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Published: Friday, 2/15/2013

2 animal welfare groups pool efforts

Sandusky and Port Clinton organizations cooperating


PORT CLINTON — Two animal-welfare groups are working together to help each other and better serve the animals in their care.

The Erie County Humane Society, Sandusky, and Island Safe Harbor Animal Sanctuary, Port Clinton, have begun sending dogs and supplies back and forth between the agencies.

“We have always had the same vision of how our types of facilities should band together with a bigger voice to all,” said Nancy Benevento-Brown, founder and chief executive officer of the sanctuary, 3620 E. State Rd., Port Clinton. “Especially to the children, by teaching them that animals are not disposable.”

The humane society provides a temporary home for dogs and cats until a permanent home is found. The sanctuary offers adoptions, but also serves as a permanent home for special-needs animals, including those with physical problems.

When the shelters have space, the two groups have agreed to accept animals from each other, said Barbara Hargreaves, director of the Erie County Humane Society, 1911 Superior St., Sandusky. The humane society took four dogs from the sanctuary that recently had been rescued from puppy mills.

The sanctuary took two dogs from the humane society that needed rehabilitation.

“We were able to rehabilitate them and get them adopted to wonderful homes,” Ms. Benevento-Brown said.

The shelters also share supplies and ideas.

The humane society donated canned dog food, collars, and cat litter to the sanctuary while the sanctuary told the humane society about a software program that it could use that would help its operations run more efficiently.

“Euthanasia in either of our organizations is very seldom done,” Ms. Hargreaves said. “We have no term limits at the humane society, nor does Nancy at the sanctuary."

The humane society sometimes refers pet owners who want to surrender their pets to the sanctuary.

“After a certain age, they do not do well in our shelter environment,” Ms. Hargreaves said. “Nancy has a different setup, which provides more housing room per animal.”

Contact Tanya Irwin at: tirwin@theblade.com or 419-724-6066.

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