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Wed, Sept. 18

Ordinary people make an extraordinary difference in homeless pets' lives

Courtesy photo<br>
Yavapai Humane Society’s Carl Swanson carries Sally, suffering with severely broken leg, to the clinic. Sally, a lovable teddy bear, will be available for adoption following recovery. If interested in adopting Sally or helping the YHS STAR program, please call 445-2666, ext. 20.

Courtesy photo<br> Yavapai Humane Society’s Carl Swanson carries Sally, suffering with severely broken leg, to the clinic. Sally, a lovable teddy bear, will be available for adoption following recovery. If interested in adopting Sally or helping the YHS STAR program, please call 445-2666, ext. 20.

Last week I shared a critical need at the Yavapai Humane Society (YHS), and the community rallied. All the necessary funds ($19,000) were donated for the purchase of a commercial washer and dryer. On behalf of YHS and the thousands of animals this equipment will help for many years to come, thank you. Whether your gift was large or small, you made a difference. This is without question one of the most generous communities I've ever had the privilege to serve.

Sadly, the opportunities to give continue; but that is why YHS is here: to help meet the needs of lost and homeless pets that have no one to turn to.

Sally is such a case. Sally is a 3-year-old female sharpei-chow mix, although she behaves more like a giant teddy bear. It is difficult to understand how someone could lose such a sweet animal. Prescott Animal Control first spotted Sally running the streets in late April. Tried as they might, she proved elusive despite what appeared to be a broken leg.

Fortunately, persistence paid off, and Sally was finally rescued on May 3 and brought to YHS. Unfortunately, she did indeed have a broken left hind leg. Both her tibia and fibula were broken in two. She was also badly flea-infested. The flea infestation was easily remedied. Not so easy to remedy was her broken leg. To save her leg, Sally required a surgical repair that included placement of a bone plate to realign the bone fragments, immobilize the fracture and allow healing. She also had entropion - a chronic eye condition resulting from her eyelids rolling inward. This condition can result in ulcers and even blindness if left untreated. Corrective surgery to her eyelids was also necessary.

These medical needs qualified Sally for our STAR (Special Treatment And Recovery) program. STAR provides medical care to abused, neglected, injured and sick animals rescued by YHS. Lost, homeless and abandoned pets with poor medical conditions tend to be dismissed as adoption candidates by many shelters even though these animals could be treated if only the funds were available.

Thanks to our STAR Program, funded by donations from generous supporters, YHS is able to provide animals like Sally the time and treatment they need to recover. This is done with the help and support of local veterinarians and foster care families able to provide safe haven to an animal for the recovery period.

Sally was particularly fortunate in that she had two veterinary "champions" volunteering to help with her surgery: Dr. Brice Smith at Mile Hi Animal Hospital and Dr. Kenneth Skinner at the Prescott Animal Hospital. YHS is thankful for and dependent on our veterinary partners. Without their support, animals like Sally would have no chance at survival. Our local veterinarians are truly every day heroes!

Since both doctors generously volunteered to provide Sally with the surgical care she needed at a drastically reduced cost, we literally had to flip a coin to decide to send Sally to Mile Hi this past Friday for surgery on Saturday. (But we won't forget about Dr. Skinner's generous offer to help; we will contact him when our next STAR Animal arrives ... )

Sally's surgery was successful. Thank you, Dr. Smith, for helping YHS save Sally's life. She is now in foster care until her recovery is complete, at which time she will be available for adoption. If you are interested in adopting Sally or fostering an animal like Sally, please contact YHS at 445-2666.

Dr. Smith's compassion made Sally's surgery possible. But it would not have been possible without your donations to our STAR program. If you want to help animals in distress, animals like Sally, please make a life-saving donation to the YHS STAR Program. Without you, our veterinarian partners and our volunteers, these animals would truly be hopeless. By working together we are making our community the safest community in Arizona for pets - owned, lost, and homeless.

Ed Boks is the executive director of the Yavapai Humane Society. He can be reached at eboks@yavapaihumane.org or by calling 445-2666, ext. 21.

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