New Mexico's Pet Resource SPRING 2006



Mission of the group:

The mission of our group is to curb the overpopulation of dogs and cats in Roswell and Chavez County, New Mexico through aggressive spay/neuter.

On January 18, 2006, we held our first Animal Welfare Alliance Spay/Neuter Clinic at Casa Querencia Animal Health and Consulting Center. We spayed/neutered 13 cats and 4 dogs. We booked over 20 dogs for our clinic on February 8, 2006. On that date the surgery was free to anyone who is disabled, unemployed or 65 years-of-age or older.

Brief history of the group. How long have you been in existence?

In 2001, Animal Welfare Alliance was formed and obtained its 501 (c) (3) non-profit status. In 2005, AWA underwent a major restructuring.

Approximately how many animals do you take in every year?

We are a “shelter-less” shelter and formalized our Foster Program just this past December. Several of us had been working independently for some time before we joined Animal Welfare Alliance and participated in the restructuring. We have signed up with for our first website at Fostering is secondary to our primary mission, which is spay/neuter.

How many animals do you adopt out each year?

Since we formalized our Foster Program several months ago, we have placed seven kittens and one cat. Thankfully, it is not yet kitten season. We also transport animals (usually adults) from the City of Roswell Animal Control to different breed rescues around the state.

What requirements do you have for intake of animals and adoption?

I wouldn’t say that we have “requirements”. By far, the majority of our fosters come from the City of Roswell Animal Control. Most of these are kittens who occasionally need to be bottle fed. Animals coming into the City of Roswell Animal Control facility have seven days to be adopted or they are euthanized.

Do you inquire about the past/present experience of potential adopters with pets or ask for references?

Absolutely. We have based our program upon that of Felines & Friends in Santa Fe. We require references, a vet reference and a home visit. We are very grateful for their help, generosity and guidance in getting our program on its feet.

Do you make follow-up home visits or phone calls to adopters?

Yes, both. We have a strong word-of-mouth referral system. Adopters refer friends, family members and co-workers to us. We are frequently sent follow-up photos of adoptees. We have a newsletter coming out soon that features a picture of “Sweetpea” and “Petunia” with their new family members.

What is your adoption fee and what does it cover (i.e. does it cover shots, transportation and spay/neuter)?

Our adoption fee for cats is $50 and for dogs it is $75. The fees include vaccinations, de-worming, and spay/neuter.

What are your provisions for the return of animals if they aren’t compatible with their adopters?

Pets MUST BE returned to us if they do not work out for any reason. We ask that everyone be patient with us and give us a little notice as we do not have a shelter and need a day or two to make arrangements.

Do you accept puppy mill or kitty mill animals? If so, what is your policy toward their probable medical expenses and toward providing spay or neuter services for them?

That problem, thank goodness, has not arisen. Being shelter-less, it would be difficult for us to take in large numbers.

If your group accepts cats, what is your policy toward feral cats?

We own 17 humane traps. We doTrap-Neuter-Return for 200-300+ cats per year. Last year we used TNR on 58 cats in November alone. We recently suspended our Barn Cat Placement Program as it was expensive and time intensive for everyone involved. Plus, relocation is very stressful for the animals.

What is your policy concerning euthanasia?

Euthanasia is seldom necessary, but considered on a case- by-case basis. Our only euthanasia in recent months was a kitten with a birth defect that could not be overcome. We do euthanize ferals if they are terribly ill or injured.

Do you use a foster based system or do you have a physical building to house animals?

Private home foster system.

How is the group financed?

Though we will be seeking grants to fund our spay/neuter efforts, we are primarily funded through private donations and our annual garage sale.

What do you need in terms of volunteers, goods, services, etc.?

Donations to the Spay/Neuter Program are always welcome as we’re working hard to serve those in our county who are disabled, unemployed, on Social Security, etc. The demographics of Chavez County, show that 48% of our families live at or below the poverty line. The need for free. or at least affordable spay/neuter here, is huge. Volunteers are needed to foster, to help transport animals to breed rescues and to help with check-in on clinic day. We could use help getting word out to the Hispanic community, too.

PETroglyphs thanks Judy Hathcoat, president of Animal Welfare Alliance, for providing this information. If you would like to volunteer for or donate to this group, you may contact them at: Animal Welfare Alliance, PO Box 2762, Roswell, NM 88202-2762, (505) 317-7439, on the web at: or by email at:

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