FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 8, 2013
Contact: Kerry Pettit
Animal Welfare League Names New Board President
AWL parks offer service, help animals
Trumbull County Animal Welfare League Bark Parks offer service, help animals in need
Published: 11/3/14 @ 12:00 By Jeanne Starmack
Vienna Frisbee Field was empty Friday afternoon, an expanse of fenced green grass stretching out under the gray, gloomy sky. Cinnamon and Harley stood at the edge, waiting, tails wagging, until two clicks, two slack leashes and they were free — stretching their legs over and over around the biggest of the Trumbull County Animal Welfare League’s three Bark Parks as a group of handlers watched with amusement. It was chilly. Dogs don’t care. The grass was wet. So what, so were their noses. The two shelter dogs, usually inside in their pens along with many others, were having a special treat, said Kerry Pettit, director of the shelter at 812 Youngstown Kingsville Road in Vienna. They were chosen to show off the AWL’s membership-access Bark Parks, which debuted in June on the shelter’s property across the highway from the Squaw Creek Country Club. Cinnamon, a 6-year-old boxer mix who came to the shelter two months ago with a litter of puppies, needs her own home now that her pups are all adopted, Pettit said. She stalked and pounced on Harley, a 1-year-old boxer-pitbull mix, who thought she was great. Harley has been through AWL’s prison training program, meaning he’s gotten extra training by living with an inmate for 10 weeks. He’s also housebroken and crate-trained. Neither Harley nor Cinnamon would be demonstrating the park next to Frisbee Field — the Lil Pup Play Park. They both tip the scales past the 25-pound weight restriction. No one was at the Lil Pup on Friday, and the weather the likely reason why. But across a pond that is next to the two parks and will soon have a dock for dogs who like to swim, Terry Taylor of Howland and her golden retriever Tia were making use of the third park. It’s called the Pupp Pupp. An old Putt Putt miniature golf course, it has hills and tunnels. “We get out here at least once a week,” said Taylor. She threw a ball. Tia ignored it and walked the other way. “She’s a retriever that doesn’t retrieve,” Taylor said. “That’s what we work on out here.” “You’ll get a cookie if you bring the ball back,” Taylor told the dog. “Go get it.” Tia chased it, overran it, and gave up. “She has a yard to run in, but she doesn’t,” said Taylor. “So here, she does. That’s good exercise.” Pettit said that not only are the Bark Parks a safe place for play and exercise, but members are supporting animals at the shelter who need medical help. The $240 annual membership benefits shelter animals 100 percent, she said. That includes heartworm treatments “to get those animals adopted,” she said, and after-hours emergency services with the police in the county. Membership is for the calendar year. Potential members must fill out an application. Members also have to show proof their dogs are current on vaccines. “So that sets us apart from public parks, she said. “We aren’t putting each animal at risk.” “Really,” she added, “Your membership is paying to help an animal. You could be helping to save a life.”
Busko sisters honored for years of service
Warren, OH– In a meeting held February 7th, the Animal Welfare League of Trumbull County (AWL) announced a new board president, Dr. Jeff Williams. At the same meeting, former board president, Barbara Busko and former secretary Mary Busko, were honored with Lifetime Achievement Awards for their 40 years of tireless dedication and work on behalf of AWL. Both women will remain on the board with emeritus status.
The new board president, Dr. Jeff Williams, is a veterinarian and owner of Countryside Veterinary Service, Inc. In accepting his new position, Dr. Williams stated, “The first order of business for me and the board is to extend our deepest gratitude to Barb and Mary Busko for their life of dedication and vision for care of the stray, abandoned, and abused animals of Trumbull County.”
Williams pointed out that the sisters’ long-time vision of a new shelter is coming to light as the AWL has recently broken ground for a new 47,000 sq. ft. facility in Vienna. The new facility, described as a first of its kind in the country, is projected to open in September of 2013.
According to Williams, with the new shelter underway, the AWL is now collaborating with the Trumbull County Commissioners and Dog Warden to house the Dog Pound at the new facility. Having both groups in one common location will make it easier for area residents to know where to take a found pet, and where to look for a lost pet.
Additionally, Kent State University will use the new facility as a teaching center for their Veterinary Technician Program. Students will receive hands-on training and shelter animals will receive health care, socialization and increased adoption potential.
“This will be a shelter that revolutionizes the way of caring for animals in our community.” said Williams. “I am inspired and honored to be a part of this organization.”
The Animal Welfare League of Trumbull County is a non-profit humane organization dedicated to protecting the rights of unwanted, neglected, abandoned, and abused animals to live without pain and suffering. Founded in 1969, the Animal Welfare League has evolved into one of Ohio’s foremost shelters, leading the way in direct animal care, community outreach and education, animal advocacy, and fighting animal cruelty at every level. To learn more, please visit www.animalwelfareohio.com or call 330-394-3512.