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Halifax County Humane Society appeals for help

Halifax County Humane Society is facing a dilemma — volunteers are having to handle more animals than ever before with decreasing funding.

According to Cheryl Watts, spokesperson for the organization, the local humane society is continuing in its mission to help the stray and homeless animals in the county by continuing to find permanent homes for as many as possible.

They also are trying to get the word out as to the vital importance of spaying and neutering as the primary method of reducing the thousands of these animals in the county.

“The good news is that we are way ahead so far this year in the number of animals we have dealt with. In 2011 we dealt with a total of 469 animals, an average of 39 a month. The first seven months of 2012 we have averaged 50.4 animals a month,” Watts said. “Unfortunately this means we are experiencing higher costs to keep up this level of success.”

The humane society’s largest expenses include veterinary care for spaying and neutering, gas, most of which is used for dogs transported out of the county, puppy and kitten chow and other foster home needs such as kennels, grates, fencing, bedding and flea and tick control.

“Vet bills alone in the spring and summer months run from $2,200 to $2,900 a month,” Watts said.

The humane society’s expenses are outpacing its revenue, while donations are down due to the overall economy and lack of fundraising opportunities in the summer months, she further explained.

“We truly appreciate all who continue to help us monthly, quarterly or annually or when they are able. All donations, regardless of amount, are important. You’d be surprised what a lift we get from our supporters who send $10 to $12 each month. This lets us know they are committed to sending what they can to support the cause. Others might donate the same $120 to $144 with a once a year donation. We are also very appreciative of those who are able to give in larger amounts to sustain our work,” Watts said.

And she also expressed appreciation to everyone who has ever supported the organization’s fundraisers, stews, bake sales, raffles, yard sales and product sales.

But Watts said more supporters are desperately needed.

“If you haven’t helped in a while or are thinking about becoming a supporter, there couldn’t be a better time than right now. We are greatly in need of funds,” she said, explaining the humane society will be forced to significantly reduce the number of animals it is taking in without some additional funding.

Anyone able to assist the humane society is asked to send donations of any amount to Halifax County Humane Society, P. O. Box 969, South Boston, VA 24592.

The Halifax County Humane Society is a volunteer (501c) organization, and all contributions are tax deductible.

The organization’s next fundraiser will be when they host their annual fall festival on Oct. 13 at Molliver’s Vineyard. Watts invites the public to join humane society volunteers for “a day of fun.”

“We are very willing to continue the work with your help. We do not receive government funds,” she added.