We are all another decade older. Hopefully, that means wiser, braver and more forgiving. I was barely 30 years old when I started PETS and you all know my story. If not, you can read it here. I learned quickly what it took to run a business (80+ hour work weeks), what it took to offer safe/quality care at a high volume (the best veterinarians and techs on planet earth), and the importance of relationships and customer service (thanks to my extraordinary volunteers) but it took me much longer to become the leader my team needed and I am a work in progress.
Animal Welfare is hard and we all come into it because we want to help the animals but caring for the people that directly do so is just as important and it means much more than making up rules or being a boss. I have a long list of professional goals for the next decade but at the top of that list will be a personal goal of being the best leader I can for the people I depend on to make our dreams come true. Nothing we have accomplished or will accomplish would happen without them.
I like to kick off my end of the year blog with our total number of surgeries:
63,991! This number represents everything we stand for: Preventing Euthanasia Through Sterilization.
Our primary veterinarian’s mother made this board for me many years ago as a Christmas gift and having my picture made in front of it each year makes my heart swell with pride. Though I stand alone by this number, our success is 100% a result of the incredible team that makes PETS what it is. 63,991 spays and neuters to date. That means almost 1 million unwanted litters have been prevented in our community and surrounding areas. This does not include the 616 surgeries our team performed in Graham or the 2074 surgeries P.E.T.S. Clinic of Amarillo knocked out in just 4 months of being open. We are also very excited to report that Amarillo’s hard work in 2019 did not go unnoticed, they were awarded some unexpected grant funding to better serve their community in 2020.
We have so much to be thankful for this year! Not only did our family grow to include some of the biggest hearts in Texas that just happen to all live in Amarillo but with the incredible generosity of our community we finished our capital campaign. Our new building should be ready by June of 2020 and we will be able to serve Wichita Falls in new, improved ways including expanded hours and services, private exam rooms, and handicap accessibility. To learn more, check out our Capital Campaign web page.
During 2019 our little clinic that could spayed and neutered 7,546 cats and dogs. We saw 19,350 cats and dogs for preventative care services. We performed 1,848 surgeries for feral/free-roaming cats for free and 2,057 spays and neuters for $10.00 or less. We assisted 246 pets with vet care by either helping ourselves or paying for services at a local full service vet clinic. We sent 708 dogs to New York who would not be alive today without our PETS Underdog Express program and the absolutely fabulous donors and fosters that make that program possible. Lastly, our Chain-Off team completed a 6 month long project at Faith Refuge so that pets no longer have to be left behind when women need shelter and time to rebuild their lives.
It was a fantastic year but we think 2020 will be even better!
Here is what is to come!
January 1, Crime Stoppers of Wichita Falls will begin including an Animal Cruelty Division meaning our residents will now be paid to do the right thing. If you see cruelty in the form of abuse, torture, dog or cock fighting, say something by calling (940) 322-9888 or electronically at https://www.wfcrime.com/
You can make our city safer for animals (not just dogs and cats), earn a reward AND remain anonymous. This is a huge step forward for our city and definitely starts 2020 off on the right paw, hoof, and foot.
January will be a busy month as we will begin providing transport services to Vernon, Texas with plans to open our second satellite clinic at the Wilbarger Humane Society as soon as possible. You see, Texas has a BIG problem. In 2018, we killed the most companion animals of any state in the US. Considering there are countless states and cities that do not have to kill for space, we know we can do better. Making sure quality low-cost spays/neuters and preventative care is accessible to everyone is the only solution to our state wide problem so that is what we will do.
While we anxiously await the completion of our new building, we are very pleased to announce that we will be opening our second independent branch. P.E.T.S. Clinic of Lubbock hopes to open its doors in March of 2020. This is a community full of amazing supporters that have tirelessly worked to raise the money necessary to provide Lubbock and surrounding areas with a quality low-cost option for spays, neuters and preventative care. We cannot wait to introduce you to their team and show off their new clinic.
Animal-Friendly Wichita Falls
As for Wichita Falls, we have a plan to make our community more pet friendly this means pet friendly businesses, community spaces, increased pet-friendly housing and consideration for pets with human service organizations. Pets are part of the family and should be included when a family needs help. We want to put Wichita Falls on the map as a pet-friendly city and we believe animal lovers like yourself will help us do so and enjoy the result!
We have a two week break to rest, reflect and restore. Our teams will resume our great work January 6th. We hope you have a wonderful holiday in whatever way is wonderful to you. We are very grateful to each and every one of you for your support whether you donate food, money, or supplies. We are grateful for those of you that bless us with your business and tell others about us. We love meeting your pets and watching them grow over the years. We are thankful for those of you that live our message by spaying, neutering and adopting and encouraging others to do the same. Because of you, PETS will turn 13 in 2020. Because of you, we will be in a new building locally and in more cities throughout Texas. It started right here in Wichita Falls because of YOU! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your loved ones (furry, feather, and not).