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Season of Wishes: Pups, kitties hope for warm Christmas season, too

LAUREN WOOD/THE NATCHEZ DEMOCRAT — Karly Johnson plays with a kitten named Jumper Wednesday afternoon at the Natchez-Adams County Humane Society.

NATCHEZ — Just over a month ago, a 1-year-old hound dog, covered in mange and fleas and in major need of medical help was dropped off at the Natchez-Adams County Humane Society shelter.

The then-hairless and severely underweight dog was in such need of help the staff at the animal shelter knew only a Christmas miracle could save the dog.

Knowing the medical cost were going to be more than the shelter could afford, humane society board member Linda Kennon asked the public for help.

They responded.

Now the pup, named Chris in honor of Christmas, is well on his way to recovery and close to being adopted, and Kennon said it was all thanks to people’s generosity.

Since the shelter received Chris, Kennon said more than $800 has been spent on bringing the dog back to a healthy state.

“The shelter couldn’t handle all of the bills for Chris,” Kennon said. “What we spent on him could have helped up to 10 animals.

“Only through donations was it possible to save him.”

Kennon said people sent money, food, sweaters and even a bed.

Unfortunately, stories like Chris’ don’t end so happily. Kennon said of the 75-100 dogs and 50-65 cats the shelter has on hand any given day, not all can be saved or adopted. Some even have to be euthanized.

“Sometimes the number gets higher, but we try not to let it get that way,” Kennon said. “People from as far as Monterey, Jonesville and Meadville come here to drop animals off.

“We shouldn’t be doing that, but we are not going to turn animals away if we have room.”

The shelter runs on a yearly budget of $175,000. Kennon said the City of Natchez and Adams County contribute $25,000 each, and the remaining $125,000 comes in the form of donations.

“All the money we receive is used toward operation expenses,” Kennon said. “We’ve done the best we can.”

Kennon said the shelter is always in need of items like blankets of cages and dog houses, hay for bedding, treats and toys and food.

“We always need food,” Kennon said. “We take Purina puppy and dog chow and any kind of canned dog food.

“We also need dry or canned cat food and cat litter.”

Cleaning supplies are also a major need. Kennon said the shelter uses Clorox, lemon Pine Sol, paper towels, latex gloves and Dawn dish washing liquid.

Monetary donations can be mailed to NACHS, P.O. Box 549, Natchez, MS, 39121 or dropped off at its location on 392 Liberty Road.

The annual Christmas fundraising party is from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday at the site of the future NACHS on 475 Liberty Road.

Hamburger plates will be sold for $25 each, with all of the proceeds going to the general fund and the floor plans for the new building are going to be unveiled.

“We are hoping to break ground at the first of next year,” Kennon said. “It will be bigger and have new equipment.

The shelter is open for adoptions from 2 to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. Adoption fees are $45 for dogs and puppies and $35 cats and kittens, which covers the cost of getting the animal neutered or spayed.

To adopt an animal, call 601-442-4001 or go to www.natchezpetadoptions.org.

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