PET PROJECTS: LOCAL NO-KILL SHELTERS AT A GLANCE

Second Chance Humane Society recently moved to the 52-acre Angel Ridge Ranch.

With 2011 Revenues of $684, 245, Second Chance Among State’s “most solvent”
By Caitlin Switzer

REGIONAL—(February 19)  When it comes to making charitable donations, it is no secret that many people prefer to support organizations that promote animal welfare.  Here in Western Colorado, animal lovers may choose from not one but three local, no-kill animal shelters—The Montrose Animal Shelter, Grand Junction’s Roice-Hurst Humane Society, and Ridgway’s Second Chance Humane Society. With all three accepting and even soliciting donations, which is the best fit for you and your budget?

The Montrose Animal Shelter (3383 North Townsend) has been a no-kill facility for the past four years. The current staff includes four full-time employees and four part-time employees, who are assisted by numerous generous volunteers. The shelter is supported financially by City taxes, and has a small donations fund set aside for special pet needs such as surgeries.

“We use that account for things that are not in our normal budget,” City of Montrose Animal Services Supervisor Mike Duncan said. “There are some surgeries we might otherwise not be able to afford.” The community is very supportive, he added. “People donate almost faster than we can use the fund,” he said.

The Montrose Animal Shelter has a 2013 budget of $564,000. Last year, the Montrose Animal Shelter responded to 2,200 calls for animal control, and sheltered 1,537 animals, with those numbers expected to rise in 2013, according to Duncan. Although the shelter does receive some support from the non-profit Montrose Animal Protection Agency, the two organizations are separate and operate entirely separate fundraising campaigns, Duncan noted.  The 2012 City of Montrose Animal Services Annual Report is currently being completed, and will be available online later this month, Duncan said.

The Montrose Animal Shelter also has a working relationship with Second Chance Humane Society, a privately held non-profit based in Ouray and San Miguel counties.“We work together, although we have no relationship when it comes to funding,” Duncan said. “We collaborate with Second Chance on spay and neuter programs, and the occasional Adopt-a-thon. They probably help us more than we help them.”

Second Chance, founded in 1994, is one of the most solvent humane societies in the State of Colorado, noted Board Member Dudley Case. With a stated annual budget of $578,850, Second Chance reported total revenues of $684, 245 for year 2011 (the last year available) on the Colorado Secretary of State’s web site.

“Sixty-five percent of our revenue comes from the Second Chance Thrift Store,” noted Case. “We have noticed lately when we apply for grants that the funders prefer to see 501(c) (3) non-profit organizations that are run like real businesses.”Although the Second Chance Shelter is now located on 52 acres at Angel Ridge Ranch just outside of Ridgway (177 County Road 10), the non-profit provides services such as spay and neuter clinics in Montrose County.

“We also work with Petco, to place some of our cats for them to try and sell,” Case said. “If they don’t sell, the cats come back to us. We have relationships with some local veterinarians too, such as the Montrose Vet Clinic.”

Second Chance Humane Society employs approximately 20 staff between the thrift store and shelter operations, including an executive director and business manager, and rescues almost 300 pets on an annual basis, according to the non-profit’s fundraising materials. The shelter can accommodate 25 dogs and 50 cats. To view the most recent annual report posted, visit http://adoptmountainpets.org/images/documents/annual_report_2011_web.pdf.

The Roice-Hurst Humane Society of Grand Junction (362 28 Road) has just entered its 50th year, and is also a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization. According to board member and communications chair Elaine Johnson-Craig, the shelter—which recently moved to a new facility—has an average annual budget of around $525,000.

“In 2011, we adopted out 678 cats and dogs, a 33 percent increase over 2010,” she noted. “In 2012, our first full year in our new facility, we adopted out 1,048 cats and dogs—a 55 percent increase over 2011. Because we have been able re-home our animals more quickly, we have been able to transfer in more adoptable animals from area municipal shelters, including 182 dogs from Mesa County Animal Services and 23 dogs and two cats from Montrose Animal Services in 2012.“We believe that collaborative ventures with other animal rescue agencies are vital to saving a re-homing as many Western Slope pets as possible.”

Roice-Hurst currently employs nine full time and four part time staffers, and has more than 100 active volunteers (including its nine-member working board of directors) who assist with everything from dog walking and cat grooming to fundraising and off-site events.

“Our three biggest needs are monetary donations, dog and cat food, and kitty litter,” Johnson-Craig said, adding that the current shelter wish list can be found online at www.rhhumanesociety.com.