Early on after the governor enacted stay-at-home orders, we became aware that a number of our feral cat and kitten volunteers were continuing to rescue abandoned kittens, but without the support that area shelters usually provided. They worried about the costs to spay and neuter the kittens when those services opened again. We budgeted $10,000 to cover the costs of spaying and neutering the kittens and reimbursed the foster volunteers when they were finally able to get the kittens fixed.
In August, we worked with the Rio Linda Feral Help Group to bring the Elevation Animal Rescue Mobile Clinic to Rio Linda for several weeks. Friends also paid $8,600 to spay and neuter 311 cats and kittens.
We spent over $1,000 for dog coats so pets belonging to the homeless would have some protection against the cold. A fabulous community activist who works with the homeless and their animals distributed those coats.
At the request of Loaves & Fishes, we spent almost $2,000 for flea collars for dogs and cats belonging to the homeless. We also budgeted money for vaccinations and medical care.
We donated to organizations that are doing good for animals in our community, including $10,000 each to the Community Spay Neuter Clinic and the Coalition for Community Cats. We also paid for a free Feral Cat Free Spay/Neuter Day in the new year at the Community Spay Neuter Clinic.
Friends continued to pay for necropsies for animals whose death is suspicious. This provides critical evidence for the DA’s Animal Cruelty Prosecution Unit to investigate and prosecute animal abuse and neglect.
We spent more than $1,000 so seven of Sacramento’s Animal Care Officers could meet standards under California’s Certified Animal Control Officer Standards Act, including training in animal care to properly identify disease, injury, and neglect in pets and livestock.
All the while, our nine-person board of directors along with our shelter’s manager, donated $5,000 to a matching fund for the Big Day of Giving, and another $5,000 matching fund for Giving Tuesday. Several of our board members have contributed or are responsible for bringing in several thousand dollars each to Friends just this year.
We are always on the lookout to help the greater community. If you have ideas to improve animal welfare in our community in 2021, we would like to hear them. Just saying thanks is not enough to express our gratitude (and the gratitude of the animals) for all you’ve helped us accomplish in 2020!