Iowa County Humane Society

Serving the animals and citizens of Iowa County and its surrounding communities

I.C.H.S Newsletter - March, 2012

Newsletter Index:

A Letter From The Editor

By the time you read this edition of PawPrints, the meteorological winter will be over. And the astronomical winter ends on March 20th. I just have one question…"Did southern Wisconsin have winter this year?" If we had winter, I don't think I remember it. But I am not complaining. You can't really complain about lower heating bills, not having to do chores in the bitter cold and not requiring a 4-wheel drive vehicle to get you to your destination. I cringe at the thought of outdoor animals (whether it be cats and dogs, horses, other farm animals or wildlife) having to withstand frigid temperatures and sub-zero wind chills. It was a relief not to have too much 'cold' this winter. It was nice not to have turkeys at the birdfeeders; they apparently found food without visiting my backyard. However, on the flipside I feel badly for people who depend on snow for their livelihood. And moisture - will lack of snow mean that we are in for another dry summer? A positive spin on the lack of snowfall is that flooding will be minimal due to lack of snowmelt. But there is nothing that we can do about Mother Nature! "Whether the weather be wet or whether the weather be hot, we will weather the weather, whether we want to or not."…And as you read this letter, it is important to remember that I am a volunteer and these are MY thoughts.

For the past three years, my volunteering with the animals has been with the dogs - pretty much ignoring the cats. Although I enjoy my time with the dogs, I will admit that my loyalty lies with the cats. I feel like a traitor when I walk through the cat area to get to the dog kennel. So, a couple of weeks ago, I thoroughly enjoyed spending a couple of hours with Betty and the shelter's 'special needs' cats. Betty (a long-time volunteer) had mentioned that she thought that the 'special needs' cats should be high-lighted in some way. I agreed and suggested that I could put something in PawPrints (and we will also feature them on an ICHS bulletin board). It was just like 'old times' as Betty introduced me to these kitties.

(If I hadn't known) I wouldn't have had a clue that the cats which I spent a couple of hours with were 'special needs' cats. These particular cats had either tested positive for FIV or FeLV. Since I am not an expert on these 'disorders', I found much of the information which I am sharing at This is very basic information, and if adopting a 'special needs' kitty piques your interest, please take the time to investigate these disorders further.

ICHS currently has seven FIV cats awaiting adoption. Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) is a virus that affects a cat's immune system. FIV cats can live long, healthy and relatively normal lives with no symptoms at all but this is determined by the rest of the cat's immune system and exposures to disease challenges. FIV weakens the immune system which makes cats vulnerable to other infections. While FIV is similar to HIV in humans, it is a cat-only disease and cannot be spread to people or other non-felines. FIV is not easily passed between cats. It is not spread casually - such as in litter boxes, water and food bowls, toys, when grooming each other or playing. It is passed to other cats, but only through blood contact which means a bite wound or a mother cat to her kittens. FIV cats can live with non-FIV cats but because it would only take "scrapping" with each other one time to transmit it, you need to be careful to have cats which will get along together. If introducing an adopted FIV cat to non-FIV infected cats, do so 'properly' just as you would when introducing any new cat. FIV-positive cats should be kept as healthy as possible. They need to be kept indoors and free from stress, feed them a high-quality diet, and treat any secondary problems as soon as they arise.

ICHS has two FeLV cats waiting for homes. FeLV (Feline Leukemia Virus) is similar to FIV because they both affect a cat's immune system and they both only affect cats. Because FeLV suppresses the cat's immune system, the cat's ability to fight off bacteria, viruses and fungi contributes to other serious health problems. FeLV can also cause anemia and lymphoma (a type of cancer). FeLV-positive cats may live many years in a healthy state. There is no set life expectancy for FeLV-positive cats; much depends on the cat's immune system and ability to fight the virus. Whereas FIV is not easily transmitted from cat to cat, this is not the case with FeLV. The feline leukemia virus is spread through direct contact with an infected cat. High concentrations of the virus are found in saliva with lower concentrations in blood, urine and feces. The virus is most commonly transmitted through shared food and water bowls, grooming of each other and bites. Litter boxes can be a source of transmission. Housing FeLV cats with non-FeLV cats is a matter of some discussion. The ICHS staff veterinarian, Dr. Deb Smith-Reed, has seen FeLV positive cats live with non-positive cats, sharing the same food and water bowls, and the other cat never become infected with FeLV. This again depends on each cat and its immune system. Dr. Mike Dix, the medical director for the Best Friends clinic, (author of this information) also explained diagnosis and testing for FeLV which I found quite interesting but decided not to include because of space. If interested, go to Studies of FIV and FeLV are going on continuously and recommendations change frequently. The best advice for someone who is interested in adopting a cat with either FIV or FeLV is to discuss the options with your regular veterinarian before adopting. It would also be a good idea to have your cats at home tested prior to bringing a new friend home.

If you are thinking about adopting (or fostering) a cat, is it possible that you could be a hero to one of these 'special' kitties? Obviously you need to approach this with an 'open mind' and your 'eyes wide open'. Although I may be making it sound that it is no 'big deal' to care for these 'special' cats, that's not necessarily true. There are emotional, practical and financial issues to think about. After spending time with these 'normal but special' kitties, I would bring one or more of them home in a heartbeat (if my husband would permit it?). Other than my husband, the other issue I have is that I allow my cats to go outside (when I am home and never at night). From an emotional, as well as a practical issue, would I really be able to say "no" to cats asking to go outside? I know what the answer should be…

If you have any suggestions or ideas about the content of ICHS PAWPRINTS, please contact me, Terri Davis at

Newsletter Index:

Upcoming Fundraising Events

A small, but enthusiastic group of volunteers meet monthly to plan the ICHS fundraisers. We meet the 3 rd Tuesday of the month at 7 o’clock at the shelter (call Cheri for verification). Our meetings include the discussion of ideas for possible events as well as the planning of actual events. The fundraising meeting follows the 6 o’clock outreach and education committee meeting (for information regarding this committee, see the November 2011 Newsletter or call Cheri for details). Please join us if you would like to be a part of either of these two committees. And if you can’t make it to the meetings, please e-mail Cheri at ICHS and share your ideas with her.

Live Art Auction
The “Artists to the Rescue” Live Art Auction is an annual event and this will be year number twelve. The auction features a variety of media including watercolors, etching, metal, glass and more.  Something for everyone can be found at this event, from hand-crafted jewelry, pottery, original paintings, and so much more.  Many of the artists have shops in the area, while others are exploring their talents in art classes or creating art for the pure joy of it.  Event chairperson Dawn Judd states that although it is difficult to ask for donations in these difficult economic times, “the artists have been very generous this year, and every year.  The art community has always been so supportive of our cause”.

The 12 th Annual “Artists to the Rescue!” Live Art Auction will be held Saturday, March 24 th, 2012 at Hill’s Pub and Banquet Hall (previously Thym’s Restaurant) just north of Dodgeville, WI.  Viewing begins at 2:00 p.m. with the auction beginning at 3:00 p.m.  Appetizers and beverages will be provided.  Admission is $10 with all proceeds going directly to the Iowa County Humane Society.  For more information and photos of the artwork, please go to .

The generous and continuing support of area artists is greatly appreciated. Please come out and help us support their generosity and celebrate their talent while raising money for such a worthy cause at this great event.

Easter Bake Sale
It’s time for the annual “Easter Bake Sale”. This traditional event dates back to the early beginnings of ICHS. The sale is at Spring Gate Mall in Dodgeville (near the entrance to Piggly Wiggly). The sale begins at 8:00 a.m. and continues until 2:00 p.m. or until all the “goodies” are gone. Every year the variety and amount of donated items is greater than the year before! It is absolutely amazing how much community support goes into this event – both in providing the delicious baked goods as well as purchasing them. If you haven’t experienced this event before, please stop by and see for yourself. If there is one problem with our bake sale, it is a matter of having to choose between all of the ‘goodies’. It all looks and tastes so ‘yummy’!

Paws Fur a Cause
The 4 th annual “Paws Fur a Cause” event will take place on Saturday, April 21 st. This is a 5K run or 2 mile walk which has proven to be incredibly successful since it began a few years ago. Since its beginning, this event has been coordinated by Dodgeville High School students/volunteers. Melissa, Abby and Emilee are the students in charge of the event this year. The run starts at 9:00 a.m. with the walk beginning at 9:15 a.m. Dog(s) are welcome to accompany the walkers but will not be allowed in the run. Registration begins at 8:00 a.m. or you can register online by going to ICHS’s website and clicking on the link provided.

Sunday, May 6 is the date for this challenging charity bike ride. This event is a HUGE fundraiser for ICHS. There are four ride options ranging from 35 to 100 miles. There are rest stops with snacks, showers and a meal at the conclusion of the ride. This event needs a lot of volunteers to ensure its success. Whether you want to ‘enjoy’ the ride or help out with the many tasks that it takes to coordinate this event, mark this date on your calendar. More information and on-line registration can be found at

ICHS Plant Sale
The 6 th annual ICHS Plant Sale Fundraiser will be held on Saturday, May 19 th and Saturday, May 26 th at the ICHS facility in Dodgeville. The sale will be from 9:00 a.m. to noon each Saturday. A variety of annuals and perennials will be featured. More information will be available in the May Newsletter. The plants are affordably priced with ALL proceeds going directly to a ‘need’ which benefits the animals. Last year’s sale provided a surgery table for the surgery room.

Tellington TTouch Training
Last October, Sage Lewis, presented a Tellington TTouch fundraiser/workshop at ICHS. Sage will be back in May for a repeat performance. Tellington TTouch ( ) is a means of helping your pets with common everyday challenges such as shyness, anxiety and vet visits. When Sage was here in October, she did a TTouch for Dogs (and cats) Demo and lecture which was a fundraiser for ICHS. This time around Sage will do a TTouch for Cats (and dogs) Demo on Friday, May 18 th from 6:30-7:30 p.m. This hour-long lecture/demo will be a fundraiser with the $20/person admission going to the humane society. The TTouch workshop on Sunday, May 20th is from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. and is the only one of its kind in Wisconsin. The focus of Sunday’s workshop will be on your dog and you! There are only 8 spots available so you and your dog can be assured of having Sage’s personal attention.

Newsletter Index:
Special Pets

We all know that all animals are ‘special’ but the animals featured in this section are indeed special. These are ‘special needs’ animals. The special person/family who adopts one of these animals knows that this may/may not be the long-term relationship which we hope for when we open our hearts and homes to a new family member. These animals ‘forever homes’ with us may be just for a short time before they move on…But, nevertheless, these animals need a home and a loving family just as we all do. Are you possibly the family that could provide a home for one of these animals? If not, do you know of a family who could provide a loving home for these animals? If so, please come out to ICHS and find out more about these animals from the ICHS staff.

Jax & Lance

Jax had been the only FeLV cat at the shelter and so you have been reading about him since PawPrints made its debut in 2009 (yes, he’s been here a long time). Now he has to share this space with Lance who is a recent arrival. Jax is an AWESOME guy! Everyone who knows Jax loves him and as much as we all want him to have a home, we will miss him terribly when he finally does get his ‘forever’ home. I am not going to expound on all of Jax’s virtues (since he has to share this space) so go to past PawPrints to read about him or better yet, come and meet him and let him “wow” you! Lance is a young, orange tabby. He is a very nice, friendly cat who loves to play and just happens to have FeLV. So…both Jax and Lance need homes.


Fonzie, Sarah, Walter, Dominic, Bernard, Duchess & Noreen

These 7 kitties are special needs cats – they have been diagnosed with FIV. These seven cats are normal, happy cats and are waiting for a home. Since these cats are (and will be) included in PawPrints until they find homes, I thought it was time to get to know these cats personally. After meeting these cats, I can’t begin to explain how ‘normal’ these cats are. If I were able to have one or two of these cats, I don’t know how I could possibly choose among them. So if I can convince you to open up your home to one of these sweeties (foster or adopt), you will have to come and meet them - I can’t begin to do them justice. Noreen and Duchess are mother and daughter (I don’t know which one is which), but ‘sweet’ is definitely in their genetic make-up! I was told that it wasn’t necessary to carry these two kitties to the ‘meet & greet’ room; they go by themselves! I was skeptical, but guess what? They do! You just open their cage door and they walk right to the ‘meet & greet’ room! And, guess what? When it is time to go back to their cage, they go back by themselves – directly to their cage! How cool are these two? Fonzie is a younger cat with a slight limp which doesn’t bother him in the least. He is very playful with a LOUD purr and the softest fur. Bernard is the newest arrival. He is friendly, but timid, and is so handsome with his sparkling green eyes and his longer beige fur. Sarah is ‘sweetness-personified’. On the day that I was taking pictures, Dominic had already been out of his cage and was very content. He didn’t want to leave his bed. Walter is a real character - so photogenic and charismatic. So…if you are looking for a kitty companion, these kitties are looking for you!


Peter Cottontail

ICHS has had a few resident rabbits over the years. Peter Cottontail has been with us for a couple of months and seems to be doing just fine, but it would be nice for him to have a permanent home. I don’t know anything about Peter – other than he is a cutie! Actually I didn’t know anything about rabbits so I went to the Internet to find out more about living with a rabbit. Rather than repeating what I learned about rabbits, you can go on-line yourself or refer to the January 2012 PawPrints newsletter. Having a rabbit isn’t quite the same as having a cat or a dog, but depending on your situation, Peter might just be the perfect pet for you! So…Peter needs a home.

Newsletter Index:
Crossing over that bridge…

Crossing OverIt is never easy to say “goodbye” to our friends and family, but please note that your adopted pet has touched many lives. When your pet crosses the Rainbow Bridge, feel free to let us know about your loved ones passing.


In Memory of Mozart…

Mozart passed away unexpectedly at the shelter on Valentine’s Day. It was determined that Mozart had an enlarged heart which is not too unusual in young male dogs and there usually aren’t noticeable symptoms of a problem. There was no way of knowing that Mozart had this condition and nothing could have been done to prevent his death. It is sad that Mozart was unable to experience a loving home, but staff and volunteers loved him. One of Mozart’s favorite things to do was to grab on to his leash while he was being walked which resulted in a ‘tug-of-war’ game (granted it was a game for Mozart but not the person). Mozart, now that you have crossed over the Rainbow Bridge, you won’t need a leash as you play with the angels. Mozart, you are missed…

In Memory of Charlie… (submitted by Sharon S)

This is a true tale about a dog without a tail.  Well, he had a tail but it was short.  Charlie caught my eye while I was volunteering at the shelter.  Mike and I have had 4 boxers of our own, many years ago.  I couldn't help but notice how unhappy he was.  Boxers are great family dogs so living in a shelter was stressful.  The staff at the shelter was doing all they could but he needed a home.  Mike and I decided we would foster Charlie until he found a forever home.  He moved in, showed all 4 of our dogs what a gentle old man he was and which spot on the couch he preferred.  He loved to put his head on a pillow.  A few months later we adopted Charlie.  What a great dog, like so many who get passed over because they are misjudged, lack manners, bully breeds, black dogs, big dogs, noisy dogs or  misinterpreted as problem dogs.  We loved Charlie as much as any dog we have, so when he we learned he had kidney failure, it was time for Charlie to pass over Rainbow Bridge. Rest In Peace my friend.  You gave us so much joy.

Dogs come to shelters for many reasons.  Popular belief is, they have been abused.  We never know but my experience has been, if you treat them as a new member of your family, and forget about making excuses that they were abused you will almost always have a positive experience.  Invest in an obedience class or 2. You are new to the dog and he is new to you.  It is great for bonding at any age.  

Newsletter Index:
Success Stories

I need your help if I am to continue to feature the success stories which begin the moment your adopted companion chooses you. It is not difficult for me to write a paragraph that showcases your pet. The problem that I have is finding YOU and your pet. I don’t know who you are or how to contact you. If you would be interested in sharing your pet’s story in the newsletter, please e-mail me at . A picture and a brief write-up about your pet(s) is all that I need. If I don’t have enough info, I will get back to you. It would be helpful to know your pet’s shelter name (if you renamed your pet), when you adopted, pet’s favorite activities, other pets that you may have and whatever else you would like to include. If you are not able to send a picture, that’s OK. Many of you send periodic updates regarding your adopted pet to the shelter. I can use those write-ups if you would please indicate (in your letter to ICHS) that you are giving me permission to include your pet’s story in the newsletter. I hope to hear from you!


This is an update on the generosity of the people who contributed money for Lindy’s eye surgery. After the initial plea for help, the cost of the surgery was raised in a matter of a few days. Lindy (now known as Sadie) had the surgery, went to her foster home and her adoption should be complete by the time you read this. I hope to be doing Sadie’s success story in a future issue.


As much as I enjoy writing and reading about the animals which had previously been ICHS residents, it is especially heartwarming to read about those animals that were either here ‘forever’ or those who have special needs (including the elderly) and someone finally chose them to be a part of their family. In some cases it is a ‘race against time’ to find a home for these animals. I know there are many people who can’t take ‘special needs’ animals for various reasons - one of which is the heartbreak of ‘keeping watch’ as it becomes apparent that your four-footed friend’s time to cross the bridge is drawing near.

Holly (see the September 2011 issue of PawPrints) is one of those ‘special needs’ dogs who found her ‘forever family’ last fall. It sounds as if Holly’s new home is heavenly. Lori writes…”I have a small farmette and other pets; Holly lives with 2 beagles, 2 inside kitties, 2 (feral but fixed) barn kitties, 3 goats and 4 chickens. Holly occasionally enjoys chasing the inside kitties, but they don’t seem to mind (I know this because they sleep with her!). The beagles are both girls. Holly and Millie were fine right away (Millie made it known she was #1), but Holly and Baron had some minor issues in the beginning (power struggle). However, now the only time I have to separate them is when it’s 1 a.m. and they won’t stop playing! Holly and ‘the girls’ share a large fenced in area separate from the goats and chickens when they are outside. Holly is VERY interested in the goats and chickens…as in, she might make a snack of them!”

Lori said, “Holly’s cancer has progressed a bit, her shoulder tumor has grown 2 tumors (yes, her tumor is growing tumors). BUT none of this seems to be bothering her in the slightest; at this time, she doesn’t even need any medication.”

I asked Lori to comment on why she had taken Holly knowing that Holly had cancer and there may not be a lot of time left for Holly. Lori replied, “I try to provide the unwanted a safe haven, even if it is for a short time. I’ve been lucky enough to foster and/or adopt several ‘special needs’ animals over the years with various ‘issues’. I don’t think many people realize how rewarding it is to care for a ‘special needs’ animal. It’s difficult to put into words what it’s like to witness an animal learning to trust, recover from an injury/illness, or be content in their final days by simply providing them comfort and the safety of a loving home. It may sound odd, but I believe they make me a better person and I’m grateful to them.”

Lori continues, “I would like to thank the wonderful staff/volunteers at Iowa County Humane Society for allowing me to adopt Holly – you all did a wonderful job with her!”

Lori, speaking for myself as well as the staff and volunteers, we all thank you for giving Holly the chance to live life away from the shelter. It always seemed as if Holly was incessantly happy here at the shelter, so I can only imagine what happiness she must be experiencing living with you and her new family. THANK YOU!

If you have any suggestions or ideas about the contents of ICHS PAWPRINTS, please contact me, Terri Davis at


Low Cost Vaccination and Dog Licensing Clinic Schedule
Upcoming Event Calendar
Donate to ICHS
ICHS Thanks Business and Organizations who help us help the animals!
Board Meetings and Financial Information
I.C.H.S. Newsletter



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Iowa County Humane Society
305 Co. Rd. YZ
P.O. Box 195
Dodgeville, WI 53533

Phone: 608-935-1381
Fax: 608-935-2884

For additional contacts go to:
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Monday: Closed
Tuesday: 1:30pm - 6pm
Wednesday: 1:30pm - 6pm
Thursday: 1:30pm - 5pm
Friday: Closed
Sat/Sun: 1pm - 4pm