By Meladi Brewer
GREENVILLE — The Darke County Animal Shelter, 5066 County Home Rd, Greenville., hosted an open house Saturday from noon to 3 p.m.
The event provided vaccinations and microchipping for dogs and cats by Dr. Gerber with Green Lawn Animal Clinic, free food and drinks donated by Winners Meats in Greenville, Ketering Locker Service in New Madison, Eikenberry’s in Greenville, and Rural King Greenville location, and a selection of 25 plus vendors.
At the event, the shelter had a $45 adoption fee on all adoption for dogs over one year of age. A total of five, one-year old or older dogs were adopted, and all 15 of the puppies were adopted as well. Shelter Director Robert Bair laughed and said the shelter put pictures of the adoptable puppies on Facebook in an attempt to make people come to the event.
“We put the puppies on Facebook last night around 5 o’clock after we closed, and this morning we had about 25,000 people that it had reached. It was kind of a ploy to get people out here, and it worked,” Bair said.
The Open House had something for all mammals alike. There was free food, door prizes, and even dog treats. Bair said everybody could have come out to the event and enjoyed all the vendors. Darke County parks even brought a snake and turtle for guests to enjoy.
“They say they want to come again next year if we have one, and that’s our plan to have it yearly,” Bair said.
Bair said the event is a way for the shelter to shed a positive light on the amenities the shelter provides for Darke County.
“Everybody remembers us from the olden days when everybody thought at the time all we did was euthanize dogs. Well maybe once upon a time, but since 2018 we have been considered a no kill establishment statistically and by definition,” Bair said.
Bair added it was in part to law changes saying it used to be where if your dog bit someone then the dog warden is taking your dog to the shelter. Now, owners are able to quarantine their dog at home, thus resulting in less dogs being removed from their owners.
“Those are some of the things that we are trying to change people’s perception of us. We are not the bad people here. We are just trying to help everybody,” Bair said. “We are here to enforce the laws that are there to help neighbors be neighbors.”
The shelter strives to provide the best humane dog-control and care. Its mission is to provide the best possible chance of rehabilitation and re-homing of abandoned dogs as well as reuniting lost dogs with their owners.
“If your dog is out running around the county, please check with your local shelter first. Some people wait two, three, four, five days before doing anything. Just check with your shelter first because chances are we already picked it up,” Bair said.
There are a variety of services the shelter offers: enforcement of the Ohio Revised Code 9.55 dealing with dogs, they provide dogs for adoption, they provide public education, they accept owner surrendered dogs, and more. The shelter provides these services to the public, but they are not paid through the general tax fund. Most of their income comes from their dog licensing, shelter fees, and citations.
“If we didn’t care, we wouldn’t be here, and we care about all these animals,” Bair said.
Bair offered a special thank you to everyone involved with helping out with the event. He thanked all the donors, sponsors, and vendors for coming out and making the event one the public would enjoy, and he sent a special thank you out to the community for supporting the Darke County Animal Shelter.
To learn more about the shelter go to the web page at www.darkecountyanimalshelter.com or follow them on Facebook.
To contact Daily Advocate Reporter Meladi Brewer, email [email protected].