More than just an office space

Published 10:11 pm Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The impact humane societies, ASPCA chapters and other animal shelters have in a community can sometimes be overlooked.

What these organizations do is greater than keeping strays off the streets — they save lives and bring happiness only furry friends can deliver.

The Suffolk Humane Society’s work goes even farther with its mission statement to “end euthanasia as a means to control pet overpopulation in Suffolk.”

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For the past four years, Suffolk Humane has worked to find new homes for homeless cats and dogs, to encourage responsible pet owning and to promote humane treatment of animals.

Unfortunately, that work will be hindered if they do not find a new office before June 1, when they must vacated their current space in Driver.

They need the space for storage of pet-related items such as toys and food for the animals they care for.

More importantly, their office provides a temporary home for animals preparing for adoption.

Currently, there are seven adult cats, four 8-week-old kittens and three infant kittens that were born Sunday, April 17, who call the office home.

Lee Murphy, the director of adoptions and fosters for Suffolk Humane, said the cats can stay at the office while they wait to be sent to PetSmart to be adopted.

They can stay a few weeks to a couple of months, depending on health, temperament and other factors.

But the payoff has been huge.

They have found homes for 78 cats since January — that’s 20 more than they had adopted out by this time last year.

Additionally, more than 190 Suffolk Humane cats were adopted from PetSmart stores last year while they found owners for more than 60 from Suffolk Animal Control.

Suffolk Humane also works with Animal Control to find homes for dogs and puppies, but because dogs require more space and attention, they stay at Animal Control until they find their forever homes.

This time of year especially busy for Suffolk Humane because it is the time dogs and cats give birth.

In addition to the new kittens, another one of Suffolk Humane’s cats is very pregnant.

Suffolk Humane works to match these animals with owners and spreads happiness is the process.

It should not go unnoticed how happy a little girl can be getting a new kitten or a married couple finding the perfect dog.

There is a joy that only an animal can bring to lives, and Suffolk Humane works to make that happen while saving lives in the process.

It is of paramount importance they have the space to work out of to continue their adoptions and save the lives of animals that cannot protect themselves.

Kay Hurley, Suffolk Humane’s director of community outreach, said they want to keep the momentum they have and hope to continue in the right direction.

Going without an office would hinder that goal.

They need an animal-friendly space with at least 500 square feet and a few parking spaces.

If you know of a space that Suffolk Humane could use, call 538-3030 and leave a message, call Hurley directly at 377-8816 or send an email to