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NV Energy and Las Vegas 51s Partner to Help Heaven Can Wait

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Heaven Can Wait Animal Society would like to thank NV Energy for choosing our organization as the recipient of this year’s Las Vegas 51s NV Energy Save of the Game. We hope HCWS baseball fans will go to as many games as possible this season to cheer us on and support the Las Vegas 51s team.

Each year NV Energy partners with the Las Vegas 51s baseball team for the NV Energy Save of the Game.  For every save earned by the 51s at home games, NV Energy will make a donation of up to a total of $5,000 to a Nevada nonprofit organization.

Heaven Can Wait Animal Society was picked because we are, “an organization whose goal is to provide sanctuary to unwanted animals in our community – saving them from death in shelters or on the streets.  Through its aggressive spay and neuter program, adoptions and other robust educational programs, Heaven Can Wait continues its mission to eliminate companion animal suffering and pet overpopulation.”

The Las Vegas 51s will play lots of home games during the 2013 season so there is plenty of opportunity to show support for our team.  This Link will take you to the season calendar.

NV Energy is a strong ally of Heaven Can Wait.  Their employees hold annual charitable drives collecting much needed supplies for our cats and dogs and the NV Energy Team participates in our annual Lose A Pound Memory Walk.

At the end of baseball season a representative from NV Energy will present a check on-field to Heaven Can Wait for every home game save.

Show your support for the work done at HCWS by Clicking Here.

Photo: Courtesy Creative Commons – Madmiked

Youth Group Member Hand Crafts Jewelry To Benefit HCWS

HCWS Youth Group member Sage (pictured with her cat, Tippie) designed jewelry to help the cats and dogs in our care.

HCWS Youth Group member Sage (pictured with her cat, Tippie) designed jewelry to help the cats and dogs in our care.

The Heaven Can Wait Youth Group gives kids aged 10-18 a chance to learn about animal care and animal rescue.   It was organized as a way to teach the next generation how to be responsible pet owners.  However once in a while, one of the students has a new idea to teach us.  This is the case with Sage, who is helping homeless pets with a line of jewelry she hand makes.

Twelve year-old Sage and her grandmother Jorie have designed and handcrafted earrings and bracelets for Heaven Can Wait with 100 percent of the proceeds going to the cats and dogs in our care.

Bracelets have colorful beads and a paw or cat charm.

Bracelets have colorful beads and a paw or cat charm.

The jewelry which is made from “real silver” is being sold for $15.  It can be purchased each Friday and Saturday at the HCWS Warehouse Sale at 6360 Annie Oakley (between Sunset and Russell).   The Warehouse Sale is open 9am to 2pm.  Jewelry can also be bought by contacting the HCWS Youth Group at: hcwsyouth@hcws.org.

Sage said she came up with the idea when all of the members of the Youth Group were asked to think of creative fundraising ideas.  Sage said her grandmother came to visit at about the same time and together they decided to make the jewelry.

Earrings have cat or dog face charms.

Earrings have cat or paw print charms.

Sage has been active in the HCWS Youth Group since last summer.  Her parents introduced her to the group because they knew their daughter is interested in helping animals and hopes to one day become a veterinarian.

Heaven Can Wait is very proud of Sage’s accomplishments and we look forward to see what else she will be doing in the future for homeless animals.

You can read more about the jewelry on the Heaven Can Wait Youth Group Facebook page.   And you can learn more about our Youth Group by Clicking Here.

Charitable Giving Drive From Navarro-Intera Employees

Cats like Magoo, who are waiting to be adopted, get to enjoy toys, food, bedding and more when they are donated.

Cats like Magoo, who are waiting to be adopted, get to enjoy toys, food, bedding and more when they are donated.

Heaven Can Wait would like to send a huge thank you to the employees at Navarro-Intera for once again choosing our organization for their annual charitable giving drive.  Last week a representative from the environmental services company stopped by our clinic with a carload full of pet food, towels, sheets, pet carriers and a cash donation.

All of the items donated are used every day in the HCWS Spay and Neuter Clinic and in our Adoption Center for the cats and dogs in our care.  The contribution is greatly appreciated.

A letter that accompanied the donation said:

“…Our employees association, Support for Navarro Association for People (SNAP), selected your organization to support based on your mission to eliminate companion animal suffering and pet overpopulation through aggressive spay/neuter, adoptions, community outreach programs, and education…”

If your company or charitable group would like to start a Donation Drive, please contact us volunteer@hcws.org for a list of items that Heaven Can Wait needs.  Or if you’ve already collected items, please come by our clinic at 546 N. Eastern Ave. Ste 175 Monday – Thursday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.  to drop them off.   There is no minimum number of items that need to be donated.

Here is a suggested list of items we always need:

  • Towels
  • Blankets
  • Pet Carriers
  • Pet Food
  • Cat and Dog Toys
  • Dog Collars
  • Cat and Dog Treats
  • Kitty Litter

Heaven Can Wait spays and neuters 10,000 – 13,000 cats and dogs each year.  The majority of pet clients come from low-income homes and the cost of surgeries are not fully covered by fees.  The other half of our clients are un-owned, free roaming cats.   Your generous donations are always greatly appreciated and help us continue our work to end the senseless killing of healthy pets in Las Vegas area shelters because of pet overpopulation.

Common Misconceptions Pet Owners Have About Microchips

Colonel is a Schnauzer mix who is waiting for a new home at HCWS.

Colonel is a Schnauzer mix who is waiting for a new home at HCWS.

By Amber Mahrou

Does your pet have a microchip? If your furry buddy is from Heaven Can Wait Animal Society, the answer to that question is—yes!  Heaven Can Wait microchips all of the cats and dogs that find new homes through our adoption program, but many pet parents don’t receive the full benefit that a microchip provides because of these common misconceptions.

Micro-Myth 1: There is no need to do anything with your pet’s microchip; it is already set up for use.

Actually, although the microchip is always functional, you must register the microchip with your own name and address in order for it to be helpful in reuniting you and your pet in the case that Fido or Fluffy gets lost. Don’t forget to update the contact information you have registered if you change your phone number or address! Think of the microchip as an emergency ID tag which your pet can never lose; you wouldn’t want the wrong number or address hanging around your pet’s neck in case of accidental separation, would you?  Registering your pet is done by contacting the company that provided the microchip.  The two top companies are Avid or Home Again.  Information should be provided in your adoption packet. That said—

Micro-Myth 2: Microchips replace ID tags.

Although microchips contain the same information, or more, as an ID tag, you need special equipment to scan and read it. Veterinarians and animal shelter staff can check for microchips on lost pets, but your average Good Samaritan will not be able to see that information in order to return your pet to you. An easy to read ID tag attached to your pet’s collar is a must have item. Of course, Heaven Can Wait encourages everyone who finds a lost pet to take them to a veterinarian to be scanned for a microchip. You never know when a small act like this will help reunite an adventurous pet with their original owner!

Micro-Myth 3: Microchips can act as small GPS units, allowing owners to pinpoint the location of lost pets.

Since they are essentially small, un-lose-able ID tags, microchips only provide the details that would be necessary for a pet’s recovery—the owner’s name, address, and phone number, as well as your pet’s name. There are devices for sale on the market that DO act as a small GPS unit when placed on your pet’s collar, but microchips are not such devices!

Not sure whether your pet has a microchip? You can find out by having them scanned at your veterinarian’s office.  If they do not have a chip already, you may get one for your pet as an added security measure. The chip itself is about the size of a grain of rice, which is injected under a pet’s skin around the neck. It does not hurt any more than a routine vaccination, and most pets don’t even notice when they are being given one. Microchips may not be ID replacements or GPS units, but they still reunite thousands of pets with their owners every month; register yours, and your furry friend has a better chance of being one of those lucky pets if you ever become separated!  It’s the responsible thing to do.

Heaven Can Wait pet adoptions are held every Thursday – Sunday for cats and each Saturday for dogs.  For details check our website: www.hcws.org

April Is Prevention Of Cruelty To Animals Month

Be part of the solution and stop animal cruelty.

Be part of the solution and stop animal cruelty.

by Lucy Bobeck

April is National Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month.  The event was started by the ASPCA to call attention to the countless animals that are abused, neglected and abandoned each year and how individuals can fight against it.

Around 7 million animals enter shelters each year.  Approximately 4 million are euthanized.  Sadly only 40 percent of dogs are adopted, and cats have a 30 percent adoption rate.  Half of the animals entering shelters are owner surrenders.

Why are so many animals let down by the people who are supposed to take care of them? Society, too often, does not value animals and sees them as disposable.  Or owners do not take the time to train pets to obey even simple commands. (Behavior problems rank high on the reasons dogs and cats are surrendered.)

How can we change an uncaring world into one that values our beautiful, loyal animals?  The ASPCA thinks each person can make a personal difference and suggests these tips for recognizing and reporting animal abuse:

  • Know who to call in your community to report abuse.
  • Get to know the animals in your neighborhood.
  • Call authorities when you see something amiss.
  • Fight for the passage of anti-cruelty laws.
  • Talk to kids about how to treat animals with kindness and respect.
  • Support your local shelter or rescue group.

Heaven Can Wait helps every day by seeing that the dogs we rescue are ready to be adopted into new homes through our Pups on Parole training program. Our Angels for Animals humane education programs provides school children with direct, grade level information on caring for, and respecting animals.  And our Youth Group gets kids involved in helping homeless animals in the community.

What’s the best way to solve the problem?  Prevent it in the first place by eliminating pet overpopulation through spay and neuter. Heaven Can Wait’s targeted spay and neuter programs are instrumental in preventing unwanted litters of puppies or kittens from being born and ultimately being surrendered to shelters.

Let’s work toward every home being a loving home.

Get involved in stopping animal cruelty in Las Vegas by completing the HCWS volunteer application.

Chester The Lab Mix Seeks a Stable, Quiet and Loving Forever Home

Chester is a laid back boy who is waiting for a special person to share a forever home with him.

Chester is a laid back boy who is waiting for a special person to share a forever home with him.

By Keely Biggs

When you approach Chester’s cage at the HCWS adoption center, you won’t see him get up to greet you wagging his tail with wide, bright eyes. The easy going Lab mix doesn’t get as excited as a young puppy anymore.  He’s learned that life can bring disappointments and doesn’t always work out as you hope.

Chester hasn’t given up hope he is patiently waiting for the one special person who will prove their commitment to him before “giving his heart” again.

Chester was originally found as a stray running on the streets with his best buddy, a dog named Manny. The pair was rescued by a man who intended to keep them, but ultimately had to find them another home. Chester and Manny were placed in a home with eight other dogs.  All ten dogs lived in the back yard and didn’t have a lot of interaction with their owners.  The ordeal left Chester a little “selective” about meeting new dogs.

Chester’s second home was foreclosed and he and Manny moved around a bit. Eventually they ended up at Heaven Can Wait. Both dogs were enrolled in the Pups on Parole program and did very well learning all their commands and new skills.  The HCWS dog coordinators also got their first glimpse into Chester’s gentle soul.

Chester has learned that life doesn't always turn out as you hope it would.

Chester has learned that life doesn’t always turn out as you hope it would.

Once the dogs had completed the program Manny was quickly adopted into a new home.

Chester’s best friend and stable companion was gone and it was quite a disappointment to him.

To cheer him up, the coordinators had a puppy move in with Chester and the two dogs became good friends.  Chester’s calm nature allowed the puppy to crawl all over him while he just laid back and enjoyed the antics.

The HCWS dog coordinators say that Chester’s easy going demeanor is what is keeping him from finding a new home.  People pass by his pen each week because he doesn’t exhibit the outgoing characteristics prospective owners are used to seeing.

Chester is 4 to 6 years-old and has a mild case of arthritis. He would do great in a quiet home with older children and another mature dog. He is a loyal dog that will sit at your feet and reciprocate the love you show to him. He needs stability, love, patience and companionship but, most of all, a permanent home.

Come by to meet Chester on a Saturday at Bogart’s Bone Appetit at 4985 S. Fort Apache Road Las Vegas, NV 89148 between the hours of 10 am to 4 pm.  Or call us at: 702-227-5555.

Let’s make this the week that shows Chester friends and family stay in our lives forever!

Let's help Chester learn that friends and families Do Last Forever!

Let’s help Chester learn that friends and families Do Last Forever!

How One Mom-To-Be Eased Her Cat Into Sharing Life With A Newborn

Miguel was 14 years old when his owner became pregnant.

Miguel was 14 years old when his owner became pregnant.

Last week we shared a story about two cats named Ragmuffin and Nina that were returned to Heaven Can Wait when their family became new parents.  Myths and adjustment to change can create a stressful atmosphere for new parents.  Heaven Can Wait volunteer writer, Colette Hays, shares  her personal story about how she eased her beloved cat into sharing life with a newborn.

By Colette Hayes

When my longtime cat, Miguel was 14 years old, I became pregnant with my first child.  Miguel and I had a very close relationship; I had raised him from a 4 week old kitten, bottle feeding him, carrying him with me wherever I went. Miguel currently threw his 20 pounds of black fur against my chest every night and slept purring with his face inches from mine. He followed me everywhere and would only consider my lap comfortable enough to sit on. During conversations with several close friends and family members about my pregnancy, I was told stories about behavior changes in their cats. I was told that I had to be careful because Miguel could smother the baby, scratch or hurt the baby and I could get Toxoplasmosis. Hearing this I began to look at my beloved cat differently and wondered just how a new baby would change things.

I learned through research that cats smothering babies was a myth and common sense and some simple precautions were needed to allow a baby and cat to live together peacefully. Toxoplasmosis, a parasite infection, passed through the feces of cats is a real concern, but one that my obstetrician helped me deal with. My obstetrician explained that if I had been around cats for a number of years, I had more than likely already been exposed to this infection. Using plastic gloves while I scooped the litter box and hand washing frequently would help limit the possibility of catching Toxoplasmosis. Getting a family member to scoop for 9 months was also another precaution and one that got me a 9 month break from litter box duty!

Setting up the baby’s room, I allowed Miguel to sniff and investigate everything. He enjoyed jumping in and sleeping in the empty drawers of the new dresser, but took interest in nothing else. He never once attempted to jump in the crib, although purchasing a crib net would have eliminated this option for him if he had showed an interest.

Miguel’s behavior did begin changing when I was around 6 months pregnant. I began noticing a urine smell each time I went up or down the stairs.  I attributed the smell to the litter box which was nearby. Thinking I was not sufficiently cleaning the box, I began scooping up to twice daily. Still the smell of urine was strong. One day I started investigating and found a corner of the stair landing saturated in pee. I ripped up the corner of the rug to discover the pad and concrete floor below were soaked in urine. Miguel was already diabetic so I figured a quick vet checkup would be the first place to start.  The vet gave him an exam, ran a few tests and everything was fine. Indicating my stomach, the vet said, “First baby?” I nodded. “Cats can have strong feelings about changes in the household.” Knowing Miguel and his haughty temperament, I figured he was having super strong feelings ending in urination. The vet explained that cats can be jealous of the new baby and are sensitive to the changes that were happening in my body.

The vet gave me several suggestions to get Miguel using his litter box again. These included cleaning the carpet thoroughly, making sure there was adequate litter boxes and they were clean.  Other suggestions included setting Miguel’s food dish near the spot he had chosen for his bathroom. Cats usually won’t eat where they pee. Miguel proved me wrong in that regard. I watched as he casually peed and then sauntering over to eat. I placed his litter box directly over the pee spot, but he took to peeing in the other corner. I put a second litter box in that corner and he peed in the third corner.  I now had two litter boxes and a food dish placed on my landing and he was still peeing on the carpet. Finally a trip to the local home store, gave me the idea of a plastic runner. I laid the plastic runner over the landing on the stairs. The next morning I woke to find urine and feces on the runner. I was about 7 months pregnant, overwhelmed with the upcoming birth and wondering how I was going to deal with a new baby and a cat that refused to use the litter box. I considered Miguel family and knew that I could not surrender him. I mean let’s be real who is going to adopt a 14 year old, diabetic cat who refuses to use the litter box? I was angry, but I also knew that Miguel was also feeling the changes in the household and my anger directed towards him would make the situation words. After a good cry, I cleaned up the plastic runner on the stairs and landing and made peace with the fact that every morning I was going to have to clean up poop or pee or both.

Patience and understanding brought baby Joseph and Miguel, the cat, together.

Patience and understanding brought baby Joseph and Miguel, the cat, together.

A month later, I brought my son, Joseph home from the hospital. I tried coaxing Miguel to sniff Joseph, but he refused to even pretend to be interested, instead he glared at me from his favorite bathroom spot, the landing.  For about 4 weeks, Miguel would leave the room when I entered and would sleep in the bathtub. I tried to pay extra attention to him and find time to spend with just him alone, but he made a point of leaving the room whenever I came to find him or hiding under the bed.  I did notice that his bathroom use on the runner was lessening, instead of daily it was three of four times a week. Finally when Joseph was about a month old, Miguel jumped on my lap and began investigating Joseph. He sniffed him, watched him and then carefully sat down next to him. Within minutes Miguel was purring softly and Joseph was sound asleep.

Over the next several months, almost as suddenly as he had stopped he started using his litter box again. Miguel also began taking an interest in me again, sitting on my lap and follow me from room to room. By the time Joseph was a year old; Miguel would lie next to Joseph and allow himself to be hugged and slobbered on.  Miguel eventually learned to tolerate Joseph and Joseph learned to be gentle with Miguel.

With time, patience and a sense of humor it is possible for a cat to adjust to the changes of pregnancy and a new baby. Cat and baby can learn to live together and if not like each other at least tolerate each other. While dealing with unwanted behavior changes in a beloved pet can be frustrating and difficult, realize that your cat is expressing their feelings about the changes in their lives and while we may not like how they express themselves, realize they need your love and patience during this transition.

Heaven Can Wait cat adoptions are held Thursday – Sunday in Petsmart at 7050 Arroyo Crossing Pkwy (off I-215 and S. Rainbow.)  Check out all the cats waiting for new homes at: www.hcws.org