Hill County Paw Pals, Hill County, Texas
  

Myths and Facts About Hill County Paw Pals
By Sarah Bennett

Myth #1 --   Hill County Paw Pals is a group of “tree-hugging, animal lovers.”

Myth #2 --   Hill County Paw Pals wants to completely put a stop to all animal euthanasia.

Myth #3 --   The City of Hillsboro faces a huge liability in allowing volunteers from Hill County PawPals to operate adoption days and low-cost spay and neuter clinics at their animal control facility.

Myth #4 --   Hill County Paw Pals’ programs of Education, Legislation, Spay/Neuter, and Adoption cost local vets money.

Myth #5 --   Hill County Paw Pals is a freestanding organization of animal rescuers who house, adopt out, and euthanize animals.

Myth #6 --   Hill County Paw Pals is a renegade organization that has goals that are contradictory to the goals of Hillsboro.

Myth #1 -- Hill County Paw Pals is a group of “tree-hugging, animal lovers.” (This is a direct quote from an elected county official.)

Fact:   We are professionals: accountants, attorneys, bankers, business owners, clerks, corporate executives, doctors, elected officials, farmers, housewives, mechanics, nurses, retirees, servicemen and women, teachers and professors--representing a cross section of our community.   We all do care about animal welfare and animal rescue, but more importantly, we all care about our community and making it a better place for all of us.  (Paw Pals has official endorsements from: Aquilla, Blum, Bynum, Carl’s Corner, Covington, Hillsboro, Itasca, Malone, Penelope, and Whitney) (Pending presentations scheduled are Abbott, Hubbard, Mertens, and Mount Calm).  Our organization is incorporated in the State of Texas and holds IRC 501(c)(3) tax exempt status.

Myth #2 -- Hill County Paw Pals wants to completely put a stop to all animal euthanasia.

Fact:   Few communities ever reach this status.   The fact is euthanasia is often necessary but it’s not the best solution to pet overpopulation and is not, in fact, an answer to the problems that result from pet overpopulation.   The only viable solution involves Education, Legislation, Spaying & Neutering Programs, and Adoption working simultaneously.   The communities who successfully reach that “no-kill” status have these four programs working together.

Myth #3 -- The City of Hillsboro faces a huge liability in allowing volunteers from Hill County Paw Pals to operate adoption days and low-cost spay and neuter clinics at their animal control facility.

Fact:   Other municipalities throughout Texas and the rest of the country rely upon volunteers to help in their animal control facilities with adoption days, clinics, and any other situations in which local funding falls short.   A simple waiver of liability form releases the city or county from any repercussions.   Volunteers from Hill County Paw Pals will be trained and qualified to assist at the facility and will in no way interfere with or hamper the running of the shelter by the city and its Animal Control Officer.

Myth #4 -- Hill County Paw Pals’ programs of Education, Legislation, Spay/Neuter, and Adoption cost local vets money.

Fact:   Education aimed at local school children teaches an entire generation about the importance of taking care of dogs and cats, vaccinating them, having them spayed or neutered and regularly taking them to a veterinarian.   Legislation programs will eventually bring about pet ownership rules and laws that will require pet owners to maintain the health and proper care of their pets which will necessitate regular vet visits.   Low-cost spay and neuter clinics are only the beginning for responsible pet owners.   Sterilization surgery is a once in a life time expense for pets.   The only services offered at these monthly clinics are the spaying/neutering and annual vaccinations.   Throughout the life of a companion animal there are many other incidences when a veterinarian’s care is a necessity.   One visit to a low-cost clinic will not cover a pet for the rest of its life and very often it is the first introduction for people to the idea that pets need regular veterinary care.   Paw Pals encourages every animal owner to develop a relationship with their local veterinarian.   Adoption of unwanted or abandoned animals from our city pound is a commitment the new owner takes very seriously. That person is choosing to save the life of a dog someone else turned their back on.   That person is dedicated to providing the care and services that dog needs which in addition to love and training has to include regular veterinary care.

Myth #5 -- Hill County Paw Pals is a freestanding organization of animal rescuers who house, adopt out, and euthanize animals.

Fact:   We are simply a group of concerned citizens seeking a change in how our community handles its growing pet overpopulation crisis.  We are not all experienced animal rescuers and do not run any sort of rescue organization or independent shelter.

Myth #6 -- Hill County Paw Pals is a renegade organization that has goals that are contradictory to the goals of Hillsboro.

Fact:   Paw Pals goals to build an animal shelter that would allow for animal adoptions and improved housing for unwanted pets complements the city’s goals to move Hillsboro forward.  We, too, would like our city to reflect the pride and the compassion of the citizens who choose to make this their home.  The current shelter does not meet state mandates. We have greatly appreciated the support of the City of Hillsboro in providing space for our garage sales, the proceeds of which were directly applied to the Animal Shelter Building Fund.   We have also greatly appreciated efforts of the city to investigate a suitable building site.   We are deeply grateful to Betty Harrell (City Manager), Mayor Will Lowrance, and Lauralee Vallon (City Attorney), for organizing the many meetings that have brought us to this vital point.