The Road – “Life Path”

The Road – “Life Path”
Palm Valley Animal Center/The Laurie P. Andrews PAWS Center

As is the case with most things in life, we often focus our attention on the big events. What we sometimes fail to see is that there are usually a number of smaller encounters, steps or stages which lead to the culmination of those events in a seminal moment, or watershed event. Certainly that has been the case with PVAC/PAWS. While we had seen very slow progress in the number of companion animals we were saving for five consecutive years, our progress had basically stalled. We had reached the limit on what we could do on our own, and found it to be terribly lacking. In fact, what we discovered is that we were way behind in our lifesaving efforts. Though a painful, and often times what seemed to be an impossible process, we have been able to acknowledge our failures and set a course to save more lives.

With the help of Maddie’s Lifesaving Academy at Austin Pets Alive!/Austin Animal Center and Best Friends Animal Society, we have been challenged to take a long look in the mirror to see our weakness and where we could improve. In addition, along the way, we have been able to visit other shelters and receive their council on ways we could improve the care of our animals and provide a more positive outcome for them. Early on in this journey, San Antonio Animal Care Services and The City of El Paso Animal Services provided insight and direction, especially with a very high open intake shelter. In more recent times, Petco Foundation and Maddie’s Fund have encouraged us with grants to attend critical conferences as well as seed funding to help us make our “life path” transition.

While in the planning for over a year at this point, this past week has been the critical implementation of what we have been learning and preparing for. Our Board of Directors spent a weekend with Brent Toellner from Best Friends to develop a short and long-term strategic plan. One week after this important planning activity, Austin Pets Alive arrived with key members of their team, along with one key member from Austin Animal Center to help us make significant changes in almost every aspect of our flow and care of animals through the facilities.

Key areas of focus throughout this week and going forward are: Disease Control, Expanded Adoptions, Expanded Rescue Transports, Owner Surrender Options, Expanded Foster, Increased Volunteer Involvement, Improved healthcare along with moving critical staff into more effective “life path” roles. We recognize this will provide additional challenges as we continue to move forward, but we do so with our eyes wide open and the lives of those in our care as our focus.

In the coming weeks I will share specifics related to the above programs and the “life path” results, and also speak specifically regarding ways our local community as well as the animal loving community throughout the country can help us save more lives.

If you want to help, our most immediate needs are:

Two cargo or sprinter type vans for Rescue Transport ($35,000 each), full time driver for each ($21,500 each), and crates ($2,000 for each van):  $58,500 per van

General or restricted donations to support our programs (foster, rescue, adoptions, volunteer, medications, medical treatment, etc.)

Gift cards from national chains (ex. Home Depot, Walmart, Lowes, etc.)

See all items on our web page www.pvaconline.com


Tim Ousley,

Executive Director

Palm Valley Animal Center/The Laurie P. Andrews PAWS Center

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