Shelter sets record for animals served
MIDDLEBURY — Homeward Bound, Addison County’s Humane Society, is excited to announce that they have set a record in 2016 with 908 animals served; 253 dogs, 541 cats, and 114 small animals like rabbits, birds, and guinea pigs. Of the 908 animals, 454 were surrendered by their owners, 234 were strays, and 220 were transferred in from high volume shelters outside Vermont. This far surpasses any previous year, as traditionally the shelter sees 600 animals in a given year.
The 30 percent increase represents 100 additional animals from Addison County and 200 more animals transferred in from beyond county lines. In past years, Homeward Bound had taken in a half dozen out-of-county animals, typically a few dogs from the south. In the latter part of 2015, it became clear that the shelter had the capacity to reach out even further beyond its traditional boundary lines.
Homeward Bound Executive Director Jessica Danyow shares, “In 2015, we achieved a 33 percent decrease in the average length of stay for an animal at our shelter. We set a goal in 2016 to capitalize on the operational efficiencies that enabled us to reduce our length of stay and expand our reach to help animals from high-volume shelters in other parts of the country.”
Danyow adds, “We would not be in a position to save these animals if it wasn’t for our staff, volunteers and the community in which we live. We’re proud to be able to say that a record number of animals were served by Homeward Bound this year. We also know we couldn’t have done it without the support of passionate donors and volunteers, our local media, and a caring community.”
Homeward Bound’s goal going into 2017 is to maintain the level of service to people and animals that was achieved this year and to grow community programs aimed at eliminating the causes of animal homelessness. Danyow shares, “We are going to continue to change the lives of homeless animals and forever impact the lives of the families who adopt them. It is a privilege to be doing this work.”