DOWNEY - In a season where shelters struggle to find owners for rescued and abandoned animals, SEAACA, the Southeast Area Animal Control Authority, looks to its newest venture, an on-site production studio, which will utilize technology and the internet to showcase animals in need of adoption.Launched on March 26, the Mod Pawd cottages, as they are called, were proposed by Found Animals Foundation, a LA-based, non-profit animal shelter assistance organization that provided nearly $200,000 in funding for the Pawds, which primarily focus on the adoption of cats. "This is unprecedented and the first of its kind," said Captain Aaron Reyes, Director of Operations at SEAACA. "The Mod Pawds are a result of many conversations with Found Animals Foundation. They said they would like to help us with our cat adoptions, which are pretty dismal. Cats are multiplying - as a result, the demand for them is not that great, their value is diminished." Located on SEAACA property, the three Pawd trailers act as an extension of the shelter, providing much needed housing for its cats, however, the Pawds also house a production studio where live shows are filmed and aired online at Foundanimals.org. The Mod Pawd webcast, which can be viewed live on the internet Monday through Friday from 4:00-4:30 p.m., features interviews with SEAACA staff, educational discussions concerning pet care and adoption, as well as the stories of several SEAACA animals and their paths to the shelter. After watching a broadcast, viewers are encouraged to adopt the pets featured on the show, giving SEAACA a new way to market their animals potentially saving them from euthanasia. In a released statement, the executive director of Found Animals Foundation, Aimee Gilbreath, applauded the Mod Pawds, which she believes could be the first of many across the country. "The Mod Pawd combines the best of media and animal shelter awareness," said Gilbreath. "We experienced a great response in the past while testing this public awareness platform and were able to find homes for hundreds of animals. This groundbreaking initiative has the potential to save thousands of pets from coast to coast…this could be a watershed moment for our industry." Reyes said currently, the Mod Pawd project at SEAACA has a 61 percent adoption rate for the dogs, rabbits and cats being housed inside the cottages. For SEAACA, the Mod Pawds are proving to be a success for both the shelter and the animals that are getting a second chance at life. "Cats are not embraced like dogs in the community, generally speaking," said Reyes over the phone. "They're definitely not in short supply and for that reason they are not adopted as frequently. Through Mod Pawds we hope to bring awareness to animals available at SEAACA, educate people on proper cat care and show that these animals are good companion pets."
********** Published: April 9, 2010 - Volume 8 - Issue 51