Four years ago, we had just unlocked the door to the Peaceful Animal Adoption Shelter a few months earlier. A beautiful building, a mission statement that said, in part, PAAS would save thousands of homeless pets in Northeast Oklahoma. And we are, but it isn’t what any of us would have envisioned.
In 2015, PAAS was a “traditional” shelter. We were full, we had a long waiting list of owner surrenders and only a few adopters. Something had to change if we were to save “thousands”.
By 2016, we were a traditional shelter that also had a prison program and a new out-of-state transfer program.
In 2017, we were slowly transitioning from a traditional shelter into unknown territory. Our prison program was going well, we had a good spay/neuter program going with local veterinarians thanks to grants from Flint Family Foundation and PetSmart.
In 2018, our prison program was no longer a part of our mission; the out-of-state transfer program was in full swing; we had grants, with specific parameters, for spay/neuter of pets; we were going full speed with the HSUS Pets for Life program in both Vinita and Tahlequah. We were no longer doing local adoptions. However, whenever someone was interested in adopting a shelter dog, we referred them to five local rescues/shelters. Why? Because, at any given time, collectively there are 300 dogs available in our area.
The change of direction has been rewarding, hard work, and life-saving for thousands of homeless dogs and cats. And, with1,500+ spay/neuters, countless thousands of unwanted litters.
Where are we going next? Stay tuned!!!!