Mission Valley Animal Shelter
When you visit a shelter, the first thing you see is kittens. They draw you in with their cute little mew’s and miniature features. Then you start to look around and see the animals with a story, animals that without the help of the shelter would certainly be dead.
My visit to Mission Valley Animal Shelter in Polson, Montana last weekend was no different. I was just there to drop off some food from AniMeals and was drawn in by the kittens. Then I was introduced to animals with names like Roper, Burrs, and Blaze. With names like these you know these animals have a story. That and the staff are running out of names and creativity.
Roper was found running out in the country dragging a four foot piece of rope. Burrs came in so matted down with burrs his chin was matted to his chest and he had attempted to get them off so aggressively he had scratched a sore behind both his ears. When they started brushing the burrs out of his fur he just purred the whole time. Blaze wasn’t in the shelter when I was there but her story seemed seriously sad, she had somehow caught on fire and someone brought her into the shelter with burnt fur and singed ears.
And most recently was a chocolate lab named Coco whose people noticed he had an eye problem and abandoned him. Turns out he had a condition where his eyelids grow into the eye and curl under. The staff knew it would be an expensive trip to the vet, but felt strongly that they needed to do everything they could to help this animal. After working out a deal with the vet, Coco underwent surgery to fix his eyes and is recovering in foster care. Everything was new to Coco after his surgery, he timidly checked out things like grass which he was seeing for the first time. After telling Coco’s story to a man visiting the shelter, the man was so inspired he went to the vet and paid the rest of the bill.
The kindness and generosity of people like this man are often times what saves an animal’s life when financially there may not have been an alternative. Many shelters depend on private donations and are struggling just to stay open. Being able to bring food to the shelter, food donated to AniMeals by so many generous people, was such a blessing and just confirmed how important our mission is.
You can visit Mission Valley Animal Shelter Wednesday through Saturday from 11am-6pm. They would love to show you around their facility and have you meet their animals.
239 North Reservoir Road
Polson, MT 59860