Hawkins animal shelter in need of donations, adoptions

Jeff Bobo • Dec 26, 2018 at 9:25 AM

ROGERSVILLE — Everybody wants a puppy for Christmas, but the Hawkins County Humane Society is asking the public to remember that the shelter has a large population of long-term residents in need of adoption as well.

The HCHS is in urgent need of donations to stop potential staff cuts and reduction of services.

Board of directors Chairman Dave Toll said funding is lower now than it has been in the past several years.

“Only a small portion of the Hawkins County Humane Society income is from adoptions and the local government contributions,” Toll said. “We really need donations now from people in and around Hawkins County to be sustainable. The Hawkins County Humane Society has a small staff and heavily leverages volunteers and overall assistance from the county.”

He added, “The Humane Society is very effective in Hawkins County saving numerous animal lives. Over 360 dogs and cats are moved each year to new homes. Our shelter expenses are much more efficient. The Hawkins County Humane Society has an improving spay and neutering program reducing our county homeless population. Contributions will go towards saving these beautiful furry companions.”

HCHS manager Sandy Behnke noted that in addition to funding and adoptions, the shelter needs supplies.

Animal food is in good supply thanks to Christmas contributions, but the organization always need cleaning supplies, especially bleach. The HCHS is also always in need of cat litter, which is its single biggest expense.

As of Dec. 19, the shelter was at capacity with 102 cats and 52 dogs.

So far in December the shelter has had 32 adoptions: 26 dogs and six cats.

“Because we are a no kill shelter, we keep all animals here until they are adopted,” Behnke said. “We have a very low adoption rate on our cats, which is why our population is so high. We have to house and feed these animals and we go through about 250 pounds of litter every two weeks. We have a lot more animals now, and adoptions are very low for our older dogs. Everybody wants puppies, but a lot of people overlook older dogs. Basically we have a lot of adult dogs in need of a home.”

Donations can be dropped off in person or mailed to the Hawkins County Humane Society, 5180 Highway 11-W, Rogersville, TN 37857. For more information about adoptions and/or donations, call (423) 272-6538 during business hours from noon to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.

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