The Animal Welfare Society has a proud tradition of serving our community and domestic
pets in need. We have served continuously since 1952. AWS was formed to provide
care and protection for suffering homeless and unwanted animals; to educate the public
in respect to humane treatment of animals and to encourage and assist in the enforcement
of laws against mistreatment of and cruelty to animals.
During two decades from 1958-1978, the Society passed through a period in which there
was little growth and in which rising costs and limited membership income hampered
the Society’s activities. Yet, the founders persevered in their vision and mission.
The 72 member AWS was the only organization in the county trying to solve the problem
of acute unwanted stray pet explosion.
Among the projects undertaken was a spay/neuter program in cooperation with Friends
of Animals and local veterinarians, a cooperative effort with the county on low-cost
rabies vaccinations, a program to increase knowledge of children in proper pet care.
All of these programs continue today!
Proper housing for abandoned cats, kittens, dogs and puppies didn’t exist. The county
only housed adult dogs. So in 1985, AWS completed construction of the current animal
shelter on Old Leetown Pike Road. The shelter accommodates 20 dog/puppies and roughly
30 cats/kittens. As a no-kill shelter, we are normally overflowing with pets seeking
a second chance for a loving home. Each year, over 500 pets pass through our doors.
We do all of this with an annual budget of only $160,000.
AWS is governed by an all volunteer Board of Directors - all of whom are residents
of the county.
AWS is all about compassion for animals and their suffering. We have the willingness
to do “whatever it takes” to provide our wards with the second chance at the life
they so deserve.
Jeremiah, a 7 month old Black Lab mix, had been abandoned. He was brought to us severely
injured after having been struck by a car. He received medical care and while being
nursed back to health, shelter staff worked to bring him out of being withdrawn from
humans. Fourteen months passed with no forever home for Jeremiah even though he
was well adjusted. He became our shelter mascot.. Then it happened! Jeremiah received
his second chance - a forever home! That’s the meaning of compassion. Never giving