A Dumfries-based non-profit has its sights set on helping homeless animals find a home.
The Prince William Humane Society, a community partner with the Prince William County Animal Shelter, was founded in 2012.
“We started out as a fundraising organization to help the shelter with getting their animals adopted and out the door, healthy and alive,” said Prince William Humane Society Founder and President Lori Leary.
Last year, it opened an Adopt Shop at 17983 Dumfries Shopping Plaza.
The shop offers a welcome center, outside dog park and community cat room that can house up to 10 cats.
“We feel that this is a better environment for the homeless pets,” Leary said. “It’s bright and cheerful, and it’s open.”
While the Prince William Humane Society does receive most of its cats and dogs from the Prince William Animal Shelter, the two organizations are run separately.
The animal shelter is a county agency that is a part of the Prince William County Police Department.
The Prince William Humane Society is a “animal welfare organization.”
“Our mission is to get as many animals as we can adopted, to teach people about animals and how to treat them,” Leary said.
The humane society is focused on matching homeless animals with the right family.
“We don’t just let people walk in the door and say, ‘I want that one,’ and walk out the door,” Leary said. “We ask a lot of questions, and make sure that they’re actually going to be a good fit and have the right environment for the pets in our care.”
The Prince William Humane Society offers several adoption programs, including Seniors 4 Seniors and Warrior Buddies.
It offers enrichment programs, as well.
For one of its programs, “Running with the Big Dogs,” runners from local high school track teams sign out dogs and run with them for 30 minutes after school or on weekends.
“It’s really good for the animals, it’s good for the kids because they get a chance to do some community service,” Leary said. “And our animals get really great exercise.”
The organizations has various volunteer opportunities available.
In addition to dog walkers and runners, the Prince William Humane Society is looking for community members who can serve as adoption counselors or “cat cuddlers.”
It is also seeking volunteers who can help with administrative tasks, provide assistance at events, and foster animals.
Those interested in getting involved can contact the Prince William Humane Society Adopt Shop at 703-634-0880.
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