Hermanus Animal Welfare operates on two sites. The one is the kennel complex in Steenbras Street in the industrial area, where all our animals are kept. The second is the welfare charity shop in Mitchell Street in central Hermanus. At the kennels there are eight permanent members of staff headed by Peter Hansen, the Kennel Manager.
In addition, volunteers come in daily to care for the cats and dogs. Our work consists mainly of responding to reports of animal abuse and looking after starving, maltreated, abandoned and sick animals and rehoming them. A dipping and anti-parasite service is also provided at the kennels for a nominal fee.
In addition we look after stray, abused and neglected animals brought to us by the Municipality's law enforcement department. If the animals are not claimed by their owners within 7 days, the animals become the property of HAWS where we then attempt tp rehome them.
The kennels can accommodate 50 - 60 dogs/puppies and the same number of cats/kittens during busy times. There are four separate cat rooms, all with an outside area. The dogs have a combination of small and roomier cages depending on the breed size. They also have large grassy outside areas where they can run about during the day and take a dip in small plastic pools during hot days. HAWS also has the use of a servitude behind the property where the volunteers can help exercise the dogs individually and can also take the dogs for walks via the servitude instead of along the busy road in front of the property.
With the assistance of volunteers and a dog trainer, the dogs are being taught basic obedience training. The aim of this is to make them easier to handle and thus more adoptable.
Our own independent clinic has been operating since June 2013. It was recently moved from a small area behind the offices into the old vets building, thus providing a lot more space. This makes it possible to treat the animals in our care as well as those of our welfare clients at the kennels. HAWS also receives assistance from some of the local vets.
Thanks to the input of committee member Marlene Deneeghere, the HAWS Education Centre opened at the kennel complex in 2015. Here children from the local communities are taught the basics of pet care and health.
The welfare shop is run by a full-time manager, Sandra Corbett, her assistant Progress and several volunteers. It is fully stocked with goods and clothing donated by generous members of the public and local businesses. These items are sold and the monies received provide an invaluable service in raising funds to keep our kennels going.
HAWS is managed by a committee of dedicated volunteers, chaired by Pam Quinn, who all have a specific portfolio of responsibilities. They meet every month to discuss matters regarding the running of HAWS.
We also have a volunteer dog behaviourist who assists with difficult cases from time to time and also helps train and stimulate our puppies.