The Eaton County Humane Societies website, eatoncountyhumanesociety.org announced a new animal welfare director on Jan. 30. “We are excited to announce that Holly Thomas is our new Animal Welfare Director. [Thomas] is the co-founder of Voice-less, a mid-Michigan animal rescue/foster group. [Thomas] is also the co-founder of Michiganders for sheltered pets, a coalition to advance the welfare of Michigan sheltered pets. [Thomas’] experience will be a great asset for Eaton County Humane Society.” Thomas officially began her tenure at the society on Feb. 1.
The Humane Society, prior to Thomas’ hire, began the process of renovating the floor in the shelter. The project started on Jan. 31, but the planning began in late 2016. Once all of the animals currently in the shelter were adopted out of the society prior to the new year of 2017, this would allow the humane society to begin the process of replacing the floor.
“With the floor not being level, the Humane Society had been wanting to fix the problem for a while. Since there are no animals currently in the society, this is an opportune time to fix the problem,” said Thomas in a telephone interview.
Walsh Building Group based out of Eaton Rapids is renovating the floor. The Humane Society is expected to re-open two-to-three weeks after the Jan. 31 starting date.
Olivet College freshman, Brooklyn Burel, a previous volunteer, had this to say about the importance of the shelter via email, “The Humane Society is important to me because it provides a home for many helpless animals to have food, shelter, and people who love them,” Burel also said, “One thing the Humane Society could improve upon is having a larger facility to house more animals.”
Over the past three years, the Humane Society has had an average of 230 animals, according to its website. Eaton County formed the Humane Society in 1968, and in 2008 they opened up their first shelter in Olivet, according to their website, this shelter does not receive any local, state, or federal funding. All of the funding is donation based from local businesses and from the public.
Olivet College junior Abigail Gaines expressed her feelings about the shelter, via text message: “It puts a smile on my face seeing how excited the dogs get when they know they have visitors. The animals are super cute, and taking 30 minutes out of your day to walk with them is totally worth it. I think everyone in Olivet should make their way down to the Humane Society and befriend a pretty little pooch!”
While the shelter will be closed for a few weeks, new animal welfare Director, Thomas, had some encouraging words for the community: “We do hopefully have an exciting announcement later this month, but I can’t say anything yet, but it should be good for the community.”