What’s Big and Furry and Running all Over?

Well, we hope it will soon be our AWSOM dogs!

For the last two summers AWSOM has tried to build a play yard for our dogs to exercise, get fresh air and to interact with their other buddies that reside in the AWSOM shelter.

This interaction with other dogs is great for them and it allows the much needed playtime for our furry friends.

These pens help our dogs remain outside for longer periods of time rather than the quick walk and then back into the shelter waiting till the next dog walker comes along to take them out.

Mark our shelter manager and a few volunteers were able to put a couple of panels together and came up with one play area. Now that the weather has warmed up the staff has been able to place two or three dogs at a time in the play pen and let them run around and have an AWSOM time!

Sadly, one pen is just not enough for all the dogs that are at the shelter daily.  Our mission this year is to make their time at the shelter as enjoyable as we can until they are adopted by a furever family.

So, with that goal in mind we have priced out what it would take to put up some additional pens with covers.

Tractor Supply in Mt. Pocono has a heavy duty 10 x 10 by 6 ft tall pen for $300.

If we can purchase two of these pens and put them together we would have an additional play yard which would be 20 x 10 or 200 square feet!

This size pen would be large enough for volunteers to go into the area and throw a ball or Frisbee or just let 2 or 3 dogs run around and play for a few hours.

The existing play area is AWSOM but we would to make it Super AWSOM for our furry friends!

To complete our mission it will cost $1,600 plus the cost of renting a truck to get the four pens to the shelter.  Once the pens are at the shelter Mark and a few volunteers will put up the pens in a day.

We have started the Doggie Play Pen fund to raise enough money to get us started.

Please become an AWSOM Doggie Play Pen Fund Supporter by going to our website to donate.

Tell us you are an AWSOM – DPPFS and your donation will go toward the AWSOM doggie play pen.

Thank you all for your help and support of our AWSOM Shelter Animals.

Hope you enjoy this and make us your mission pawsible….see you round the food bowls!


Guess Who’s Coming to Stroudsburg and giving back to AWSOM?

The Board of Directors at AWSOM is pleased to announce that a Banfield® Pet Hospital is opening in our local PetSmart® and we will be receiving 20% of their opening weekend revenue.

 Now that is AWSOM!

 Please join us in welcoming them to the area!


The World’s Largest Veterinary Practice Celebrates the Grand Opening of its New Location 

STROUDSBURG, Pa.March 5, 2012 The doctor is in at the new Banfield® Pet Hospitalin Stroudsburg! The world’s largest veterinary practice, is hosting its official grand opening on Saturday, March 17, 2012 at Stroudsburg. To celebrate the newest location, PetSmart® and Banfield have teamed up to host grand opening activities including refreshments, contests, giveaways, “Ask-the-Vet” and hospital tours. To further commemorate the grand opening and give back to the loyal pet community, 20 percent of Banfield’s opening weekend revenue will be donated to the Animal Welfare Society of Monroe (AWSOM).

Offering preventative care including everything from annual examinations and nutrition counseling to prescriptions and surgical needs, Stroudsburg-area pet owners have a one-stop shop to pamper their pets while keeping them healthy with high quality veterinary care. Additionally, pet owners are invited to meet their local veterinarians and sign up for Banfield’s Optimum Wellness Plans®, a comprehensive package that allows Stroudsburg pet owners to provide preventive care year-round.

“We’re very excited that Banfield is now an even greater part of the Stroudsburg community and we look forward to assisting local pet owners in providing quality care for their pets,” said Dr. Christopher Corrado, lead veterinarian at the Stroudsburg hospital. “Banfield provides exceptional care for pets with a strong focus on preventive medicine which helps keep pets healthy and happy.”

With more than 800 hospitals across the country, Banfield Pet Hospitals offer the most advanced, high-quality veterinary care available to pets.  From routine checkups and vaccinations, to a comprehensive range of ongoing medical services, Banfield Pet Hospital is Stroudsburg’s new caring partner in pet care.

The hospital will be open Tuesday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information about Banfield Pet Hospital visit www.banfield.com.

About Banfield Pet Hospital
Founded in Portland, Ore., in 1955, Banfield has become the largest general veterinary practice in the world, with more than 800 hospitals in neighborhoods across the United States. More than 2,400 veterinarians at Banfield are committed to giving pets the highest quality of veterinary care. Banfield hospitals offer a full range of comprehensive medical services, computerized medical records, preventive care plans for pets and extended operating hours. Banfield Pet Hospital helps extend the lives of millions of pets each year through Optimum Wellness Plans®. For journalists seeking more information, please visit our press room at http://www.banfield.com/press-room or contact our 24-hour Media Hotline at 888-355-0595.

Eli’s coming…hide your heart girl!

by Peggy Sais

As a board member, I am called upon to do many things for AWSOM, but the most AWSOM adventure that I have undertaken so far is that I am now an AWSOM adopter!

We currently have two dogs, a shelter dog named Dexter weighing in at 140 pounds whom we adopted from the PSPCA and a little 8 pound Havanese named Madison whom we purchased (shame on me) from a breeder.  When we walk them it is quite a sight!

My AWSOM adventure began last Saturday when the shelter informed me that they would be receiving some small dogs from a dedicated rescuer whom we have named “the Maltese Madness Guy” as he has rescued over 20 Maltese dogs from puppy mills and hoarders and brought them to AWSOM.  Being curious, I hightailed it to the shelter to see the newcomers!

The shelter had named the three females and the one male puppy.  The little guy was called Checkers.  Suffice it to say he broke my heart and I couldn’t leave him.

The house is now in pandemonium, but I am having an AWSOM time training him to go potty in the right places, eating treats and socializing with Madison and Dexter.  This little guy just loves Dexter.  Madison and he spend hours and hours chasing each other around the house.  He made himself right at home.

When we got my little guy home, I figured we needed to rename him.  I suggested names like Fluffanutter, Prancer, Spike and finally settled on Wes (named after Wes Welker of the New England Patriots…Go Pats!).  My husband being a Giants fan said no.  He suggested Eli (named after Eli Manning grrrr)!  In order to keep domestic bliss I acquiesced.

Here he is in all his glory…the day I picked him up at the shelter and after his first grooming!  If it is possible I love AWSOM even more…for that is how Eli came into my life!


Come find your Eli (or Wes) at AWSOM!


We have had so much good news at the shelter this week!

The three Maltese girls were adopted.  Lenny (see Best in Show Blog) was adopted.

DiCaprio our feline AIDS cat was adopted by the Keys family.  You guys are AWSOM.  They have already reported back that they love him to pieces and he has settled in nicely.


We also had cat adoption mania this week…Louise, Sophia, Kirby, Zelda, Pauline and Lois were adopted.

Our dog adoptions were…Almond Joy, Chloe, Yoda, Diva, Joann, Jasmine, Courtney, Rex, Candy and our mostly blind little Yorkie mix was adopted by the next door neighbors of her foster parents, how AWSOM is that!

For those of you who are following August our poor GSD with cancer, she has gone to a hospice foster home…we are grateful for your AWSOM kindness.



The Dog Workshop held last week was a huge success.  Watch our web site for upcoming workshops.

Alaska Pete’s: March 11, 2012 at 1 PM – 8 PM join us for an all you can eat Italian Buffet.

Crescent Lodge: Thursday nights in March and April are Hero Nights and 10% of the restaurant receipts will be donated to AWSOM.

Click on the link for more information:




Please support our local vendors who support us…this week’s TOP DOGS include:

Pocono Cheesecake Factory Alaska Pete’s The Big A
American Candle Kistler Printing Weis
Barton Heights Vet Hospital Pet Corral Colonial Auto Sales
Randy R. Nolf, DDS. EPAA Pet Smart

Hope you enjoyed this week’s update and make us your mission pawsible…see you round the food bowls!


Find your Best in Show at AWSOM!

by Peggy Sais

As you all know, a cute little Pekingese named  Malachy won Best in Show at the Westminster Kennel Club 136th Annual Dog Show in NY.  While it is true, that Malachy is cute as a button, I don’t think he can compare to any of our dogs at the shelter!

My own favorite for Best in Show at AWSOM is a laid back soul named Lenny.

Our Lenny is a terrier mix who must have heard about AWSOM and came looking for us because the staff found him wandering on Godfrey Ridge Drive!  Lenny has been with us since early December and is a volunteer and staff favorite because of his gentle demeanor with people and the ease with which he walks with everyone.  He is extremely friendly and loves people.  He is a gentle soul!

Just look at that face, if Lenny had been in the ring, Malachy never would have stood a chance.  Lenny you are my AWSOM Best in Show!

Come find your Best in Show at AWSOM!


This week at the shelter we had 7 new incoming cats and 5 new incoming dogs.  See one of our cuties below!


MOMA our pregnant lab has had her litter.  Six pups, three males and three females.  We have one busy Momma and foster family!

Cats Rambo, Eve and Max were adopted.  Kittens Bam Bam, Pebbles and Amanda were also adopted…Meow Madness!

Puppies Heidi and Carter were adopted.   Harry our black and white Chi Chi mix, and Cujo and Jessie were adopted together…now that is AWSOM!

Jet also known as Jet Blue (see https://awsomanimals.wordpress.com/2012/02/02/looking-for-a-purrfect-day/) was adopted this week.  I am so happy for you!  I hope you have an AWSOM life you deserve it!


Our feline AIDS positive cat DiCaprio who is so friendly is looking for a special home…can you please help?


This Saturday and Sunday February 18th and 19th  AWSOM is sponsoring a Dog Handler Workshop! Call our volunteer coordinator to reserve your spot.

Click on the link for more information:



Thanks to the Pocono Record who is featuring our pet of the week DiCaprio…our AWSOM paws are out to you!

A huge AWSOM thank you to the SARPD… we know all the hard work you do in the community for the animals!  We love you guys!

Hope you enjoyed this week’s update and make us your mission pawsible…see you round the food bowls!


Find the love of your life this Valentine’s Day at AWSOM

by Peggy Sais

Valentine’s Day is soon upon us and a lot of us out there put a significant amount of our emotional energy into our animal relationships.

While I am not an extremely sentimental person, I do live for perfect moments and many of them come from some interaction of affection, connection or even awareness between me and the many dogs in my life.

Why not give yourself and your family a truly significant Valentine’s Day gift this year by adopting one of our furry friends at the AWSOM shelter!  And if you can’t adopt one of our furry friends please think about donating to the shelter in honor of your Valentine.

However you celebrate Valentine’s Day, savor your loved ones, whatever their species and have a truly AWSOM day!

Here are just a few of our Valentines at AWSOM:





This week at the shelter we had 2 new incoming dogs.

MOMA our pregnant lab has settled nicely into her foster home and her foster family just loves her!

This past week Paula one of my favorite cats was adopted…you go girl!

Puppy and dog adoptions this past week were Lacie, the puggle, Almond Joy and Harley and 2 of the Akita/Shep mix puppies…totally AWSOM!

Thanks to our facebook page and the blog we were able to place 2 dogs into foster homes this week.

Friski, the long haired Chihuahua (mentioned in last week’s blog) and Izzy, the nearly blind dog.  Bless our AWSOM fosters!

As many of you know we were closed last week but the staff worked extra hard and completed the entire cleanup after the renovations.  Thank you one and all!


3/11/12 – Spaghetti Dinner @ Alaska Pete’s

4/12/12 – Pawsitive People Awards Dinner @ Terraview at Stroudsmoor

5/6/12 – Wag N Walk

6/9/12 – NASCAR Pocono Raceway Festival

6/24/12 – AWSOM Vendor Market


An AWSOM thank you to all of our volunteers who helped make our second annual Brunch event at the Big A a huge success!

A big thank you to The Home Improver – Domenic Localzo who worked on most of the construction at the shelter and did an AWSOM job!

Thank you Mesko Glass for the purrfect job in making the office look more professional!

Hope you enjoyed this week’s update and make us your mission pawsible…see you round the food bowls!


Looking for a Purrfect Day

by Peggy Sais

I know many people may think of a perfect day when a favorite sports team wins the super bowl, or when they plan an outing and the weather is perfect, or when your child wins the class spelling bee.  Some of us think a perfect day is one when you have a quiet moment to catch your breath.

For me a perfect day is when one of the long-time furry residents of AWSOM is adopted.

Currently, AWSOM is home to three year old Marta.  She is a laid back lady that just loves to cuddle.  She enjoys lots of attention and head scratching and she is a purr machine.

Marta has been with us now for one full year.

When you visit Marta in the shelter house she is the first cat to jump in your lap and the last to jump down.  She will amuse you by diving in boxes, playing on the cat tree and jumping to the top of the cabinets.

Marta and all the other wonderful animals at AWSOM are just waiting for a furever home.  Won’t you make it a purrfect day for Marta?


This week at the shelter we had 11 new incoming cats and kittens and 10 new incoming dogs and puppies.  We do know our incoming dog number is a bit off as one of our cuties is pregnant.  Our cutie pie is now in a wonderfully loving foster home and we will keep you updated on MOMMA and on the arrival of her pups!

Cats Kashmir, Kittie and Zoey were adopted…happy tails!

Dog adoptions:

Nikki, Kody, Milo and Jenna were also adopted.

August and Sparky and they were adopted together…totally AWSOM!

As many of you know we are closed this week for some renovations so please plan on stopping back next Tuesday when we reopen to see all of the fantastic changes at the shelter.  We will give you a hint at some of the new wall colors: our black Lab named Jet now needs to be renamed “Jet Blue” after he brushed up against the paint.

Sadly this week at the shelter an older long haired Chihuahua was surrendered.  Unfortunately, the owner was hospitalized and is not expected to recover.  This cutie is scared and lonely and needs a loving home quickly.


JT Lambert Middle School dropped off more wonderful donations and treats.  Thank you! You guys are AWSOM!!!

Thank you as always to our volunteers who cleaned kennels, cages and litter boxes and walked dogs.

Hope you enjoyed this week’s update and make us your mission pawsible…see you round the food bowls!


Mission Pawsible!

Welcome to the first Animal Welfare Society of Monroe (AWSOM) Animal Shelter Blog – Mission Pawsible

by Peggy Sais

I have been mulling over starting this blog for AWSOM for about a year now and kept putting it off because I wondered what could I possibly talk about?   This blog will be ever evolving and a work in progress and I hope over the next few months to find topics that  speak to you!

The AWSOM shelter has been open now for an incredible 26 months, and I can’t think of a better way to begin this blog than to recount some of the amazing endeavors that have been accomplished during this time frame:

We have adopted out over 2,000 animals from the shelter; that averages to 133 animals per month and that is pretty AWSOM!

We reunite over 15 dogs per month with their families.

We have recruited 100+ active volunteers.

We have countless foster homes that provide love and guidance for our animals in the foster programs.

We have fed over 5 tons of dog food to our shelter dogs.

We have scooped 20 tons of kitty litter.

We have disinfected with over 1,500 gallons of bleach.

We have cleaned up with 250 bottles of hand sanitizer.

We spay or neuter on average over 30 animals a month.

We have calculated that since the shelter opened our dog walkers have walked 12,000 miles.

We clean 18 large dog kennels, 5 puppy/small dog kennels, at least 25 cat cages and 2 cat rooms each day…the poop is one statistic we won’t calculate.

We are on version 5.0 of our web site and it continues to get better.  You can find us on facebook and we have been known to twitter on occasion; all thanks to the volunteers who man these projects.

We average,  2-3 fundraising events per month including sponsored brunches, recognition dinners, holiday pictures, yard sales, and adoption opportunities.  Our events are only limited by our ability to come up with clever names:  the Wag and Walk, Meow Madness, Dog House Day, the Crab-Fest, Tricky Trays, Gimme Shelter, Smooch a pooch, The Twelve Strays of Christmas, Fore the Animals Golf Tournament, The Real House Pets of Monroe County, the Fur Ball, Accessorize to Save Lives, and many many more.  A little something for everyone and all to raise funds for the shelter or to promote adoptions.

We have been featured in the Pocono Record, on various local television news reports and even on Home and BackYard on WNEP-TV.

We medicate, we comfort, we advocate for the animals.

We have accomplished so much, but there is so much more to be done.

We continue to raise awareness about the shelter, and the problems the animals face in our community.  Many of our younger volunteers are from East Stroudsburg University and we hope to begin a program in the public schools educating our children on the principles of responsible pet ownership.

Recently, someone asked me why do you do this? It is hard, often tireless work, and the clients can’t say “thank-you.”  Of course, the easy answer is “for the animals” and while that is true, there is more.     I have seen true happiness when a new family is created through adoption.  I have seen the best in people shine through their work with the animals.  I personally, have gained friends and a sense of community through AWSOM.

Please follow us on facebook.  I hope to post weekly updates about what has transpired at the shelter.

Hope you enjoy this and make us your mission pawsible…see you round the food bowls!