Wednesday, June 29, 2016

My life with my HATS friends and staff.

I am proud of where I live. There are great people who work at the shelter, wanting only the best for myself and other four legged friends who live here. This open admission shelter cannot pick and choose what acquaintances come to live with me. Unlike private shelters, we take in all Isabella County dogs and cats regardless of their behavior or medical condition. What that means is the awesome staff tries to save all medically treatable and behaviorally rehabilitative animals that come to stay until their forever home is found. About two or three challenged animals come in per week along with pets who are just like me- a cat without a family. Some of the issues I have seen range from normal aging issues to being hit by a car, being heartworm positive, eye problems or kittens being removed from their mothers. I have seen it all in my time living here. My friends are given lots of love and time to heal while they wait for their time to be adopted.

Our budget to care for my fellow cats and dogs comes completely from our wonderful donors and grants. My buddies are now living at the shelter through no fault of their own. Sometimes my new friends are very scared and confused so I hang out with them and show them the ropes. The staff works hard to help us look forward to a new life with lots of love, positive attention and training to be the best pet possible. Over time our broken hearts and loneliness are mended as our staff has a special way with woofs and meows. Everyday of the week, staff is at the shelter filling our water and food dishes, walking those noisy dogs and making sure we are all ok. We are excited to see them each morning and enjoy the quiet when they leave for the night.

My fellow animals and me too, are longing to find a person of our own. We are waiting for someone to love as we promise a lifetime of loyalty and love. Please stop by and visit us in person or see our smiling faces on the Facebook page.

There are all kinds of dogs and cats here right now, kittens and more mature cats and dogs. We have lots of kittens- newborns and toddlers now sharing space. Boy are they a lot of work for the staff and foster parents! Every two hours someone is bottle feeding these puffs of fur. The staff gets really excited when the kittens open their eyes for the first time. The puffs of fur soon learn how to use their legs and  boy what trouble they can get into. Exploring all the nooks and crannies of the rooms, I have to watch out where step. I sometimes have to plug my ears when the kittens learn they have voices. This is when I go into one of the staff offices for an extra scratch around my ears and quiet relaxing time. People can stop by the shelter to give me a pat on the head when I am in the lobby. The staff will help tell you how best to pet me and my fellow playmates.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

The Russ Herron Fund

Hey guys, it's Anna again. I'd like to talk to you about something very near and dear to my heart: Special needs cats. Our little shelter is comprised of approximately 2/3rds cats, many of which come to us with injuries or illnesses.

When dealing with these special needs, we seek out treatment from veterinarians around Isabella County. Often times, the vet offices will give us a discount or offer to help out free of charge. We, along with our cats, can never thank them enough when they do things like that.

But inevitably, there will always be another injured or sick cat who needs our help. And although discounts help tremendously, there are still countless fees for antibiotics, surgeries, and other treatments.

That's when the Russ Herron Fund comes into play. The RHF is specifically designated to help cats entering our facility with life-threatening injuries that require emergency care or surgery. This includes but is not limited to x-rays, eye removals, amputations, mass removals, drain tubes, ultrasounds, and many other diagnostic testing costs.

When you donate to this fund, you're directly impacting lives like Jeepers, an abandoned kitten who needed eye surgery. With help from the RHF, Jeepers was able to receive the care he needed.

Remember, we're all in this together. We are their shelter. You are their future.

Til next time,


Friday, March 11, 2016

Working Together to Accomplish More

Hello my wonderful followers!

It's me again, your number one reporter everything that goes on here at HATS. These silly humans don't think I'm listening as I stretch out on the desk, steal a chair to "nap" on during a meeting or even when I'm nibbling on donated treats....I'm all ears! I'm sure you have been hearing a lot, through our website and  facebook page, about our need for volunteers to help us transport animals to various locations around the state.

Where are these animals going? For those of you who are not familiar, HATS works with several rescue groups around the state. You may wonder why we do such a thing. I know I had that very same question when I first arrived here. There are many reasons a shelter may be transferring animals from their facility to another shelter or rescue. Space is one reason. Shelters do have a maximum capacity and once they reach that, it means  that there are no more empty cages, workers and supplies are stretched thin and no more animals can enter the facility until cage space opens up again. To avoid this most shelters will create a working friendship with other shelters near and far in hopes that once one facility reaches capacity another facility might have a few open cages that they are looking to fill.

Another important reason shelters may transfer an animal is because some rescue groups specialize in a specific breed or the even the special needs of different animals. For example there are German Shepherd, chihuahua and even rescues specific to blind cats! The people in these rescues know everything from common temperament, health issues, behavior quirks, and exercise needs specific to the breeds or types of animals that they serve. Another advantage of working with many of these groups is that most are foster based, meaning these animals will wait in a loving, experienced, home environment until they are adopted. As you can imagine a home environment is much less stressful than the noisy shelter atmosphere. Don't worry, there aren't any rescues for blog writing, sassy cats so I'm going to stick around this place for a while!

Lastly, sometimes a change of environment and a new location is all that it takes for a long term resident to find their perfect person! So as you can see their are many reasons that we work with other groups throughout the state. The best part is that each of these partnerships directly benefit our adoptables animals and allow us to continue our life saving work!

Signing out, Anna.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Doug the Wonder Dog


This is my very first blog post. Can you believe it?  I’ve been viewing the comings and goings of the shelter for over three years, and I’ve just now only gotten the idea to write about it.

For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Anna and I’m the official shelter queen. I’m in charge of all of the humans, and I have to make sure to keep a sharp eye on them.

The topic of my first post is one that many of you have already heard about. But it’s one that I have the inside scoop on, since I hear and see everything at HATS. I’d like to talk about Doug, that emaciated dog found in town a few weeks ago. Let me start off by saying I don’t particularly like most dogs, but Doug is okay in my book.

He was so skinny when he came in, I didn’t even recognize him as a dog! But it’s a wonder what a little time and some TLC can do. In just under three weeks, Doug has gained almost 30 pounds! Can you believe that? And he’s been making friends with everyone at the shelter and learning some new tricks! His tail never stops moving!

I have to admit, I was a little jealous of him at first, but after I saw how genuinely happy he was for a simple bowl of food, I decided he was a cool pup. I mean, I get grumpy if I miss my afternoon snack! I have no idea how that dog managed to be so sweet to everyone after the condition he came to HATS in.

Doug is not quite up for adoption yet, though. He still needs to gain a little weight and have his neuter surgery once he is given a clean bill of health. But for those of you interested in potentially adding Doug to your household, you can fill out an interest form, located on our website at under the Adoption tab.

Doug seems to really enjoy all of the love and support that he has been receiving from everyone near and far. He especially enjoys his gifts! He is always sleeping on his bed or chewing a rawhide and I have no idea why, but he seems to really love those sweaters and coats that the humans put on him. We are still collecting donations to for his medical care. Donations can be made to the Colton Fund for Special Needs Dogs via

Thanks for reading, humans!


I really like Sheba wet food. So while you’re out shopping for Doug, keep me in mind too, will you?