The nonprofit agency said its mission is to help create a world where every dog and puppy, cat and kitten, and other unwanted, abandoned or neglected animal has a loving home. The main focus of the organization is to spay/neuter as a means to counter nearly 8 million adoptable pets being needlessly euthanized each year.
According to Dawn Williams, a PALS volunteer, the agency has been in Bradley County for more than two decades and adopts all sorts of pets who might otherwise be abandoned and living on the streets.
“As volunteers we open up our homes to homeless pets from surrounding counties,” Williams said. “We’re not a kill shelter. We don’t have a shelter facility. We spay and neuter as well as rehabilitate animals, especially dogs. We take in all types of species — everything from lizards and rabbits to exotic animals and birds. No animal is turned away unless we don’t have the room.”
Kathy Kinder, president of PALS, and her volunteers are raising awareness of the agency’s role in the community and inviting more volunteers and donations to help support the pets being housed and to offset their medical expenses.
“We could use things like dog houses and cat litter boxes,” Kinder said. “We give these to the elderly who are living on a limited income and who rely on their pets for companionship. We all agreed to give back to our community and welcome any local support.”
“Financially, we are really, really hurting right now,” Williams admits. “Due to the downturn in the economy, we have received many pets from divorces, foreclosures, people having to move in with their parents, as well as displaced animals from last year’s tornadoes and floods. We’re actively involved in other animal rescue organizations and trying to help them as well.”
According to Williams, owner of Partner in Nature Craft, a log home company in Meigs County, volunteers are incurring the medical, food and shelter expenses out of their own pockets and welcome contributions to help the small nonprofit agency in caring for stray pets.
“Occasionally we do get donations of food products for the cats or the dogs,” Williams said. “Sometimes we’ll get cat litter or cages, but it’s rare. We’re always in a dire need for that. Because we help with the cost of spay and neuter as well as provide puppy shots and adult shots when the adoption fee takes place. Our adoption fee is very low. We do adoptions at Petco in Cleveland every first, third and fifth Saturday of the month, when applicable.
“We’re also on Petfinder.com, under Pets Are a Lovable Society. It’s a great source because it shows up-to-date photographs and bios of the animals that we do have up for adoption.”
Williams said PALS is actively looking for volunteers who do not have to be fosters to any animals but would still like to help in other ways.
“A lot of folks say, ‘I would love to help the organization but I don’t want to foster because I know I will get attached to the animals. That’s understandable,” Williams said. “But there are a lot of other things a volunteer can do for us.
“They can help us with event planning, marketing, being a liaison to local organizations, offering suggestions, helping us get the word out and making phone calls. There is a mountain of other things volunteers can do. Even volunteering to help with the Petco adoptions would be appreciated.”
The adoption fee starts at $35, which includes shots and deworming, up to $75 for adult dogs and cats to offset the cost for shots and altering.
“All that does is cover our cost,” Williams made clear. “There is no profit in that whatsoever. The fee is exactly what the bill will be.”
Williams added if anyone wants to make donations, they can do so through Bradley Veterinary Hospital on 5527 Georgetown Road, N.W. Cleveland, TN 37312. The donations would go toward offsetting PALS’s outstanding balance for providing medical care for the sheltered animals.
For further information, contact Kathy Kinder at 423-476-9395 or Deanna Phillips at 423-304-6516. To learn more about Pets Are a Lovable Society, go online at http://www.petfinder.com/shelters/TN362.html.