PET-FOOD DRIVE SLATED AUG. 28 AT DOÑA ANA COUNTY GOVERNMENT CENTER

PET-FOOD DRIVE SLATED AUG. 28 AT DOÑA ANA COUNTY GOVERNMENT CENTER

ACTion Program for Animals (APA) will hold a pet-food drive from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, Aug. 28, in the rotunda of the Doña Ana County Government Center, 845 N. Motel Blvd., in Las Cruces.

APA is a non-profit organization that assists Doña Ana County pet owners who are low-income, unemployed, disabled or otherwise unable to purchase food for their companion animals. APA distributes pet food donations on the second Saturday of each month from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the corner of Westgate Road and Westgate Court in Las Cruces.

The Aug. 28 event is the first time that Doña Ana County has formally teamed up with APA to support its efforts.

District 4 Doña Ana County Commissioner Scott A. Krahling, who chairs the Animal Services Center of the Mesilla Valley Board of Directors, said the drive represents another step in ongoing efforts to bring all animal-advocacy groups together to keep companion animals from ending up at the shelter.

“The terrific work of APA is undoubtedly assisting people who might otherwise consider abandoning their animals,” Krahling said. “I’m proud to partner with APA for this food drive, and I encourage all animal lovers to come to the Doña Ana County Government Center on Aug. 28 to donate as many cans or bags of pet food as they can comfortably afford.”

Michel Meunier, who chairs the APA board of directors, said more than 8,500 pounds of food have been distributed since the program began in June, and she estimates that more than 500 dogs, more than 100 cats and one horse have directly benefitted. She said APA also accepts cash donations with which to purchase food and other pet supplies for cash-strapped pet owners.

Meunier said APA screens all recipients for residency and financial need, and many recipients must volunteer to assist the organization in its collection efforts as a condition of continued support through the program.

“We believe in helping people in hard times,” Meunier said, “but we also believe in the concept of asking returning recipients to assist us with growing this program and paying forward with their time and energy.”

In addition to accepting donations at the Aug. 28 event, Meunier said APA will hand out information about low-cost spay/neuter and vaccinations.

***** ***** ***** ***** ***** *****

Reporters seeking more information or interviews may call county Public Information Director Jess Williams at (575) 525-5801.