Friday, December 11, 2009

Our Long-Term Shelter Guests are “Homeward Bound”!

Meet Redford. If you like to “window-shop” on our “Available Animals” section of our website (we also kiddingly call it “lurking”) you’ve probably seen his handsome photo for several months. He's one of our longer-term “guests”, and a member of our new, successful “Homeward Bound Scholarship Program". What’s that? It’s been a great and innovative way to shine a light on some of our special dogs, cats, and rabbits who have been in our care for 100 days or more and are waiting patiently for us to find them their permanent, loving home. They still have a lot to give, but may not immediately stand out, and have not been snatched up quickly by adopters. HSSV waives their $175 adoption fee to help them find a home. Our adoption counselors still follow the same procedure in rigorous detail to ensure a match with the right individual or family…this special incentive is just a way to encourage more people to consider these special pets. It’s our way of highlighting them and drawing attention to them – and it’s working! We launched this program in early October, and the first weekend, 16 out of our 20 Homeward Bound pets were adopted! And none of them were returned because of a bad match. Everyone we talked to said that they had noticed their new “Homeward Bound” adoptee because we provided more insight into the fact that they had been with us a little longer. Most people who adopt from a shelter or rescue group do so because they want to help save a life and/or they want a great animal who isn’t from a breeder. With the animals in our Homeward Bound program, the mere fact that we call special attention to these animals is just one creative way we get great animals adopted and started on their new lives.

Sometimes, the individual or family adopting these Homeward Bound pets donate all or part of the waived fee back to HSSV to fund another Homeward Bound adoption, or they may use the savings to purchase necessary items for their new pet in our Whole Pets pet store. Either way, everyone wins!

Other individuals or companies who have taken an interest in a Homeward Bound pet, but who can’t adopt right now, have generously chosen to sponsor that pet’s adoption fee as well. (If you have a favorite dog, cat, or rabbit here at HSSV -- either at our Animal Community Center, or at our Petco El Paseo De Saratoga Satellite Adoption Center -- and would like to sponsor their adoption fee, you can call our front desk at 408-262-2133 ext. 150 and cover an adoption fee for someone else!)

We look forward to all of our animals being “homeward bound”, of course, but we get especially excited when those who have been with us for a while, and to whom we become attached, find the home of their dreams with the help of this great new program.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

SANTA CLARA COUNTY RESIDENT??? Take this survey and help our shelters work together better!

This is a very important survey that was created by Humane Society Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley Animal Control Authority, Palo Alto Humane Society, Town Cats, San Martin 's South County Animal Shelter, San Jose Animal Care Services. The goal is to get a sense of what the residents of our community feel about the care of animals. Please pass along, making sure to indicate that it is for Santa Clara County residents ONLY!

Thanks for helping!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Holiday Arts and Crafts Faire! Shopping Galore!

By Stephanie Ladeira - the return of "The Shopper"

I can't WAIT for the Humane Society Silicon Valley Holiday Arts and Crafts Faire this weekend! I was perusing the site to look at all of the vendors who are coming and found about a million things I "needed" to get. There's a great little website with links to all of the vendors and info on the day.

1) First, there's the cute, hand-knit turtleneck sweaters for Rocky and Lucy, my rescued German Shorthairs. Rachel Deichman, who makes these totally hip sweaters (see Bach modeling to the right), has been knitting up a storm. I am going to purchase a pink and grey wide stripe sweater for Lucy and will ask Rachel to custom make a brown and black one for Rocky. The best part? When Lucy rolls in cow manure in her sweater, I can just pop it into the washing machine. The felted-wool coats she makes for the little dogs are so cute, I'll have to get one of those for Ruby, my little terrier mix.

2) Sonya Paz, acclaimed artist and animal lover, will be selling her awesome art, including "wearable" art such as wristwatches and necklaces that have her paintings on them. A portion of the proceeds from the sales of her wearable art and artwork with animals in them goes to HSSV. Sonya is so generous AND she has great stuff!

3) "Pawfectionz", jewelry and crafts by Alexis Grenzer, inspired by her little muse, the darling chihuahua named Frida (adopted from HSSV) is next on my list. I simply must purchase a pair of silver earrings with little beagles on them for my friend who has a little beagle/basset mix. Alexis' wares are beautiful and creative. She also does jewelry in resin and many other types of materials.

4) Handknitted scarves by Homa Adelkhani will be the perfect gift for my friend Cassie. She has a little dog who won't wear sweaters, but will wear scarves, and I'm going to get a matching one for her to wear when she and her pup go out together. The scarves are gorgeous and not like anything I've ever seen - silky strands intermingled with boiled wool. Amazing, delicate and one-of-a-kind.

5) For my friend Judith, who amazingly has managed to get a foxhound, rabbit and chihuahua to all live together peaceably together (how on earth did she figure that out?).... a pair of "More Rabbit Pottery Mugs" from Gray Rabbit - great handpainted mugs with a whimsical feel.

I could go on and on...but I want to leave you with a little nugget of info. The prized raffle item of the day? Some lucky shopper will win the ultimate gift - to keep for him or herself, or to give away - a bronze-plated brick that will be permanently displayed at the new Animal Community Center where all sorts of amazing life-saving goes on.

Make sure to join us this Saturday, December 5th, for HSSV's first Animal Arts and Crafts Faire. Holiday Shopping that helps to save lives is the coolest.

P.S. For Delilah's new people: Rachel is knitting a beautiful little dress for your sweet girl. It's going to be mostly pink and Rachel is using recycled silk from saris. It's gorgeous, delicate and perfect for your little girl!