The Shelter Connection has been able to improve the quality of life for our shelter dogs in so many ways. Some of our earliest contributions include subsidizing the shelter's food budget to improve the quality of dog food, purchasing beds for the kennels, crates for training and our crate loaning program to adopters, and buying treats, toys and other training material. In addition to the physical health and comfort these items provide, we are able to keep our dogs engaged in training and exercise improving their chances for a successful adoption.
Over time we have succeeded in even more ambitious projects that make the Town of North Hempstead Animal Shelter a progressive model for open admission shelters.
The Nature Trail: A walk in the woods for shelter dogs
A dream come true is the way we describe the Nature Trail at the Town of North Hempstead Animal Shelter. With vision, dedication and lots of hard work, an overgrown, trash strewn, unused piece of Town property adjoining the shelter has been transformed into a scenic, winding network of landscaped trails for our shelter dogs to wander.
Donations of money, materials, equipment, and even the services of a landscape architect combined with the hard work of volunteers and staff to create this safely enclosed walk in the woods where shelter dogs can enjoy feeling the earth beneath their paws. Stops along the way include Cootor Cove, Henry Hollow and Sundown Ridge. Shelter dogs can smell all the scents that nature has to offer during their stress busting strolls.
The Outdoor Playground
Shelter dogs are usually confined to kennels for long periods of time. When TSC first began to work with our Town's homeless dogs, we had the use of the TONH shelter garage to provide space for exercise and training. As good as that was, wouldn't it be so much nicer if the dogs could stretch their legs and burn off energy in an outdoor yard? A spacious, paved area next to the shelter was safely fenced in using TSC funds giving the dogs a chance to chase tennis balls and stretch out under the blue sky and sun.
Next came a generous donation of agility equipment and the real fun began. Working with TSC's professional dog trainer, volunteers learned how to teach our dogs agility training. Going over hurdles, through the tunnel, over the ramp and on the table, we keep our shelter dogs' minds and bodies active while they await a forever home.