The Verde Valley Humane Society's "Pet of the Week" is "Mikey," a young Boxer/Shepherd mix that has been at VVHS since August. This sweet little guy is spending his puppy days in a kennel, behind bars. Mikey's adoption fee has been discounted by $20 thanks to our generous sponsors.
It's 5:15 a.m. and I have been dreading this Monday for days now. Not because it's the end of a nice weekend, but for several other reasons.
Normally I love Mondays. They are exciting; face paced and they always seem to present a challenge of some sort.
All types of things happen on the weekends that need to be addressed on Monday. Animals are found, animals are lost, there is sickness, there are unexpected deaths and there are even bites that need to be dealt with.
So why is this Monday different than most? It's because I have known for days that even though our adoptions have been fantastic, we are still at maximum capacity and the dogs and cats just keep coming in.
What does that mean? It means that some of the animals that you have seen as the "Pet of the Week" will lose their lives due to a lack of space.
I know that you have seen Ladybird, Deemus, Mikey, Buck, Zahara and Buster to name just a few of our long-timers as the "Pet of the Week."
Well those are the ones that will pay the price for nothing more than a lack of room. These are great animals that no one has adopted. We have to make room for the new arrivals.
When strays come through the door there has to be a place to kennel them. It doesn't matter how they get here, they need a cage.
What makes it worse is looking next door at the new adoption facility knowing that if we just had the rest of the money to complete the facility we wouldn't be these putting animals down for space.
For us it is very difficult when we are out of space. We know these animals. They each have their own little personalities and characteristics.
Each one of them greets us in a different way each morning. They have learned to love and trust us, yet we are the ones that have to euthanize them.
For me I realize that I have the final say and it never gets any easier. I think about Deemus as I write this article. He's such a big baby. We laugh and play with him calling him "train wreck." He wiggles his way to the front of the kennel with his entire body wagging.
What a love he is. Of course Deemus, like so many others that come in to us hasn't been trained. He's only one on the list.
He needs someone to work with him and teach him the rules. He's so cute and so naïve about how things are supposed to be.
We taught him to love and trust again, the rest will take more time. He's not a push button dog that will immediately learn the rules of the house.
As you know we are doing all types of fund raising. I feel like my hand is constantly out hoping that dollar by dollar we will get that $150,000 that we still need.
Do you know 150,000 people? Sometimes when I go shopping it seems as if I do. It's awesome to listen to people talk about the Pet Corner and their animals.
Now think about this for a minute. If we could get even just $1 from 150,000 people we would have what we need to open the doors.
How about you? Do you have $1 or 150,000 friends that you can get $1 from? We really need your help to finish our "last mile."
You can mail us $1 to VVHS Building Fund P.O. Box 1429 Cottonwood, AZ 86326 or simply stop in the shelter located at 1502 W. Mingus Ave. here in Cottonwood and save the cost of postage.
If we all join together we can make this happen. There's power and strength when we all work together on this. Please ask everyone you know to help us finish our "last mile."
For all of you that are new to the Verde Valley I will offer a little history and information about VVHS.
I will also give you some information on how to donate at a later date. If possible, donate now and see your dollars at work.
But first, for everyone that has already donated, you should be very proud to see what you have helped accomplish.
If you haven't seen the new adoption center just drive passed the existing shelter and look to your right.
You will be able to see the building that your donations have built. Be proud for helping. You have helped us get this far. Many lives will be saved thanks to you.
Now on to the other info I promised. The Verde Valley Humane Society has from 1,900 to 2,400 animals brought in each year. These animals come in from Animal Control Officers and from concerned citizens.
For those who aren't aware, it's important that people realize that our territory goes from the Coconino line down to Black Canyon City.
We also receive animals from the Village of Oak Creek, Page Springs, Cornville and many other remote areas in Yavapai County. The amount of area that is covered by VVHS is enormous.
We are contracted by Cottonwood, Clarkdale, Jerome, Yavapai County and the Yavapai Apache Nation to take in all stray animals. At times just one officer brings in four and five animals in just one trip to the shelter.
There are 59 dog kennels and 45 cat cages at VVHS. These fill up very rapidly. Needless to say, it is an endless battle. There just never seems to be enough room.
Occasionally we are fortunate enough to have space to impound animals that are owner owned. These are called "surrenders." Unfortunately this can't happen on a regular basis due to the amount of strays that come in. We deal with thousands of animals each year.
VVHS has a waiting list of people that need to give up their animal for one reason or another. When we have openings, we get them in as fast as possible. It's the best we can do without taking the life of another animal.
Mutual fund shares or Appreciated Stock
Charitable gifts of stock provide you with a tax deduction of the full market value (for shares held more than one year); also capital gains taxes on the appreciated asset are avoided. If your donations are gifts of appreciated securities, you may qualify for a charitable deduction of 30 percent of your adjusted gross income.
Bequest in a Will or Living Trust
If you would like to provide help to the Verde Valley Humane Society through your will, your living trust or charitable remainder trust, you will need the Verde Valley Humane Society's tax identification number, legal name and mailing address. For this information, please call (928) 634-7387 or email email@example.com to obtain this vital information.
An outright cash donation may qualify you for a tax deduction of up to 50 percent of your adjusted gross income (excess deductions may be carried over for up to five years after the year of your donation).
Gifts 'In Memory Of' or 'In Honor Of'
These gifts can be given with the thoughts of your loved ones, your friends or your beloved pet. The Verde Valley Humane Society will inform the individual, the pet or family that you designate about your gift.
We will also provide the information about how your gift will benefit the homeless animals in our care at VVHS. Please provide us with the information about the person or pet being honored or remembered.
Life Insurance Policy
You may name of the Verde Valley Humane Society as your beneficiary on a policy that you no longer need, add VVHS to an existing policy or you can even create a new policy.
Charitable Remainder Trusts
A Charitable Remainder Trust provides a means to receive an immediate income tax deduction, income for life, and a meaningful gift to a charity at death or at the end of the term of the trust.
Charitable Gift Annuity
When you make your gift of cash or stocks to fund a Verde Valley Humane Society Charitable Gift Annuity, you will receive a tax deduction that can be spread over five years after the year of the gift and payments for life of up to 11.3 percent based on your age.
U.S. Savings Bonds or Retirement Accounts
Listed above are just some of the ways you can help the animals at VVHS get a new facility.