Tuesday, March 27, 2007

3/30/07 Humane Happenings

Desert Haven Animal Refuge, owned and operated by the Sierra County Humane Society, Inc., has come a long way since May 1999, when President Eliana Aubin, Treasurer Jerry Aubin and several Board members gathered to walk through the undeveloped and rugged 5 acres property they had just purchased on behalf of the small, non-profit 501-c-3 animal welfare organization.

A giant step had been made - a lot of work needed to be done - that day, the Sierra County Humane Society had broadened its horizons.

Today, Desert Haven, a small No-Kill domestic animal sanctuary built from the grounds up, is fully operational and home to no less than 200 feathered and furry animals. Built on a sound foundation, the facility continues to grow in strength and capacity, thanks to careful planning, hard work and dedication on the part of an all-volunteer crew who is determined to help Desert Haven fulfill its mission: protect abused, abandoned and neglected living creatures and give them back their lives. The work of Desert Haven reaches beyond the sanctuary, through adoption, humane education, and spay-neuter programs in Sierra County.

Our small but very active organization receives absolutely no funding from government entities, local or otherwise. Our funds are generated from private and corporate contributions, yearly membership fees and Paws & Claws thrift shop, a small second-hand store operated by volunteers and located in T or C. Our budget is carefully planned each year to help insure that our organization is able to function effectively within its means. Volunteer help is always needed, either local or through the Society’s work camper’s program. Together we are building a better world through kindness to animals and we are seeking out people of like-mind.

Our Wish List: someone with a small grader, fencing material, pet food, brooms, Clorox bleach, cleaning detergent and brushes, , dry dog and cat food, bird and sunflower seeds, chicken scratch, rabbit pellets, Dog Walkers and Kitty Cuddlers, handy folks to help on Tuesday projects, helpers at Paws & Claws thrift shop.

For more information, check us out on http:// www.DesertHavenAnimalRefuge.com, contact us at 505-894-2778 or visit Desert Haven on a Tuesday, and experience first hand the wonderful energy created through our labor of love in progress.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Featured Pet - Sassy

Sassy is a cuddly, smart, black lab-mix. She is medium-sized with sleek good looks and only wants love. Her foster parents say that Sassy is very well behaved indoors, does not bark, and is completely housebroken. She obeys commands - Come - Stay - Sit - Up - Shake hands - Go potty! She loves to ride in the car. She walks great on the leash and relishes going for a run or walk. Sassy enjoys being an Alpha-Woman. She enjoys meeting other animals when out walking but is very clear about her boundaries.


Sassy loves attention, greets people visiting at the house, and thrives on affection. She was rescued as a young pup in the summer of 2002, after being abandoned in the middle of the desert, miles from civilization. She is looking for a lifetime home that offers belly rubs and cuddling in return for her well-mannered attitude. One look into her face and you’re hooked!

You can meet Sassy at Desert Haven during our Open House every Tuesday from 9AM-4PM or any other day by appointment. Call Freddie at 505-894-2778 or send an e-mail to Eliana Aubin at aubin29@zianet.com for more information on Sassy.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

A Volunteer Speaks

Contributed by ds....

We have three dogs adopted from Desert Haven. One we have had for over three years and two little sisters we adopted at different times. One over a year ago and the other just last year. Desert Haven has a great volunteer crew who all have the same interest... the well being and care for animals. Everytime we go to visit Desert Haven everything there is very clean and neat. The animals there are very well cared for by the volunteers who take very good care of the animals. Everyone who volunteers is an asset to Desert Haven. There is a lot of work involved in caring for the animals that unless you have been a volunteer there you don't realize it. But the work is well worth the feeling that you receive knowing that you have contributed to a great cause. When you are a volunteer at Desert Haven you are not treated as a volunteer, you are treated as part of a family. I know this from experience as I came to Desert Haven as a volunteer a few years ago and even now that I am not there I feel as though Desert Haven is still my family. It is a good feeling to return to Desert Haven for a visit and be welcomed with opened arms by the volunteers and by the animals there. Instead of getting a AKC pet, why not adopt a grown pet that needs your love and care just as much as a AKC pet? You won't regret it because I sure don't with the three dogs I have adopted from Desert Haven.

Thank you, ds, for all that you do for Desert Haven!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

A Work Camper Writes to Us

Liane & Doug Stark sent this message to friends and family after spending time with us at Desert Haven. With their permission, we are sharing it here:

We just finished up volunteering for 2 weeks at the Desert Haven Animal Refuge in Truth or Consequences, NM. We had a lot of fun, met WONDERFUL people, did a lot of work and already miss the dogs. On our work days, we work basically from 8-10 in the morning and then again from 5-6 in the afternoon. We'd walk dogs, muck out kennels, feed dogs, capture the escape artist dogs and lend a hand in the Cat Palace or Birdland as needed. On Tuesdays, it was an all day work "party". Think I may have lost a pound or two on those days!

The Animal Refuge has 10 dogs, about 20+ cats, guinea pigs, rabbits, doves, 2 peacocks, other birds, chickens/roosters and a "partridge in a pear tree". OK, no partridge, at least not yet. Many of the residents were rescued from certain death at the animal shelter, others were dropped off and still others are there because their owners died. It's a no-kill facility, so until a home is found, all the animals are safe and loved. A couple of dogs tugged on my heartstrings, but Max reminded me that he's a spoiled, only dog. So we still have only Max.

From all the residents and friends of Desert Haven, thanks again, Liane & Doug!

Monday, March 19, 2007

Week of 3/18/07 Humane Happenings

Desert Haven Animal Refuge is a small, home-like domestic animal sanctuary where unwanted and abandoned creatures, who would otherwise have no place to go, now can spend their days in a safe, peaceful and stimulating environment, surrounded by caring folks who tend to their needs, while at the same time, they help strengthen a no-kill movement that will outlast them.

These past few weeks have been very special to everyone involved with DHAR, as we were surrounded by old friends: former work-campers Walt Allen of Michigan and Larry & Mavis Juniper of Indiana, who return to Sierra County every Winter since they work-camped with us several years ago, also Ted & Fay Early, who stopped at the RV campground for a few weeks on their way home last March, and who, this year, made it a point to stop at DH again on their way back home to Colorado. Also working with them were Liane and Doug Stark, first-time work-campers at DH, Deb Peters of Connecticut, Jeanette Galliard of Albuquerque, Sheryl McKinney, Kathy Stoud, Linda Estavillo, Bootz, Freddie Loveless, Gene Trelewicz, Al Wilkinson, Middle school student Samuel Ashley, Jody and young son Joshua Koch, also Ginnie Nylen and Eliana Aubin. It has been an enjoyable few weeks indeed !

A special thank-you is in order to Camille Pronovost who travels and work-camps with husband Ed around the country and also spent time at DH earlier this year. Not only did Camille create the www.deserthavenanimalrefuge.com web site, but she also updates it weekly. It’s a professional job, well worth checking out regularly. If some of our readers correspond via the internet with animal loving friends, sending them our web site will help spread the word about our no-kill sanctuary and at the same time give the animal residents an extra chance to be sponsored or adopted.

Update on little Urchin AKA ”Sandy”: the miniature poodle lost in Elephant Butte on July 4th 2006 and finally reunited with her family, at Desert Haven, where she had arrived in early December. A miracle has happened: “Sandy” is back in Grants with her family and getting back into her old habits. Many guardian angels, all of them involved in one way or another with Desert Haven, have been watching over her along the way. ” Saving one pet won’t change the world, but surely, the world will change for that one pet”.

Wish List: Small grader to clean less than 200 ft of fence line through light brush on terrain relatively flat - Pet food - Dog Walkers and Kitty Cuddlers - Volunteers at Paws & Claws thrift shop. For more information or to adopt a pet from DH, contact us at 505-894-2778.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Week of 3/11/07 Humane Happenings

Since 1990, The Sierra County Humane Society, Inc. has offered a rebate to pet owners who wish to have their animal sterilized but need a financial incentive to do so. These rebates - $30 and $40 for male and female dogs or cats, respectively, are entirely funded through private and corporate contributions and most of all, the hard work of volunteers who believe in what they do. Volunteers operate Paws & Claws thrift shop, the proceeds of which are instrumental in funding the local Humane Society and its programs.

Since the SCHS was organized in the Fall of 1989, the Society’s major goal has been to curb the exploding population of cats and dogs in Sierra County. Irresponsible pet ownership has created a domestic animal population explosion. Unsterilized cats are allowed to roam the neighborhoods and their offspring add to the local feral cat population. To add to their misery, Pit Bulls are bred intentionally, and Pit-Bull pups can be seen everywhere in our county, at the city shelter, on our roadways, in the back yards of unscrupulous owners. They and the Pit Bull-mix pups are doomed from birth.

In 1999, a small but determined group of volunteers took the first step on their “Journey of 1000 Miles”. Desert Haven became a reality. Of course, the purpose of the small no-kill domestic animal sanctuary was never meant to take in all the unwanted animals of Sierra County. We use the resources that we have to save as many lives as we possibly can. The environment created at DH is giving all animal loving folks who are involved at the sanctuary, the determination to make a difference. Through hard work, we help finance, not only Desert Haven, but also a Spay-Neuter and Spay-a-Stray programs, together with a Humane Education program that will someday help bring needed changes in the lives of animals in our area. Of course, there will always be those who condemn us because we don’t take in their unwanted dogs or cats. On the other hand, most folks who join hands with us share our vision: help make our corner of the world kinder and gentler for all its residents.

This week’s wish list: dog, cat, bird, and rabbit food. Someone with a small grader to clear around 200 feet of fence line through light brush on terrain relatively flat. For more information on the Sierra County Humane Society, Desert Haven, or Paws & Claws thrift shop, or to adopt a rescued dog or cat, contact us at 505-894-2778, check us out at http://www.deserthavenanimalrefuge.com/ or write to us at POB 638 Williamsburg, NM 87942.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Featured Pet: Sasha

Sasha, our featured pet this week, is one of the sweetest and most gentle kitties at Desert Haven. Born in 2002, Sasha came to Desert Haven after her owner moved out of the area, abandoning her. At the time, Sasha was in her last term of pregnancy. Soon after, she delivered her kittens under the porch of the mobile home that was now vacant. For several weeks, Sasha had to search for food throughout the neighborhood just to survive and keep nursing her kittens. Finally, a neighbor discovered the kittens and took most of them in to be adopted out to his friends.

Sasha is a sweet, gorgeous long-haired cat who enjoys the company of adults and who will easily be coaxed to sit on your lap and let herself be groomed. She will sit up for you after she gets to know you, just to get a treat or two. Sasha was in foster care for a while to improve her self-confidence and she has adapted very well to the normal life of a typical cat at Desert Haven. She enjoys looking out the boxed window of the Cat's Place in Desert Haven's Cool Cat Neighborhood, enjoying the peacefulness of her surroundings. She accepts and even thrives in a household with other adult cats, as long as she receives her share of cuddles and attention.

If you have room in your heart and your home for this adorable girl, contact Desert Haven at 575-894-2778.

Sunday, March 4, 2007

Week of 3/4/07 Humane Happenings

Welcome back, Larry and Mavis Juniper. This former workcamping couple comes back to this area every year since they spent the Winter of 2004 at Desert Haven Animal Refuge. While they reside in Williamsburg this Winter, they work on needed projects every Tuesday, with the volunteer crew. Larry and Mavis have made many friends here, and it’s great to see them back each year.

A happy ending to a very sad story: Urchin, the miniature female poodle discovered on a very cold morning in December, wandering behind someone’s shed near the Rio Grande and taken in that morning at Desert Haven, is now back with her former family. After disappearing from the out-of-town family’s vehicle at an Elephant Butte gas station during the long July 4th 2006 holiday week-end, Urchin was left to fend for herself until early December, when she was discovered miles away, on Riverside Drive. This small poodle was very traumatized from her ordeal and it took many weeks of love and patience to help her get over her fear of people in general.

At his last visit to the sanctuary, James Rogers recognized her from the flyers that her family had posted in July, before returning to their home in Grant. The family was contacted and came all the way from Grant, to pick-up their beloved “Sandy”, the little dog they feared they would never see again. It feels good to know that little Urchin/Sandy has finally been reunited with her family.

Linda Estavillo, Facilities Manager at Desert Haven Animal Refuge since last August, recently completed the Sierra County Humane Society financial statement for 2006 and her hard work is to be commended. An individual with many talents and a big heart for animals, Linda is also a pleasure to work with and we trust that her association with Desert Haven and all its inhabitants will be a long and positive one.

With another growing season coming up, Desert Haven needs a green thumb or two interested in helping maintain the grounds, including Central Bark, the garden area adjacent to the Main Building. We need extra help in the office at Desert Haven, especially with membership mailing and filing. Two hours of your time at Desert Haven every Tuesday would make a world of difference. For more information on the Sierra County Humane Society, Desert Haven and Paws & Claws thrift shop, contact us at 894-2778 or write to us at POB 638 Williamsburg, NM 87942.