On May 10, a group of Virginia Tech veterinarians, veterinary technicians, and veterinary students, along with four carpenters/contractors and other volunteers, will work together with a goal of constructing up to 100 emergency dog shelters for dogs enduring crisis living conditions in underserved rural counties. The event is open to media and the public. 

In Craig County, for example, there is no animal shelter, rescue organization, or veterinary clinic. The animal control officer has limited resources to provide consistent, adequate shelter to neglected dogs in crisis awaiting their “day in court” or for those in situations needing temporary crisis intervention.

The project was conceived by Craig County resident, Tami Quesenberry, a veterinary technician at the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine and her husband Zane, a local contractor.

"I have witnessed some desperate and neglectful living conditions for animals in Craig, Giles, and Pulaski counties. This has inspired us to use the gifts and talents we were given to make a change," said Tami Quesenberry. "And the support of a passionate group of pet lovers who are giving of their time and talents to support this effort has been so gratifying."

The Humane Outdoor Mobile Emergency Relief Shelters, or HOMERS, will be built using sustainable materials by modifying reconditioned 55-gallon plastic barrels. The shelters will have a raised, treated-lumber base, a doorway, drainage, proper ventilation, drip edging, and a protected space for appropriate bedding. Up to 50 of the 100 HOMERS will be gifted to the Craig County Sheriff’s Office and their Animal Control Officer.

The kickoff event will be held from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Newport, Virginia.

For more information, contact Homersoutreach@gmail.com

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