December 3, 2016

Stray Hearts Animal Shelter Says, “I Know Jo”, Do You?

Stray Hearts GalleryBy Jo Mixon

This week our featured I Know Jo business is Stray Hearts Animal Shelter With Stray Arts 2nd-Hand Gallery

Man’s best friend, woman’s constant companion, a child’s first responsibility in caring for another living being, our animal fur friends seem to jump into the hearts of those who adopt them into their families. I spent time yesterday with Dave Noll, Executive Director of Stray Hearts Animal Shelter in Taos. This non-profit organization, run on a bare minimum staff, depends largely on countless volunteers and donations. The shelter itself consists of a main building and several “pod” buildings that I thought were greenhouses. Who knew? These out buildings house wonderfully large kennels for the animals to stay in at the shelter while they wait for you to come adopt them. Stray Hearts has the capacity to house 75 adult dogs and 50 adult cats, as well as puppies and kittens. I received a tour through the shelter as workers and volunteers alike cared for and generally loved on these animals. What an impressive operation! Operations manager Cynthia Shafin, and Anna-Lisa, Julie, and Miranda were happy to tell me of their various and constant fund raising efforts and adoption events. Check out our Chamber Calendar of Events for information or the Taos newspaper for details.

I also went to the Stray Arts Gallery, a second hand Art Gallery where 100% of the profits are given to the Stray Hearts Animal Shelter. Dave explained to me that the gallery opened in Nov. 2009 after the Board of Directors had tossed around the idea of a second hand store to help supplement the shelter financially. But they knew of many other second hand stores in Taos. Tom Wheeler, an artist on the board suggested a second hand Art Gallery. Thus Stray Arts was born. In the store you’ll find works from artists from all over the world. They have original artwork, some of which has never been sold at another gallery. They have jewelry, pottery, collectibles, cards, t-shirts, and a donation jar. The Stray Arts Gallery is managed by Rake Satori and an all volunteer staff. Approximately 90% of the artwork is donated and about 10% is on consignment.

Stray Hearts Shelter and Stray Arts Gallery welcome donations. And they would love for you to volunteer. They need pet walkers, kennel cleaners, office help, sales people at the gallery, etc. etc. They also really invite you out to adopt a pet! The cost is approximately $100. for a dog and $75. for a cat. The costs pertain to the shots that the shelter provides, neutering, the check-ups and any surgery they may have required when they get to the shelter, vaccinations, room and board, etc. They will also provide your pet a micro chip for $10.00 if you adopt, $20.00 for the public.

Adjacent to the shelter at 1200 St. Francis, they have opened the only “Off Leash Pet Park” in Taos. Oct. 15th will be a fund raising event, Bark in the Park, to raise money for its landscaping. It is free and open to the public! Go visit, go volunteer, go buy art, go adopt a pet!

For more information please call 575-758-2981 or visit www.strayhearts.org.

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