Saturday, December 31, 2011

Week of 12/25/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

This is Christmas week 2011 - quite an interesting few days for the volunteers at Desert Haven Animal Refuge.

Freedom with Sherry, former DH animal care coordinator.
Freedom, the black lab rescued at the sanctuary from an abusive environment some months ago, has now moved to his forever home. Do you remember Jill Elisabeth and the You-Tube segment that she made about Desert Haven recently? Well, you can watch it either on You-Tube or on During her several visits to the sanctuary last week, Jill interacted with all the DogTown residents and Freedom caught her attention. From then on, Freedom and Jill became best buddies and now, Freedom has his very special place in the sun. We are told that Jill’s bed is his favorite spot these days and that it is where he feels most secure. Thank you, Jill, for taking this fur-kid into your home and into your heart.

Riley the fluffy teenage kitty is moving to his forever home in Seattle Washington at the end of this month. His plane trip, courtesy of Carl and Linda who are currently work camping at the sanctuary, will land him on the lap of Linda’s sister who is waiting for him with anticipation. Hurray for Riley! And a big hug to Carl and Linda for their kindness!

Ric and Marj arrived at Desert Haven last month with the intention of work camping at the facility for several months. They received sad news a few days ago regarding the health of a close family member. The news prompted them to make the decision to leave the sanctuary almost immediately - months earlier than expected - and to move close to their family member in need of their support.

With Ric & Marj leaving the sanctuary immediately, the DHAR volunteer crew is now short two team members - a huge drawback for everyone there. If you enjoy the company of dogs or cats but adoption is not in your plans at this time, volunteering at the sanctuary for a couple of hours a week may be for you. If you believe in what we do for companion animals down-on-their-luck and you can give to a good cause a few hours of your time for a while, we can certainly use your help at Desert Haven. If your new year’s resolution includes getting more exercise to stay healthy, walking the dogs of Desert Haven one or more mornings a week may just be what you need. Interested in more information? Contact Janice at 575-894-1694 or 813-716-2033.

Check us out at Chat with us at Our mailing address is POB 638, Williamsburg, NM 87942.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Week of 12/18/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

This week, the volunteers and staff at Desert Haven Animal Refuge wish to thank Jill Elizabeth, a California native traveling throughout the US on a mission. Jill’s goal is to search out good deeds performed by ordinary people. She then shares her interesting and entertaining findings on You-Tube - “Videos to inspire and inform as together we build a new world of love, truth and freedom!”

Jill’s current residence is Truth or Consequences. This past week, she visited Desert Haven. As she interacted with all the little rescues, she interviewed the volunteers. Part one of two is already posted on You-Tube and also on Facebook at Thank you, Jill, for bringing attention to the cause of all companion animals in need and for giving folks everywhere the opportunity to see what we do here at Desert Haven.

Jill and a young black Lab named Freedom connected in a special way during the several visits Jill made to the sanctuary this past week. The playful girl-dog is being adopted and will soon move to a home of her very own! What a great way for Freedom to end the year 2011!

We currently are receiving a larger than usual number of requests regarding abandoned or no longer wanted dogs and cats. Our sanctuary is small and can’t take them all. However, we can help in another way! E-mail us at several photos, together with some information on the animal you wish to give up and we will post them – free of charge to you - on the Desert Haven Petfinder page. The Adopt-a-Pet Referral program is sponsored by the Sierra County Humane Society. Call Janice at 813-716-2033 for more information. Interested in adopting a cat or kitten? A generous couple who supports our efforts is currently covering half of the adoption fee for any feline adopted from our sanctuary. Interested? Contact us at 575-894-1694 or 813-716-2033. Desert Haven is open for visitors every Tuesday from 9AM to 4PM.

One of Paw&Claws dedicated volunteers is slowly recovering from a very recent vehicle accident. He will be out of commission for at least several more weeks. If interested in helping out at P&C during his recovery, please let us know. P&C Thrift Shoppe is open Wednesday through Saturday between 11 AM and 4PM. Would you like to become a member of our animal welfare organization or support us in some other way? Check us out at or call us at 575- 894-1694. Our mailing address is POB 638, Williamsburg, NM 87942.

Week of 12/11/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

 Bullocks receipts are an important source of revenues for the Sierra County Humane Society. We collect Bullocks receipts at Paws&Claws Thrift Shoppe, the TorC  Public Library, also at Celestial Creations in TorC. Josephine Varnum routinely tallies them for our animal welfare organization, as she has done for many years now. The funds generated by the receipts go towards the SCHS spay-neuter program. We also collect aluminum cans to help fund the program. Our Can-Corral is located next to Paws&Claws Thrift Shoppe in TorC. Our volunteers work hard and deserve a pat 
on the back. Our supporters from all over are very generous and they too deserve our gratitude.

At this time of the year and for while longer, folks who wish to adopt a cat or kitten from the sanctuary have the unique opportunity to pay only half of the adoption fee, thanks to an anonymous supporter who wants to give Desert Haven felines an extra chance to find a special forever home during the Christmas Holidays. Interested? Contact us at 894-1694 or visit the sanctuary when it is open to the public - every Tuesday, from 9AM to 4PM.

A sincere thank-you goes to the kind folks who last week brought to Desert Haven and Paws&Claws bags of used pillows and blankets, also small rugs to help keep the fur-kid residents warm during this extreme weather.  Their outpour of generosity was truly heartwarming. Winter is not yet over, so please continue to donate whatever warm bedding you no longer need nor want. If you wish to help out in other ways, please donate canned dog food for the residents of Dogtown. When it is cold as it is right now, we feed them a mixture of canned and dry dog food and our supply of canned food has become very low.

Our organization has recently been inundated with calls from local people who want to give away an unwanted animal or two. The last few weeks especially, calls came from neighbors of people who moved away, passed away or went to the nursing home, leaving their pets behind. We want to help, but more often than not, we can"t. We do not have the room or the resources we would need to take in all these little ones at the sanctuary.

Our mailing address is Post Office Box 638, Williamsburg, NM 87942. Check us out at,, and

Friday, December 9, 2011

Week of 12/7/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Israel receiving donations at Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe
This is the time of the year when we are asked to donate to this cause or that charity. The act of giving fills us with joy. And when the recipient responds with gratitude, we find satisfaction. Whether we donate to a local cause or a national charity this holiday season, we will experience the most joy and satisfaction when we know that our hard-earned money lands where it’s most needed and where it will do the most good.

With so many animal welfare organizations all over the US, competition for funds has become intense. We need to add to that the scam artists posing as charities,and we will understand how easily our contributions could fall into the wrong hands. So before we write our check, let’sdo our homework. We want to know how our money will be spent and if the organization is in good standing with the IRS. A good rule of thumb: at least 75% of our donation should go to the cause we want to help. That leaves 25% of each donated dollar earmarked for administrative costs, such as salaries and fundraising.

The Sierra County Humane Society has an even better long-term record. In 2010, our tax returns indicated that we spent only 4% in administrative costs, a far cry from many well-known animal welfare organizations that as a rule spend the majority of our donations on their extensive fundraising activities, not to mention ther high salaries of their managing staff.

When our donated dollars stay in Sierra County – known to be one of the 17 poorest counties in the entire US by the way– every dollar that we give for the worthwhile cause of our choice can be accounted for. By donating locally, we can follow, first hand, were our contribution goes and how it benefits the organization of our choice, simply because it’s right here in Sierra County.

The Sierra County Humane Society needs your generous help this holiday season. Desert Haven, Sierra County’s no-kill domestic animal sanctuary, needs your support. Your contribution to your local animal welfare organization is vital to the good work that we do to help companion animals down-on-their-luck. Please be generous this holiday season – help us help them. Every dollar counts and is accounted for.

Please send your contribution to SCHS & DHAR, Post Office Box 638, Williamsburg, NM 87942. You can also donate on line via PayPal (link is always available from the home page of our web site) or via Causes, which is also available on Facebook.

We also need warm bedding and used pillows for the little ones in our care. Dog treats are always needed and appreciated. We have already started heating the Inn at Dog Town at night - it's freezing right now, and there is another snow storm on the way, with expected temperatures of around zero. We are not used to these extremes and neither are our little rescues. This is the Desert Southwest after all. The costs of heating Dog Town is very high. We will soon have to find another - much more economical - way to heat the insulated building, in order to make it more in line with our budget. Any advice anyone? Until then, we are appealing for help in keeping all our little ones as comfortable as we possibly can during these unusually cold temperatures.

We also need volunteers at Desert Haven and Paws& Claws Thrift Shoppe. Contact us at 575-894-2639. Checkus out at ,, www. and

Week of 11/27/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Marj, newest work camper at Desert Haven
This Christmas Season, The Sierra County Humane Society is asking local residents who own dogs and cats to insure that animals not fortunate enough to enjoy the comfort of their warm owners homes during the cold season be provided with especially warm bedding. It’s heartbreaking to see dogs chained in yards during all types of weather, with often no adequate shelter, if any at all. If you witness animal neglect, abuse or cruelty of any type, please immediately report it to Dispatch at 575-894-7111, whose job is to forward your information to the appropriate law enforcement authorities. Requesting a follow-up may help insure that action is taken and the animal protected or even removed from the situation. Companion animals are defenseless in the face of ignorance, stupidity, or cruelty and all of us who love animals are their voice.

At this time of the year and for the next few months, Desert Haven Animal Refuge is offering folks who wish to adopt a cat or kitten from the sanctuary the unique opportunity to pay only half of the adoption fee. This very thoughtful offer is being provided by an anonymous supporter of our sanctuary, who wants to give a Desert Haven feline an extra chance to spend the rest of his life in a loving home. Interested? Contact us at 894-1694.

Barbara and Don Heller regularly drop-off at the sanctuary a large bag of dog food and one of cat food. This past week, they also brought fresh catnip for our small army of felines. Your kindness is very much appreciated, Don and Barbara.

This winter, we especially need warm bedding of all types for our resident dogs and cats. Used bed pillows come in very handy. They are the perfect size to line each one of the more than 35 kitty condos in the Feline Dorm and other sleeping areas. They also fit very well inside our dog houses.

We need straw to help insulate the guinea pig and rabbit habitats, also the nesting boxes for the peacocks, doves, miniature hens and roosters. We need alfalfa, bird and sunflower seeds, also cracked corn to help feed the residents of Birdland. We need dog treats for our small dogs and very large bones for our largest canines. Desert Haven has an account at The Horsin’ Around Feed & Tack store in TorC. Folks interested in helping feed our residents are welcome to place their contribution into our Desert Haven Account.

For more information, call us at 575-894-1694 or 813-716-2033. Visit Desert Haven on Tuesday. Check us out at ,, and

Week of 11/20/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Carl and Rick discuss the Tuesday project
Every year, Desert Haven Animal Refuge celebrates Thanksgiving on the Tuesday before the traditional Thanksgiving Day. This year again, the DHAR team of volunteers and work campers shared in providing for everyone a traditional Thanksgiving meal of turkey with all the trimmings, together with a congenial atmosphere.

We thank our animal loving friends who, this past week, dropped-off at P&C Thrift Shoppe bedding material to be distributed between the sanctuary resident dogs and cats. We also thank KCHS radio station for airing our appeal several times this past week- free of charge to our organization. With our current army of furry and feathered residents, our volunteers are always looking for bedding to keep everyone as warm as possible during the cold winter nights. We still need carpet remnants, small rugs, old blankets and flannel sheets, also old pillows which by the way fit perfectly well inside each feline individual condo. We collect them at P&C Thrift Shoppe, located across the alley from Family Dollar. Your donations should be brought inside P&C during business hours - from Wed through Sat every week, from 11 AM to 4 PM. This will keep them from disappearing in the hands of unsavory folks who make a habit of taking what is not theirs, wherever and whenever they see the opportunity.

The “Horsin’ Around Feed & Tack located on Broadway in TorC has an account opened for Desert Haven. It has been set up to help supporters of Sierra County’s No-Kill domestic animal sanctuary donate funds towards the costs of alfalfa, straw, bird seeds and cracked corn that we need to feed and keep warm the residents of Birdland & Animal House this winter. We also use straw to better insulate the large dog houses located inside the exercise yards in Dogtown. During the coldest winter nights, the dogs of Dogtown are moved inside the insulated Inn. The cats sleep inside the Feline Dorm. The cost of operating propane or electric heaters is almost prohibitive for our budget, so we are looking into alternatives to keep our fur-kids warm during the winter nights. Among our readers, perhaps there is someone who would help us with the information on how to purchase and install a wood burning stove.

Interested in helping us help unwanted domestic animals in some way? We need dog walkers at DHAR, especially during evening care which starts at 4 PM at this time of the year. We also need volunteers at P&C. Call us at 575-894-1694 or 813-716-2033 for more information. Check us out at: , and chat with us at and

Week of 11/13/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Linda and Carl are work camping this winter at Desert Haven
A sincere “Thank-You” is in order to the staff at White Sands Credit Union for choosing the Sierra County Humane Society as this year’s recipient of their generosity. It was very heartwarming to realize that all the hard work of the volunteers who make things happen at the non-profit animal welfare organization was being acknowledged in this very generous way.

The end of the year 2011 is quickly approaching. What could be a better time to reflect on all the support shown by local businesses to our animal welfare organization? Year after year, St Cloud mining routinely donates cat litter for an average of forty DHAR resident cats and kittens. Three mornings a week, we pick-up fresh veggies and fruits at Bullocks for the residents of Birdland & Animal House. It’s fun to watch our guinea pigs and rabbits munch with obvious pleasure on their large chef salads every morning. Each one of them has a favorite fruit or veggie and immediately looks for it in the middle of everything else and then savors it with obvious delight. Whoever said that rabbits and guinea pigs don’t have personality should visit their habitat at Desert Haven, when their breakfast of fresh produce is in front of them! The Bullocks’ Cash-for- Clubs program also provides our organization with much needed revenues to cover some of the costs of our SCHS sterilization program.

This year again, our organization received a generous contribution from Moose Lodge 2050 and American Legion Post 44. Thanks to Jared at Bar-2 Sand & Gravel, Desert Haven also received two loads of crusher fine which we immediately used to resurface some of the exercise yards in Dog Town. Wal-Mart donates pet food and cat litter on a regular basis and occasionally other needed items. At the end of the Summer Season, Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe received several boxes of brand new clothes and other items from Burke’s Outlet in TorC.

Our local media deserves recognition for printing this Humane Happenings article every week. The on-going support of the local newspapers is absolutely crucial to our small organization. To all the business who supported us this year: we thank you.

The cold nights are already here and warm bedding of all types for the dogs and cats and also bales of straw for the habitants of Birdland & Animal House are this week’s highest priority. Interested in helping the cause of companion animals in some way? We need volunteers at P&C and dog walkers at DHAR. Call us at 575-894-1694 or 813-716-2033 for more information. Check us out at: , and chat with us at and

Monday, November 28, 2011

Week of 11/1/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

It was great to see Ginny Nylen at Desert Haven Animal Refuge recently. Ginny, a resident of Hawaii, is a wonderful friend of the No-Kill domestic animal sanctuary. Several years ago, while work camping at a local RV park, she visited the sanctuary for the first time and, realizing that she could be of some help in the office, she made a point to give us a hand every Tuesday. Ginny was in the area again the following year, and once again became an integral part of our DHAR office staff on Tuesdays. Ginny stays connected with our sanctuary and whenever she comes back to the community to visit her friends, she also visits Desert Haven and shares our Tuesday Power Lunch. This time, Ginny brought her friend Betty May, who lives in TorC.

We have a new item on our wish list this week: a heavy duty dolly. We need a strong dolly at the sanctuary to move heavy items and appliances from one location to another. We need one at P&C Thrift Shoppe too, when we receive donated furniture pieces and appliances. Doggie treats for our small dogs are also high on our list. When our supply of dog treats became dangerously low recently, Susan Newman of Animas Creek Nursery came to the rescue. Thanks to her generosity, our large dogs received two huge boxes of dog biscuits, just right for their size. We also have a small army of little dogs and they too would appreciate doggie biscuits especially made for the small breeds. Your donations can be dropped-off at P&C Thrift Shoppe from Wednesday through Saturday between 11 AM and 4 PM, when the shop is open for business. Please do not leave any donated items unattended in front of P&C Thrift Shoppe. There are a few unsavory local folks who make a habit of taking what is not theirs, and they will grab anything left unattended in front of P&C. If you wish, you can also bring your contributions of dog treats (cat treats and catnip too) to Desert Haven on Tuesdays between 9AM and 4PM . Plan on distributing some of them to the resident fur-kids and share their pleasure.

Interested in helping the cause of companion animals in some way? Call us at 575-894-1694 or 813-716-2033 for more information. Our Tuesday Power Lunches have been moved to Noon for the winter months and our visitors are always welcome to share them with us. Check us out at:, and chat with us at and

Week of 10/23/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Mary Roden delivering cat food for Desert Haven
Congratulations to Susan Newman for becoming The Sierra County Humane Society’s newest Life Member. Susan owns and operates Animal Creek Plant Nursery and she has been one of our organization strongest and most positive supporters. DiAnna and George Schnetzer of Texas have sent us many boxes of DVDs and CDs over the past few weeks. We sell them at Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe in TorC and our customers appreciate browsing through our large collection of brand new and almost new DVDs and CDs. P&C is the major fundraiser for our organization and DiAnna and her husband have supported it in many ways over the year. DiAnna also makes all our labels and she sends them to us regularly all the way from her home in Texas. Mary Roden came through again for our Desert Haven feline residents this pastTuesday. When she found out that our kitty cupboards were almost depleted, Mary immediately committed to bring canned food and she was true to her word: she delivered several large boxes of canned cat food which we unloaded gratefully. “I forgot the catnip” she added, “but I will bring it next Tuesday”. What a very special lady!

Fender, Lady and Spirit

The last few weeks have been very busy at Desert Haven. Several small and medium size canines were rescued and are now enjoy a safe and fun life at Dog Town, together with the rest of the residents. During the same time, Desert Haven sent to their new forever home Sally the Australian Shepherd, Cinder the little terrier, Fender and Lady Bug, two Coker Spaniels who were together since they were puppies. They all will be living in local homes. Fender and Lady Bug will be the new buddies of Spirit, a Desert Haven rescue adopted out several years ago. He now resides in Hillsboro with his mom.

On Sunday October 30th from 2-4 we are holding our first ever Adoption Option at Walmart in T or C. Interested in participating? Let us know. Desert Haven and Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe offer many volunteer opportunities for service oriented people who want to help the cause of domestic animals down-on-their-luck. Contact us at 575-894-1694 for more information.

Check out our web site at: , our blog at and our Facebook pages, and

Friday, October 28, 2011

Week of 10/16/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Sharon and Bill Stoffels

Sharon Stoffels of Albuquerque and her father Bill are very special people to everyone who resides at Desert Haven Animal Refuge, the no-kill domestic animal sanctuary in Sierra County. Sharon works at Sandia labs and Bill, retired for some years now, spends his leisure time between Albuquerque and Sierra County.

During the summer, the WI-FI inside the main building and the DHAR campground failed to perform as needed. The situation gave a lot of concern to all of us at Desert Haven, especially since having internet is crucial to our office work as well as to the work campers who come from all over the US sometimes for months at a time, to trade their time and energy for a FHU RV site. In one of our weekly Humane Happenings articles, our readers were informed of our difficulties and they were asked for assistance in correcting a very frustrating and costly situation.

Sharon and Bill Stoffels came to the rescue. It took both of them many hours during many week-ends to troubleshoot and make the necessary repairs and upgrades. Sharon’s brother-in-Law, through the company that employs him, generously donated over five hundred feet of RCA cable that Bill installed at the sanctuary. When the WI-FI situation was finally corrected, Desert Haven had also received from Sharon Stoffels and her father a couple of new antennas and router boxes, also a brand new hard drive and a printer for the existing office computer. This professional lady and her father are indeed very special to all the volunteers involved in some way with the Desert Haven operation.

This week, a special recognition is in order for Susan Newman, owner of Animas Creek Plant Nursery. Desert Haven received this past week two very large boxes of dog biscuits for the residents of Dog Town. They were sent by a nationally known mail order company and paid for by Susan. Those specific treats are great for our dogs morale and also for their teeth, and they are usually high on our priority wish list. Our DHAR dog treat supply always seem to be very low.

Interested in getting involved with individuals of kindred spirit in your local humane society and its no-kill domestic animal sanctuary? Desert Haven and Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe offer volunteer opportunities you may wish to investigate. We also have a newly-vacant position on the Board of Directors. Call us at 575-894-1694, 813-716-2033 or 894-2639 for more information. Desert Haven is open for visitors every Tuesday. Our Tuesday Pot Luck Power Lunch has been moved to 12 - Noon for the winter months and our visitors are always welcome to share it with us. Check out our web site at: , our blog at and our Facebook pages, and

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Week of 10/10/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

  Gene Trelewicz has been a household name at Desert Haven Animal Refuge for many years now. A long time volunteer at the no-kill domestic animal sanctuary, Gene was known to help out whenever needed in order to keep the tools we used there in a good state or repair. Gene, a retired electrical engineer, was truly amazing in what he could do with his talents and his skills and Desert Haven gave him the opportunity to use them over and over again and in a very productive way.

Gene and Mary had moved to this area from New Jersey over 17 years ago. Along with their household goods, Gene also moved an entire workshop, including some heavy machinery that he set up inside his new home shop. Gene found great pleasure at repairing tools and building things. When he realized that Desert Haven could use his skills, he decided to come on board. Being involved at the small sanctuary was healthy and it was also gratifying for Gene. After Mary, his high-school sweetheart and wife of many years passed away in 1997, Gene stayed involved at the sanctuary. He also had good friends there, friends who cared about him.

Gene passed away earlier this year – not in his own home, the home he and Mary had built together some years ago, but in a new place in a new town – Houston Texas - far from his old friends, far from his home with his machine shop.

To honor a decent man who always made himself available to help his fellow man, either around his neighborhood or in the community, Desert Haven now has a large wooden plaque hung above the door of the Sanctuary’s workshop. On the plaque, one reads: “Gene Trelewicz Memorial workshop”. It is a loving tribute to a good man. Farewell, dear friend.

This winter, we are asking our animal loving friends to please remember that we need the help of Dog Walkers at the sanctuary, during Morning and also Evening Animal Care. Some dogs are walked on a leash around the Desert Haven perimeter. Others are walked to a fenced one-acre area where they can run and exercise off-leash for a while. Interesting in enjoying a walk with a dog or more? Call us at 575-894-1694 or visit Desert Haven on a Tuesday to meet everyone. We always need extra helpers at Paws&Claws Thrift Shoppe. Interested? Call us at 575-894-2639 or visit P&C between 11 AM and 4 PM, from Wednesday through Saturday. Check out our web site at: , our blog at and our Facebook pages, and www.facebookcom/pages/Paws-Claws-Thrift-Shoppe/258790984151651

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Week of 10/3/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Volunteers folding newsletters
The Sierra County Humane Society recently sent its 2011 newsletter to members and supporters from all over and we are already receiving some positive feedback. If you love animals and want to help us make a better place for them in our area, renew your membership today. If you believe in our work of love for domestic animals, contribute to our cause today. You can send your donation, large or small, to the Sierra County Humane Society at POB 638, Williamsburg, NM, 87942

Our members contribute towards our on-going work to save unwanted and abused companion animals and give them a new chance at a normal life at Desert Haven Animal Refuge, Sierra County no-kill domestic animal sanctuary. Our members help curb dog and cat overpopulation in Sierra County through both SCHS Spay-Neuter and Spay-a-Stray programs. Our members help fund Humane Education through the Adopt-a-Classroom program that our organization offers every year to local participating elementary classrooms. Our members help us give a voice to neglected and abused defenseless animals.

Animal welfare organizations throughout the US work independently from each other and must raise their own funds in order to provide needed services in their area. Contrary to popular belief, local animal welfare groups receive no financial support from any other organizations, including the ASPCA and the Humane Society of the US. When you donate to any of those larger groups, please also donate to smaller ones as well, such as ours. Be generous with your contribution to the Sierra County Humane Society & Desert Haven. We need you, our members and supporters, to help us continue our work.

Volunteer opportunities are available at both Paws&Claws Thrift Shoppe in TorC and at Desert Haven Animal Refuge. At the shop, we need help with sorting, tagging and displaying the donated clothing from Wednesday through Saturday between 11 AM to 4 PM, during business hours. Interested in helping us walk our Desert Haven resident dogs? Morning animal care starts at 8 AM every morning and lasts about two hours. Evening Animal Care starts at 5 PM at this time of the year and lasts for less than two hours. Call us at 575-894-1694 or 813-716-2033 for more information or visit us on Tuesday. To adopt a dog or a cat, call for an appointment or visit the sanctuary on a Tuesday, between 8:30AM and 4PM. Visit our web site at: , our blog at and our Facebook pages at  and

Week of 9/25/11 Part II Humane Happenings

Desert Haven rescued five dogs the past couple of weeks. Trina is a three years old Jack Russell whose elderly owner’s health is quickly deteriorating and she can no longer care for her. Fender and Lady are both young adult Cocker Spaniels. Their human companion’s new job requires him to travel extensively. Travis is a playful young terrier mix who loves the company of people and wants to please. 

Sally, born in January 2005, is a very loving and very smart Cattle Dog Blue Heeler mix relinquished by her human folks soon after they watched a pack of coyotes attempt to reach her as she was snoozing the afternoon away inside her own back yard way out in the country. Sally has received obedience training and would make a very faithful and truly enjoyable companion.

Foxy Girl
Foxie Girl is a one year old Boxer. She is a beautiful, fun loving dog who thrives on attention. She is currently sharing the Canine Cottage and its large exercise yard with her playmates Chowder and Vickie, both of them also available for adoption. Desert Haven is currently home to dogs and cats of all sizes and temperaments. All the Desert Haven dogs and cats available for adoption are sterilized and current on their shots. Anyone interested in adoption a dog or a cat is welcome to visit the no-kill sanctuary on a Tuesday, between 9 AM and 4 PM. Please call us at 575-894-1694 for more information.

This week’s wish list: Pieces of plywood & screws for some of our small construction projects. Bird & Sunflower seeds. Dog treats (no rawhide please). Canned cat food and Catnip for our small army of finicky felines. If any of our readers has left-over construction material, patio blocks, insulation, fencing material, we can use them at the sanctuary. Any donation dropped-off in front of Paws & Claws after business hours is very likely to disappear within the hour if no sooner. Undesirable individuals are quick at picking-up anything donated for our animal welfare organization and Desert Haven, whatever they can sell on their own for a profit.

Interested in becoming involved in The Sierra County Humane Society, Desert Haven Animal Sanctuary or Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe? Contact us at 575-894-1694. Visit our web site at Chat with us on both our Facebook pages at and

Friday, September 30, 2011

Week of 9/25/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Mosey is waiting patiently at Desert Haven for her "forever" home!

This week, the volunteer team at Desert Haven was made aware of a situation involving a dog owned by a local individual. The dog – a gentle female Pit Bull - has been bred regularly for profit. Pit Bull pups are sold to the highest bidder in this area of NM. This situation seems to be the norm around here, as far as Pit Bulls are concerned. The ordeal of this specific female dog touched a sensitive cord with the ranks of the sanctuary’s volunteers. This time, the delivery went wrong. The female suffered terribly – an agony that took many, many drawn-out hours. The puppies were dead at birth and the mother is not expected to survive. Of course, no veterinary care for that dog – it would have cut into her owners anticipated profits.

People who love animals feel immense compassion for dogs routinely bred so that their owners can reap a sizeable profit from the sale of their puppies. Back yard Puppy Mills are still alive and well right here in and around our communities. Back yard breeding involving Pit Bulls is even more disturbing. Pit Bulls in this area and perhaps in most areas of the US are generally acquired for all the wrong reasons. The fact that their owners refuse to have these dog sterilized is a unmistakable indication that their reason is obvious and consequently it is very unsettling to decent folks.

Anyone knowing of back yard Pit Bull breeding should contact The Sierra County Humane Society at 575-894-1694 or 894-2639. Please leave a clear message and as much pertinent information as you can, such as the exact address of the breeders, number of adult dogs, etc. You can remain anonymous, but please, if at all possible, leave a number where you can be reached if we cannot find the location ourselves. Sheriff Joe Baca and Tor C Police Chief Gallagher do not condone dog fighting, an illegal activity in all of the US, including New Mexico. The raising of Pit Bulls for dog fight, the back yard breeding of Pit Bulls for profit, so that their off-springs can be sold at a profit to unscrupulous individuals who use the most aggressive ones for fighting and the gentler ones for bait, an abomination. Unfortunately, our area is not immune to this illegal activity.

If you have the use of a computer, please check our Desert Haven Facebook page at for more information. Decent folks who love animals owe it to the innocent victims of Man’s Cruelty to become more aware of their agony as they are bred, raised and sold to be used and ripped apart in dog fights. Some of these activities are kept well hidden but still right under our noses, in our neighborhoods. Vigilance on the part of all decent folks may save some of those animals. All animals deserve better.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Week of 9/17/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

David Kuhn and Lolly

These past couple of weeks, the Sierra County Humane Society 2011 newsletters went out to members and supporters from all over. The on-going generosity and kindness of our members and friends allow us to help and protect homeless pets in our area. We appreciate the dedication of our volunteers, both at Desert Haven and Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe. Everyone involved with our organization has contributed to its success over the years. It’s a success that finally gives a voice to the unwanted animals in our corner of the world.

The Sierra County Humane Society was organized in 1989, only after many unsuccessful attempts were made over the years by people wanting to make life a little better for dogs and cats in Sierra County. It took a lot of determination to get our organization started. The road was not easy and full of man-made obstacles. After all, this was still “The Wild West” not that long ago. In 1995, to curb the cat overpopulation in Sierra County, our organization decided to cover the costs of sterilizing stray and feral cats. We called it the Spay-a-Stray program. It was tailored from the Trap-Neuter-Release program initiated by the national organization “Alley Cat Allies”. Surprisingly, several local people with special interests and free time on their hands were not only dead-set against it, but even campaigned against us. They tried to crush our efforts to save stray and feral cats and kittens whose only fault was to be born unwanted, from systematic killing to reduce their population.

Thankfully, times have changed. More cat owners now understand the need to sterilize their companion animal. There is also more compassion towards stray and feral cats and kittens. Feral cats, after all, are the off-springs of un-sterilized female house cats or of cats abandoned by their owners to fend for themselves. Male cats allowed to roam out-of-doors also contribute to the cat overpopulation. Until our organization instated the Spay-a-Stray program, all of these unwanted animals were doomed to die. For more information on the Spay-a-Stray program, contact us at 894-1694.

Volunteer opportunities are always available at both Paws&Claws Thrift Shoppe in TorC and at Dessert Haven Animal Refuge. Call us at 575-894-2639 or at 813-716-2033 for more information. To adopt a dog or a cat, contact us at 740-9412. Tuesday is Open House Day at the no-kill sanctuary and everyone is welcome to visit. Visit our web site at: , our blog at and our Facebook page at

Week of 9/10/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Newsletter crew

This past Tuesday was very busy at Desert Haven Animal Refuge, the no-kill domestic animal sanctuary owned and operated by the Sierra County Humane Society. After the traditional pot-luck lunch shared by the DHAR volunteer and work camping team, everyone gathered around the oversize table in the dining/meeting room. The goal this week was to fold the newly printed 2011 newsletters and get them ready to mail to our supporters and members. In a few days, over six hundreds newsletter will have been mailed to our animal loving friends in Sierra County and throughout the US. The furry and feathered residents of Desert Haven count on YOU. Our volunteer team counts on YOU. Your membership gift and your continued support make our work of love at Desert Haven Animal Refuge possible. We could not do what we do without YOU.

This week’s wish list: Bleach, Odorban, dishwashing liquid, heavy duty long and short handle brushes. We can also use construction and roofing material, plywood, rolls of insulation, wood screws, etc. Our on-going treat supply for Desert Haven canines of all sizes needs replenishing. Please consider donating dog treats for dogs of all sizes (no rawhide please). Your contribution can be dropped off on Tuesday at DHAR or at Paws&Claws when the shop is open for business (Wed through Sat from 11 AM to 4 PM). Please wait for the shop to be open for business when you drop-off your contributions. Remember that any donated item left at the front of the store when it is closed usually disappears quickly into the wrong hands and does not make it inside.

We continue to offer volunteer opportunities at both Paws&Claws Thrift Shoppe and Desert Haven Animal Refuge. Two of our P&C Thrift Shoppe dedicated volunteers have recently taken a medical leave of absence. We need help now more than ever at the shop. It’s in the middle of re-organization and our customers are obviously impressed with the results. All the comments we hear are very positive and encouraging and they are shared with all the volunteers. Everyone likes the “New Look” at Paws& Claws. Interested in helping your local animal welfare organization in some way? Call us at 575-894-2639 or at 813-716-2033 for more information. Tuesday is Open House Day at the no-kill sanctuary and everyone is welcome to visit. Visit our web site at: , our blog at and our facebook page at

Week of 8/28/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Bill washing dog dishes

Sunvalley Hardware made a generous donation of dog food to Desert Haven recently. We sincerely thank owner Chuck Watkins and Manager Doug Brown for initiating this timely donation. We also thank Jesse Bailey for kindly loading the several large dog food bags into the IM4PETS truck - destination: Desert Haven Animal Refuge.

These are tough economic times for everyone. Contributions to our cause have understandably decreased since the past economic down turn, but the need to care for even more animals has increased. These are also though times for the animals all over Sierra County. These are times they need us the most. We depend on our supporters now more than ever. We depend on profits from our Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe now more than ever. Times are tough. Still, our business community continues to come through for us. Moose Lodge 2050 and American Legion Post 44 also came through for us this year, as they do whenever we need it the most. People from all over who love animals continue to help us make a difference in Sierra County. We are grateful. We could not do what we do without ALL OF YOU who support our cause.

Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe has been undergoing some re-organization the past couple of weeks. The major project has been on our “must-do” list for several months now, but we just did not have the able-bodied volunteers to get it off the ground. Last Monday, Frank and Daniel Welch, Sherry Scott, Janice and David Lamb, Bob and Bonnie Collins, Israel Davis, together with Eliana Aubin, spent the entire afternoon re-organizing the store front of Paws & claws Thrift Shoppe. Janice, David and Eliana worked long after everyone else had left that evening, to bring the project a little closer to completion before the shop opened for business as usual on Wednesday of that week. It was hard physical work, but the results made it all worth it. A sincere “Thank- you” goes to everyone involved in this major and much needed project.

Interested in joining our animal welfare cause? Pick up a membership form at Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe and become a member. There are volunteer opportunities at Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe as well as Desert Haven Animal Refuge. Contact us at 813-716-2033 or 894-2639 or for more information. Visit the sanctuary on Tuesday, between 9 AM and 4 PM, when it is open to visitors. Want to adopt a dog or a cat? Contact us at 740-9412. Visit our web site at: , our blog at and

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Week of 8/21/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Leonard Chambers watering the cats

MOOSE Lodge 2050 recently made a very generous donation to the Sierra County Humane Society & Desert Haven Animal Refuge. The donation will go towards veterinary care for the dogs and cats residing at the no-kill sanctuary. It will also allow the completion of several projects that will make life even more comfortable for its furry residents. MOOSE Lodge 2050 has always been very supportive of the entire community and of our animal welfare organization. All of us who love animals sincerely appreciate the on-going kindness of its members and leadership.

It’s been a good summer. It started in April of this year, when Sherry Scott filled-in the position of DHAR Animal Care Coordinator. A few days later, Frank Welch of Albuquerque arrived with his two Dobermans at the sanctuary as a long-term work camper. He had watched a segment on Desert Haven aired on a number of regional TV stations, as part of the “It’s All Good New Mexico” program presented by Comcast TV. Frank was inspired enough to make a change in his lifestyle and become involved as a full-fledged member of the DHAR team. Frank is also an accomplished handyman – a magic word at Desert Haven. A few days later, Diane Lombardo of Northern New Mexico, together with Max, her constant fur-companion, committed to help the crew for a couple of months. Diane is returning this fall as a long-term work camper. Her involvement will include our organization’s Humane Outreach and Education program.

Janice Lamb and her husband moved from Florida to Elephant Butte in April. Almost immediately, Janice became a volunteer at DHAR. Just recently, they moved to Desert Haven. Janice is a tremendous asset, and she is already making a difference in her new position in the organization.

Karen and her cake

Israel Davis and Daniel Welch are Desert Haven’s newest long-term work campers. Barbara and her husband moved to Elephant Butte this past April. Not only she is helping with animal care through the week, but she also volunteers at P&C and handles the front desk at Desert Haven every Tuesday. Bill McLain, Leonard & Karen Chambers are currently work camping at the sanctuary. Leonard & Karen’s commitment to DHAR is nearing its end. They will be missed.

Indeed, many good things have happened at Desert Haven since the month of April. Interested in joining our team and become a dog walker or a kitty cuddler? Visit the sanctuary on Tuesday, between 9 AM and 4 PM, when it is 0pen to visitors. Desert Haven can be reached at 575-894-1694. Visit our web site at: , our blog at

Week of 8/14/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Over the next few weeks, the Sierra County Humane Society team will be concentrating its efforts on revamping Paws&Claws Thrift Shoppe adjacent to Family Dollar in TorC. We plan to make it more spacious and attractive and can certainly use a few extra hands to do so. Is this type of physical volunteer work up your alley? Then check with our shop cashier during business hours for more details . We are open from 11 AM to 4 PM Wednesdays through Saturdays, or call us at 894-2639.

Tuesday lunch at Desert Haven
Paws & Claws customers Sharon Lagerfeldt recently dropped-off at P&C a box full of home-grown Gala apples to be shared at our Tuesday lunch - very tasty by the way and a thoughtful gesture appreciated by everyone. By the way, Sharon does this every year and she also supports our animal welfare efforts by donating to our cause items from around the world and also one-of-a-kind items that go a long way to enhance the variety of our assortment for sale. Donations such as these help give our shop its unique flair making it an interesting place to shop at - a point often acknowledged by many of our customers. Israel David is DHAR’s newest long-term work camper and already, he is becoming very versatile both at DHAR and P&C Thrift Shoppe. Israel’s willingness to give a hand whenever needed, together with his pleasant attitude and his generosity, is already making this hard working and conscientious individual a valued member of the team.

For more information on our organization’s Adoption and Adopt-a-Pet Referral programs, contact Sherry at 575-740-9412. Do you feed a feral cat in need of sterilization? Call Janice at 813-716-2033. Perhaps you need some financial assistance in having your companion animal sterilized? Spay-neuter forms are available for you at the TorC Police Station and Paws&Claws Thrift Shoppe. Please remember that it is only through YOUR purchases at P&C that these crucial sterilization programs can be made possible. Desert Haven can be reached at 575-894-1694. It is open to visitors every Tuesday from 9AM to 4 PM. Visit our web site at: , our blog at and

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Week of 8/7/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

David Kuhn is a former Desert Haven work camper who returned to the sanctuary for a brief visit this past Tuesday. Lolly, his constant companion whom he had adopted from the sanctuary, was with him. His reason for the visit:“ I want to thank Desert Haven and everyone who was there at the time I worked at the sanctuary last year, for their generosity and their kindness to me when I was down-on-my-luck”. He added, emotional and struggling for words: “the kindness that was shown to me … from Eliana to everyone there at the time…..I don’t have the words… express the depth of my gratitude.” But David, a reserved man of few words, didn’t need to say much – everyone there was able to grasp by his expression how touched he had been, and obviously still was, by the kindness extended to him by the Desert Haven team in his time of need.

David did not come empty-handed by the way. He had brought with him two large dishes of Lasagna. By what was left in the dishes at the end of the Tuesday lunch, his gift was great idea. It was truly a good feeling to visit with David. He looked and obviously felt better than the last time he resided at the sanctuary. David told the gang that during his difficult period last year, he came to realize that work camping was no longer a way of life for him. David is now is a full-fledged resident of TorC.

Thank- you, Debbie Niles of The Ivory Spa in Elephant Butte, for your timely donation of a brand new gas powered weed eater for Desert Haven some weeks ago. Debbie has been a strong supporter of our organization and she makes a point to visit the sanctuary whenever she is able to. RV’ers Bob and Bobbie Collins of Oregon recently parked their rig at Desert Haven campground. They learned about Desert Haven thanks to the “It’s All Good, New Mexico” segment aired this last Spring by Comcast TV on several regional and state TV channels throughout NM, CO and AZ. Bob mentioned that after watching it together, Bobbie was very inspired by the work that we do at the sanctuary. She checked out our web and told Bob that she would love for them to visit and help out for a few weeks. And here they are - two wonderful people who came to DHAR to check it out and help as needed, both in time and money. We are grateful for their thoughtfulness and their kindness.

Interested in learning more about us? Visit our blog at You can also chat with us on

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Week of 8/1/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin


Barbara Teater of Spokane Washington moved to the area in April of this year. Already, this versatile and delightful lady is becoming very involved with the Sierra County Humane Society and Desert Haven Animal Refuge. For several weeks now, Barbara helps care for the little rescues one morning a week and then she shares some of the office work on Tuesdays when the sanctuary is open for visitors. What a valuable new member of the team! Knowing that Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe is always – and especially at this time of the year - in need of extra helpers, Barbara is also volunteering a few hours a week there. Way to go, lady!

Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe continues to be very busy and we still needs a few more helpers on Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, or Saturdays during business hours, which are from 11 AM to 4 PM. Contact us at 575-894-2639.

Is any of our supporters knowledgeable about WI-FI? While WI-FI is still available on the sanctuary grounds and inside the office building, the WI-FI connection inside the small campground recently gave up on us from one day to the next and getting it repaired and back to normal is now high on our list of priorities. As most of our animal loving friends and supporters are already aware of, our small sanctuary receives no government funding and operates solely on private and corporate contributions together with the hard work from volunteers at Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe. Any hands-on help, advice or even financial support with getting our WI-FI back in line would be so appreciated!

Desert Haven is a small sanctuary which operates in one of the most disadvantaged counties in the entire US. Consequently, our resources are limited. While we neither have space, nor manpower or funding to take in and provide a home to all the unwanted dogs and cats in Sierra County, our animal welfare organization provides a unique and valuable tool – the SCHS Adopt-a-Pet Referral program – that allows Sierra County pet owners an alternative should they no longer wish to keep their unwanted dog or cat. For more information on the Adopt-a-Pet Referral program, contact Sherry at 575-740-9412. Desert Haven can be reached at 575-894-1694. Visit our web site at: , our blog at and

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Week of 7/24/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Freddie and her "Happy Trails" cake

This past Tuesday at Desert Haven, Sierra County’s No-Kill domestic animal sanctuary, everyone had the opportunity to wish Freddie Loveless “Good Luck” as she is moving out of the sanctuary and into the community nearby to start the next chapter in her life. Freddie is special to all who know her, especially those within the ranks of the Sierra County Humane Society and Desert Haven, where she has given so much of her love, time and energy over the years. A first time RV’er in the fall of 2002, Freddie arrived from her home state of Indiana to the sanctuary for what she anticipated would be a short stay before moving on to new RV’ing adventures across the US. She was accompanied by her constant companions, Belle and Girl, two elderly Labradors that she had rescued some years before. The Refuge was just getting off the ground when Freddie started calling it “home”. At the time, it had recently become a safe haven to a small flock of white doves, a few baby Easter rabbits, along with several guinea pigs. The rest of the furry and feather inhabitants came later, some of them much later. Freddie quickly embraced her new environment and soon gave it her love and loyalty. As she worked closely alongside Eliana through the years, she helped make it what it is today. Freddie’s two elderly dogs have passed on and are buried at Rainbow Bridge Pet Sanctuary. Her fur kids consist now of six years old little Jordan, Penny and Ruffles, all of them rescued at the sanctuary and fostered at her home for some time before she officially adopted them. Freddie is relocating, but she will be ending up only a couple of miles away. That will be nice for all of us because she won’t be far. This very special lady will always be a part of our animal welfare family here at Desert Haven. She is welcomed and encouraged to come by and visit for as long and as often as she wishes to do so.

Desert Haven is open for visitors every Tuesday. Join us at one PM for our Pot Luck Power Lunch and meet our down-to-earth animal loving crew. Help walk some of our resident dogs and care for our felines. If you are thinking of adding a fur-kid to your family, check out our list of adoptable dogs and cats on the DHAR Petfinder page or call us at 575-894-1694 or 740-9412 for more information. Visit our web site at: , our blog at and

Monday, August 8, 2011

Week of 7/18/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

This week, a huge thank-you is in order for a generous couple who wishes to remain anonymous. These two wonderful people from out-of- state are strong supporters of Desert Haven Animal Refuge. They have special ties to the sanctuary, as one is a former DHAR volunteer and the other is a work camper who both met each other there before starting a life together –We very recently received from them almost a dozen boxes of DVDs, some of them still brand new and unopened and all of them earmarked for re-sale at Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe. Paws & Claws is the major fundraising activity for The Sierra County Humane Society, the animal welfare non-profit organization that owns and operates Desert Haven Animal Refuge. The past few years, the declining economy of our entire area has joined the rest of the country. Of course it has greatly affected all of us here at Desert Haven and our Society’s dependence on the revenues of Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe is stronger than ever.

At the shop, we continue to need help from a book lover or two who would enjoy keeping the Book Nook as pleasant an environment as possible. We also need help in the shop’s receiving area – electronics and electrical items, also furniture pieces and small appliances arrive on an on-going basis and need to be either tested and/or cleaned-up for display. Are you a crafty person? Can you spare a couple of hours one or two Tuesdays a month at Desert Haven? We receive donations of entire boxes full of craft items, but we don’t have anyone available for sorting and pricing them regularly, so they can be displayed for sale in the craft section at P&C. We sincerely appreciate all our volunteers who work very hard many hours to keep Paws & Claws open for business from Wednesday through Saturday every week. Most of our customers appreciate P&C’s existence and they tell us so. One local lady said to our cashier last Friday:” We love your shop - Thank you for being here and doing what you do”. We could not do what we do without those who either donate to us, volunteer with us or purchase from P&C Thrift Shoppe. Thank-you, everyone.

Desert Haven is open for visitors every Tuesday. The Pooch Play yard in Dog Town is currently home to quite a few small breed canines and they need special attention including a daily walk on a leash. If interested in walking a little dog or adopting one, contact us at 575-894-1694 for more information. Visit our web site at: , our blog at and

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Week of 7/9/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

David and Frank resurfacing the playyards
Desert Haven Animal Refuge was a busy place the past couple of days. A determined crew of volunteers gathered soon after sun-up on Monday morning to resurface with crusher fine three of the six play yards in Dog Town. The crusher fine had recently generously been donated by Bar-2 Sand and Gravel. A sincere thank-you goes to Jared Bartoo. Don & Jackie Fletcher of EB and Bootz & Jack Gillem loaned their heavy duty wheelbarrows. The crew consisted of Jackie, DHAR work campers Bill Mc Lain and Frank Welch, together with Frank’s friend, David, who was visiting him from Albuquerque for a couple of days. There was also Janice Lamb of Elephant Butte and Eliana Aubin, the organization’s president. The work was very physical and the heat and intense humidity did not help, but in the end, it was all worth it. The rocky ground has been resurfaced with a layer of crusher fine. Thank you everyone, for a job well done!

Eliana Aubin and Jo Brewer
 Tuesday morning, Desert Haven received the wonderful surprise visit of Jo Brewer of Connecticut. Jo is well known and well loved at Desert Haven. We have known her since the winter of 2002, when she work camped at the sanctuary for the first time. Still under construction at the time, Desert Haven had just opened its doors to a few white doves, several guinea pigs and a mother cat with her tiny kittens. Jo returned to DHAR the following Winter and made many more friends along the way. Before she left in the Spring, she had become a member of the organization and she has continued her support ever since. What a real pleasure it was to see Jo once again at Desert Haven, even only for a very short while!

Desert Haven is open for visitors every Tuesday. Join us at one PM for our Pot Luck Power Lunch and meet our down-to-earth animal loving crew. If you are thinking of adding a fur-kid to your family, check out our list of adoptable dogs and cats on the DHAR Petfinder page or call us at 575-894-1694 for more information. Visit our web site at: , our blog at and

Monday, July 11, 2011

Week of 7/3/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

David spreading crusher fine

The Sierra County Humane Society is currently recruiting a crew of able bodied volunteers to gather at Desert Haven in the early morning of Monday July 11 – we are planning a 7AM start. Our goal is to spread crusher fine to resurface several play yards in Dog Town, which should take a couple of hours or less. We thank each and everyone who has already committed to be there early that morning, including one lady who plans to insure that hot coffee and cold beverages will be available for all the volunteers. Breakfast burritos, perhaps sweet rolls would be a welcome end to the morning’s work project. If you wish to contribute in that way, please let us know. Do you have a heavy duty wheelbarrow or garden cart to lend us for that morning? Can you give a hand in any way you feel appropriate? Contact us at 894-2639.

Bullocks receipts continue to be collected for the Sierra County Humane Society. Our collection boxes are located at several local businesses including the T or C Public Library, Williamsburg Post Office, and Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe in T or C. Please do not cut the bottom of the receipts you save for our organization. If you do, we have to discard them. Josephine Varnum is to be commended for her on-going work in tallying them year-after-year-after-year. Thanks to everyone who saves their Bullocks receipts and the nice folks who also collect them for us from neighbors and friends, our animal welfare society and Desert Haven continue to be the number one recipient of Bullocks receipts. With the funds we receive from the tallied receipts, our organization continues to be able to offer rebates of $30 and $40 to help Sierra County residents who need a little extra help with sterilizing their male or female dog or cat, respectively. Applications for the SCHS Spay-Neuter forms can be picked-up at the TC Police Station, Hot Springs Animal Clinic and also at Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe in TorC.

Desert Haven is open for visitors every Tuesday or by appointment. Call 575-894-1694 for more information. Check-out our web site at: , our blog at and

Friday, July 8, 2011

Week of 6/25/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Jack Hogue with a gentle caress for the kitty "supervisor"
The past few days, we have been welcoming several new volunteers at Desert Haven and Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe: local residents Monica Dudbudinger, Diana Bellhouse, also Bill Mc Lain of Florida who recently settled at the sanctuary, followed by Leonard & Karen Chambers of Sioux Falls SD. Already, the new work campers are settling down at the sanctuary and visiting the neighboring communities. RV’ers from all over who commit to help out for a while at DHAR not only give much precious time to help the cause of animals in Sierra County, but they also contribute to the local economy in the same way that tourists do.

Local businesses and private residents continue to support our efforts in many ways. Among other contributions to Desert Haven from local businesses, St Cloud Mining regularly donates kitty litter for the sanctuary’s “Cool Cat Neighborhood”. The residents of Birdland & Animal House eat fresh veggies and fruits every morning, thanks to the generosity of Bullocks Grocery Store. We regularly pick-up damaged and open bags of pet food and other needed items from Walmart, free of charge to us. Bar-2 Sand and Gravel came through for us again this year, with a substantial contribution of crusher fine that will soon be used to resurface several play yards in Dog Town. The on-going generosity of private residents, both local and from out-of-the-area, continues to warm our hearts. Together with generous anonymous donors, Don &Barbara Heller of Elephant Butte, Mrs Robert Wagner, Susan Newman of Animas Creek Nursery, Claire Dishman, Donna Duncan and her family, Carl Bonner and his folks in memory of their beloved family dog duke, also Mary Roden who makes a point to help insure that there is always enough canned cat food for all the residents of the Cool Cat Neighborhood to enjoy at breakfast time every morning. Large or small, each donation is crucial to the success of the sanctuary and the well-being of its residents. Thank-you everyone.

Early Monday morning July 11, a crew of several able-bodied volunteers will gather at Desert Haven to resurface several play yards in Dog Town with crusher fine. The project is expected to take less than a couple of hours and be completed long before the end of the morning. The more help we have, the quicker we will get the job done. Can you give a hand? Do you have a heavy duty wheelbarrow or a sturdy hand cart you can lend us for that morning? Contact us at 894-2639.

Desert Haven is open for visitors every Tuesday or by appointment. Call 575-894-1694 for more information. Check-out our web site at: , our blog at and

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Week of 6/20/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

It’s been hot at Desert Haven Animal Refuge and every effort is being made to keep our residents as comfortable as possible through what is known here in the Southwest as the hottest month of the year: the month of June.

Janice Lamb, who with her husband David, recently moved to Elephant Butte to be closer to family, has been a welcome addition to the Desert Haven office staff for some weeks now. Janice comes from the corporate world and brings with her many talents and professional skills that are put to good use at the sanctuary. Janice also loves animals and makes a point to routinely get involved with the care of the non-human residents. It’s great to have you on board, Janice! And what award-winning smile and friendly personality you have!

An Albuquerque resident who was camping at Elephant Butte Lake with several friends this week-end introduced them to Paws&Claws Thrift Shoppe last Friday. As they were finishing their shopping spree, they made several complimentary comments about our shop. “Not too organized but organized enough” one of them commented.” She added: ”Everywhere I turn, there is a nice surprise. I hate stores that are so organized that I know what’s around the corner”. Our hard working P&C volunteers appreciate all the compliments they receive.

Recently, Jackie and Don Fletcher installed a large set of shelving at P&C. It is now being used to display the pairs of jeans that are known to be some of our shop’s best bargains. We still have several boxes of jeans waiting to be sorted by size and displayed on the shelves. Interested anyone?

During the summer, the morning hours in the Desert Southwest are some of the most comfortable times to enjoy the Great Outdoors. Why not mix your routine walk or other daily exercise with taking a Desert Haven dog for a walk? Perhaps you prefer to groom a few kitties who love the special attention, or you may enjoy caring for a few other small creatures lucky enough to have been rescued at some time or another and who call the sanctuary “home”.

The Book Nook at P&C Thrift Shoppe needs a book lover to take charge of revamping it. Jackie, who sorts the donations in the P&C yard on Wednesday and Thursday, can also use help. Interested? Call us at 894-2639 or talk to us at P&C thrift Shoppe.

Desert Haven is open for visitors every Tuesday or by appointment. Call 575-894-1694 for more information. Check-out our web site at: , our blog at and

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Week of 6/15/11 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Sharon Stoffels

Desert Haven is extremely grateful for the most generous contribution of several key individuals this past week. Albuquerque resident Sharon Stoffels, a computer software specialist at Sandia Labs, made yet another visit to Desert Haven to take care of some glitches in our office computers. Before Sharon left DHAR that day, the office had a much needed printer, a brand new CPU tower and a few other amenities to help make our office function more efficiently. We can’t thank this professional lady enough for her on-going generosity and the contribution of her precious time.

Bar-2 Sand and Gravel generously donated enough crusherfine to completely resurface the several large canine play yards in Dog Town. We especially wish to thank Jered Bartoo for his significant contribution. Bar-2 Sand and Gravel has been a long time contributor to our animal welfare organization and we appreciate it immensely.

What a great surprise we received in the mail this past Tuesday! A former Desert Haven work camper sent us the funds to cover the costs of replacing the sagging and rotten wooden flooring in the Snack Shack in Birdland with a strong, easy-to-clean cement floor. She and her husband have been staunch supporters of our organization over the years. Her generous contribution may even allow us to replace the broken-down refrigerator with a good used one. We can’t thank this couple enough for their on-going generosity over the years. She and her husband have modestly wished to remain anonymous but we know them as exceptionally kind and generous people.

Do you have a few hours of free time each week and would like to volunteer for a good cause? We need someone to help us walk the dogs or care for the felines early in the morning. We also have a couple of relatively small painting projects in the works. It would be great if they could be completed before the monsoon season arrives in our area. Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe also needs extra helpers during business hours. Would you enjoy organizing books? We have a great selection of books in our P&C Book Nook, but no one to keep it sorted. Come by P&C and see for yourself what you can do to help. At DHAR, we currently need the help of several young folks to spread the crusher fine inside the dog’s yards some morning.
Desert Haven is open for visitors every Tuesday or by appointment. Call 575-894-1694 for more information. Check-out our web site at: , our blog at and

Monday, June 13, 2011

Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

The Sierra County Humane Society continues to collect Bullocks receipts. Josephine Varnum has picked them up from the Bullocks drop-off box at P&C Thrift Shoppe and the T or C Library, also at the Williamsburg Post Office ever since the program went into effect many years ago. She tallies them for us and redeems them at Bullocks on our animal welfare organization’s behalf. PLEASE: do not cut off the bottom section of your receipts for any reason. If you do, they cannot be redeemed and we must discard them. Josephine deserves a huge thank-you from everyone who loves animals for being so helpful for so many years. We receive a large number of receipts every week and it helps cover some of the costs of both the SCHS Spay-Neuter and Spay-a-Stray programs. Bullocks grocery store in T or C is very community minded indeed. Sierra County dogs and cats, including feral cats who have a caregiver to watch over them, benefit from the program, courtesy of our organization. We also thank all the nice people who save their receipts and their friends for our animal welfare organization.

We also collect aluminum cans. We have a Can Corral adjacent to P&C Thrift Shoppe in TorC, across the alley from Family Dollar. We routinely take a truck load of cans to a local recycling center and the money collected also helps fund our comprehensive spay-neuter program.

Do you like to paint? If so, we have just the project for you – it’s not a big project, perhaps a couple of hours at the most, and it can be a very enjoyable! We need to get several kitty-condos painted, each one in a bright and cheery color – and hopefully before the monsoon season starts. The paint was recently generously donated by Walmart. Once the project is completed, the kitty condos will be moved back into the Feline Dorm inside the Cool Cat Neighborhood at DHAR. This summer and until our long-term crew comes back from vacation or from their summer play-grounds across the US, our Desert Haven kitties would love a couple of hours of your time on any morning of your choice? At 8 AM, the weather is cool and the “Neighborhood” is active with felines of all sizes and temperaments who love any extra attention. You prefer dogs? We have them too and they all want your attention and to be walked by your side if you will give them some of your time – and what great exercise it can be for you too!

Interested in finding more about us or any specific program we offer? Call our SCHS office at 575-894-1694. Desert Haven is open for visitors every Tuesday or by appointment. Check-out our web site at: and