On June 2, 2003, the three active members of the Caldwell Humane Society (Lynne Williams, Debbie Price, and Ann Campbell) joined forces with four new members (Traci & Kenny Whiteside and Lauren & Jeff Clark) to incorporate Caldwell Humane Society, Inc. and adopt bylaws for the incorporated entity. Caldwell Humane Society, Inc. then applied for and received public charity status under Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)(3).
CHS, Inc. continued the philosophy of CHS which emphasized spaying and neutering as the primary solution for pet overpopulation in Caldwell County. CHS’s ongoing SPOT (Stop Pet Overpopulation Today) program was brought into Caldwell Humane Society, Inc. and consisted of 5 spay/neuter procedures each month, donated by local veterinarians. CHS, Inc. screened applicants for eligibility and administered the appointments. In time, the group began using its own funds to pay for additional procedures beyond those donated by the veterinarians. The first “Bark in the Park” was held in 2005, raising funds for the SPOT program as well as the KIND News, another program that was carried forward from CHS to CHS, Inc. KIND News is a kid-friendly monthly newsletter about animal welfare issues that is provided to all 4th and 5th graders in the Caldwell County school system on a monthly basis.
In 2005, CHS, Inc. began considering the establishment of low-cost spay/neuter clinics through the Humane Alliance Low-Cost Spay/Neuter clinic in Asheville, NC. A partnership was created with this cutting-edge group (see their website at http://www.humanealliance.org/HA2/ha-index.htm), and the SPOT program was revamped to use the Humane Alliance clinic, except in cases where the pet did not qualify for surgery in Asheville (in which case the local veterinarians continued to provide donated surgeries). Appointments also became available to the general public at that time. The first Humane Alliance/CHS, Inc. low-cost spay/neuter clinic was held in October 2005, with 22 animals going to Asheville for surgery and returning the next day. The group discovered a great need for low-cost spay/neuter, and the third clinic (held in February 2006) consisted of 74 animals, which remains the greatest number of animals ever sent on a single transport. The clinics were held every other month until March of 2008.
2008 was a year of tremendous accomplishment for CHS, Inc. In March of 2008, CHS, Inc. began holding the low-cost clinics on a monthly basis instead of every other month. The entire appointment process was reorganized and a clinic partnership was established with the newly-opened SNIP Regional Spay/Neuter Clinic in Catawba County, shortening the travel time for animals participating in the clinics. More than 450 animals were spayed or neutered through our 2008 clinics alone. In total, since the CHS, Inc. low-cost clinics began in October 2005, more than 1,000 Caldwell County animals have been spayed or neutered, preventing untold numbers of unwanted litters. CHS, Inc. is an all-volunteer group, and none of the progress described above would have been possible without the hard-working and dedicated volunteers who are determined to create a better future for Caldwell County’s animals.