Animal advocates work to keep their furry friends safe | New

Local animal advocates work hard to keep their furry friends safe, healthy, fed and repaired.

Shaun West, president of the Humane Society of Cherokee County, said 18 dogs and 13 cats are currently at the shelter.

“We are really pushing [for] sterilize and sterilize right now. That’s our main focus in the spring and fall,” West said.

October is National Adopt a Shelter Dog Month and the CCSS stays in touch with anyone who adopts a shelter dog for the first two months. The process of adopting any animal at HSCC is deliberately tedious to ensure that the animal is brought into a safe home.

Tahlequah Animal Control Officer Vicky Green said there were more than 30 residents at the town’s animal shelter Thursday afternoon. The adoption transports are being done by Alexis Colvard with Wagging Tails, and the next one is scheduled for Saturday, October 15 in Kansas.

“Nine dogs are leaving this facility,” Green said. “It used to happen twice a month, and now it’s once a month or once every two months. Sixty-four dogs are on a waiting list right now, and that was 82 [dogs].”

Green emphasizes the need for foster homes more than anything, so animals can be spayed and neutered.

“You have to bring them back to this facility, and I don’t want to bring them back here after they’re fixed. We’re working on it and trying to figure it out because it’s not the safest thing. [to bring the animal back here after surgery]but it works best for the people who host,” she said.

Anyone who walks into the Tahlequah Animal Shelter will notice a variety of dry and wet dog/cat food on the shelf. Green said it was thanks to Pets for Life.

“If you have a dog, or if the neighbor’s dog is starving, just call the town shelter and we’ll help you. We’ll have your pets spayed and neutered, vaccinated, and we’ll do everything we can to that this pet in your house and not here,” she said.

Pets for Life is a program started by the Peaceful Animal Adoption Shelter in Vinita. PAAS is focused on providing support services to pet owners in Vinita and Tahlequah.

Green takes issue with people picking up an animal in the county and bringing it to the town shelter. She said these dogs belong to someone most of the time.

“Some of these dogs aren’t sick or unhealthy, and that’s illegal. You can’t take possession of people’s property,” she said.

Anyone who finds a stray or picks up an animal should send as much information as possible, along with a photo, to Green.

Facebook has several lost and found animal pages for Tahlequah and Cherokee County to help people get the word out quickly. Green said it was imperative to find the dog’s owner before doing anything else.

Animals are held for a maximum of 10 days before being eligible for adoption.

The 4th Annual Tahlepaws Pet Wellness Fair will be held on Saturday, November 5 at Phoenix Park. Pets will receive free DHPP injections, free deworming medication and free rabies shots. The first 25 animals to show up in disguise receive free flea and tick medicine.

The event is drive-in only and dogs must be on leashes while cats must be in carriers.

To be involved

For more information about the Humane Society of Cherokee County, visit or call 918-457-7997 to leave a message. For more information about adoptions at Tahlequah Animal Shelter, call 918-456-1241.

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