We are saddened to announce that we must close our Pet Adoption Center in Butler. After 5 years of operating at a substantial loss, we are convinced that we can do better for animal welfare in Johnson County by focusing on other needs. We are a total volunteer organization dependent upon memberships, donations, and fundraisers for our operating funds; we do not receive any support from any level of governmentcity, county, or state.
For the entire 5-year period that the PAC was open, we were limited to only fifty percent capacity (equivalent of 10 kennels) in the summer and 25 percent capacity (equivalent of 5 kennels) in the winter. This limitation was set because we could not obtain and retain enough reliable volunteers; everything we do, is done by volunteers. Therefore, we limited the number of animals we accepted to a number that could be cared for by the small number of volunteers. Since the number of animals accepted was low, the cost of operating the PAC was spread over a limited number; therefore, the revenue generated from surrender and adoption fees could not offset the cost of operation. Johnson County residents have been very supportive of our fundraisers and rummage sales over the years, and this support is what enabled the PAC to operate these past 5 years.
During the 5-year period of operating the PAC, we found homes for almost 300 cats and dogs, while the euthanasia rate at Mountain City Animal Control for one year is approximately 300 animals. This underscores the need for a change of focus for the humane society to a more cost effective method while at the same time reaching more animals and their owners.
The spay/neuter program is one that will be enlarged. The reproduction rate for a single cat in 5 years is 12,680 more cats, and for a single dog in 5 years is 192 more dogsdog and cat over- population is this countys biggest animal related problem. We have already spent $178,000 in this county to spay/neuter 4,250 dogs and cats, but there are so many more that need attention. Our money that was being used to support the PAC will now be diverted into spay/neuter funds.
Another program that has proven to be beneficial to pet owners is the microchipping of their pet. In the event the pet is lost or stolen, the chip is proof positive of ownership and can re-unite the pet with its owner. We promoted chipping in our adoption program; now with PAC closure we will encourage chipping of all dogs through chipping clinics, the first to be held at Old Butler Days on August 9 and 10.
Education of pet owners (and their pets, too) will be enhanced. The classroom programs for the elementary school, dog obedience training, canine companion testing, and pet health education are topics being considered.
Membership in our society is $20/year. Please contact President Nella Dionne, (423) 727-4665, if you have questions regarding the organization and/or would like to help us with animal welfare issues in Johnson County.