Volunteers in Fairfield County are doing their best to help area animals put their best paw, or hoof, forward.
The Hoof and Paw Benevolent Society was founded to provide supplementary support of shelter animals in excess of the essentials the county provides.
Shirley Locklair, coordinator with the group, said that they look for a niche to add little touches to make the facility feel even more like home to the animals. There is no fee to join Hoof and Paw. The group is open to any age. They meet on the first Monday of every month at 6:30 p.m. at Christ Central ministries
“We advocate for the well being of animals of any kind,” Locklair said.
The group, which began in November 2011, now has about 15 members. Part of its mission is to focus on awareness of the Fairfield County Adoption Center and its programs, such as a program that allows seniors age 60 and older to adopt a pet for free.
The group also puts an emphasis on cats, kittens and cat care. Locklair notes that often shelters have a large amount of cats or kittens as is the case at the facility where she volunteers.
Hoof and Paw would like to see those kittens and cats find forever homes.
They also will work with the center at its shed where horses, goats, chickens and sheep can be stored if they are brought in. Hoof and Paws also helps with center’s foster animals program.
The Hoof and Paw Benevolent Society was named and formed by Animal Missions out of Columbia.
One area Hoof and Paw has helped tremendously is working with the spay and neuter coupons programs that are supplied by animal missions.
Pets Inc. at 300 Orchard Road in West Columbia and the HSPCA at 121 Human Lane in Columbia honor the coupons and covers the entire price of having an animal fixed.
The Blythewood Animal Hospital and Dr. Robert Knight of Winnsboro will honor the coupons by making spaying and neutering available at a reduced price. Locklair hopes one day that large numbers of pet could be transported as part of her group’s outreach so persons without the means to take a pet to Columbia could have it neutered or spayed for free. For now, Hoof and Paw helps as much as they can to see that persons are aware of the coupons.
Locklair also thanked David Brown for his help with Hoof and Paw. The organization is not yet a certified non-profit but they are working toward that classification. Hoof and Paw is the fund raising arm of the animal care in Fairfield County.
The county-run animal center has a limited budget, so Hoof and Paw fills a needed niche according to Locklair. Miscellaneous items Hoof and Paw has purchased for the animals include blinds for the screened in cat porch, extra fans to keep the animals cooler and Plexiglas to replace a portion of the porch wall and make the area into a sun room.
“These items may not be necessities, but they are helpful with the well being of the animals,” she said.
Persons looking to help out Hoof and Paw can make a donation or attend a Homecoming Pet and Adoption Day on Saturday from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Money from the July event will benefit Hoof and Paw.