And, the increasing number of adoptions testifies to the success of all our best efforts.