Hind Foundation Networking

Critter Camp

For Woods Humane Society

In 2010 and 2011, the Hind Foundation granted $2,500 to the Woods Humane Society to support two areas of their existing Critter Camp program: Arts & Crafts and Special Speakers & Demonstrations.

Critter Camp is a week-long summer day camp for children ages 9-12 offering participatory education in humane and responsible pet ownership. Woods Humane Society offers nine full weeks of camp, and strives to keep the cost of our camp affordable, hoping to increase the awareness of responsible pet ownership among all Central Coast demographics.

Critter Camp helps develop necessary tools for youth to reach their potential and develop the skills needed to become active participants in the community. Each of the five days focuses on a different humane topic: bite prevention, kindness to animals, animal abuse, animal overpopulation, and responsible pet ownership. Every child is paired with one shelter dog for the weeklong camp and spends each morning grooming, feeding, and training the dog. In the afternoons, children participate in educational activities, arts and crafts projects, field trips, and meet guest speakers and demonstrators. The week is capped off with a graduation ceremony, where parents and family members observe our campers demonstrate what they have learned, direct their shelter dog through an agility course, and receive a certificate of completion.

Noteworthy Results

  • Pet Ownership Awareness
    Participating children learned about humane education, shared that knowledge with their families, and in this way promoted responsible pet ownership.
  • Increased Confidence
    A number of children entered the camp with a fear of dogs and successfully overcame that anxiety.
  • Greater Enrollment
    Woods Humane Society provided three full tuition awards and four half-awards for each one-week session of Critter Camp. Several participants enjoyed the experience so much that they signed up for multiple sessions.
  • Improved Pet Behavior
    Dogs that participated in Critter Camp showed marked improvement in terms of their kennel behavior. Campers used positive reinforcement techniques to help transform dogs from shy or over-excited to friendly, calm, and able to connect with potential adopters.
  • Increased Adoption Rate
    Over the nine weeks that camp was in session, adoptions of hard-to-place-dogs increased by 20% and the kennels became much more quiet and peaceful.

Area of Funding: Plant & Wildlife Restoration
Type of Funding: Supplemental Grant
Amount Funded: $2,500
Year Funded: 2010
Year Completed: 2010

About the Organization
Woods Humane Society
875 Oklahoma Avenue
San Luis Obispo, CA 93405
(805) 543-9316
http://www.woodshumanesociety.org

Woods Humane Society, Inc. is a nonprofit, privately funded organization dedicated to the humane care of unwanted animals in San Luis Obispo County. Our Staff, volunteers, and board of directors are dedicated to upholding our Mission and preserving the welfare of our present and future animals.