The Herald Bulletin

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Columns

February 9, 2013

Maleah Stringer: Programs offer love and hope

Two beautiful felines, Nala and Covu have been living in our purple cat sanctuary at the Animal Protection League since July.

Their owners lost their home so we put them in the Saving Max foster program. This program is for the pets of victims of domestic violence, the military deployed, people who require hospitalization and have no one to care for their pets and for those who have lost their home and or jobs. We care for these pets until their owners get back on their feet and can have their pets.

After seven months, Nala and Covu went home to their owners. It was a joyful reunion for the family. In 2012, the Animal Protection League cared for 24 pets in the Saving Max program who got to go back home.

JJ, a Heinz 57 canine, came to us as a stray in 2010. He is a brown dog with one blue eye and one brown eye and a loving personality. He stayed at the shelter for a number of months but no one saw what a treasure he is. He stopped eating and responding.

To save him, we took him to the Fido Shelter dog prison program at the Correctional Industrial Facility in Pendleton. The dogs live with the inmates 24/7 in their cells. There are two handlers per dog who obedience train and socialize the dogs, preparing them for adoption.

JJ was adopted on Saturday and now lives in Chicago. His new owner reports that she has fallen completely in love with him. This program was founded in 2008. There are 16 dogs in the program at a time. As one dog is adopted another dog is saved from the shelter. This program has saved 140 dogs from the shelter on Dewey St.

Socks, a black and white brute of a cat from the 9 Lives Shelter Cat Prison Program also at the Correctional Industrial Facility in Pendleton, had eye surgery last week for entropia. He is recovering in my office until the stitches come out and he can go back to prison. His inmate caretakers miss him terribly. There are currently 23 cats in the 9 Lives Program — all available for adoption.

Fido, Saving Max and the 9 Lives programs are saving countless animals in our community as well as saving the humans involved. They are providing second chances through the human/animal connection. These programs provide hope, unconditional love and the knowledge that sometimes you don’t have to lose everything that matters.

Thank you to the Indiana Department of Corrections and the staff at the Correctional Industrial Facility for your support of these programs. They have touched the hearts of all who come into contact with them.

These programs are funded entirely through grants and donations. If you would like to donate go to www.inapl.org for online donations or send checks to Animal Protection League, 613 Dewey St. Anderson, IN 46016. All donations are tax-deductible.

Maleah Stringer is executive director of the Animal Protection League, 613 Dewey St., Anderson. She can be reached at 356-0900 or at maleahstringer@aol.com.

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