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Hawaii: Missing your pets? Volunteer at Maui's humane society

March 29, 2013|By Jay Jones
  • Jagger is one of the former residents of the Maui Humane Society who found a good home on the U.S. mainland, with an owner in Colorado. Visitors can now volunteer two afternoons a week at the Maui facility.
Jagger is one of the former residents of the Maui Humane Society who found… (Maui Humane Society )

Visitors to Maui now have a way to stay connected to four-legged friends, even if the family pets are back home, thousands of miles away.

The Maui Humane Society is giving pet lovers a chance  to interact with homeless dogs and cats in need of some human kindness.

Starting Wednesday, the “Helping Paws Visitor Program” will let tourists lend a “helping paw” at the society’s animal shelter 1-4 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays.

After a brief orientation, vacationers-turned-volunteers will participate in activities such as bathing puppies, brushing cats and walking dogs. Children ages 10-17 are welcome to participate but must be accompanied by a parent throughout the afternoon.

“We have visitors stop by our shelter on a daily basis, just wanting to be around the animals,” Jocelyn Bouchard, the chief executive of the Maui Humane Society, said in a news release. “Until now, we didn’t have any organized way for them to get involved here, unless they wanted to adopt a pet.”

Adoption, of course, is an option for visitors who fall in love with one of the animals. Given the island’s relatively small population, there are limited homes for orphaned cats and dogs, 10,000 of which arrive each year at the shelter.

The Maui Humane Society is  between Kahului and Kihei at 1350 Mehameha Loop in Puunene. More information is available by calling (808) 877-3680.

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