First in an occasional series of stories highlighting organizations the county financially supports.
Perhaps you’ve been to the dog kissing booth at Walmart prior to the pandemic. Or driven by the corner of Pasture and Berney Roads near NAS Fallon and wondered at the collection of buildings and old shipping containers located there.
This is the home of Churchill Animal Protection Society, a non-profit, no-kill shelter for domesticated dogs and cats looking for their next “fur-ever” home.
CAPS Director Gabriela Negrete says CAPS provides spay and neuter services, medications, vaccines and socializing opportunities for former pets surrendered to them by owners before placing these animals with new homes.
“We get many animals from rescue groups, the City of Fallon shelter, or those who are surrendered by their owners and place them in new homes through Petfinder, our website and Facebook pages to loving homes where they are a good match with the families,” Negrete said. Some of the animals that arrive at CAPS are senior pets with special medical needs that are beyond the means of their previous owners.
To carry out its mission, CAPS employs five people: Negrete, two cat attendants and two dog attendants at minimum wage salaries. Other expenses the organization incurs include food and medical services for the animals, which run about $3,000-$5,000 monthly. Donations from individuals, animal welfare organizations and other entities, including Churchill County, help cover regular expenses, but some large projects are looming over CAPS.
For several years, CAPS has been struggling to find plentiful, good quality water. Its well pump recently burned out trying to pump sludge water. An inspection is currently underway to determine solution options.
The concrete floors in the 20+ year-old building are disintegrating under the constant use of strong chemicals needed for cleaning the kennels and general building repairs are needed. Permanent shade structures that can stand up to Fallon winds, sun and occasional rainstorms would be very welcome for the outdoor kennels.
CAPS has been hamstrung by the pandemic and its inability to conduct several of its annual fundraisers including its kissing booths and the Bark in the Park 5k run/walk in May. Churchill County’s annual community support donation of $20,000 helps pay for CAPS operational needs including veterinary expenses for the dogs and cats it its care. Other supporting organizations include Maddie’s Pet Project, Mutt Nation Foundation, Tractor Supply Company and Jordan’s Way, which recently held a Facebook Live fundraising event at CAPS.
CAPS is open Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Appointments are preferred, but walk-ins are accepted at its facility, 5894 Pasture Road in Fallon. The phone number is (775)423-7500 and the website is capsnevada.com.