Humane Society More Than a Training Ground for Dogs
Published on March 27, 2014 by Tiffany Coleman
(MERIDIAN)Â More bark than bite. From the moment you step into the Meridian Valley Humane SocietyÂ (MVHS) until the second you leave, one thing is clear: an all-out effort is being made to ensure that the animals passing through here are given every chance of survival. On any given day, the facility houses a dozen dogs that give every visitor a woof of a welcome. While the dogs are all here for a variety of different reasons, there is one common thread. The humane society is more than just a training ground for dogs. It is for people, too.
On this day, students in the Intro to Veterinary Technology class at Broadview University are taking what they have learned in class and applying it to the real world. Ear cleanings, nail trims, restraint practice; you name it, they are doing it. Two-by-two, the students team up to tackle the dogs one-by-one.
â€śThis one isnâ€™t a big fan of restraint,â€ť one of the students says while watching a somewhat tame-looking dog try to escape with an alligator-type roll.
â€śMake sure you keep him in a lateral recumbency position,â€ť their instructor, Heather Williams, says. More simply put, that means lying on oneâ€™s side.
But no matter how it is said, what it means or how instructions to do it are given, all work being done here is appreciated by those who volunteer to keep this place up and running.
â€śMVHS is a 100 percent volunteer-run adventure,â€ť Nadine Salee, a volunteer, said. â€śOur primary focus is to make sure every dog that comes through here is safe, taken care of and, ultimately, adoptable.â€ť
Salee says the shelter, which has a capacity of up to 15 kennels, is just about full all of the time.
â€śThe longest a dog ever stays here is about three weeks,â€ť she says. â€śThey certainly donâ€™t stay here long. People in Meridian are really good when it comes to adopting animals.â€ť
MVHS started up in 2007 as a nonprofit organization. The facility works to provide foster care, training, veterinary care and adoption programs for dogs whose owners are no longer able to care for them and must give them up. The dogs come from a variety of places and for a variety of reasons, including: military personnel who are transferring duty stations, other shelters and rescues up for euthanasia.
â€śBy donating our time and services here today, it is my hope that this exposure will encourage students to come back and volunteer,â€ť Williams said. â€śDoing this will give them an opportunity to do even more down the road. Plus, it helps them to apply their in-class learning.â€ť