Addressing Animal Needs in Lamar

Outdoor Cages Now Offer Sunlight and Some Room to Run



Several municipal and statewide animal welfare organizations joined forces Saturday, January 12th to find common ground to discuss ways to benefit the pet population in Lamar and surrounding communities.

Sarah McCloskey, Lamar Animal Shelter Manager, said 40 persons, citizens and municipal representatives attended the session at the Cultural Events Center. “It was good to see so many new faces.  The Mayor and Police Chief of Walsh as well as the Granada Police Chief was on hand, plus people from the County and Las Animas as well as groups such as Second Chance Animal Rescue Foundation, Animal Assistance Foundation and the Colorado Humane Society and SPCA all offered their interest and support,” she said.  “The Animal Assistance Foundation is one of our bigger financial supporters and they can serve as a comprehensive information resource, especially for some proven techniques that makes for a better life for our animals.  They can take ideas that worked in one community and see if it can adapt in another.”

McCloskey has been working with Donna Emick from Second Chance to place dogs in a new and better life around the area. The Lamar Shelter will accept dogs from Eads and Holly when there’s room in the 15 dog capacity building at CR EE.5 off Memorial Drive in Lamar.  “Right now, we have six dogs with us and we usually have one or two visitors a week to see if there’s a dog they’d like to adopt,” she explained.  McCloskey is still relatively new in the position, having taken over the manager’s position from Stephanie Strube last December, several months after having volunteered her time there.  Since then, a yard sale fundraising event brought in $1,500 in donations and the facility was given a facelift with the help of several other volunteers.  The facility was also renovated to hold one additional dog.

There were four elements of operation guiding the meeting using a SWOT technique, Strength, Weakness, Opportunities and Threats, which helped focus the group on some plans for action, although that won’t come until the Colorado Humane Society has had a chance to review the highlights from the session. One problem discussed was how to control feral cats in the community.  The Shelter has no facilities for boarding them and there are no municipal rules for governing their control of care.  “Donna Emick and I expect to be contacted to develop some short term and long term goals for all the stray animals in Lamar and we expect to concentrate on a short term project that helps maintain the interest of those who attended the meeting.”

Some of the current problems mentioned Saturday included stray dogs, feral cats, unchecked breeding, funding for a larger shelter facility to hold more animals and keeping the public informed about the shelter and its daily operation. “I still get people who are surprised we offer a shelter or try to find homes for stray or abandoned dogs.  We need to keep them and the rest of the community up to date about what we can do to help them and their pets,” she explained.

The Lamar Animal Shelter can be contacted at 336-8769 Thursday through Monday from 8am to 5pm and though the community dispatch line at 336-9777 Tuesday and Wednesday. Visitors can get an idea of current activities online at

By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: City of HollyCity of LamarCountyEducationEventsFeaturedHealthPolice ReportPublic Safety


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