Helpful Honda Guys help animals in the valley

Photos by Kyle Selby
Amber Martinez, Helpful Honda Dealer, shows potential adopters how to use their “pawsome” pet-photo booth.

■ Kyle Selby / Reporter

Tails wagged with excitement on Saturday, March 18, as Helpful Honda hosted its 6th annual pet adoption event at the San Jacinto Valley Animal Campus.
“Any exposure to the shelter is great,” said John Welsh, a spokesperson for Riverside County Animal Services. “We’re sort of tucked away in this industrial area in San Jacinto, so we’re very grateful to Helpful Honda.”
Fifteen lucky dogs and two grateful cats were adopted Saturday during the special discount adoption event, where dogs were adopted for $40, and cats for $20, spay/neuter, and license included.
“We’re hosting Helpful Honda pet adoption events in Southern California all throughout the month of March,” said Amber Martinez, Helpful Honda Dealer. “We’re here to raise awareness on the importance of adoption.”
The Helpful Honda Guys provided complimentary leashes, food bowls, and doggie bags, complete with all kinds of goodies for pet adopters. Along with a “pawsome” pet-photo booth, the Helpful Honda team made a donation for supplies to the shelter as well.
Riverside County Department of Animal Services is just one of the partners of the Helpful Honda pet adoption initiative. Others include Wags & Walks, Dachshund Rescue of Los Angeles, Los Angeles Animal Services East Valley, Barks of Love, Live Love Pet Care, German Shepherd Rescue of Orange County, and Ventura County Animal Services.

Photo by Kyle Selby
Helpful Honda Dealers Amber and Javier offer new pet owners a complimentary leash, dog bowl and doggie bag.

For the past six years, the SoCal Honda Dealers have helped more than 500 pets find their forever homes. This is the first time the Helpful Honda Guys have visited the San Jacinto Valley Animal Campus, much to the delight of the staff and volunteers.
“I’m so glad they came out to do this,” said Leslie Mills, volunteer. Mills was thrilled with the exposure brought to the shelter, because she says they are often overshadowed by the shelter next door, Ramona Humane Society.
While Ramona is contracted through the cities of Hemet, San Jacinto, Banning, Beaumont and Soboba Indian Reservation, the San Jacinto Valley Campus is contracted through the County of Riverside. However, the lack of awareness of the San Jacinto Valley Campus has led to Ramona not only experiencing overcrowding issues, but sanitation issues as well. SJ Valley Campus has plenty of room, and Mills hopes that one day, the two shelters can cooperate functionally for the animals’ sake.
“This place vets every animal and they are all well-fed, and are all kept clean,” added Mills. “It’s all about the animals.”

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