Whenever I travel, I like to do research on dogs and dog welfare issues. I was on Maui last week and took a trip out to visit the Maui Humane Society. I’m very glad I did.
The Humane Society is a very busy place set on beautiful grounds adorned by tropical flowers. In the reception area is a notice board complete with photos and details of animals that have successfully found their forever homes after a stay at the shelter.
Jocelyn Bouchard, who is the Chief Executive Officer of the Society, told me that the Society employs two full time adoption counselors who promote adoptions, provide counseling and support to potential adopters before, during and after adoption, and coordinate transfers.
The Society transports pets off island, out of state and internationally and works with adopters and transport agencies to make this happen. For the ten months of this financial year (July through to end of April), 832 dogs have been adopted and another 63 have been transferred. In the fiscal year the ended June 30 2010, the Society adopted a total of 911 dogs, transferring a total of 33.
Holiday makers often visit the Society’s shelter, and adoptions to California and other west coast (USA) locations are fairly common. The most common international designation for pets is Canada. Pets have been transferred as far as Indonesia and Germany, too!
The Society spends an average of $255 on every animal in its care.
The kennel area was full on the day of my visit. Dogs are photographed with flower leis around their neck to add a unique Hawaiian touch.
The Society is a no-kill shelter and has no time limit for keeping animals. Adoption information on the kennel signs tell you how long the animal has been in the Society’s care. Adoption fees range from a high of $125 for puppies under the age of 6 months, $100 for dogs over the age of 6 months, and $55 for dogs over the age of 7 years.
You can find the Society’s headquarters at 1350 Mehameha Loop in Pu’unene. Visiting hours are 10 am -4 pm, Monday through Saturday, and 12 to 4 on Sundays.
The Maui Humane Society is committed to building lifelong bonds between people and animals through education, community outreach and the prevention of cruelty.
Kathleen Crisley, specialist in dog massage, rehabilitation and nutrition/food therapy, The Balanced Dog, Christchurch, New Zealand