Saturday, February 27, 2010

Week of 2/21/10 Humane Happenings


by Eliana Aubin

Skye, one of the newest residents of Dog Town at Desert Haven, Sierra County’s no-kill domestic animal sanctuary, will soon be undergoing surgery, with the blessings of every member of the crew who feeds and cares for him. The handsome, good natured blue heeler Aussie mix had been rescued from the streets of Elephant Butte some weeks ago, during some of the coldest weather Sierra County endured this winter. He was cold, hungry and severely injured. Desert Haven became his new home.

Skye had been shot. The bullet was intended to kill him, but instead hit him in the shoulder. It severally damaged his shoulder blade, leaving many pieces of embedded shrapnel in his limb. Thanks to the generosity of an anonymous contributor who recently sent a donation in memory of her late husband, a kind man who loved all animals, the surgery to remove the shrapnel will soon become reality. Skye is receiving a lot of loving attention at DHAR, and everyone hopes that the surgery will allow him to live every day of the rest of his life, as safe and as free of pain that any living creature deserves in this world.

This week, we wish to remind our readers that the Sierra county Humane Society collects Bullocks receipts and also aluminum cans to help fund its spay-neuter program. You can drop off your receipts at Paws & Claws thrift shoppe, and your bags of aluminum cans in the Can Corral next to the shop, which is located across the alley from Family Dollar in T or C. Applications for the spay/neuter program are available at the T or C Police Station and also at Paws & Claws. For more information on the program, contact us at 894-2778. In the USA, Euthanasia is the leading cause of death for cats and dogs. You love animals? Then have your companion animal sterilized.

Dog and cat food, both dry and canned, is at the top of our priority list this week. Your donated pet food can be dropped off at Desert Haven or P&C thrift shop during business hours. Please note that anything left unattended in front of the shop outside of business hours often makes it into the wrong hands and disappears before it can be secured. Call us at 575-894-1694 or 894-2778 for more information. Write us at POB 638, Williamsburg, NM 87901. Visit us at and You can also chat with us at

Friday, February 26, 2010

Week of 2/14/10 Humane Happenings


by Eliana Aubin

Finally the warmer weather is attempting to settle down into the beautiful Rio Grande Corridor and Sierra County. It’s been a cold winter by most standards. At least that’s how we feel at Desert Haven, Sierra County’s No-Kill domestic animal sanctuary. Thanks to Jeanette Galliard of Albuquerque and the bales of straw that she routinely brings to Desert Haven Animal Refuge, each and every dog house in the play yards of Dog Town is lined with straw all winter – the best type of winter insulation that we have found so far for our large dogs. Except for the little guys who would not think of ripping apart their cozy comforters and warm blankets, that type of bedding used inside the dog houses and doggie condos soon find its way all over the play yards, either torn in small pieces or as part of some tug-of-war toys our dogs seem to thoroughly enjoy. Needless to say, we reserve the blankets and comforters for all the small dogs under our care and protection at the sanctuary. Jeanette also supplies Desert Haven with alfalfa year ‘round for our small army of guinea pigs, rabbits, peacocks, chickens and roosters and of course, our flocks of domesticated ring neck and white doves. Jeanette has been a long time supporter of Sierra County’s no-kill animal refuge and her timely contributions are always very much needed and most appreciated.

It was Thanksgiving revisited for the little dogs at Desert Haven this past Tuesday, as the volunteers opened a large package sent all the way from Minnesota by Michele Tjaden. It was filled with very stylish and warm doggie coats of all colors, together with “gentle leaders”. A very nice gesture indeed, from an out-of-state friend of DHAR.

This week, dry and canned dog and cat food is at the top of our priority list. An average of 30 canines and 35 felines eat a lot every day. Donations can be dropped off at Desert Haven on Tuesdays, when it is open to visitors, or at Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe during business hours. We can be contacted at 575-894-1694 or 894-2778. Write us at POB 638, Williamsburg, NM 87901. Visit us at You can also chat with us at

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Week of 2/7/10 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Dogtown fence in snow

Abandoning a companion animal is now a crime in New Mexico. The Sierra County Humane Society pledges to prosecute to the full extent of the law anyone witnessed abandoning their unwanted companion animal. If you see someone “dumping” a companion animal on the side of a road, near the river or in any neighborhood, please take the license number of the vehicle and any other pertinent information. Then contact our animal welfare organization at 575-894-2778 or 575-894-1694 or 575-894-2639. We will prosecute.

Several years ago, an incident involving a local man seen dangling a kitty by his tail over an enclosed pen occupied by both a pit bull and a boxer, was publicized by our organization all over New Mexico. We became involved. Since then, the District Attorney’s office is allowing a representative of the Sierra County Humane Society to speak in the courtroom on behalf of any local animal victim. Hurray for District Attorney Clint Wellborn and his staff for giving a voice – ours - to Sierra County’s voiceless animal victims.

Companion animals abandoned in front of Desert Haven do not know which way to turn for safety and they usually end up dead or dying before anyone even knows they are there. Sierra Animal Shelter in TorC accepts, free of charge to their owners and no questions asked, any unwanted animal. Our own organization provides rebate certificates for folks who wish to have their dog or cat sterilized. The forms are available at the TorC police station, Paws&Claws Thrift Shoppe and Hot Springs Animal Clinic. Contact us at 575-894-2778 for more information.

Birdland in snow

This week, we wish to thank St Cloud Mining for their twice-a-year contribution to Desert Haven Animal Refuge of an entire pallet of kitty litter. The folks at St Cloud Mining are only a phone call away: we can count on them and we sincerely appreciate their generosity. Recently, the dogs and cats of DHAR became the lucky recipients of a large container full of “yummy” doggy and kitty treats, courtesy of the Carson’s, Desert Haven’s neighbors. What a nice couple indeed!

A letter arrived to DHAR from AZ recently. It touched everyone’s heart. It said” I found your web site through I supported Best Friends from its very beginning. Now they are big time with movie stars & other celebrities. I don’t feel like my small donation matters. Therefore I am sending you that “small donation” as I am sure you need it much more than they do. I admire your efforts. I hope this will help. Thank you for caring for the animals.”

Everyone who helps us in some way becomes an integral part of what we do for the animals of Sierra County. We can be contacted at 575-894-1694 or 894-2778. Write us at POB 638, Williamsburg, NM 87901. Visit us at You can also chat with us at

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Week of 2/3/10 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

This week, we thank all animal loving individual and business entities who support Desert Haven Animal Refuge in some way. Without you, we at DHAR would not be able to give our furry and feathered friends the care that visitors to the small No-Kill domestic animal sanctuary comment on and even admire.

Our latest major accomplishment: little Snoopy. This little dog has a new life. Not only he was saved from a agonizing death, but he has now recovered from surgery, and is also adopted into the very best home we could have found for him. The little guy had gone through so much hardship in his short life: abandoned last Fall to fend for himself close to a very busy street, he was also kicked very hard, a blow that broke his jaw. He would have starved to death or been hit by a vehicle had he not be rescued and cared for at DHAR. The surgery performed was costly, but necessary, to help give this little boy-dog a better life. Thank you, everyone, for helping us make it happen.

There is Luke, the then-teenage kitty who came to DHAR with a badly misshapen and distorted back leg – a very cumbersome and probably painful dead-weight little Luke had to drag behind him. We opted for surgery for him, and now, Luke has started on a new life, full of love and kindness, and free from his dead-weight, courtesy of the DHAR supporters and volunteers who made it happen.

There is Whitney, rescued at DHAR in 2009 after being found wandering the countryside with a little companion. At the sanctuary, we realized that something was wrong with the little girl-dog, and a visit with the vet confirmed our suspicions: Whitney had been kicked in the stomach so hard that she would die soon without intensive surgery to repair the damage. The choice was clear: we needed to give back Whitney a chance at life. Two intensive surgeries later, Whitney is doing well and loving the attention she is receiving at the home of one of DHAR staff members.

And now there is Skye. This young and handsome Blue Heeler Aussie mix was found around Christmas on a street in Elephant Butte. Badly limping, he also had open wounds around the neck, which we assumed were from a fight. He was rescued at DHAR. X Rays showed that someone had shot him, damaging his shoulder blade with embedded fragments from a bullet that hit the bone, sparing his life but leaving him in pain. The anti-inflammatory medicine we give him every morning is not working and surgery is the next course of action, to remove as many pieces of shrapnel as possible, and give the muscles a chance to heal. Once again, we need your help. Skye deserves love and loving care and for the pain to go away. You can make a donation through our Causes page on Facebook or though PayPal.

We cannot save all the unwanted dogs and cats of Sierra County, but we change the lives of those that we can save, and that is one of our organization’s most worthwhile accomplishments. Interested in learning more about us? Contact us at 575-894-1694 or 894-2778; Write us at POB 638, Williamsburg, NM 87901. Visit us at and become a Facebook fan at