The Fayette Tribune, Oak Hill, W.Va.

January 27, 2014

Drive raises funds to aid shelter animals in need of medical care


From Staff Reports

BECKWITH — Lori and her sister, Jackie, were taken in at the Fayette County Animal Shelter last month.

The husky mixes who are younger than one-year old had been at the shelter for a couple weeks when Lori began to develop signs of Demodectic mange.

“This form of mange is not contagious but is still serious if not treated,” said Beth Powers, a member of the New River Humane Society who volunteers at the shelter. “The shelter has had quite a few dogs come in with mange and most all have been euthanized due to lack of funds designated to vet bills. I didn’t want to see that for Lori and I don’t want to see that for any other animal that comes in with illness or injury.”

Because of her desire to protect those animals who become sick, Powers, who said she has always been “an animal person,” developed a plan.

“I had been thinking of starting a fund designated for vet bills and when we discovered Lori’s mange I decided to give it a try,” she said. “Her sister Jackie never developed the mange. We believe that the stress from being in the shelter is what caused Lori’s mange to come out.”

Lori’s need led Powers to go ahead with her plan, and she set up a site at Gofundme.com to collect donations to help the shelter’s animals in need of care by a veterinarian.

“The Gofundme.com site is an easy way to raise funds for whatever your cause may be. You don’t have to be a charity to use the site, but mine goes directly to the New River Humane Society which is a certified charity,” Powers said.

“I actually have a friend who used the site to raise money to help pay for a recent surgery. We had used this site previously for a dog that had come in with a severe case of cherry eyes and raised the money we needed for her surgery.

“It is an easy way for people to donate to their favorite cause. I plan to keep the page running indefinitely to keep funds available for any animal that comes to the shelter injured or ill who needs medical help. I would hate to see any animal put down when it could be as simple as a vet visit and an antibiotic,” she said.

Donations to the site have reached nearly $900 so far and “one person brought her $280 donation personally to the shelter,” Powers said. “Our goal is $1000 a month. The shelter has around a hundred cats and sometimes just as many dogs. With that many animals coming in, there is always a need for medical care. The donations have slowed down over the past couple weeks and I don’t want to see it fade away that’s why I am constantly trying to share it on Facebook and encourage others to share as well.”

To get to the Go Fund Me page (Vet Bills for Fayette County Animal Shelter) use this address: http://www.gofundme.com/5vgguk

If you’re wondering about what became of Lori, Powers can speak first-hand to that as well.

“She went to the vet and started treatment right away with antibiotics and oral meds because we had raised money with this site. After about two weeks of treatment we noticed it was getting worse instead of better, so I decided to pull her (from the shelter) to foster her until she is fully recovered,” she said.

“I believe the stress of the shelter atmosphere is hindering her recovery so I’m hoping by bringing her to my house where it is calm and she can get the attention she needs she can improve much faster.

“Since I have had her I have washed her in medicated shampoo, started her on a new round of meds and am giving her vitamins and a high quality dog food. She will be up for adoption when she is fully recovered.”

If you don’t feel comfortable sending donations online, you can always mail it to: New River Humane Society, P.O. Box 955, Fayetteville, WV 25840. If you want your donation to go specifically for veterinarian bills, please indicate that.

Also, New River Humane Society is always in need of volunteers to walk dogs, play with puppies,  cats and kittens. You can also wash dogs or help clean cages. The Humane Society also sponsors adoption events on the weekends at Petsmart and Oak Hill Tractor Supply and also transports animals to out of state rescue groups.

If you’re interested in volunteering, just call 304-574-3682 or take a drive the shelter on Fayette County Park Road at Beckwith so the staff can get you started.