Pets at shelter depend on the kindness of strangers

Published 12:00 am Saturday, August 26, 2006

Last week I paid a visit to the Greenville Animal Shelter. I admit it’s hard for me to go in there as often as I should; those shining eyes, wagging tails, mewing voices, they always tug at my heart. I feel slightly guilty when I walk out without one in my arms.

&uot;Hey, lady, look me over! Take me home! I’d make a great pet,&uot; they seem to plead.

Benny and I already have three dogs and six cats, inside and out – a full house of former strays and abandoned animals we’ve collected.

But some folks don’t have quite so many pets with which they can share their lives. There are kids who would love to have a pet to play with, and older folks who would enjoy the benefits (and they are proven) of having an animal companion.

Certainly, there are a lot of homeless animals in sore need of the kindness of strangers of any age.

The shelter can house only so many animals for so long a time. Sick animals are humanely put down. Others who are healthy and have years of playfulness, companionship and sheer joy to offer are fostered out to Butler County Humane Society foster parents. These volunteers graciously provide homes and TLC to these puppies and kittens, dogs and cats, even to the point of bottle-feeding some of the motherless pups and kits.

But these foster pet parents only have so much room, time and resources. The shelter and the humane society need your help.

So I encourage you to stop in Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. at the shelter’s E. Commerce St. location. Maybe you will find the perfect pet for your home.

Or maybe you’ll find a great place to volunteer your time and heart. Maybe you’ve got some money to spare – every little bit helps – or you can give much-needed supplies.

Go to to see photos of adoptable animals currently being fostered in the county. Type in the Greenville zip code and it will take you to a list of shelters, including the Greenville Animal Shelter. There you will be able to read a description of each dog or cat and learn about their personality, whether or not they’ve been house-trained, spayed or neutered, et al.

There are many, many animals in need of a helping hand and a kind heart.

National Dog Day, which is August 26, was founded in hopes of finding homes for 10,000 dogs across the country and raising funds to assist animal shelters and humane societies and their efforts (and don’t forget the kitties!).

We can all do something for our furry companions right here in our community. Maybe it’s contributing wash cloths and towels, kitten food and flea spray. Maybe it’s donating $10 or $20 or $200. Or just maybe, it’s adopting a new four-legged member into your family.

Last week, on the day I visited the shelter, I came home as usual, welcomed by my three formerly homeless canines. I thought of those yearning eyes behind the gates as my &uot;dawgs&uot; arrived at my car door to greet me.

&uot;You guys are so lucky, do you know that?&uot; I said. Junior shook his big blonde head and grunted, Tutie lavished me with a wet kiss and Rascal just shyly smiled and wagged his plumy black tail.

Maybe it’s me that’s so lucky. It’s certainly good to feel so needed and adored.

Help out a furry friend in need this week. You’ll never know just how much you’ll get back in return.

Angie Long is Lifestyles reporter for The Greenville Advocate. She can be reached at 382-3111 ext. 132 or via email at