GREENVILLE — Remember the iconic chorus from the 2000 Baha Men classic— “Who let the dogs out?”
The Darke County Animal Shelter will be doing just that — and a whole lot more — at their upcoming summer shindig for everyone, on two and four legs, with smiling faces and waggin’ tails. Come down to the shelter, located at 5066 County Home Road in Greenville, for the shelter’s “Open House” Saturday, July 24, from 12 to 3 p.m.
As the shelter staff fires up the grill to cook up free hot dogs and hamburgers for everyone, many local businesses and supporters will be on hand to answer questions, offer services, and let people know the rescue work being accomplished by the Darke County Animal Shelter and others, helping find new homes for local stray and unwanted dogs.
“We hope to give people a better perspective of what we do here, at the shelter, and who we are,” said Director and Dog Warden Robert Bair. “We do a lot of networking in the area to find dogs good homes. We are in this together!”
Changing negative perceptions of the past is important to the shelter staff, as they work hard to provide each dog with a good quality of life during their stay in-house. Socialization and spending time outdoors is critical to the health, emotional and physical well being of all canine shelter guests.
“We have really worked hard to change the public’s perspective of what we do,” said Bair. “People have a bad memory of quarantines and investigations from the past. But the protocols are much different now…In 2019-2020, our shelter was considered a “No Kill” shelter by BestFriends.org. In June alone, we adopted out 43 dogs. That’s huge!”
The Darke County Animal Shelter’s dog adoption rate was last year was over 70 percent, adopting out 299 dogs in 2020. This year, Bair hopes to break “300,” adoptions — and is well on track to do so, with 196 dog adoptions this year, from January through June 2021.
“The public has really supported our efforts for the ‘Open House,’” said Bair. “The response has been amazing, from everybody willing to donate the food, prizes, and donations, with vendors giving of their time, and services donated to helping the dogs…We are so grateful for everyone’s help and support!”
The Open House will feature free hotdogs and hamburgers, with thanks to generous local donors Winners, Kettering Butcher Shop (New Madison), Hunts, Eikenberry’s; free drinks provided by Scott’s McDonalds and Rural King; free yogurt and ice by Dannon and EB’s; AmVets, the American Legion, and Blue Buffalo.
Friends of the Shelter will be offering Pet Photos a for $5 donation to the shelter. The Country Dog House, LLC and Pooch Parlor will be on site, and Marshall Combs from State Farm will answer questions about pet insurance. In addition, Doc Gerber from Greenlawn Animal Clinic will be offering pet microchipping for just $25 (a real bargain! Please call ahead to schedule a time during the event). Door prizes, such as a KitchenAid hand mixer, a Pet Vet Playset, gift cards, dog beds, dog kennels and crates, will be raffled off — with many thanks to the generosity of Kaup Pharmacy, Rapid Fire Pizza, Friends of the Shelter, and many more amazing donors.
Tours of the shelter and baked goods will be available throughout the event by shelter staff members Robert Bair, Kelsey Lewis, Kristen Marshall, Trudy Matthew, and Roger Billus.
Most importantly, the event will offer $40 adoptions, which includes vaccines, a free vet physical exam, and license for the current year (Many thanks to Aracanum Veterinary Service, Greenville Animal Hospital, Edgetown Veterinary Clinic, and Greenlawn Animal Hospital).
There are currently 10 dogs at the shelter who are looking for great homes, so come out to the Open House, and let the dogs out!
Carol Marsh covers community interest stories and handles obituaries for Darke County Media. Have an event to share? She can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 937-569-4314.