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Weyburn Humane Society has big challenges in past year

The Weyburn Humane Society faced some large challenges in the past year, members heard at their annual meeting on Wednesday evening.
The new board and executive for the Weyburn Humane Society gathered following their annual meeting on Wednesday evening at the Travelodge Hotel. In the back row are treasurer Joel Johnson, new president Randy Bakaluk, fundraising co-chair Naomi Happy, Gail Paxman, Sandy Johnson, new vice-president Bev Paul and Vanessa Lucyk. In front are secretary Lisa Webb, Collette Bisaillon, fundraising co-chair Korryn Kubashek and shelter manager Colleen Morrice. Board members missing from the photo are John Nolin and Janice Carson.

WEYBURN – The Weyburn Humane Society faced some large challenges in the past year, members heard at their annual meeting on Wednesday evening, starting with pipes bursting last January, and the largest number of animals in the past decade coming through the animal shelter.

The Humane Society saw all board positions filled and a new executive chosen at the annual meeting, with Randy Bakaluk stepping in as the new president after the society had been without anyone in this position in the past year.

The year began in January with the pipes bursting and causing a lot of damage, including a loss of some $12,000 in food for the animals.

Over the course of the year, a total of 420 animals were taken into the shelter, including 171 dogs and 249 cats, plus 18 pups and 18 kittens were born at the shelter.

There were 117 dogs running at large in the past year, and 46 cats, with seven dogs found dead, and 33 cats. The Humane Society saw 93 dogs adopted this year, and 133 cats.

Shelter manager Colleen Morrice, who also acts as the animal control officer, noted the police brought in 10 dogs and 11 cats, plus she took custody of 57 dogs and 79 cats as the control officer.

She noted also that of 93 dogs which were at the shelter, only 60 people came in to claim their animals, leaving 33 unclaimed dogs.

The population at the animal shelter at the end of the fiscal year was eight dogs and 79 cats, although as of the day of the AGM, there were 19 dogs in the shelter.

The shelter is in constant need of food for the animals, and Morrice noted they received about $13,743 worth of cat and dog food over the year, but they had lost about $12,000 worth in the flood of a year ago from the burst pipes.

The Humane Society receives about $2,700 a month from the City for doing the animal control in the city, plus about $250 a month for food for the animals, and the City pays the taxes and utilities for the shelter at their current location.

In addition, Wal-Mart provides a grant of $2,869 each year towards dog and cat food, said Morrice, and they used to provide kitty litter, but no longer stock the brand that they like using, so they have been getting wood pellets from Canadian Tire for that purpose.

Other outlets also help them out for food and litter, including the Wholesale Club and Pet Valu stores, noted Morrice.

She pointed out she has fielded a number of calls from people who can’t afford pet food, and said they’ve had a surplus in the past from which they could help people, but this year that isn’t available. She has sent people on to the Salvation Army for assistance, and isn’t sure if they are able to get help there, but did note the Salvation Army has always been good to the Humane Society.

The financial statement for the fiscal year, which runs from October 2021 to the end of September of 2022, saw the Humane Society take in total income of $319,204, with expenses totalling $205,501, for a net income of $113,603 on the year.

Other members of the executive include Bev Paul as the vice-president, Lisa Webb as secretary, Joel Johnson as the treasurer, and Naomi Happy and Korryn Kubashek as co-chairs of the fundraising committee. Other board members include Gail Paxman, Vanessa Lucyk, Collette Bisaillon, John Nolin and Janice Carson.