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The Haven provides a shelter and finds adoptive homes for abused, neglected, and homeless animals treating them with love, respect and medical care. Through education and volunteer programs, we promote community awareness of pet overpopulation and responsibility.
The Haven is a non-profit sanctuary for animals that will be cared for regardless of how long it takes to find them loving homes.
WHAT WE DO
The Haven is a no-kill animal shelter that has been recoginzed for having one of the highest save rates in the state of Alabama. Because of this, many people want to bring their pets to us that they can no longer keep or strays they have found to us as an alternative to bringing them to an open admission animal control shelter. The Haven would love to be able to help every animal, but we must remain realistic and be responsible for the animals we already promised our services to, Therefore, we pull homeless cats and dogs from our local partnering open admission animal control shelters. The Haven does not take animals from the general public. Our animals that are pulled from partnering AC shelters are usually scheduled to be euthanized due to overcrowding, illness and/or injuries. Our partnerships have steadily reduced the number of animals euthanized and also reduced the number of animals from entering the shelters over the past several years. We do offer assistance with re-homing pets, but the pet owner must be able to foster the pet until a furever home can be located. A "Foster Application" and if approved a "Foster Agreement' is signed by all parties involved in the placement of the pet.
The Haven was the idea and dream of Dr. Teresa Marshall, a local veterinarian, who ran The Haven out of her clinic for eleven years. In 2001 The Haven became a 501 (c) 3 non- profit organization. Also in 2001, the City of Fairhope offered use of part of the city animal shelter in return for The Haven providing veterinary care and staffing for the entire shelter. With this agreement both our need and ability to find homes for animals increased.
Many of the animals at The Haven have been neglected, starved, struck by cars, beaten, and/or otherwise abused so the veterinary care and rehabilitation is frequently extensive and expensive. All of the animals are spayed or neutered and receive all necessary veterinary care such as de-worming, vaccinations, heartworm testing, micro-chipped, feline aids and leukemia testing, and receive 30 days of FREE pet health insurance. Potential adopters are carefully screened. Current adoption fees are $65 for cats and $90 for dogs. We are a no kill shelter so no adoptable animal is euthanized just because we don't find it a ready home- we just keep trying. Also we ask that if any home situation/adoption does not work out for a Haven graduate, that the Haven be contacted so that we can find them the right home. We have the motto "once a Haven animal, always a Haven animal". We have frequent off -site pet adoption events, website marketing and other active marketing, as well as adoptions at the shelter - all in an effort to place animals.
Another important role The Haven plays is educating the community on the importance of spaying and neutering their pets. Our quarterly newsletter is distributed conatinaing updates from families that have recently adopted a companion for The Haven and many other pet related articles. We also have educational programs and information encouraging the humane care of animals- such as warning of the dangers of leaving pets in hot cars. We are becoming involved in the school system and discussing these issues with the children.
The Haven would not exist though without all the tireless work of its many volunteers. Volunteers tasks are near endless including office support, walking dogs, helping at adoption and fundraising events, and, yes, cleaning cages. The Haven does various fundraisers through out the year to raise money for operations. Recent events have included a pet photo contest, a pet essay contest, a benefit luncheon featuring Fannie Flagg, and a pet Mardi Gras parade. The Haven also operates a resale shop of donated items with the proceeds benefiting The Haven. The resale shop also provides a volunteer opportunity for people who prefer not to work at the shelter itself.
The Haven is a relatively new organization that has made great strides in a short amount of time. We are proud of what we have accomplished, but we have a long way to go. We are striving to live in a society where loving, adoptable animals are not being killed. We need to change the mindset of our community that animals are disposable.