Grand Daddy Of The Humane Societies Regroups

Comes through leaner, smarter, and more focused
BY: MAX POWERS

A humane societyis a group that aims to stop human or animal suffering due to cruelty or other reasons.

Lately it seems like you can’t swing a cat without hitting another organization whose goal is to help critters. Why is that? Why can’t everyone get behind one shelter in each town? Maybe because these well-meaning people want to captain their own ship. It does get dicey, though, giving money to an upstart humane society who’s bookkeeping is not transparent, or if it is, you don’t feel like pouring over the books like you should do before giving to somebody you don’t know.

So a lot of people support the first and largest, the Cabo San Lucas humane society, which dates back to the mid 1990s. But even they have their tough moments, some of which they just came through. They lost some of their long time volunteers, some who simply aged out, some who left the area, and some who had philosophical differences.

Barbara Cooperman, one of the original organizers of this shelter came back and she’s behind a lot of changes. Many years ago she was onboard when they made the major milestone of getting an actual building to be used as a shelter, an important but difficult accomplishment for any humane organization. And then their troubles just start, as they have to feed the obligation with a lot of money each month.

Today Cooperman and Armando Martinez are the volunteers most responsible for day to day operations. They have got the bookkeeping back on track, saving money by prudent spending, and have expanded the services offered.

No less than three veterinarians work there, but not always for the poor critters. They also provide services for the middle class critters and even the rich critters; they use the shelter as their office, taking in paying clients. It’s a busy, barking and meowing place. It doesn’t smell like it, though, as it’s kept squeaky clean. These vets also help with the humane society’s education, vaccination and sterilization programs. They also give free sterilization to all comers on Mondays and Wednesdays. Bring your pet in, and if you can afford it, pay what you can, but the shelter’s cost is figured by the weight. The weight of the animal, not your weight!

“The local government, through the health department gives about 200 does of rabies vaccination a year,” explains Martinez, “but we need about that many a month.” Yikes, do you still want to walk around the barrios where no dogs are on a leash, and where every dog is a potential carrier of rabies? Enter the Los Cabos humane society, which jabs every dog they can round up. And they do go on regular dog round ups.

The Los Cabos humane society can always use volunteers. Maybe you can give just a few hours here or there, maybe once, or maybe you can become a regular, working a few hours every week, when you’re in town. The need everything from dog walkers to cat petters, to administrative help in the office. There is a kind of trail in a big circle that most of the dog walkers take just with their chosen dog of the day, or in groups of friends they meet there. The cat cuddlers go into the very large, sunny enclosure and sit with the kitties of all ages, petting those who extend themselves to the potential cuddler as they see you coming through the door. Some ask for the contact, some are preoccupied with their snooze. It’s a good way to get to know an animal.

They also need foster pet parents, where you take an animal into your home for various periods of time. This works out really well if you’re only here a short period of time but miss having a dog or cat in your home.

Not to disappoint, but there is never a job picking up pet poop, as that is done by the paid staff that keeps the facility clean.

The shelter is just off the road to Todos Santos, turn right at the Love Hotel, and go up a couple hundred yards, it’s on your right, you can’t miss it. Open  Monday through Saturday 8 to 6, closed Sunday. Office 14 339 47, bilingual cell 624 129 8346.www.loscaboshumanesociety.com. You can also donate dinero online.