PARAGOULD, AR (KAIT) - Employees at Paragould Animal Welfare Society opened their doors after the Fourth of July weekend to find their building had been damaged.
"We had a leak in the ceiling from the central heat and air unit," said Kristen Bishop, administrative director for PAWS. "The ceiling tiles buckled and water was just pouring into our spay and neuter sweet. So, that's definitely an issue. We also have leaks in our kitten room and just different areas in the building because it is such an old building."
PAWS is located at 1103 East Kingshighway in a building that is at least 30 years old.
"We need new flooring," Bishop said. "The linoleum is coming up in several places. We do the best we can with our cleaners to keep things looking nice. But we really need to have this taken up."
The ceiling and the floor are not the only problems they're facing.
"Our fencing is bad," Bishop said. "We have holes in our fence where dogs have actually gotten out. There are just so many things we need help with. In our intake room is a sink and there's a leak there where we can't use the sink in there."
What makes these issues so hard is that PAWS is a non-profit organization.
"We don't get any kind of government funding," Bishop said. "We operate strictly off of donations. And they're just not coming in. Many people also don't know we're here. There are people who have lived here their whole lives and don't know we're here."
Bishop said something as simple as a dry erase board for their wall would be helpful.
"Right now we have a small thing we write in when the vaccinations are due," Bishop said. "But if we had a big dry erase board we could write down spay and neuter surgeries, upcoming vaccinations. Just a listing of all the animals in the shelter to where we're not having to look on a clipboard."
Bishop said they are bursting at the seams.
"Most days we do stay at capacity," Bishop said. "That means every kitten cage, the cat room, we have four cats at Pet Smart, and the intake for our dogs is full."
Not only do PAWS employees care for the animals and keep them updated on all their shots, they investigate the families who want to adopt to make sure the animals go to good, lifelong homes.
"We just don't have the funds to do these little and big repairs that need to be done," Bishop said. "We can only do what the community helps us do. We operate off of donations alone."
If you would like to help, contact PAWS at (870) 240-0997 or swing by their location in Paragould.
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