To our many donors and sponsors, Friends of Front Street Shelter offers our heartfelt thanks for your continuing support – support that has allowed Friends to provide extraordinary help to improve the cause of animal welfare in our region.
Undoubtedly, 2021 was another challenging year for Friends. COVID continued to block the return of one big in-person fundraiser in June, Front Street Brewfest, but with widespread availability of vaccines, a pared-down Paws to Party returned in October. Despite these challenges, our donors continued to be generous, allowing us to provide unprecedented assistance to pets and the humans who love them.
Medical care continues to be our biggest need, whether it’s shelter animals with life-threatening injuries and illnesses, or owners who face the prospect of surrendering beloved pets to area shelters because veterinary care is beyond their means – a situation exacerbated by the ravages of COVID. Your dollars provided more than a quarter-million dollars for medical care in 2021.
A nationwide shortage of veterinarians has heavily impacted the ability to spay and neuter shelter pets, owned animals, and feral cats. Nevertheless, you made it possible for us to spend more than $130,000 to spay and neuter hundreds of animals at area clinics. These efforts include an ongoing feral cat clinic that can accommodate as many at 50 cats weekly at the Community Spay Neuter Clinic at a cost of $10,000 to $15,000 every month.
Recognizing that rescue groups provide a critical safety net to help save shelter animals, your dollars funded cash grants to rescues that save animals with medical or behavioral issues that would otherwise present difficult fundraising challenges to cover costs. We also donated to and sponsored fundraisers for rescues and other animal-welfare organizations to assure their continuing vitality, including rescues that specialize in difficult-to-adopt dog breeds, community cats, and even the rescue of injured wildlife. We devoted almost $35,000 to rescues and other organizations and are expanding our efforts in 2022 as long as you make it possible.
The Front Street Animal Shelter initiated free, monthly vaccination and microchip clinics to ensure that all families have access to this crucial care. Your donations paid contract veterinarians to provide the state-mandated supervision of these clinics. In addition, you provided funding for contract vets and registered vet techs when needed in the shelter’s medical operations to ensure that Front Street is always able to provide quality care to shelter animals. Along the same line, our donors allowed us to improve medical care in the shelter by funding a dental x-ray to bring this needed care in-shelter rather than relying solely on outside veterinary care. Together, these initiatives cost more than $30,000.
We spent nearly $20,000 in 2021 to ensure that pets belonging to persons experiencing homelessness and other disadvantaged individuals and families receive pet care along with their own health care. Your dollars bought vaccines, microchips, flea and tick collars, leashes, dental chews, and more.
Your dollars accomplished so much more that we don’t have the space to list all of the innovative initiatives that you make possible. But to mention just a couple more, we’re especially excited to be funding the new AdoptUs, hospice adoption program. Your dollars reimburse ongoing medical costs for adopters willing to take in senior pets and pets with terminal diseases that still have lives to live and just need a comfortable and loving home for the remainder of their days. We support Front Street’s Kitten Connection that allows volunteers to respond to reports of feral cats with kittens, allowing Animal Control Officers to focus on more pressing demands.
We believe 2022 should see a return to a semblance of normalcy for Friends and our devoted supporters. We’re planning a return to the Front Street Brewfest on June 18, a blast of a block party on Front Street in front of the shelter. Our Paws to Party, Howl-O-Ween Edition, will return on October 29 at the California Automobile Museum across the street from the shelter. We’re looking forward to seeing you there or at other offsite events we’ll be sponsoring throughout the year,
But we’d also like to hear from you. We’re always looking for opportunities to meet the most-pressing animal-welfare needs in the greater community. If you have ideas, let us know