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  • GiveBack: A Helping Paw

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    Many Montgomery businesses show their love for our furry friends by supporting the Montgomery Humane Society.
    The Montgomery Humane Society works to prevent cruelty to animals by operating an animal shelter that takes in and cares for homeless, abandoned and unwanted animals and, through its adoption center, helping healthy animals find new, loving homes.
    This mission is just the right fit for The Shoppes at EastChase. The retail center is a pet-friendly place.
    Given this affinity for the community’s furry family members, it’s not surprising that the center sees the non-profit organization as a good choice for its support. “We support pets on property, so we feel like this is a natural partnership,” said marketing manager Suzanna Wasserman. “Animals can shop in 60 percent of our stores.”
    This support is shown in a variety of ways. In April, The Shoppes at EastChase held its third annual FidoFest – a free event that includes kids’ activities and onsite pet adoptions while pet-related vendors display their goods and services. The center also sold t-shirts and coozies with the proceeds going to the Montgomery Humane Society.
    At the end of each year, The Shoppes at EastChase provides the space for MHS to raise funds by providing holiday giftwrapping. In addition, the center offers pet photos with Santa, and a portion of the proceeds from every photo package that includes a pet goes to the non-profit.
    The Montgomery Humane Society is an “open admission” shelter, meaning that the center accepts animals under any condition. As homeless, abandoned or unwanted animals are received by the shelter, they are provided with spay and neutering services and medical treatment.
    MHS also operates an adoption center for healthy animals that places 4,000 to 5,000 pets each year into caring homes.
    “The Montgomery Humane Society is a vital part of the community,” said MHS marketing and development manager Lea Turbert. “Our residents can give a pet a second chance when they adopt from our shelter. Also, residents who can no longer take care of their pet have a place where they can bring them to get them in another loving home. We keep the community safe by taking vicious dogs off the street, and we educate the public on pet owner responsibility.”
    MHS also operates a lost and found department, which is vital for pets that have strayed from home. “Our deputies go out on calls and get them off the street,” Turbert said. “We keep them five days. If they’re not claimed, we process them for adoption.”
    The organization has an education component as well, which includes a program for schools called “Read to the Paw.” As an effort to encourage young readers, a dog visits the classroom, and children practice their reading skills while the dog lays on the ground and listens. “Dogs do not judge,” Turbert said.
    MHS also has a volunteer program where people from the community can volunteer to clean cages, walk dogs or foster animals, as well as assist at offsite events or help with fundraisers. “Our community is so good to us,” Turbert said. Among the support provided, MHS receives monetary donations, in-kind services and needed supplies. In fact, sometimes local businesses conduct supply drives to help stock the center with materials to run its offices or take care of the animals. As an example, Aldridge, Borden & Company conducted a supply drive for MHS in conjunction with the firm’s 100th anniversary. “We wanted to celebrate by giving back to the community,” said Charles Solomon, manager of information technology. “We asked our employees to donate towels and newspaper. The firm purchased cleaning supplies.” The drive, conducted last February, was a resounding success.
    Aldridge Borden also provides IT services to MHS pro bono and regularly contributes gently-used IT equipment to the organization. In addition, several of the accounting firm’s members have served in a leadership role on the board of directors. Solomon is past president of MHS and a current board member. “We love our pets and value the organization’s contributions to our community. We think it is a great organization, and we’re happy to be able to support it in any way,” Solomon said.
    You Can Help Too:
    The Montgomery Humane Society, located at 1150 John Overton Drive, welcomes contributions of the following items:
    Rawhide or pig ears; Dog and cat treats; Dry puppy food; Dry dog food; Dry kitten food; Dry cat food; Hard chew toys (ex: Kongs); Animal crates and carriers; Cat litter (prefer non-clumping); Pet shampoo; Bath towels (new or used); Blankets (new or used); Newspaper (for lining cages); Shredded paper (long shreds); Bleach; Laundry detergent (powder or liquid)
    Batteries (AAA, AA, C-Cell, and D-Cell); Garbage bags (13, 39, and 55 gallon); Paper (8.5×11); Aluminum cans for recycling
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