Mother’s Day: It’s not just for Humans

by Kimberly Wade

Mother’s Day is nearly here and I bet before I even begin this you can guess what I’m going to write about…. and you’re right! Here’s the thing. Just because I, along with many other women out there, don’t have human kids, it doesn’t make me any less of a person. In fact, we’re all moms too—to kids of the four-legged kind.

Yup, I went there. I know however, others feel as I do on this subject as you will read below.

People are always asking me when I am having kids. It went from being sweet to funny to irritating and sometimes uncomfortable. Most people don’t seem to respect that it’s a very personal decision, not to mention you never know what a woman may be facing physically. It took me some time, but I finally decided to ignore the questions or comments and instead embrace the reality, I am a mother.

At Nevada Humane Society we consider pets family. So do many of you, so what’s to take away from the fact that we, as humans, are parents to them? My husband and I have six, yes, six, animals. That is just as much work (sometimes more) than a child. Seriously. Especially given they range from one year to almost 15 years old! Pet lovers know that young animals are typically bouncing off the wall no matter what time of day, and that seniors can be prone to the normal aging challenges. Pets require care and attention and love just like human kids do. And the coolest thing? Pets offer unconditional love! That means unlike the human teen who demands independence and locks herself in her room, or gets mad because she can’t use her cell phone at dinner, pets love you all the time, no matter how busy you are or how little you have. They just want you, a warm bed, a healthy diet, and maybe some toys. It’s that easy. Plus, you can kennel a dog if they’re acting up during your dinner party—you can’t really do that with a kid (though I do know of kids who sleep with the dog in his kennel).

Though this article is meant in good fun, I do honestly consider myself a mom, as do 99% of the people around me who have pets. Our four-legged babies are our kids. We are proud to show off photos of them on our phones, spend thousands in pet supplies, and even travel with them. We often spend more in veterinary care on our furry children than we do on ourselves. They are treated like family, because they are family.

Last year my husband brought me home flowers for Mother’s Day…. flowers from our animals. It was beyond fabulous and it honestly lifted my spirits and made me very happy. He’s right. I’m a mom, he’s a dad. So are all of you.

So no matter what form your children take, here’s to a wonderful Mother’s Day with your families. Whether you share an ice cream with your human kid or your dog, or enjoy a glass of wine with your cat (there is such a thing as wine for cats; Google it), remember, we’re all Moms. So go pet your cat, play fetch with the dog, or take your human to the movies and be proud to celebrate Mother’s Day.


Kimberly Wade is the Communications Director for Nevada Humane Society. She has been with the organization for 7 years but her passion for animals began as a child. Kimberly lives with her husband, 3 cats (one pictured) and 3 dogs.


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Lucinda’s Second Chance

by Kimberly Wade

To say I don’t have favorites would be a lie. Even in my own home, I definitely have animals that I favor, but I’ll never admit who. It’s somewhat the same at Nevada Humane Society. Every animal that comes through our doors, over 12,000 homeless pets each year, is special, but every now and then one needs a little more attention than the others, and it’s easy to see why they are the ones that become my favorites.

Lucinda is a gorgeous, chocolate point Siamese. She’s got a beautiful—and typical—Siamese personality. She’s talkative, charming, affectionate and intuitive. As a personal fan of Siamese, she has easily worked her way into my heart, but it’s time for her to work her way into yours, especially as she asks for help.

Lucinda was found alone on the streets fighting several injuries. She had electrical burns in her mouth, a bad eye infection and was severely underweight. We don’t know what happened to her but we do know she needed help. When she arrived at Nevada Humane Society, she was rushed to our veterinary clinic. She was immediately given IV fluids to hydrate her, pain medications for the burns in her mouth and tucked into a warm bed to bring her temperature up. We started her on antibiotics for her eyes and tried to feed her—she refused. We knew we had to closely monitor her because with everything she was facing, though her will to survive was there, it wasn’t strong.

The next morning Lucinda looked a bit better and tried to eat a little on her own. The pain meds and antibiotics had begun to work and her instinct took over—she was hungry! It allowed us a sigh of relief but our work wasn’t over yet.

Lucinda bounced back and forth for several days between good and bad but through it all she purred and nuzzled her head in our hands. Her fight to survive was getting better, thanks to our caring staff, and slowly, she began to perk up.

Once her vitals were within more normal limits, she was spayed. Her eye infection wasn’t clearing up, and it was obvious one eye was much worse than the other so we chose to remove it. She continued to receive IV fluids, daily medication, appetite stimulants and an overwhelming amount of TLC from staff—myself included. I had met her on day two and knew she was a special gal. I told her to hang in there, fight for that second chance and saw the appreciation in her eyes as I just sat and talked to her.

Today, over a month later, I can finally say she’s looking fabulous. Her eye has healed, and her remaining eye shines bright blue in color. Her fur is velvety soft, and while her legs are still shaved from where the IVs were inserted, she’s gaining weight and it’s safe to say Lucinda is well on the mend and will soon be ready for a home.

Lucinda’s stay here hasn’t been without financial struggles. From her initial treatment to her eye surgery to her continuing care the cost has added up. Though she more than deserved it, would you be so kind as to donate to Lucinda? We have a special fund, Emily’s Fund, which provides for sick and injured pets. So far this year, we’ve unfortunately seen many, Lucinda included. We always go the extra mile for them, but would welcome your financial support—everything helps. You can donate online through our website,, or you can call us at 775-856-2000 ext. 324 or 332. You can also mail or drop off your donation. Just earmark it for Emily’s Fund. Lucinda, and the many others like her, deserve your support, and you can be confident your donations are providing for those without a voice. Like I said, we don’t know what happened to her but we are here to save her. You make that possible. Thank you, in advance, for your support for Lucinda and I can’t wait to see who falls for this beauty and takes her home—because she’s going to make someone very happy. Adoptable Pets at Nevada Humane Society


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Fido Fest Celebrates All Things Dogs

by Kimberly Wade

Barley, my middle-aged terrier, smiled at me this morning, and for good reason. He knows this weekend is going to the dogs and if you’re a dog lover (like many of us), consider yourself invited! Fido Fest, which debuted last year, is back! This fabulous doggie extravaganza features everything for the dog lover (and pet lover) by bringing together local businesses and adoptable dogs for one big celebration this Saturday, April 22, hosted by and at The Summit in South Reno. While many stores in The Summit will be participating with fun specials and giveaways, adoptable dogs and vendors will be located in the Center Plaza between Vans and Tilly’s. Fido Fest runs from 10am until 2pm and admission is free. Festivities include:

Fido Marketplace of dog-themed art, gifts, jewelry, pottery, dog toys and more

Many adorable dogs for adoption (bring the whole family to meet your new friend, yes, this means dogs too!)

Animal healthcare and obedience vendors

Live entertainment

K9 Agility Course Demonstrations


Retailer specials and giveaways

Food Trucks

Free admission!

Dogs available for adoption include big and small, young and old, cute and yes, even the not so cute. Personalities blend between sweet and well-mannered to lively and energetic. There will be the everyday pup (the labra-doggy), exercise partners and champions of fetch (the pity party), dogs for date night (the small, fluffy, diamond collar kind), couch potatoes (seniors) and those that dig through your trash (the pre-teens and toddlers). All dogs have already been spayed or neutered, vaccinated and microchipped.

The Summit has always welcomed visitors with dogs and with good weather finally upon us (unless I jinx it), Fido Fest is the perfect family outing—for the two and four-legged kind! Last year we had some pretty incredible matchmakers, if you remember Kuro and Kibo, a black lab and shepherd who were abandoned at Hidden Valley Park. These two found love thanks to Fido Fest, and we know those same kinds of stories will happen this year, which makes a big adoption like this even more important to our community. By the way, Kuro and Kibo are doing well with their family and happy to celebrate their one year adopt-a-versary too!

So don’t miss Fido Fest, even if you aren’t ready to adopt. There are lots of other fun things going on and we’re going to be showing everyone a doggone good time!

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Celebrating Saia’s First Birthday

Saia Turns Oneby Kimberly Wade

How many of you celebrate your pets’ birthdays? Whether by posting a simple photo on social media or going the distance with pup-cakes, presents, balloons and then some? If you’re like me, you do both! Next week, on April 18, my little Siamese, Saia, turns one. She’s a chunky, goofy, vibrant little girl with lots of sass in her personality. I wasn’t always one to make a big deal out of pet birthdays, but after losing my first three cats, and experiencing pet loss for the first time, I decided I needed to celebrate life. Now even my husband laughs at me for the birthday “pawties” I throw!

You may recall a year ago, I was in Las Vegas for an animal conference. After it ended, I met with a nearby animal welfare group to bring 15 cats and kittens back to Reno. My little Saia was one of them. As we were moving the kittens into our adoption vehicle, she refused to go into the cage with her four siblings. She literally leapt into my arms (mind you, she was about four weeks old) and clung to me. When I tried to put her with her siblings she wanted nothing to do with them. She wouldn’t eat. She wouldn’t sleep. So while my husband drove (he always gets roped into helping me with these things), I held her in my lap for ten hours. Once back in Reno, she came home with us, to our house, as a foster kitten. She still wouldn’t eat; I couldn’t leave her alone overnight! Her siblings were fine and doing everything right, but apparently she wanted nothing to do with them.

As you can guess, Saia never left my house. She eventually began eating, and I think her constant desire to eat today is because she’s making up for lost calories during her childhood. She’s my special little girl, who took a road trip with me, making her way into our hearts and home. For those of you thinking that my husband is very tolerant and that I’m lucky to have him (given my obsession with animals), you’re right.

So next week, we celebrate Saia’s birthday. Most of our brood (we have three dogs and three cats) have birthdays early in the year, so as you can imagine it’s been busy. Saia, just like the others, will receive toys, a fancy bed, treats and more. I even go as far as to get one of those big helium number one balloons, you know, like most people do with their human kids? For me, my pets are family, so why not celebrate their precious little lives? I’ll be sharing it all over social media too.

I know I’m not the only one that does this. The veterinarian my husband and I go to had a birthday “pawty” for her 14-year-old lab and invited lots of her doggie friends to come over and celebrate. Another friend decorates with balloons, beautiful chalkboard signs, and cake for her kitties. Then there are all of the pets’ who have social media accounts! I too have an Instagram for my cats (@little_maisey_moo) and our Nevada Humane Society office cats (@nhsbosscats) and the number of birthday celebrations we see are incredible!

Speaking of birthdays, I do have one special shout out, an early Happy Birthday to Maddie, the namesake to Maddie’s Fund. She would have been 30 on April 26, and her legacy lives on thanks to Maddie’s Fund, and also thanks to so many lives we’ve saved here at Nevada Humane Society.

So, whether you laugh at me or support me, the point is that our animals are family. They love us unconditionally, and if you’ve ever adopted from Nevada Humane Society you know this well. We take our pets’ on vacation, to the beach, shopping, out to dinner and then some—so why shouldn’t we celebrate their birthdays? Every day and every year that we have our animals with us is another one to be acknowledged. Whether you go big with a “pawty” like I do, or just post a photo online and have all of your friends wish your four-legged BFF Happy Birthday, it’s a joy for all of us. Hopefully Saia’s birthday celebration will be inspiration for your furkids, too.

By the way, if you want to share photos and stories of your “pet pawties” I’d love to see them! Email me at or send them in to 2825-B Longley Lane, Reno, 89502.


Kimberly Wade is the Communications Director for Nevada Humane Society. She has been with the organization for 7 years but her passion for animals began as a child. Kimberly lives with her husband, 3 cats (one pictured) and 3 dogs.


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Heels & Hounds is Back!

by Kimberly Wade

Think Kentucky Derby. Veuve Cliqcuot. Shopping. Mother’s Day. Adorable, four-legged, fluffy dogs and cats. Brunch. A photo booth. Plenty of pink, orange, green and gold. Spring. Charity. All of this sums up our first big fundraising event of the year, our third annual Heels & Hounds, and you don’t want to miss it!

I can’t believe it’s already April and that Heels & Hounds is here again but we are so excited to kick off Spring with a bang—especially given the recent weather hasn’t felt very Spring like! Our event will fill you with all of the warm fuzzies—bright colors, fun-filled festivities, lively and friendly community go-getters and of course, animals. Because after all, that’s why we host events and raise awareness—because the animals need you.

Heels & Hounds is our annual champagne brunch and fashion show, happening in one week, on Sunday, April 9, at Atlantis Casino Resort Spa. Tickets aren’t available at the door, so be sure to get yours now by calling 775-856-2000 ext. 320 or visiting our website, Just a few of the festivities that you’ll enjoy include:

  • Dozens of boutique vendors with of one-of-a-kind gifts for people and pets—just in time for Mother’s Day too!
  • A Bubbles & Bling Champagne raffle, where you can buy a glass of Veuve Clicquot and one lucky glass will win a pair of $2,500 Diamond earrings, courtesy of Goldilocks Jewelry and Coin!
  • The Key to The Couture Closet raffle, a fabulous gem of over $4,000 worth of prizes, with everything from a style makeover to health and wellness packages, beauty and fashion gifts, jewelry and a shopping spree valued at $500 by Dillard’s!
  • A silent auction with over 75 cool items for people of all lifestyles
  • A fashion show with local celebrities and pets
  • Unlimited champagne, brunch and even more sweet treats
  • Pets, pets and more pets!

Tickets are going fast and at $75 each they’re a steal for what we know is going to be the best “Sunday Funday” ever. Not to mention, all of this comes back to benefit our homeless pets at Nevada Humane Society.

Last year we saw over 17,000 animals come through our shelter for some form of help. While most of those were homeless pets, others were animals who needed vaccines, spay or neuter services, behavior help and more. Through it all, we saved over 95% of the animals in both Reno and Carson City. That’s lifesaving, folks. That’s making a big impact on local communities as well as those smaller ones around us. And all of this is done thanks to your support, your donations.

So if you’re thinking about going out next Sunday, April 9, maybe it should be for Heels & Hounds. After all, you’ll get a wonderful day with family and friends all for a good cause—because everything we raise for Heels & Hounds helps us cover the cost of animal care—it helps us save lives.

Tickets are not available at the door and last call is by tomorrow, Thursday, April 6, so get yours now either by phone at 775-856-2000 ext. 320 or online. We hope to see you there!

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Angel Pets Deserving of Second Chances

Kimberly Wade

“I’m Bella Rouge. I’m an Angel Pet.” This statement is just the beginning of a group of special pets at Nevada Humane Society seeking love, a family and unlimited belly rubs. Featuring nearly twenty cats and dogs, Angel Pets are those who are in need of a special home even more than anyone else.

Bella Rouge just had a birthday, turning ten-years-old. Her coat shimmers in colors of gold, orange, white and dark chocolate. She’s charming, talkative and a champion sunbather. Her need? She’s diabetic, so she needs daily medication and a special diet.

Boe is a handsome, teenage Shepherd with a stunning ivory coat. He’s always smiling, not to mention intelligent and affectionate. He loves his life despite one simple thing—he has a chronic urinary challenge. It’s easily manageable with a healthy diet and daily medication, even if it’s not fun to talk about.

Bugsy is almost 5, with eyes the color of the sunrise and a striped tiger coat. He’s a mix of sweet and spice with the cutest little face. His challenge? He has arthritis because of his round, full-figure. While exercise will definitely help, Bugsy is also on daily medications and trying his best to learn kitty yoga.

Bella Rouge, Boe and Bugsy are all part of the Angel Pets program, which is designed to help geriatric pets or those with chronic medical conditions find loving homes. Angel Pets offer companionship, unconditional love and every other benefit a pet provides—but they too need something in return. Whether a prescription diet or medications, Angel Pets need a family who will commit to them and be there for them in sickness and health—and Nevada Humane Society is here to provide medical care, training, and support for any condition these animals may have.

By asking the various animal lovers who come into our shelter, we’ve discovered that many people express interest in adopting a pet with special needs but do not have the financial means to absorb the cost of medical care. Under the Angel Pets program, Nevada Humane Society eases the burden of caring for that pet while the adopter gives the pet a chance to live a healthy life outside of the shelter. We waive adoption fees and cover medical care relating to their condition in our vet clinic—because that’s how much we feel animals just like Bella Rouge, Boe and Bugsy deserve a home.

If you’ve ever thought about opening your heart and home to a special pet, please consider adopting an Angel Pet from Nevada Humane Society. You can visit the shelter, spend time with one—or several—Angel Pets and see who is a good fit for you. Remember, we’ll offer education and support regarding their medical condition, arm you with supplies and send you home with any medications and pet food. That means all you need to do… is love. We promise it’ll be the best relationship you’ll ever have, so what do you say? Will you be the human angel to one of our Angel Pets?


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Oakley the Kitten Has a Happy Ending

Oakley Collageby Kimberly Wade

Back in February, a little black kitten made headlines throughout Carson City. Oakley took it upon herself to have a nature adventure and climbed all the way to the top of an Oak tree (hence, her name). Sadly, she couldn’t quite figure out how to get down. At only six months old, her life experience was still minimal, and there was no mom in sight to help her. She began to cry.

A nearby Carson City resident heard her cries and went outside to see what the noise was. Imagine their surprise to find Oakley, high atop an Oak tree in a neighboring yard! Our Nevada Humane Society Animal Control Officers were called but we didn’t have the right tools to get into the tree—not to mention it would have been extremely risky for a person to climb the thin, unsteady branches. The resident then called Healthy Trees, a business local to Carson City. Lucky for all of us, they were available to help.

John and Sean used their climbing gear to safely reach little Oakley, then they repelled down to us. She was in good spirits, not injured and appeared to be friendly with everyone. Healthy Trees saved the day.

Oakley remained at Nevada Humane Society for five days to see if anyone claimed her. No one came forward so we went ahead and spayed her, vaccinated her and microchipped her, then put her up for adoption. Her story at that point had been published throughout Washoe County and Carson City, so it was no surprise when a wonderful family came forward to meet her.

Just the other day Oakley’s new family sent us an adorable photos and message:

“We love her! She has bonded with us all, especially my son and is very playful and loving. She loves dogs…no worries with our two, even on the first night…crazy! She and our 13-year-old kitty are working on it but we have no doubt that one day we’ll come home and they will be curled up in a dog bed together. She also plays with Leo’s tail… it’s pretty funny since she doesn’t have one. By the way, we’ve modified her name to Annie Oakley! We love the story of her rescue, but thought it added a fun western flair! We call her by her full name….Annie said really fast. Thanks again for rescuing her and for keeping her safe to find her loving home!  I don’t know who she lived with before us, but honestly, they must miss her. She is a joy!”

Aww, we love this! It’s so good to hear of the community coming together to help Oakley and we couldn’t be more proud to be a part of Carson City. Happy Tails to Oakley!

P.S. Healthy Trees said if we get stuck in this situation again (because we know cats climb) we can call them anytime! Great job Carson community!



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