The Clinton County Humane Society recently held a yard sale that raised $3,259 for the shelter, and the shelter board and volunteers thank the community for its support.
The shelter at 1760 Fife Ave. is one of two humane societies in Wilmington, with the other being the Wilmington Area Humane Society on U.S. 68.
Since 2003, when the Clinton County Humane Society was organized on Fife Avenue, more than 7,000 homeless animals have been adopted to families both local and from out of town.
Some animals are quiet, some are loud. They may be happy and eager to please, or they might still seem bewildered about how they arrived there. They are safe, though, with food and water, shelter from the elements, and lots of love — basics that may be new to those that have been abused or neglected.
But the homeless animals at the Clinton County Humane Society are lucky enough to get a second chance at becoming part of “forever families.” They are purebreds and mutts, puppies and old dogs, litters of kittens and individual housecats. They may receive more love and attention in one day than they have in their whole previous existence, and they often flourish quickly because of it.
Although the humans in their previous lives may have let them down, the human volunteers at the shelter give their own time to bathe the animals, walk them, cuddle them, feed them and maintain a clean and healthful environment while the animals wait to be adopted. There are 35 active volunteers who work every day of the year on behalf of animals, and a board of five volunteers oversees the operations.
Last year, the Clinton County Humane Society adopted 462 animals — 414 dogs and 48 cats; the previous year’s total adoptions was 500. Most are adopted locally, but thanks to the Internet and Petfinder.com, almost 10 percent of the animals are adopted to out-of-state families willing to drive to Wilmington to bring home their next family member. Those families sometimes send updates months or even years later, often on the adoption anniversary, saying things such as “Bear is so sweet and we feel lucky to have found him. He’s been the perfect dog for us!” or “We would also like to donate to CCHS as a way of paying it forward and thank you again for saving her and allowing her to be part of our family.”
The updates are shared with volunteers, who love to see the animals’ transformations into valued family members. Some of the older dogs linger for a while at the shelter and become known to all the volunteers, so those eventual adoptions are cause for special celebration.
The Clinton County Humane Society was created first in an existing building and then in a new shelter built in 2006 from privately donated funds. It is a no-kill, nonprofit organization. It does not receive county or government funding, and it depends on donations to fund the shelter. Along with monetary donations, the shelter can always use paper towels, bleach, and Dawn dishwashing liquid.
For several years, the Clinton County Humane Society has worked closely with the Clinton County dog warden to decrease euthanasia of the county’s unwanted, homeless animals. Each animal is spayed or neutered, to further reduce the problem of unwanted animals. The shelter also hosts regular low-cost spay/neuter clinics for cats, and continues Project Abigail, which helps spay and neuter animals in the community that have unwanted litters.
The Clinton County Humane Society is on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. To donate or to view adoptable pets, visit its website at clintoncohumanesociety.org.
Because of volunteers’ varying schedules, adoptions are done by appointment; call 937-383-0703.