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Pawnee Humane Society work to resume
Loan from city approved
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Photo by Jim Misunas, Great Bend Tribune Schaller Construction, Inc. of Larned is the general contractor for the future home of the Pawnee County Humane Society.

Construction ongoing for Pawnee Humane Society
LARNED — Thanks to a $109,000 loan from the city of Larned, it’s full speed ahead for the second phase of the Pawnee County Humane Society building.
The 3,850-sq. ft. building is near the entrance of the Larned State Hospital off W. 8th. It will provide room for dogs and cats with separate rooms for food prep, laundry and grooming and education.
The Larned city council approved to provide a loan for 12 months at a 0.5-percent interest rate, with the ability to renew the loan for six additional months. The loan will help meet a July 1 deadline for licensing as an animal shelter.
Lois Eye, president of the Pawnee County Humane Society (PCHS), said it’s important to have everything in place by July 1.
“We were very pleased by the vote of the city council,” Eye said. “The city council has been very helpful. They see the Pawnee County Humane Society in a positive light. We are willing to work for this. It’s taken a long time to get to this point.” 
The loan will help pay Tim Schaller as construction manager and provide for additional interior work to be completed. Schaller completed the final design work as a donation and the inspection work for cost. He also hired sub-contractors for specific jobs.
“I was impressed with the commitment by the volunteers and was determined to help,” Schaller said.
Eye said the loan gives the PCHS additional time to acquire an additional $110,000 in donations. Donations will also help complete a dog park.
“Tim Schaller has been very helpful. He’s someone who has donated a lot of his time,” she said.
Eye said PCHS will be operated by volunteers, some who have acquired Department of Corrections certification to supervise inmates who are minimum security.
“The DOC offers free training for employers who are willing to help minimum security inmates, who are close to being integrated back into society,” Eye said. “It’s a great way for everyone to work together for a good cause.”   
The city of Larned has been without a local animal pound for several years after space was needed for a wastewater treatment facility. Currently, animals can be held for five days at the Larned Veterinary Clinic and Frick Veterinary Services.  
“Space is very limited and it’s an extra burden for the vet clinics to hold the animals,” Eye said. “Every effort is made to find the owner.”
After the five-way waiting period is over, PCHS volunteers accept the animals and spay and neuter animals which need the treatments.
“We have foster care homes that care of the animals until they find a home or we can place them with a rescue operation somewhere else,” she said. “We’re sending out five puppies to Colorado later this week.” 
Eye said the new PCHS facility will relieve pressure on the vet clinics as well as the foster care volunteers.
“The animal problem is getting better in Pawnee County, but in some ways it’s harder because we get more animals all the time,” she said. “Everything is working out right now, but it’s all through volunteers.”
Adoptable animals are available for viewing on the web site
People interested in adopting pets can call (620) 282-2554.
“We have volunteers who answer the phone,” Eye said. “We will visit with anyone interested in adopting an animal.”
Naming rights for specific rooms are available for sizable donors. The Sasser Family Dog Room was named after a $50,000 donation was received from PCHS board members Dr. Kelly Edison and Joseph Edison, and her family, the Sassers of Chicago.
A Paws in the Park fundraiser is scheduled May 28 at Schnack Park. Various events will be scheduled, including a 5K fun run.
People can make donations to PCHS, P.O. Box 224, Larned, KS, 67550.