Gearing Up for Annual Trick or Treating Event

by Kimberly Wade

Halloween. It’s easily a favorite holiday by many, especially for those who dress up their kids… and their pets. Halloween for us, for Nevada Humane Society, is a time of fun, a time to bring people and pets together and maybe, just maybe, a time to eat a little too much sugar.

Every year, we invite the community, their kids and families, into the shelter for what we call Safe Trick or Treating. It’s safe because it’s indoors and full of adult supervision. But better than that, we dress up dogs and cats in costume and they help hand out Halloween candy to the kids! Who doesn’t love that?! Of course, we have staff and volunteers on hand in costume too, and they supervise the pet handing out the candy, but we know the kids are more enthralled with the pets. I mean, who can pass up a dog in a lobster costume or a cat in a superman outfit? No one! (Side note—if you’ve got great pictures of your pets in costume, feel free to email them to and we’ll publish them on our Facebook page)

Safe Trick or Treating is on Saturday, October 31, Halloween night at our Reno shelter. It begins at 4pm and ends at 6:30pm and kids of all ages are welcome. We’ll have spooky music, people and pets in costume and of course, candy, candy, candy! It’s truly a great time for all but come early because it gets busy!

Looking for Halloween fun in Carson City? As we also have a shelter there (currently on Butti Way but the groundbreaking for our new shelter began last week, which will be on Butti Way and Airport Road), we’ll be bringing dogs for adoption—wait for it—in costume—to the Carson City Petco on Friday, October 30 from 1pm to 4pm. Then, on Halloween, we’ll have adoptable dogs in the Nevada Day Parade. We weren’t kidding when we said we do the holidays right!

One more thing. We’re seeking Halloween candy donations of individually wrapped candy for our Safe Trick or Treating event. All donations are tax-deductible and may be dropped off from the hours of 11am to 6:30pm to our Reno shelter on Longley Lane. We promise not to eat it because seeing the joy on the faces of the young kids who come through here on Halloween is priceless and we wouldn’t change that for anything! Happy Halloween!

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For the Love of Cats

by Kimberly Wade

As our 5th annual Cat Convention approaches I am excited! Yes, I am what my fellow colleagues, family and friends refer to as a “crazy cat lady.” And honestly, I don’t take offense—because I’m the kind who just loves cats and would do anything for them. I don’t have cat wallpaper in my house, I don’t wear cat clothing (ok, maybe I have a few t-shirts) and my husband is great at making our current 3 cats the limit for adopted felines in the house (don’t fret—we have 3 dogs too). For me, cats are the one companion that truly offer unconditional love. They know when you’re down and respect your space, simply lying next to you quietly. They know when you’re happy, offering kitty licks reflecting the good mood. They know when to play, when to rest, and when you need a good laugh (our 6 month old Newton chases the Roomba around as it vacuums). They can be trained (our Siamese Arwyn would play fetch) and yes, believe it or not, they do listen. They give support and companionship unlike any other pet.

That’s where our fabulous Cat Convention comes in. Happening this Sunday, October 18 at the Atlantis Casino Resort Spa, the event will feature 100 adoptable felines from Nevada Humane Society, all seeking to give you that unconditional support I mentioned above. We’ll have Cattitude Cats, Senior Kitizens, Mini Panthers, Tiny Tigers, Angel Pets, and those that are Big & Beautiful. We’ll even have kittens! Plus, at this event (not at the NHS shelter), for one day only, all fees will be waived for cat adoptions—that means no matter what age, personality or style cat you fall for, you can adopt them for free! Now, standard adoption policies do still apply but knowing that the initial fee is waived should help some of these beauties go home. Each cat is spayed or neutered, vaccinated and microchipped. We do that for them, and you, so you can reap the benefits of a life-long, four-legged, bushy-tailed, whisker-wiggling feline.

The Cat Convention is from 11am to 4pm at Atlantis, who has generously donated space for this event. It will take place in the Grand Ballrooms, featuring cool vendors selling cat-related items, as well as groomers, veterinarians and more. From arts and crafts, to kitty toys, special treats, clothing and cat beds, these vendors love cats just as much as we do! You’ll also get to talk with our staff and volunteers who lead cat related programs, such as our Social Se-CAT-ary and Cat Action Team, as well as learn about our Foster Program for Kittens. There’s even a raffle contest and free giveaways! The Cat Convention is sponsored by Carl and Virginia Mansfield, who left a legacy specifically to help kitties in need at Nevada Humane Society.

So join me and all the other crazy cat folk as we celebrate All Things Cats at our annual Cat Convention. It’s an event unlike any other that you won’t want to miss!


Kimberly Wade is the Senior Manager of Communications and Events for Nevada Humane Society. She has been with the organization for nearly 6 years but her passion for animals has existed her entire life. Kimberly lives with her husband, 3 cats (one pictured), 3 dogs and a fish.

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Feral Cats Are Family Too

by Denise Stevens


Fifteen years ago I received a call about a woman feeding feral cats on an empty lot next to the Automobile Museum. The caller told me that an elderly woman came without fail twice daily to feed “her” kitties. She lived in a motel on 2nd street, and rain or snow, would drag a little cart the three blocks to the colony, food and treats in tow.

Thinking that I would be welcomed with open arms, I arrived to save the day, offering my services to trap, neuter and return the kitties. Much to my surprise, I was met with 4’8” of 90 year old fury telling me in no uncertain terms that I was not going to touch her cats. After many trips and much cajoling, Mary and I sealed a truce and she allowed us to take her kitties to be altered and vaccinated.

Over the course of the next 5 years, Mary and I developed a wonderful friendship. A retired school teacher and widow, Mary got up in the morning to take care of her kitties. She was a devoutly religious woman with a heart of gold and she loved her feral cats. During the last year of her life, she broke her hip but her only concern was for her kitties.

You might wonder why this Animal Files column is about Mary. My answer is that Mary represents so many wonderful people who take care of community cats, providing care to these cats because they are truly compassionate. For some, taking care of community cats is a way to give back, for others; it is simply the desire to do something for animals in a neighborhood.

We share this story now because of an important proposed Ordinance within the City of Sparks. Bill No. 2695, an Ordinance amending Chapter 20.29 of the Sparks Municipal Code, is aimed at ending Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) in Washoe County and Sparks, therefore jeopardizing our position as one of the nation’s only no-kill communities. Nevada Humane Society opposes this proposed Ordinance.

Community cats, though unsocialized to humans, are still family for over 300 people in Sparks who are currently involved in TNR. Their care and effort has led to an overall 37% decrease in cat population in Washoe County over the last 8 years. If this Ordinance passes, the community will lose millions in lifesaving grant funding and its status as one of the safest places to be a homeless pet nationwide.

My beautiful 90 year old friend Mary and her feral cat colony taught me so much about life, love and compassion. Now, I am asking you to do the same. I miss Mary to this day but together we can all honor her memory and the community’s commitment to TNR by asking that the Sparks City Council reject this proposed Ordinance. For details on how to help, visit or send an email to your Sparks City Council Member stating that you support TNR and therefore are asking this proposed Ordinance to be rejected.

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