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PARTNERS IN EDUCATION
Pagosa Sun Article, April 14, 2005
By Frank Schiro

Humane Society Gives Back to Community

Slick was a lucky Labrador retriever. In fact, according to the story told by Humane Society of Pagosa Springs manager, Sheila Farmer, he enjoyed some "great and joyous lucky dog days". Slick was truly one of the lucky ones, and unfortunately for Pagosa Spring's furry residents, it is a story that is often repeated by local Humane Society and Animal Control personnel.

Sheila participated as a storyteller at last Thursday's "An Evening of Storytelling" event at Pagosa Springs Elementary School. She was one of eleven storytellers for the evening. Stories covered virtually every topic imaginable. Farmer chose to share one she wrote herself, sharing the tales of a wayward Labrador retriever named, Slick. A story similar to ones she experiences every day as the Animal Shelter Manager.

According to the story, Slick took advantage of an open gate to go exploring with some neighborhood friends. After some pretty hair raising and stinky adventures (a skunk was one of Slick's unfortunate encounters), Slick had the good fortune of being found by a kind and caring Animal Control officer. After a brief stay at the Animal Shelter, Slick was returned to his loving family of humans.

Sheila was excited to participate in the Storytelling Evening. Normally, the Humane Society is on the receiving end of public generosity. This time the tables were turned and the Humane Society was able to give something back to the community through this special Storytelling night. With interactive help from some young volunteers and puppets Farmer artfully spun the story of the curious, but lucky Labrador.

Sheila Farmer has certainly seen her share of real-life Slicks. Sheila started working for the animal shelter on December 26, 2001 as a front desk attendant. Later, she was promoted to Assistant Manager.

"Initially, I was promoted to assistant manager which gave me an opportunity to learn more about the other areas of the day to day operations."

Apparently, it worked out just fine. In 2004 Sheila became the manager of Humane Society of Pagosa Springs. Through her time as a shelter employee, she has seen many lost and unwanted animals receive care at the shelter and returned to their families or be placed in new loving home. These animals, like Slick enjoyed "great and joyous lucky dog (or cat) days".

Through Sheila's storytelling, hopefully more animals will continue to be as lucky as Slick and his real-life counterparts. The children and parents that heard the story can help in that effort. After all, just like Slick, it may be as simple as just making sure that the gate is closed and secured.

Partners in Education Pic 1

Partners in Education Pic 2

Animal Shelter -
Hours: Mon.-Sat. 10am-5pm, Sun. 10am-4pm
Address: 465 Cloman Blvd., PO Box 2230,
               Pagosa Springs, CO 81147 (Map)
Phone: (970)731-4771 FAX: (970)731-5552
E-mail: sheltermanager@humanesociety.biz
Thrift Store -
Hours: Mon.-Sat. 9 am-6 pm, Sun. 10 am-5 pm
Address: 279 Pagosa St on Hwy 160, PO Box 2230,
  Pagosa Springs, CO 81147 (Map)
Phone: (970)264-6424 FAX: (970)264-5593
E-mail: hsthriftstore@humanesociety.biz
Administrative Office -
Hours: Mon.-Fri. 8am-5pm
Address: 279 Pagosa St on Hwy 160, PO Box 2230,
  Pagosa Springs, CO 81147 (Map)
Phone: (970)264-5549 FAX: (970)264-5593
E-mail: hsadmin@humanesociety.biz