By Robson Reyes | Humane Society of Pagosa Springs
America’s animal shelters are in crisis. Since the early months of the pandemic, shelters around the nation have faced a chronic shortage of staff and volunteers. To make things worse, shelters are packed to capacity with dogs and cats. Adoptions are lagging across the nation as families surrender pets they can no longer afford to keep. Animal rescues are understaffed, and workers are overwhelmed. Shelters need help now more than ever.
The Humane Society of Pagosa Springs (HSPS) is seeing similar trends and urgently needs the support of its community to help combat these difficult times. For some time now HSPS has seen its shelter over capacity.
To try to reduce the shelter population in anticipation of receiving more incoming animals, HSPS recently offered reduced adoption fees and various adoption events to try to encourage adoptions and get some of their shelter animals into new homes. But even after desperate efforts to try to place more animals into forever homes, the number of animals coming into the shelter continues to outpace adoption rates, creating a crisis.
“As a no-kill animal shelter, we never euthanize our animals based on time, financial or space constraints. We heal their bodies, mend their spirits, and offer every homeless, neglected, and abandoned animal our unwavering love and support until they get adopted, no matter how long it takes,” said Robson Reyes, executive director. “This means it is critical that we adopt out animals at a rate that allows us to take in new animals in need of our shelter and care. The best way for our community to help is by choosing to adopt, foster, volunteer and donate.”
As rising housing costs and inflation continues to squeeze the wallets of Archuleta County residents, the HSPS animal shelter is tasked with not only getting more animals into homes, but keeping them there. The HSPS offers many community services to help people keep their pets. Spay and neuter vouchers, emergency medical aid, a pet food bank and low-cost vaccination events are just a few ways HSPS serves Archuleta County’s population with pets.
“Inflation has made owning and caring for a pet more expensive, leaving some owners struggling to afford to keep their pets. The rising cost of pet food and medical care can make owning a pet a financial strain for many families already struggling to afford to live in our community,” said Reyes. “Our community services keep our shelter population down by helping pet owners keep their beloved companions, even in financially difficult times. But these services take resources, which is why the success of this year’s virtual Auction for the Animals and other fundraisers is more important than ever. We know things are going to get worse before they get better. We have to be prepared with the resources needed to continue to care for our community and its animals in need.”
The Auction for the Animals is the Humane Society’s most important annual fundraiser. The success of this online auction makes a huge difference in the organization’s ability to provide nutritious food, safe shelter and quality medical care that every lost, abandoned and homeless animal needs and deserves.
The funds from the auction will help HSPS continue to provide a safe haven to more than 700 animals that will call the shelter home, at least until a family and a forever home can be found.
Virtual auction attendees can bid on hundreds of incredible items including jewelry, art, home goods, outdoor gear, gift baskets and gift certificates donated by generous local businesses, as well as gift certificates and items from nearby towns like Creede, Lake City, Ouray, Chama, Silverton and Durango. There are adventure items like Durango and Cumbres Toltec railroad train passes, San Juan dog sledding, Wolf Creek ski passes, Overlook Hot Springs soak passes and so much more.
Start viewing items and bidding on your favorites now by visiting www.hspsauction.org. The auction ends promptly at 5 p.m. on Monday, June 26.
The HSPS thanks you for your support.
The HSPS is a local private non-profit organization that operates the only animal shelter in Archuleta County. Your local humane society does not receive funding from the Humane Society of the United States, American Humane, ASPCA or any other national animal welfare organizations. Private donations, grants, and thrift store revenues cover only a portion of animal shelter operating expenses. The remainder of shelter costs must be met through fundraising events like the Virtual Auction for the Animals. The HSPS is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization, and all donations are tax-deductible to the full extent of the law.