Introducing SeniorPAWS

We’re excited to introduce a new project called SeniorPAWS. SeniorPAWS is a new partnership project with the St. John’s Living Center that will enhance the quality of life of Living Center residents while providing a foster home for an adoptable dog pulled from a regional shelter. This is a symbiotic project, both people and pets greatly benefitting from their time together.

 

Joey, an 8-year-old special blend of chihuahua, miniature pincher, and anyone’s guess made her journey from the Snake River Animal Shelter in Idaho Falls to Jackson on Friday, January 10th as the first SeniorPAWS dog. We selected Joey based on her age, size, and initial plucky demeanor and it turns out she was originally surrendered to the shelter because of her elderly owner’s failing health. She spent her first weekend with our Program Director, Jess, and immediately made herself at home.

Meet Joey

 

Joey and PAWS staff dogs

While fostered by our staff, Joey received a much-needed dental cleaning and bloodwork panel to ensure this spry senior lady was healthy, and indeed she is. Joey was introduced to the Living Center, on Tuesday, January 14th and never looked back… all while we were sniffling to see her leave our office.

Joey and LC resident, Fred

Joey and L.C. staff member

Upon her arrival, Joey immediately fell right in-tune with Living Center staff and residents, helping herself to anyone’s lap without hesitation. Not only was Joey phenomenal with her new residents, but it was visible how much she enjoyed herself interacting with them. Living Center staff members relayed that residents who suffer from memory loss have been able to remember who Joey is, her age, and why she is there… it is truly remarkable. Director of Life Enrichment Connie Hansen states, “Joey has already brought much joy to many of our residents. Her presence is truly therapeutic for some.”

Can you tell that we’re leading up to something? We’re excited to announce that Connie officially adopted Joey on Monday.

Joey and her official adopter, Connie

Joey will be residing at the Living Center as the permanent SeniorPAWS Ambassador dog. Her life will serve a higher purpose. We are confident that having Joey permanently within the Living Center family will ease the future SeniorPAWS dogs’ transitions from the Living Center into their new adopters’ homes. It’s always difficult to let go of a foster pet, but Joey’s consistent presence will benefit the residents and will make transitioning future dogs out of the Living Center much easier. Once Joey is settled in, a new SeniorPAWS foster dog will be introduced into the Living Center community and then eventually become available for adoption. Stay tuned to meet them.

 

2019 Year in Review

PAWS of Jackson Hole’s mission is to prevent pet homelessness, protect pets from harm and suffering, and to promote responsible pet ownership. These key pillars of pet service help pets and their people and is done throughout Jackson, Star Valley, and Teton Valley, ID.

PREVENT

PAWS prevents pet homelessness by continuing to offer spay/neuter vouchers to people for their pets. PAWS Spay/Neuter program has made significant impacts on our local pet overpopulation problem. Thanks to veterinary participation and your support, PAWS funded over 1,165 altering surgeries in 2019.

             

PAWS MedFund program was extended beyond Jackson/Teton County this year to assist the increased unexpected vet bills people saw in our neighboring communities. PAWS MedFund enabled 114 pets to receive required, and often urgent, medical care to stay alive. As animal shelter medical budgets are often stressed, PAWS MedFund is also available for pets at local shelters.

            

PROTECT

PAWS protects pets from harm and suffering by supporting animal shelters that take care of homeless pets. In 2019, PAWS ShelterFund granted funds to Teton Valley Community Animal Shelter to purchase and install a new pet washing station, critical IT needs, and funds for dog training. In addition, we supported Jackson/Teton County Animal Shelter with dog training and a PAWS staff member who spends part of her day assisting at the shelter and oversees the volunteer program. A huge meow of thanks to Pet of the Week sponsors, Graham-Faupel-Mendenhall & Associates and Spring Creek Animal Hospital, as they helped highlight adoption of local homeless pets.

             

SafePAWS, our partnership with Community Safety Network, supports pet needs of domestic violence victims. With a dog yard and a newly created cat safe haven at Community Safety Network, more pets are allowed to safely stay with their families during challenging times.

The PAWS Disaster Animal Response Team (DART) was not activated in 2019 but continued their hands-on training to help pets during a local disaster. Our partnership with Teton County Emergency Management continues to thrive, volunteers are highly engaged, and we remain very active with Jackson’s Volunteer Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD).

           

PROMOTE

PAWS is the backbone of responsible pet ownership through our local communities. Through PAWS Mutt Mitt program we maintained 23 mutt mitt stations and provided over 150,000 mutt mitts for dog owners. The infamous Poop Fairy Brigade (supported by PAWS) and the PAWS-itivity Ambassador Team remain a positive influence on pathway and trail users and are easy to spot when out walking dog-friendly trails. Thanks to Snake River Brewing, Persephone, Teton Tails, and Pet Place Plus who reward pets and their people for good etiquette.

          

PAWS Education and Outreach programs taught Humane Education to over 450 students in Teton Valley ID and Etna Elementary. The children learn empathy and compassion for both pets and people and an array of topics that aid them in becoming pet advocates in their communities.

       

PAWS remains at the forefront of advocating for a year-around Dog Park in Jackson. The Winter Dog Park at the fairgrounds experiences thousands of dogs from November – April. Over in Idaho, PAWS has partnered with the City of Victor to help provide financial support to add a second entrance, create a fenced section for small dogs, and donated five Mutt Mitt Stations for the Victor Dog Park.

            

With thousands of rescue shelters and animal welfare organizations nationwide, what makes PAWS of Jackson Hole unique is that we focus on both pets and their people. We are incredibly thankful for our volunteers spanning over 8 programs, our partners who help us deliver these vital programs, and our supporters, whom without you none of this would be possible. To assist us in continuing to provide assistance to pets and their people please consider starting your year out with a donation to PAWS. Donate Today!

If you have any questions about PAWS of Jackson Hole please call 307-734-2441, email [email protected], or visit our website www.pawsofjh.org.