Nonprofit Spotlight: Douglas Animal Welfare Group
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Douglas Animal Welfare Group (DAWG) is a non-profit group of volunteers who rely entirely on donations, membership dues, grants, fund-raising events and a recycling program to fund the goals of it’s Mission Statement.
The Mission is to better the lives of Douglas County animals by improving their adoptability and thereby increasing the adoption rate while at Douglas County Animal Care and Services (DCACS), educating the community about responsible pet ownership and engaging in other projects and activities that may come available that will yield positive benefits to the animals, owners and citizens.
DAWG active volunteers visit the dogs and cats at the shelter 365 days a year, including holidays when the shelter is closed to the public. We exercise and walk the dogs, give all animals affection, grooming, training and love.
The time we spend with them gives us information about their behavior which we share with potential adopters. It also gives us the opportunity to socialize the animals to increase their adoptability. In 2017, volunteers provided 16,491 hours of care for the animals at the Douglas County Animal Shelter.
DAWG supports Douglas County animals. For shelter animals, we offer assistance for spay and neuter, medical emergencies and other health problems. We have several different programs that we operate and fund. Here are the results for 2017:
• DAWG provided $25,952 in medical care for wellness exams, dental work, senior exams, medications, xrays, surgeries and more for the animals at DCACS.
• DAWG provided $10,448 worth of community assistance to lower income residents needing assistance paying for veterinary care.
• DAWG provided care and assistance to all145 dogs and 138 cats that were adopted from DCACS.
• DAWG provided $6457 for a low cost spay/neuter program for Douglas County Pitbull and Pitbull X dogs, titled “Fix-A-Bull.”
• DAWG provided $16,383 toward a spay/neuter program called Fix a Family Pet for lower income Douglas County residents.
• DAWG provided $13,862 to implement a program to Trap, Neuter, and Return feral/community cats in Douglas County.
• DAWG continued the Found Cat program instituted in 2016. This program arranges for short term foster and medical care of found stray domestic cats/kittens pending admission to DCACS due to a lack of space. In 2017, we helped 84 cats/kittens at a cost of $3,981.
• DAWG spent $10,996 for it’s foster program which provided both short and long term foster homes for animals recovering from surgery or illness and other situations, including hospice care.
• DAWG provided $6,077 to assist with adoption fees and advertising for shelter pets.
• DAWG provided $813 for the purchase of microchips for every dog and cat residing at DCACS.
• DAWG spent $2,369 on shelter food, equipment and supplies for the animals at DCACS, including the purchase of a clothes dryer for the shelter and improved fencing for the dog yards.
• DAWG also contributed assistance to Veterans when adopting animals and assistance to pay costs for hard to adopt animals.
In summary, DAWG spent in excess of $98,000 on Douglas County’s animals in 2017 and we are extremely proud of our efforts over the past year and we look forward to even greater success in 2018.
DAWG facilitates the adoption of the dogs and cats through special adoption events held monthly at Pet Station in Gardnerville. Every Sunday volunteers keep the shelter open for adoptions from 11 am to 3 pm.
We maintain a website – dawgrescue.com – to promote the available animals at DCACS and provide information on our various programs and services. We also have our Facebook page and utilize newspaper advertising.
DAWG is always trying to educate the community about responsible pet ownership. We provide speakers to community groups, schools and events as well as printed educational materials.
In order to fund our Mission, DAWG has had several large fundraisers. In 2014, we had the “DAWG Pound” and in 2016 we had “Funny Valentine.”
For 2018, we are planning the “Douglas County DAWG Derby” to be held on May 4, 2018 at the Carson Valley Inn. In addition to these and other events, we received 4 grants in 2017, totaling $31,000, to help facilitate our mission to the animals.
In 2017, DAWG was recognized as the Best Service Club/Organization by the Carson Valley publication The Record-Courier. It was welcomed by all members as a thank you for our dedication to the animals we love.
Nevada was honored in the 3- to 5-million population category, alongside Kentucky and Utah, while Alabama was awarded the Gold Shovel in the same Category. Other Gold Shovel Awards went to Texas, Georgia, Virginia, Arizona and Mississippi.