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Lackawanna County Humane Society DBA Griffin Pond Animal Shelter: Orvis Dog Enrichment Grant Report

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

Our Orvis Animal Care Grant was used to purchase products that would enrich and improve the daily lives of our shelter dogs as they wait for their forever homes. We acquired a variety of toys for both indoor and outdoor use to alleviate boredom as well as training/calming items to increase adoptability for our more-challenging residents. Please see our detailed list below:

3 - Tether Tug Outdoor Toys
12 - Non-Pull Mesh Dog Harnesses
2 boxes - Calming Collars (3 count per box)
3 - ThunderEssence Dog Calming Drops
4 - Thundershirts
2 - Thundercaps
5 - 10" Jolly Balls
10 - Kong Jumbler Balls (with squeakers)
20 - Jolly Eggs (8" and 10" sizes)

With careful planning and negotiation, we were able to stretch these funds and will be able to use many of the items purchased not only for our current population but those who will inevitably find themselves at our door.

At Griffin Pond, funds are primarily utilized for basic necessities needed to operate the shelter each day: food, medical and general supplies such as litter. Often, there's very little left in the budget for items considered non-essential to daily operations. This funding allowed us to purchase the above items to further improve the daily lives of our pups and as well as increase the adoptability of a few of our more-challenging cases. While our staff provides wonderful care, the dogs still have many hours of downtime without human interaction. This grant allowed us to purchase "non-essential" toys as well as other items to make shelter life a little happier for the pups in our care. We found that the toys aided in their solo play, thus reducing boredom and lifting their spirits.

How many pets did this grant help?

More than 20 dogs have benefited thus far, and we have enough items to continue the program as animals are surrendered to the shelter.

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

The items we were able to obtain truly helped all our pups, but we’d like to highlight one pup in particular. This story is about Jackson, a yellow Labradoodle who was brought to the shelter as a stray. Though she was badly matted and had very little training, there was something about her overall happy disposition that just drew you to her. Her overexcited nature placed her in a more-challenging adoption category. Many families passed by, worried that her larger size would overpower their young children. We knew that her kindness would just melt someone’s heart if they gave her a chance.

Since we were able to purchase calming collars and drops, we thought Jackson would be a perfect candidate for these products to improve her adoptability. We were all pleasantly surprised by the outcome! We started her with the calming collar and placed one of the large Jolly Balls in her kennel for solo playtime. The very next day, our staff noticed she had a calmer demeanor! She was no longer jumping, out of control, at everyone and everything she saw and became more focused on her handler. This enabled our staff to teach her some basic obedience training (sit, stay and walking on a leash).

So now Jackson was not only looking beautiful, her sweet nature and better manners shined. We are pleased to report that Jackson (now Jackie) has found her forever home with a loving family of three. Their young daughter couldn’t be happier and we know Jackie feels the same!

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