The lack of city funding for the shelter has resulted in a shortage of basic items needed to provide comfort to shelter animals. Simple things like toys and beds can make a world of difference to a homeless pet. FOJA is committed to providing these items and others to make the shelter environment as comfortable as possible.
Animal enrichment programs support the sensory needs of the animals in the care of ACPS. Enrichment programs reduce stress, prevent boredom, and decrease undesirable behaviors. Enrichment also provides much needed mental stimulation and is as important as physical exercise.
In addition to monetary donations, the shelter is always in need of these items, to help support our enrichment programs.
In 2013, FOJA provided the funding to add three additional outdoor dog exercise areas. These areas are used for doggie playgroups, exercise areas. and adoption interaction areas. FOJA also provided the supplies utilized in playgroup such as leashes, collars, soft muzzles, water bottles, plastic pools, etc. Enrichment funds have also been used to purchase Kongs, dog friendly music CD's, calming collars, toys, and other enrichment items. FOJA has also purchased supplies which will allow the ACPS Dog Committee to build 100 krunda-type beds.
Future projects include agility equipment for the exercise yards and "Doggy Bags" equipped with a collar, leash, and kong for adopted dogs.
In an ongoing effort to make the shelter environment less stressful for our feline friends, FOJA has provided many items to increase their comfort while promoting both physical and mental exercise. Some of these items include; cat beds, shoe boxes (to lay in), toys, kennel-sized scratch pads, scratching posts for the play rooms, treat, calming spray, and calming collars. These items, paired with the love and cuddling of our fantastic volunteers can make a world of difference to a scared or un-socialized cat, and can play a big role in making them more adoptable.
We are always researching ways to further enrich the lives of our shelter cats and kittens. A future goal is to have a "catio" built so that they may enjoy safe access to outdoor viewing and play.