Established in 1965, HAWS assists over 6,000 animals and welcomes more than 31,000 human visitors annually. As an "open admissions" shelter we lead the community in animal welfare and assure sanctuary for all animals in need, regardless of age, health or temperament. HAWS is a non-profit, entirely donor-fund organization with an active humane education program, and both wildlife and companion animal rescue services for Waukesha County.
HAWS License #267280-DS
This weekend marks the unofficial beginning of the summer season. At HAWS we’re already in the midst of another unofficial beginning – that of “kitten season.”
There aren’t any songs written about it, no greeting cards to buy and send, no notation on the calendar. But every year about this time HAWS can count on being inundated with kittens. Nature has worked it out this way and we’re just going to roll with it!
Battening down the hatches for this truly blessed event means stockpiling cat litter and kitten food and formula, collecting donations of towels and blankets, signing up as many foster homes as possible, getting our volunteer corps braced for the extra cleaning and adoptions staff ready for the uptick in visitors and adoptions. We even hold a Kitten Shower to celebrate (Saturday, June 15th).
(Here’s the part where I “make the ask”: we’d be grateful for your donation! When you’re out shopping in the next few weeks, can you pick up an extra bag of litter or food, or a canister of KMR formula for HAWS? Or, if you just want to allocate a few dollars for us to do the shopping we’d be happy to oblige!)
Meanwhile, back at the blog…
On Monday we had more than 100 kittens in foster homes. On Tuesday that count was down to 86 as several dozen came back ready for adoption! By this evening the in-foster-care number will again change. And again on Wednesday morning, and again on Wednesday evening. You get the idea – so if YOU want to join the foster family ranks, call Kelly at our shelter for info or click on over to our Foster Home Application. We’ll provide the supplies and kittens, you provide the love. Warm fuzzy alert!
Happy Summer, everyone! And happy Kitten Season, too!
By the way – as much as we love kittens, they are symptomatic of the still great problem of pet overpopulation in our County. The many rural areas are fertile breeding grounds for thousands of cats. Please help save a life by sponsoring a spay! And if you know someone who has a cat colony on their property, or just too many cats and could use HAWS’ free Project Guardian spay-neuter service, let us know! Thank you.
Get those rodents running at HAWS May 19th at the Rodent Rally!
Come to our shelter at 701 Northview Road, Waukesha, this Sunday for a one-of-a-kind event for anyone who has a rodent of any kind - including rats, mice, hamsters and gerbils! (Altho you should leave your rodent friend at home where they will be more comfortable.)
Special Rodent Rally guest speaker Nicole Waliszewski, DVM, of Brook-Falls Vet Hospital & Exotic Care will take the podium at 12:30pm to discuss common health concerns and treatments. Your questions are encouraged – and we know you have them. Also covered will be proper small pet housing and the all-important complete little pet diet.
Admission to HAWS' Rodent Rally is FREE, but donations to HAWS' Small Animal Fund are greatly appreciated.
While you’re here, stop by and say hello to our Roborovski Dwarf Hamsters currently available for adoption! The girls are Itsy, Bitsy, Teenie and Tiny, and the boys are Isaac and Newton. Since they love being together they should be adopted either as groups or in pairs. Robo Hamsters are very active and always on the move – they enjoy hanging out together and scampering around non-stop exploring the fun stuff in their habitats! They are very difficult to hold probably wouldn’t do well with children, but they do not typically bite and are quite friendly.
By the way – have you gotten the kids signed up for Kids ‘N Critters Summer Day Camp yet?!
Spring has taken a while to arrive, but it does feel good now that it has finally arrived. With spring, in come the kittens, the stray dogs and wildlife. HAWS’ Animal Rescue Team is busy on the road!
Stray dogs “happen.” They sneak out when the kids run out the door, they find open gates and go for walks in the spring sunshine – just like we do. A friendly dog looks for company where ever it can find it, so with more people outside, more dogs are enticed into excursions. I own huskies that are opportunists, and will run just for the joy of it! If you are not quick at the gate, the chase is on. Stray dogs happen. The most diligent owner can be challenged.
I continue to be amazed at the number of dogs that come to us that do not have any identification on them. Microchips are great BUT they cannot be read by the general public. A dog tag is an affordable and simple means to have your dog returned to you. Often, if it is a friendly dog, the finder will call you directly, preventing a trip to the shelter.
A few ideas for simple insurance:
• Get TWO tags: put them on separate rings so if 1 ring fails you will still have another tag.
• Check your tags on a regular basis.
• Put your CELL PHONE number on the tags! There are two sides to most tags, so fill them up with numbers. You will probably be out looking for your dog, so the cell phone number is the most important.
• Consider putting a number on the tags that is for a relative or your dog sitter in case your family is out of town and your dog gets loose.
• You can write your cell phone number ON the collar with a permanent marker if you have a nylon collar of a lighter color; more insurance if the tags come off!
• Microchips are a good, permanent form of identification. They prove ownership. If you have a microchip, does it have the correct contact information associated with it? This is a good time to update that. Often we will call in a chip, contact the number and find out the phone isn’t current or the owners have moved from the listed address…or the dog no longer even belongs to them!
Spring. It’s a good time to check on tags and update all information. Take a walk and meet the neighbors so they know who your dog is. Be prepared; maximize the chances of your dog getting returned and minimize the chances of them getting away. Nothing takes the place of supervision and leashes, but if the worst happens, tags and microchips will help your dog get home.
By the way – your dog would love to come with you to HAWS 30th Anniversary Pet Walkathon, this Saturday…!
HAWS and the Friends of HAWS fundraising group have announced the “starting line-up” of activities for the 30th Annual Pet Walkathon on May 4th to benefit the Waukesha shelter.
The event runs from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Sussex Village Park, south of Main Street/Silver Spring Drive in Sussex.
The day features something for everyone – pets and their people!
Pre-Game / 9:00am: National Anthem & Blessing of the Animals
1st Inning / 9:30am: Featured Breed
2nd Inning / 10:00am: Award Presentations - Diana Boettcher Youth Community Kindness
Award and the $10K Behavior Matching Grant Challenge
3rd Inning / 10:45am: Sing Our Jingle Contest Winners perform
4th Inning / 10:30am: Treibball Demo
5th Inning / 11:00am: HAWS’ K9 Clicks & Tricks Brigade performance
6th Inning / 11:30am: Parade of HAWS Adoptable Pets and HAWS Alumni
7th Inning Stretch/Noon: Bobbing for hotdogs (dogs), Baseball piñata contest (kids)
8th Inning / 12:30pm: Pet Contests - Best pet trick, Fastest tail-wager
9th Inning / 1:00pm: Musical bases - "musical chairs" game for dogs