Humane Society to close temporarily

Article Published: Apr. 4, 2013 | Modified: Apr. 5, 2013
Humane Society to close temporarily

The Watauga Humane Society is currently seeking foster families to take in healthy cats, dogs and small animals, as well as animals recovering from illness. No prior experience is needed.
File photo

The Watauga Humane Society will close temporarily later this month due to a flooring project.

The Irma Baker Lyons Adoption and Education Center will close April 18 and 19 and will reopen April 20 in temporary quarters on the grounds of the Humane Society at 312 Paws Way, according to a news release Thursday from Executive Director Laurie Vierheller.

Vierheller said the floors will be resurfaced with epoxy to comply with regulations from the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services' Animal Welfare Section.

The repairs are expected to take about three weeks and will require the Humane Society to remove all of its animals except the dogs in kennels, she said. The kennel flooring already meets requirements, and that portion of the shelter will be closed off to prevent dogs' exposure to fumes.

Working with Emergency Management Coordinator Steve Sudderth, the Humane Society has arranged for two specially designed trailers to arrive April 15. The trailers are outfitted for caring for animals in emergencies such as floods and hurricanes and will be provided free to house the healthy cats.

Watauga Humane Society is currently looking into options for a temporary building or modular unit on or off the grounds to house sick cats and sick dogs, such as those in quarantine.

Regular volunteer operations will be suspended during this time, as the Humane Society will need only about six volunteers per day. Existing or new volunteers may call to schedule a day or half-day during the temporary operation. Email ( to sign up.

During the upheaval, the Humane Society has several needs, Vierheller said.

Staff members are looking for:

— A temporary building or modular that can be placed on the grounds AND a box truck that can hold animal food, cleaning supplies and other equipment. Anyone willing to loan these items to the Humane Society for three to four weeks can call Laurie Vierheller at (828) 773-5281.

— Handymen or others qualified to remove baseboards from the walls in the building, as well as volunteers to move heavy furniture and equipment.

— Foster families to take in healthy cats, dogs and small animals, as well as animals recovering from illness. No prior experience is needed. Call (828) 264-7865 if interested.

— Individuals interested in adopting a pet. Adoption will continue during the temporary move to keep up with increased volume typical during spring. Through April 14, individuals can pay reduced adoption fees for cats. Minimum fees are $20 for cats older than five months or $10 for senior cats. Kittens five months and younger require the regular adoption fee of $75.

— Storage containers and lids (any size), extension cords, newspapers, paper towels, bleach, shallow cardboard boxes to be used as disposable litter pans, masking tape, permanent markers, cardboard boxes for packing and moving or other items listed at Tax receipts may be provided for donations.

*Correction - An earlier version of this story listed an incorrect phone number for the Humane Society. The story has been corrected.

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