From the Director’s Desk – Humane Society of Southern Arizona

SUMMER HAS ARRIVED, and we are celebrating a wonderful season of energy and growth for the Humane Society of Southern Arizona. We are compassionately serving pets and the people who love them in ways both time-tested and brand new.

You have enabled the pets and people we serve to not just survive, but thrive, during a year in which all of us faced many challenges. Because of your generosity, our shelter medical team saved the lives of hundreds of pets who came to our door with life-threatening health issues. Our amazing staff of clinic veterinarians provided high-quality care for pets from low-income families in record numbers—an achievement that, along with increasing our free pet food distribution, helped to meet the needs of our community in a time of crisis. We are moving forward to meet Southern Arizona’s needs in new ways and new places. We have heard your requests, and we are acting.

You told us you wanted more support for training and behavior, so with the help of our dedicated donors, we have begun building a new Education and Behavioral Center, in collaboration with the University of Arizona College of Veterinary Medicine and working with local animal behaviorists, so that we can get you the tools you need to keep your family healthy and happy for your pet’s entire lifetime. And you told us you wanted a new animal services center on Tucson’s eastside. We listened. This summer we will be opening a new eastside location — with your help we will ramp up adoptions, admissions, clinic services, and much more in the near future.

Since moving west to Roger Road three years ago, we have lost customers, patients, and clients who live in a large area from the central part of Tucson to the east and beyond. To some of our strongest supporters who have shared with us that you no longer donate or volunteer or adopt at a location so far from your homes: We hear you. And we are acting to bring a new branch of HSSA to you.

We have taken the first step to serve eastside pets and people and accomplish our mission even more effectively and creatively than even imagined previously. On February 27, we took possession of a 16,000 square foot building on nearly two acres of land at 22nd and Wilmot, just south of Park Place Mall, and we are beginning a five-year plan to bring a complete suite of animal services to the growing eastside – starting midsummer with an expanded Thrift Store, adoption events, and vaccination clinics.

We’ll share more news in coming weeks, including how you can help us make this dream a reality. Stay tuned, and email me at sfarley@hssaz.org if you’d like to be a part of this new chapter in HSSA history!

March Muttness 2021 results

LAST YEAR, HSSA CREATED the first annual March Muttness tournament with eight shelters competing in a bracket to see who could raise the most money in a designated period of time. Even with eight teams, it was a big success, and a whole lot of fun for everyone.

This year we set out again, with 32 shelters from across the country facing off for the championship, and the good-natured rivalries ran right down to the buzzer — with cinderella stories, last-minute donations that change the outcome, and a whole lot of money raised to help homeless pets all over the USA.

We didn’t win it all in 2020, and we came so close this year. A magical run, thanks to our generous donors, got us into the championship game against Ten Lives Club in Blaisdell, NY – just outside of Buffalo. It was a good matchup but they prevailed, finally bringing a national championship home to Buffalo – no Wide Right this time! The whole competition scored a slam dunk for pets in need, raising more than $205,000 to help homeless pets nationwide!

Supporting Community Cats

TRAP NEUTER RETURN (TNR) is the humane trapping of feral cats to be spayed or neutered, vaccinated and medically treated by veterinarians. Once treatment is complete, adult feral cats are typically returned to their colony. If kittens are young enough, they can be placed into a foster or adoption program, decreasing the number of cats living on the streets.

Research has shown that TNR helps to humanely reduce feral cat colony size over time and helps feral cats to live healthier lives. As a result, TNR helps feral cats be better neighbors to the humans and wildlife around them. Ensuring these cats are vaccinated helps community cats avoid diseases that are a public health concern, such as rabies.
Bringing cats into HSSA’s TNR program takes a lot of patience and dedication. With our recent success in this new program and the dedication of HSSA’s Community Cat Coordinators we have introduced the inauguration of a Community Cat Coalition and the creation of a Community Cat Center — with two full-time staff. This program is aiming to end cat suffering and make sure no kittens are unwanted in Southern Arizona by 2025. To learn more about HSSA’s TNR program and to make a donation to help us continue this vital community work please visit HSSAZ.org/TNR.
With your support, there’s nothing we can’t do to serve pets and the people who love them. The Humane Society of Southern Arizona has been one of the region’s most trusted service organizations for more than 76 years. Our reputation, gained over decades of exemplary service to pets and the people who love them, has allowed us to carry out our mission all over the Tucson metro area. We are thrilled to expand our reach this summer and add new faces to our HSSA family along the way. To find out more about us or to help support our programs, please visit HSSAZ.org today!



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