Tags Posts tagged with "Kent Animal Shelter"

Kent Animal Shelter

From left, Eileen Striese, Linda MacDonald and Pam Green. Photo by Heidi Sutton

In 1969, the Kent Animal Shelter opened its doors in Calverton to Long Island animals with nowhere to call home. From their first day of operation, Kent was a no-kill shelter, providing a safe space for healthy animals to find homes and treatable sick or injured animals a place to recover.

The private, nonprofit shelter was founded by a small group of humanitarians with a deep compassion for animals. The shelter was small and not well known outside the local community, and for several decades they struggled to avoid financial problems. The animal population was minimal and the staff didn’t have an executive director, either. In 1985, they hired Pamela Green for the job in a last-ditch effort to rejuvenate.

“I love being a part of the work we do, which ultimately helps both people and animals.”

— Linda MacDonald

Green, who went to college for pre-veterinary studies, grew up in a family that always encouraged compassion for animals. At home, they raised horses, chickens and ducks, among others. “It was always my intention to work with animals. They can’t speak for themselves so they need people to help them,” she said.

Under Green’s direction, Kent Animal Shelter has flourished. They now facilitate adoptions for nearly 700 dogs and cats every year, and are expecting to surpass that number by the end of 2019.

Included in the adoptions are a population of animals rescued from other places in the United States and even around the world.

“We have rescue partners around the country as well as internationally. Every 10 to 14 days, we do rescue transports from high-kill shelters in places that don’t place a lot of priority on adoption programs,” Green explained. “For many of the animals in those areas, there aren’t a lot of ways out of the shelter. We rescue them, bring them up here for medical care, vaccines and spaying or neutering, and then adopt them out.”

Many of the rescues Kent performs are in the South, where animals can become victims of homelessness or injury following natural disasters like hurricanes or floods. Some rescue dogs are flown to the United States from other countries where dog meat is consumed. Around 25 animals are rescued per trip, the majority of which are dogs because of Long Island’s ongoing problem with cat overpopulation.

One of the shelter’s biggest draws is their spay and neuter program. Two veterinarians work four days a week to spay and neuter local pets. Approximately 3,500 animals are spayed or neutered each year, Green said.

Pam Green with Mason

“Spaying and neutering is so important because if it’s left unchecked, a huge number of animals will be left without homes. You see this in areas of the country where spay and neuter programs aren’t as much of a priority. It leads to overbreeding and overpopulation.”

It takes a lot of work to keep the busy shelter running, and a regular staff of 22 makes it happen, along with volunteers who walk dogs, play with cats, and work fundraisers.

Office manager Linda MacDonald has been involved with animal care and rescue in various capacities for more than 20 years. These days, she keeps the business side of the shelter running smoothly while also helping to facilitate adoptions and surrenders.

“I love being a part of the work we do, which ultimately helps both people and animals,” MacDonald said. “I get to know the animals we have here very well, and it helps me to counsel customers on the right type of animal or breed for their lifestyle. We’re always looking to change and grow, whether it’s growing our social media presence, expanding our kennels or working with a trainer to help our customers introduce a pet to their home. A positive experience when a pet goes home can affect how they behave the rest of their lives.”

Eileen Striese of Bellport visited Kent for the first time 15 years ago. She had lost a dog a few years before and was eager to bring home a new pet. Her husband suggested they try Kent, and not long after, they welcomed home a black and white shih tzu named Lily.

Years later, as Striese approached retirement, she began to think about what she might do next. “I always knew that I wanted to volunteer and give back in some way,” she explained. “I love animals, but I had never worked with them before. So I went to the shelter and asked how I could get involved.”

Soon, Striese was walking dogs and socializing with the animals at Kent. She was also one of the volunteers responsible for transporting dogs to a local Petco for adoption.

“They warned me that I might fall in love with one of them, and there was a white bichon poodle mix that would just fall asleep in my arms. The bond formed instantly,” she recalled. “A few months later I brought him home. We renamed him Rocky.”

Brookhaven Town Supervisor Ed Romaine with Pam Green, executive director of Kent Animal Shelter and her dog, Frodo. Photo courtesy of Kent Animal Shelter

Brookhaven Town Supervisor Ed Romaine has a long-standing connection to the shelter that began when he adopted his first family dog in the 1970s. Since then, his family has gone on to raise two poodles who are now elderly. 

“I thought that these two dogs were going to be the last for us, but sometimes life throws you a curveball,” Romaine said. “My wife was diagnosed with cancer, and she said to me at the time, ‘If I make it through this, I want to get a dog.’”

In March 2018, the Romaines welcomed a white bichon poodle mix into their family. Appropriately, they named him Lucky.

“They say you can judge a person by the way they treat animals — I’ve known Pam Green for a long time, and she’s a very special person who is so enthusiastic about her career,” he said. “The work Kent does for the community is incredible, and so important. It sets the shelter apart.”

Kent Animal Shelter’s funding is donor-based, and while most donations come from private donors, other funds come from foundations including the ASPCA and PetSmart. The shelter also holds several fundraising events throughout the year, all of them focused on having fun. In the past, they’ve held comedy nights, psychic readings, dog walking events, and recently celebrated its golden anniversary with a dinner/dance fundraiser at Stonewalls Restaurant in Riverhead.

At the end of the day, it’s all about doing as much good as they can, said Green. The shelter is looking to update and expand its facilities in the future to reach even more animals in need.

“It’s very rewarding work, but it’s also difficult and sometimes disheartening. The reward is to see an animal taken out of a terrible situation and have its life saved. To see them go to a loving home makes it all worth the effort,” she said.

Kent Animal Shelter is located at 2259 River Rd, Calverton, and is open seven days a week. To learn more about the shelter or to find your perfect pet, visit www.kentanimalshelter.com or call 631-727-5731.

Jack

Update: Jack in the Box has been adopted!

MEET JACK IN THE BOX!

Jack

This week’s shelter pet is Jack, a 4½-month-old ginger tabby kitten who arrived at Kent Animal Shelter after he was left on someone’s porch in a box. 

Now he is affectionately known as Jack in the Box by Kent’s volunteers who tell us that this handsome boy is shy but very friendly and loving once he warms up to you. Why not drop by and meet him? He comes neutered, microchipped and up to date on his vaccines. 

Kent Animal Shelter is located at 2259 River Road in Calverton. The adoption center is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. 

For more information on Jack and other adoptable pets at Kent, call 631-727-5731 or visit www.kentanimalshelter.com

Brookhaven Town Supervisor Ed Romaine with Pam Green, executive director of Kent Animal Shelter and her dog, Frodo. Photo courtesy of Kent Animal Shelter

Brookhaven Town Supervisor Ed Romaine (R) awarded a proclamation to Kent Animal Shelter on Oct. 15 citing its 50 years of dedicated work for the betterment of animal welfare. 

Long recognized for being a small shelter doing monumental work, the Kent Animal Shelter has operated since its incorporation in 1969 as an organization dedicated to helping homeless animals. Since its beginning in its humble space along the scenic Peconic River in Calverton, the shelter has given refuge to over 35,000 homeless animals. 

A humane bedrock in East End communities, it gradually extended its reach throughout Long Island and the tri-state area and now rescues and rehabilitates abandoned, abused and homeless animals throughout the U.S. and neighboring countries especially during crisis situations. 

Programs include rescue, adoption, low-cost spay/neuter and humane education. To date, over 50,000 animals have been spayed or neutered to help control animal overpopulation. Over the years, plans to expand the shelter have been blocked by town and government regulatory agencies due to zoning and restrictions within the Pine Barrens. 

“Our efforts will not be thwarted, and the shelter fully intends to rebuild its facility on its current footprint. We are grateful to Ed Romaine and the Town of Brookhaven for recognizing and always supporting the vital efforts of the shelter to make a difference in the lives of companion animals,” said Pam Green, executive director at Kent. 

Kent Animal Shelter is a 501(c)(3) organization, no-kill that operates solely on the generosity of individuals and foundations. For more information, call 631-727-5731 or visit www.kentanimalshelter.com.

by -
0 270
Sally

Update: Sally has been adopted!

MEET SALLY!

This week’s shelter pet is Sally, a 1½-year-old heeler mix rescued by Kent Animal Shelter from Texas, where sadly many dogs are euthanized. Sally is one of the lucky ones and is very grateful to have a second chance at life! She is eager to please and loves to go for walks with our volunteers. All she needs is a new home. Come on down to visit her!

Sally comes spayed, microchipped and up to date on her vaccines. 

Kent Animal Shelter is located at 2259 River Road in Calverton. The adoption center is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information on Sally and other adoptable pets at Kent, call 631-727-5731 or visit www.kentanimalshelter.com.

Fred and Ginger

MEET FRED AND GINGER!

Check out these cuties! 

Recent arrivals from South Carolina, Ginger (white) and Fred (black and white) are 2-month-old Chihuahua puppies currently up for adoption at Kent Animal Shelter. They’re brother and sister and come as a pair, just in time to dress them up for Halloween! Both are so sweet, love to cuddle and give kisses! 

Kent Animal Shelter is located at 2259 River Road in Calverton. The adoption center is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information on Fred, Ginger and other adoptable pets at Kent, call 631-727-5731 or visit www.kentanimalshelter.com.

Update: Fred and Ginger have been adopted!

Photo from Kent Animal Shelter

Willy, a 1½-year-old gray and white kitty was brought to Kent Animal Shelter to be neutered by a woman who was feeding him as a stray.  One of Willy’s eyes was damaged from an infection that went untreated while he was living outside and had to be removed. He’s all healed now and is ready for the next chapter in his life. He loves to play and is an all around awesome cat! Won’t you open your heart to this very special guy?

Kent Animal Shelter is located at 2259 River Road in Calverton. The adoption center is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information on Willy and other adoptable pets at Kent, call 631-727-5731 or visit www.kentanimalshelter.com.

Mickey

MEET MICKEY!

This week’s shelter pet is Mickey, a 6-year- old Hound mix rescued from the Bahamas and currently settling in at Kent Animal Shelter.

Weighing in at a healthy 50 pounds, this handsome boy loves to go for long walks. Mickey has the sweetest disposition, and would do great in a family with kids.  He comes microchipped and up to date on his vaccines.

Kent Animal Shelter is located at 2259 River Road in Calverton. The adoption center is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information on Mickey and other adoptable pets at Kent, call 631-727-5731 or visit www.kentanimalshelter.com.

MEET ROBIN AND RAVEN

This week’s shelter pets are kittens Robin and Raven, 8-month-old female domestic short-haired siblings waiting at Kent Animal Shelter for the next chapter in their lives. 

Robin is black and white and Raven is black. They are sweet, docile and playful kittens who would love to be adopted together if possible.

Both kittens are spayed, microchipped and up to date on their vaccines.

Kent Animal Shelter is located at 2259 River Road in Calverton. The adoption center is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information on Robin and Raven and other adoptable pets at Kent, call 631-727-5731 or visit www.kentanimalshelter.com.

‘Fall Day at Stony Brook Harbor’

By Melissa Arnold

Susan Trawick of Setauket devoted more than 20 years to helping Sachem East High School students develop their art skills. All the while, she continued to create her own artwork, primarily in watercolors and oil.

Following her retirement from teaching in 2008, Trawick sought to keep her art skills sharp and maybe even make some new friends. She joined several local art classes, including one taught by her neighbor Mary Jane van Zeijts, owner of Studio 268 on Main Street in Setauket.

‘West Meadow Gates’

Van Zeijts taught Trawick how to use a set of pastels she received from friends as a gift, and she immediately fell in love. “Pastels are definitely my new favorite medium to work with,” Trawick said in a recent interview. “The colors are so vibrant and intense.”

Van Zeijts was so impressed with Trawick’s skills that she invited her to create an art exhibit for the studio. That show, aptly titled Land and Sea Pastel Images, will open on March 24.

Trawick’s passion for art is hereditary, she said — her father loved to draw, and she picked up the hobby in early childhood. She married young and was a stay-at-home mother before attending Dowling College for a bachelor’s degree in fine art and Stony Brook University for a master’s in education. Without hesitation, she cites impressionists as her favorite artists, including Vincent van Gogh, Andrew Wyeth and Joseph Reboli.

While Trawick’s work has appeared throughout the area in various exhibits, this show is the first she’s done solo. It will be almost entirely comprised of pastel art, with one watercolor and one oil painting to give a taste of her other skills.

“Setauket is the best place for an artist to live — the landscapes are so beautiful,” Trawick said. “I love the water, the wetlands, the trees, even the little hills here on the North Shore that the South Shore doesn’t have.”

‘Hidden Stream’

Trawick explained that inspiration for a new piece will strike as she’s out driving or enjoying time outside, especially in the light of early morning or at sunset. When she sees something she wants to paint, she’ll take photos to preserve the memory for later. She also enjoys occasional plein air painting. 

Trawick will display more than 30 pieces of varied sizes at the show. Most pieces feature recognizable Long Island scenes, while others show off the beauty of Central Park, Yellowstone National Park and Higgins Beach in Maine, all with brilliant color.

“Susan is an incredibly strong, skilled and prolific artist,” van Zeijts said. “She has used and taught other mediums, but she is so expressive with pastels. It speaks of who she is. We can all relate to her work because a lot of it is local. You can see a picture of Maine and acknowledge it as beautiful, but her Long Island work will be recognizable and enjoyable for people from this area.”

Every piece at Trawick’s show is for sale, with paintings ranging from $50 to $850 and prints for less than $10. Twenty percent of the proceeds from the show will benefit Kent Animal Shelter, a no-kill nonprofit haven for dogs and cats in Calverton, where Trawick has served as a board member for 32 years. Her two dogs and “too many” cats at home are all rescues.

The shelter also offers low-cost and sometimes free spay/neuter services for more than 3,500 animals each year. This critical work helps address excessive breeding, overpopulation and animals left homeless.

“I’ve seen so much suffering of animals in my time doing work with the shelter, so I want to do anything I can to alleviate that suffering,” said Trawick.

Reached by phone, Pam Green, executive director of the shelter, said that Trawick is the quintessential animal lover. “Susan is so devoted and has done a lot of work with helping support our spay/neuter efforts in the area. She also provides a lot of advice for people that come across homeless or sick animals,” Green said.

Studio 268, located at 268 Main St., Setauket will present Land and Sea Pastel Images from March 24 to April 14. The studio is open on Saturdays and Sundays from 1 to 4 p.m.

Join the artist for an opening reception on March 24 from 2 to 4 p.m. Refreshments will be served. For more information, call 631-220-4529.

Vivaldi

MEET VIVALDI!

Look into my eyes …You are getting veerrrry sleepy. Your eyelids are feeling heavy and you are now asleep. When you awaken you will get into your car and drive to Kent Animal Shelter. You will visit the kitty cottage and meet a wonderful loving 8-month-old kitten by the name of Vivaldi. You will adopt me (Vivaldi). You will then bring me home to live with you where you will serve me by giving me plenty of food, lots of petting and enough loving until I can’t take anymore! When I meow you will awaken and embark on your journey … MEOW!! See you soon!

Vivaldi comes neutered, microchipped, and up to date on vaccines. Kent Animal Shelter is located at 2259 River Road in Calverton. The adoption center is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. every day. For more information on Vivaldi the hypnotist and other adoptable pets at Kent, call 631-727-5731 or visit www.kentanimalshelter.com.

UPDATE: Vivaldi has been adopted!