There is a new organization in town—Animal Friends of New Mexico.
Photos are from a recent adoption event at Tractor Supply Co.
Our mission is to support animals and their caretakers through promoting appropriate adoptions, fostering, spay and neutering, education, outreach and fundraising with the goal of alleviating suffering and lessening the euthanasia rate of companion animals.
Animal Friends of New Mexico was founded in November 2012, when a small group of animal advocates joined together to explore how we could help the plight of our animal friends, particularly here in Southwest New Mexico. We are dismayed by the pet overpopulation and the resultant high rate of euthanasia of companion animals and we desire to take responsibility to help these creatures who cannot speak for themselves. We are a diverse and ever-evolving group of people who share a deep conviction that animals are sentient beings who are dependent upon human beings for their welfare and protection. We believe that animals, as well as humans, deserve to live life with dignity and respect, and hopefully with love. We each contribute by volunteering our energy and resources as we are able, following our personal passions and shared desire to improve the quality of life of our animal friends. We promote a climate of openness and transparency and invite anyone who shares our commitment to join with us in this undertaking.
Our first “get-together” was with High Desert Humane Society President, Heidi Sexton, who gave the history of the HDHS and the shelter, which are two separate entities, but housed in the same building. This was the beginning of discussions and what might be possible in our efforts to lower the euthanasia rate at the shelter and hopefully one day have a no-kill shelter in our community.
Our initial meeting, held on December 3, 2012 got our website started. Please visit for more info and updates www.animalfriendsnm.org.
We hold meetings each month with enthusiastic folks showing up from the community and local organizations. Heidi Sexton, the President of the Board of the Humane Society has been attending all the meetings and been most helpful with information for us on how to get this organization going. We will be working in cooperation with High Desert Humane Society and the shelter along with other shelters in the area and groups devoted to spay/neutering. We hope to engage the local schools as well in educational programs into the future.
Our primary, initial, mission is to help increase adoptions at HDHS. That means we will be taking adoptable dogs and cats out into the community. Tractor Supply Company, a new business in town, was kind enough to allow us, Animals Friends of NM, to hold our first “adoption day” in front of their store on February 2, which was a great success. Four dogs were adopted and headed home to start their new lives with loving families...and there were many other inquiries and possible future adoptions that came from the day's event.
You can sign up to be a part of this new and exciting organization by going to the website to leave your information and become part of the email list, so you will be in the loop for more information, meetings, events, and our progress. And, of course, if anyone wants to help, in any small way, everyone is invited and welcome to join us.
As well as getting adoptable pets out in the community to view, we want to help with advertising adoptable pets. A big shout out and thanks to Hacienda Realty for their ad and continued support of High Desert Humane Society and SNAP (Spay and Neuter Awareness Program) with their monthly sponsorship of the ad in the Desert Exposure. If you can help us with sponsoring an ad for the papers of adoptable dogs or cats that are available please contact us.
Another future goal that we would like to embrace is the huge undertaking of getting a foster program started. We would also like to have more information and education out regarding spay/neuter programs that are in existence in our community and will be starting a Spay/Neuter Education Outreach Team in March to focus on this important issue.
We plan to do educational outreach in the community, at schools, clubs, senior centers, etc. on the responsibilities of pet ownership and what everyone can do to help our animal friends.
We want to support the seniors in our community, so that in any event, they can afford to keep their pets, not have to relinquish them to the shelter because of financial need.
We want to address legislative issues within our city and county, regarding companion animals in our community.
We plan to write regular articles regarding all things animal related. Behavior issues with pets, myths and truths about spay/neuter, and how this issue alone can help reduce the euthanasia rates in our community, vaccinations needed for your pets, and a variety of other animal related issues.
As we grow we do want to remind you that you can go to the High Desert Humane Society and walk a dog or play with a cat. If some feel this is too tough emotionally, remember it is also very rewarding, a great stress reliever, and the animals do so enjoy the interaction, or join us in our many endeavors, there is certainly some small task everyone can do and help us meet our future, ultimate goal of one day living in a no-kill community.
Our next meeting is March 11, in the Coop meeting room, behind the Coop at 3:30 pm