Thursday, May 22, 2014

Week of 5/17/14 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin  

At this time of the year, Desert Haven Animal Refuge and the Sierra County Humane Society are transitioning into their routine summer schedule. Indeed, life is going at a slower pace at the sanctuary. The seasonal helpers at Desert Haven and Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe have already moved back to their home states up-North. Local folks who help out on a long-term basis spend much of the summer attending family business or enjoying vacations which more often than not take them out of the area for weeks at a time. During the hot summer months, there are also fewer visitors at the sanctuary. There are fewer adoptions too. It does not make the work-load any less. If anything, with the heat, both at the sanctuary and Paws&Claws Thrift Shoppe in TorC, fewer volunteers available translate into more work for a skeleton staff. Regardless, the sanctuary’s furry and feather residents continue to receive the daily care and attention that they require, no matter what.

The Sierra County Humane Society is formally registered with the IRS as a 501-C-3 non-profit charitable organization dedicated to the welfare of animals. Since 1989, we have earned our exemplary reputation through the selfless efforts of many caring volunteers and work-campers, some of whom have come and gone throughout the years. Some of our strongest supporters are reputable home-town businesses who know us and the work we do. Year after year, we continue to be true to our mission of caring for the abandoned and mistreated companion animals of Sierra County.

Thank you, Camille, for maintaining our web site, all the way from your home state of Florida. Your busy career as an RV Sales Consultant for Camping World of Bartow in Florida leaves you with very little free time. Still, you manage to donate some of it to our cause. Over the eight years of your involvement with us as our web master, you have stayed true to your word; year after year, you continue to do what you can to help us help companion animals in our area. You are indeed a remarkable individual, Camille!

Contact us at 575-894-1694, 894-2639 or at Chat with us at:, and

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Week of 5/11/14 Humane Happenings

Jmes Bagwell, CPA, works on Sierra County Humane Society taxes
 by Eliana Aubin

This week, The Sierra County Humane Society & Desert Haven Animal Refuge acknowledge once again a very supportive community. James Bagwell is a CPA with a busy office in TorC.
Year after year, Mr. Bagwell handles our animal welfare organization’s tax returns, completely free-of-charge to us.


Atty. John Wheeler at work
Attorney John Wheeler is an equally valuable asset to our organization. We rely on his legal expertise, which he provides to us as needed, also pro-bono. The guidance and services from well-respected professionals such as CPA James Bagwell and Attorney-at-law John Wheeler have been invaluable over the years. We are indeed extremely grateful to count them as some of our organization’s strongest long-term supporters.

Good news about Gummy Bear “Aka Gumbo”, the young female Chihuahua rescued some months ago from a vehicle discarded in a wrecking yard. After several months of rehabilitation at the sanctuary, the little one was fostered by Beth, a TorC winter resident at the time. When Beth recently returned to her home state of Minnesota, Kendall, another winter resident, took Gumbo under her wings and will soon finalize the paperwork to adopt her before returning home.

Desert Haven is known by many to be a spiritual place. Those who share the good work that is accomplished there every day often tell us that they see Desert Haven as a place that is good for the soul. Most of our little rescues arrive with scars, both physical and emotional. Here at the sanctuary, they are treated with kindness, patience, compassion and respect at all times. Theses innocent creatures deserve no less. Our little Gumbo was obviously surrounded by guardian angels. Tim discovered her and rescued her, and Beth took her in her home and furthered her rehabilitation by caring for her with patience and compassion.

Animal loving work-campers and winter residents will slowly return to our area and help out again at Desert Haven next Fall. Until then, we need the help of adult individuals at the sanctuary and at Paws&Claws. Contact us at 575-894-2639 or e-mail us at Chat with us at:, and

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Week of 4/27/14 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Donated food comes in
 This week, the Sierra County Humane Society wishes to acknowledge the generosity of SunValley Hardware and of Horsing ‘Round Feed and Tack store, located in TorC. Both businesses recently contributed several bags of pet food to our organization. We are indeed grateful to all the local businesses that help us out in some way or another throughout the year. Our acknowledgement includes the local media. Both local newspapers kindly publish our “Humane Happenings” articles every week. These articles give our organization the opportunity to share with our animal loving friends, local and from out-of-town, the good news about Sierra County’s animal welfare organization and its no-kill domestic animal sanctuary, Desert Haven Animal Refuge. We are a small but very active community-minded organization dedicated to the welfare of companion animals in our area. What we accomplish with our limited resources definitely makes a difference in the lives of companion animals in Sierra County.

 Are you a bird-lover? Then come on down some Tuesday and spend time among our domesticated ring-neck and white doves and also our peacocks. They love sunflower seeds, so bring some with you and you will certainly enjoy watching them all around you and fly right up to you to eat this delicacy, sometimes directly from your hands.

To all our thrifty shoppers: we are adding another business day to Paws&Claws Thrift Shoppe. Our regular business days have been Wed through Saturday 11AM to 4 PM. The first and second Tuesday of each month, Paws&Claws Thrift Shoppe will also open for business from 11AM to 4 PM. We continue to need volunteers at the store, to help keep the store attractive and our customers happy.

At Desert Haven, volunteers are also needed on Tuesdays, anytime between 8 AM and 4 PM. We need someone to greet our Tuesday visitors and handle routine paperwork and our phone line, walk some of our canines and groom our felines. On Tuesdays, we also need someone to sort through, tag and price sewing, knitting and craft items that are then displayed at Paws & Claws.

 Contact us at 575-894-2639 or at

Check us out at,, and

Week of 4/20/14 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

Gummy Bear

Gummy Bear “Aka Gumbo” is a young female Chihuahua rescued by a member of the Sierra County Humane Society and active Desert Haven Animal Refuge volunteer. Tim discovered the starving and frightened puppy by accident this past winter. She had been abandoned inside a vehicle discarded in a salvage yard on the outskirts of Albuquerque. It took Tim much effort, determination and patience over several weeks to trap the little one, to save her from a slow and certain death and give her a new lease-on-life at Desert Haven. Several weeks later, Beth, a local winter resident, volunteered to foster little Gumbo until adoption or until Beth returned to her home state up-North. Beth is returning home for the summer in a few days. Gumbo desperately needs a new foster mom or a Forever Home. Contact us at 985-640-4116 or

This week’s wish list: someone to donate time and/or material to help us lay several 3 to 4 ft square cement slabs inside the fenced outdoor Cat Walk. Our resident felines would appreciate the luxury of new areas to snooze their days away. Our volunteer team would also very much appreciate the new & improved, easy-to-clean cement flooring in parts of the Cat Walk.

Interested in helping get this project off the ground? You can send your contribution earmarked for the “Cat Walk Cement Project” at Desert Haven Animal Refuge, POB 638, Williamsburg, NM 87942. Do you prefer to give us a hand by donating your services? Let us know at 575-894-2639 or We need your help to see this project through, one cement slab at a time.

Charlotte and Gerald will soon be moving on from Desert Haven where they work-camped since spring 2013. This wonderful, hard-working couple has made many, many friends in this little corner of the world. Both will be sorely missed. At this time of the year, Desert Haven and Paws&Claws Thrift Shoppe are also losing the dependable help from several local winter residents. Until late summer and early fall, when our sanctuary winter work-campers and seasonal Sierra County residents return, we need several adult individuals to give us a helping hand for at least a couple of hours a week, either at the sanctuary or at Paws&Claws. Contact us at 575-894-2639.

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Week of 4/13/14 Humane Happenings

by Eliana Aubin

This week, the Sierra County Humane Society wishes to remind friends and supporters that we collect aluminum cans in the Can Corral located adjacent to Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe in TorC. When the cans are redeemed, the funds generated are earmarked for the organization’s Spay-Neuter program. Tim Boswell, you are a gem! You take time out of your own very busy schedule to routinely load the bags of empty aluminum cans on your trailer and you redeem them locally for our organization.

Over time, too many local people have obviously failed to realize that the purpose of the SCHS Spay-Neuter program initiated in 1990 was always to give a helping hand to low-income companion animal owners, low-income only. It was never intended to hand-out free spay-neuter rebate certificates to anybody and everybody who wanted to take advantage of it.

All else aside, it’s an expensive program that we can only offer based on our limited resources. This is not a government program. The money to pay for it is generated by a very small group of hard-working volunteers. These selfless volunteers sacrifice their precious time - and much more - just to keep it alive. They strongly believe that sterilization is the way to go if we are going to decrease the tragedy of pet overpopulation in this area. They don’t just talk the talk. They do something about it.

For years, ever since 1990, we weren’t so careful about screening those who wanted to utilize the program. Consequently, it drained our resources, so we have had to ensure that only lower income people had access to it. For more information on how you can help keep it alive by supporting it in some way, contact our organization at 575-894-1694 or e-mail us at

At this time of the year and until they return next Fall, the Sierra County winter residents who have generously donated their time to our animal welfare cause by helping at Paws&Claws and at the sanctuary are moving back to their respective states. We need helpers to replace them at Paws & Claws Thrift Shoppe and Desert Haven Animal Refuge. Do you genuinely love animals? Do you want to help us help them in this part of the Desert Southwest? Then contact our volunteer coordinator team at 575-894-2639.

Check us out at,, and