Bookmark and Share

New Amigo Fund helping dogs and cats in need

Dogs and cats throughout Archuleta County are not getting the medical care they need and are not getting the food they should have.

Because of the economic downturn, pet owners are losing their jobs, are unemployed or are having their hours and pay cut. Their pets are also suffering.

A new fund has been started to help those pet owners in need: The Amigo Fund. Donations are needed now for medical care and food. Every dollar donated goes directly to helping a pet in need. The Amigo Fund has no overhead and all work is done by volunteers; all funds raised go directly to helping dogs and cats in need.

The fund was started by Jean Pionke who lost her beloved German Shepherd, Amigo, last fall and understands how overwhelming pet medical bills can be. She was able to extend Amigo’s life by four months because she figured out a way to pay for the continued medical care he needed. Jean was able to provide Amigo a wonderful quality of life during that last four months and that time was so precious to Jean.

Many of our local dogs and cats are immediately euthanized because their owners do not have the funds to pay for needed medical care. Medical conditions that once resolved would return a dog or cat to a full, healthy and long life. There are pets waiting now for needed medical treatment. The Amigo Fund needs your help.

Throughout the country there are similar funds that help those pets in need. Large and small donations save the lives of pets by providing necessary surgery, repair and treatment of illness that many pets would not be given. Already donated money and donated time by local vet Dr. Polly of High Peaks Mobile Vet have helped two dogs with broken bones, a cat with a serious medical condition and families that need food for dogs and cats. When available, Pagosa Feed is donating food to the Amigo Fund to help feed pets that are not getting the food they need. Dog food is available now.

The Amigo Fund is named after a large, stunning German Shepherd owned by Jean Pionke. Jean was a Humane Officer in the Midwest when she purchased Amigo as a pup. Amigo became a self-taught service dog and worked with Jean every day. Amigo learned to sense danger on the job and defuse it without showing any aggression. Amigo learned to do so on his own and took control of each situation with just his will and presence. Amigo was lost to cancer last fall and afterwards Jean realized that there are dogs and cats throughout our county that need the same help. Their owners are overwhelmed with the seriousness of their pet’s injuries or illness and the cost of providing the care needed. Jean’s goal is to have a pool of funds ($3,000 to $4,000) and provide the money available to those local vets that are either donating their time or have offered their medical care at a discount.

Dr. Hooton and the staff at Elk Park Animal Hospital are joining the efforts of the Amigo Fund and will be helping with this program.

Pagosa Springs and Archuleta County is home to a world of generous people who give an extraordinary amount of their time and hard earned dollars to help make our community a great place to live. The Amigo Fund is another way to help. Please consider making a donation. Call 946-0980 or mail a donation to P.O. Box 2054 Pagosa Springs, CO 81147.