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BARL receives Mutt Nation Foundation Grant

Photos by Alex Jacks / These two dogs are just some of many available for adoption from Brookhaven Animal Rescue League.

Photos by Alex Jacks / These two dogs are just some of many available for adoption from Brookhaven Animal Rescue League.

Miranda Lambert, Grammy-winning country singer-songwriter, and her mother Bev Lambert selected the Brookhaven Animal Rescue League as the Mississippi recipient of the Mutt Nation Foundation’s Mutts Across America: 50 States/50 Shelters grant.

BARL board member Rusty Adcock said BARL applies for many national grants throughout the year, but this award did not come from filling out an application. The MNF Board of Directors and staff spent countless hours researching shelters in the United States.

Each shelter picked for the grant had to meet criteria elements set forth by the MNF board, including at least a 90 percent successful adoption rate, high volunteerism, fiscally responsible, high activity and fundraising attempts and community involvement.

“We are quite humbled to realize they saw us as a qualified candidate to be granted this award,” Adcock said.

Depending on the time of year, Adcock said BARL can have between six and 15 volunteers. 022616_BARL Grant 2

“We an influx throughout they year at different times depending on whether or not school is out,” Adcock said. “The core group that we have range anywhere from six to eight to about 15. They each have a specific little job that they do for us. Volunteers can do administrative stuff. We need that as much as cleaning kennels. It takes more than people realize to manage a rescue facility.”

Every year BARL adopts out approximately 600 dogs and cats, which is about 35 to 50 animals every month, depending on the time of year, Adcock said.

“We’re considered is a limited intake facility,” Adcock said. “We do not practice euthanasia just for the mere fact of time lapse or how long we’ve had a dog. There are instances where it is the most humane way to handle an animal by euthanizing it, whether that be its health or mental state. We do not practice it unless there is a reason.”

Adcock said BARL has already received the $3,000 grant from MNF and the shelter plans to use part, if not all, of the money on spaying and neutering dogs and cats.

“Our main mission, other than taking care of, sheltering the animals and finding them homes, is to spay and neuter,” Adcock said. “The crux of the problem is the lack of spay and neutering going on and is the main reason for overpopulation. Most of the grant money we bring in throughout the year goes to spay and neutering.”

Upcoming shelter events

BARL will have a rummage sale in the old Hudson Building next to Sears March 5. The group is collecting donated items today from 1 to 6 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Sunday from 2 to 3 p.m. The public is welcome to drop off items at the old Hudson’s Building during those times or can call 601-757-1057 to schedule a drop off appointment or pick up. Early-bird tickets to browse the rummage sale on March 4 from 5:30 to 8 p.m. will be available for $5. The sale will open March 5 from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. with no admission cost.

Other community events include Bark Fest on the Mississippi School of Arts campus in May, Doggy Day Camp for elementary age kids at the end of the summer, the Celebrity Dinner in October and pet photos and a rabies clinic in December.

“We’re constantly needing volunteers,” Adcock said. “We have a good core group, but there is a lot to do people get burned out. It is good to have a rotation. If anyone is interested I would encourage them to call us, look us up on Facebook or email us. Fundraising events are a good way to get in touch. It is something good for the community, what we do. The more help we get from the community, the better off we are.”