March 12, 2014
May 10: 10am - 4pm: Bi-Annual Rabies Clinic at the Bossier City Animal Control.
Click on the link "Join HIP" and either complete the online form or print and mail the pdf form.
Our Mission is to introduce homeless animals to caring companions through education, advocacy and enrichment.
Hand in Paw (HIP) is a small volunteer group who for the past 8-10 years has worked with the Bossier City Animal Control.
Some of our work with the shelter animals includes spaying and/or neutering to control pet population
and make animals more adoptable by paying for additional
treatments such as malnutrition, skin conditions, heart worms, etc., sheltering animals during hurricane evacuations, and pet adoptions at PetSmart, Bossier City Animal Control Shelter and other locations.
Many people do not realize that the State requires animals to get the rabies vaccination every year or they do not think they can afford to have their animals vaccinated.
For those reasons, we conduct bi-annual low cost rabies clinics for the community.
In 2013, HIP helped over 645 animals find their furever homes. HIP also paid to have 324 cats and dogs spayed or neutered this year, which cost $21,632. Additionally, we conduct a low-cost rabies clinics bi-annually for the community. This past year we helped vaccinate over 500 animals. Our group is committed to providing care and homes to the numerous animals that enter the shelter each year.
Previously the National Humane Society recognized our achievements with a $20,000 grant to continue our work.
A large portion of the money went directly into the Bossier City Animal Shelter to purchase new cat enclosures.
We were able to save the City of Bossier a lot of money with this addition.
Saturday adoptions stimulate the local economy in the following ways:
First, whenever an animal is adopted, food, preventative medicines, toys, collars, leashes, dishes, bedding, etc. is purchased from local retailers.
Second, it provides tax dollars for Bossier City and the State of Louisiana.
Third, our group spays or neuters numerous animals and pays for other medical treatments each year which provides additional business to our area veterinarians.
Fourth, once an animal is adopted, as part of the adoption contract, the owner agrees to maintain the animal’s health and well-being. This means additional business for local veterinarians.
An average of around 15 animals go to new homes every Saturday thanks to these adoptions.
This means fewer animals will have to be euthanized due to overcrowding or costs to the city.
In The News
Bossier City budget woes affecting its pets
By Drew Pierson • firstname.lastname@example.org • January 22, 2010
Pet lovers in Bossier City are praising what they say is a creative solution to budget woes at the city animal shelter, but the department head still cautions that any more cuts could mean more animals euthanized.
"If we lose one more employee, ... we won't be able to keep doing what we're doing," said Gary Neathery, head of Bossier City's public works department, which also runs the animal shelter. "We're right at the point of make or break."
To patch a $6.5 million deficit by last December, the city laid off about 10 percent of its more than 800 city positions, including two of the animal control's eight positions. The animal shelter's budget is $438,844, down more than $100,000 from last year's budget of $555,147.
Pet lovers were concerned because city administrators at one point considered forgoing the shelter's weekly Saturday adoptions to cut down on overtime. Every Saturday, an employee from the shelter plus volunteers take a sample of the 5,000 to 6,000 animals that come through the shelter's doors each year to the PetSmart on Airline Drive in the hopes that someone will adopt them.
"We were upset," said Phyllis Whatley, president of Hand in Paw, a volunteer group that works with the animal shelter. "If we can't continue Saturday adoptions, that means more animals will be euthanized."
During standing room-only budget hearings late last year, animal enthusiasts pleaded with the city to find a way to keep the Saturday adoptions running. With a shelter that normally sees only three or four animals adopted on a weekday, Saturday adoptions are important for Hand in Paw and other groups because it's not uncommon for three times that number to be adopted Saturday.
Fifteen animals, already tested for feline leukemia and heartworms and some spayed or neutered, were adopted Saturday by shoppers entering PetSmart, Whatley said. Prices range from $55 to $85 per animal, depending on the animal's age, among other things.
Statistics for the animals that aren't adopted are grim. Like most animal shelters, supply far exceeds capacity in the Bossier City Animal Control. Of those 5,000 to 6,000 animals, only about 25 percent are adopted, Neathery said. While some also may be reunited with former owners, the majority of those remaining are euthanized.
To keep the weekend operations running, Neathery allows one paid employee at the shelter to take a day off work during the normal week so that person can supervise the Saturday adoptions, started in about 2003. In addition, the work of the animal control division's superintendent, whose position was cut, is now done by Neathery.
"I do not expect the quality of the city's management of its animal control division to decline," said Bossier City Mayor Lorenz "Lo" Walker. "Department of Public Works Director Gary Neathery has assumed responsibility as superintendent of that division, and we are working flexible hours to continue our pet adoption program."
But Walker has warned council members that the city still has a serious money problem, and that more department cuts are possible if not probable by the end of the year. But the mayor, who has two pet Chihuahuas, said he would draft future budgets that would provide "quality service with empathy" for Bossier's furry friends.
For the moment, Whatley said she was pleased.
"Apparently, there are some animal lovers on the council," Whatley said. "They really came through."