Mohawk Hudson Humane Society Launches Pet Behavior Helpline to Offer Free Professional Advice, Helps Keep Pets at Home
The Mohawk Hudson Humane Society (MHHS) has launched a Behavior and Enrichment Helpline (BAEH) for pet owners. This free service provides training and behavior tips and solutions to common pet challenges with the aim of enhancing relationships and ultimately keeping animal companions with the families who love them. It is one of three programs under “Loved for Life,” a collection of community services targeted at pet retention.
“Every day we meet families struggling with some aspect of caring for their pets. Often it is behavioral or financial in nature. Many want to keep their pets, but if they don’t know where to turn for help, they might make the heartbreaking decision to give them up. Our goal is to give pet owners the resources and confidence to work through challenges so their pets won’t become homeless,” said MHHS CEO, Ashley Jeffrey Bouck.
While the Society has always provided follow-up support for adopters, the BAEH brings the benefits of staff expertise to the entire community. Questions are answered by the Society’s accredited trainers and staff who have an abundance of firsthand experience with a wide range of issues – from basics of new pet ownership, such as crate training and housebreaking – to more complex challenges, such as separation anxiety and litterbox misuse.
“Behavior and enrichment are very closely connected,” says Director of Behavior and Enrichment, Nancy Haynes. “A dog that is destructive is bored and needs outlets for that energy and frustration. Exercise and play are positive ways to redirect that activity. We effectively use these techniques all the time in the shelter and are eager to share them to help pets in homes.”
Consultation requests are made through an online form at https://mohawkhumane.org/behavior-helpline, by email at [email protected] or for those without a computer, by calling 518-434-8128, ext. 201. Responses will be provided within 48 hours. Helpline staffers may also recommend additional resources, such as articles, webinars, group or private training classes (both offered by the Foundation) or veterinary care.
‘Loved for Life’ programs also include spay/neuter and wellness services and a pet food pantry. Low-cost spay/neuter and wellness services are offered at the Menands Animal Care Center, located at 3 Oakland Avenue, and the Saratoga Spay/Neuter Clinic, located at 4255 Route 50. In addition to spay and neuter surgeries for dogs, cats and rabbits, pet owners who income qualify can receive healthy pet services, such as vaccinations, testing for heartworm in dogs and feline leukemia/FIV in cats, microchipping, flea treatment and more.
The Furry Friends Pet Food Pantry, sponsored by Goldstein Auto Group, is also available in Menands and Saratoga. The use of this program has risen dramatically since the start of the pandemic. (In 2019, just over 53,000 pet meals were provided. Year to date, the number is over 208,000 pet meals.) Deliveries by volunteers are also offered on an emergency basis for those unable to get to the shelter. The pantry is stocked through donations and available to anyone needing help feeding their pet.
More details on the Society’s programs and services are available at https://mohawkhumane.org/.