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Style Magazine

Animal Instincts

Sep 30, 2008 05:00PM ● By Super Admin

You do not have to be a pet owner or even particularly wild about animals to recognize and support the fact that animal rescue agencies exist because they must. There is a need for their services, and that need extends locally.

Thankfully, there’s People for Animal Welfare in El Dorado County (PAWED). According to the organization’s Web site, PAWED is an all-volunteer nonprofit that works to “improve the lives of companion animals in El Dorado County” through adoption, pet care education, advocacy of shelters, and the distribution of supplies to these facilities.

Since founding PAWED in 2000, President Charlene Welty has made animal welfare her mission. She says, “there are many who love their animals and provide good care and a lifetime home for them. But unfortunately, there are also some people who abandon, neglect and/or abuse their animals.” Still, Welty reaffirms the fact that El Dorado County residents care deeply about the welfare of animals. And she’s right.

Animal welfare resources are plentiful and provide a strong, collaborative response to a serious problem. El Dorado County alone claims four reputable animal shelters, several non-profit organizations that advocate on behalf of animal issues, and numerous private pet-related businesses that donate to animal non-profits and area shelters.

Among PAWED’s top priorities are to halt pet overpopulation, to provide disaster response services, to assist in the adoption of shelter pets, and to help keep animals in their homes and out of shelters through public education, identification, training, and assisting residents with new home placements for their pets.

Through its efforts, PAWED has successfully changed the perception of what most people still refer to as “the pound” – an antiseptic place without feeling, where nervous animals are caged and uncared for. “It is unfortunate that people may have a negative impression of animal shelters, because they provide an important and essential service in our community,” Welty says. “The animal shelters in El Dorado County today are definitely not the “pounds” of the past. Shelter staff work very hard to protect and care for our community’s companion animals.”

Indeed they do. Among their involvement in the aforementioned efforts, volunteers also are active in fund-raising events, such as PAWED Furry Friends Walk-a-Fun, one to two-mile walk for dogs and their people. The event, organized to help raise funds for PAWED’s mobile clinic, will be held October 5, 2008, from 10-11 a.m. at the El Dorado Hills Community Services District Park in conjunction with Bark in Community Park. In addition, PAWED volunteers work adoption events every Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the El Dorado County Animal Shelter in Placerville.
“Pets are wonderful companions and they need and deserve a loving and responsible family for their lifetime!” says Welty, who strongly stresses the importance of controlling El Dorado County’s pet population by getting animals spayed and neutered.

To learn more about PAWED, adoptions, or how you can volunteer, contact the organization by calling 530-677-2476, or visit
Download a Furry Friends Walk brochure/registration form at