The 10th Annual Woof Walk Returns to Pioneertown

By Lisa Lynn Morgan

Woof Walk 2024 will be held in Pioneertown, California on April 6, 2024, and the shelter pups are all excited and ready to s strut their stuff. This will be The Joshua Tree No-Kill Shelter’s 10th annual fundraiser, a day full of live entertainment, food, local vendors, live and silent auctions, and of course, the pup strut down Mane Street. Held at the Wild West Theater in Pioneertown, 100% of the proceeds will benefit the programs and operation of the only no-kill shelter in the region.

The total commitment to the no-kill concept comes with extreme challenges. “It is very costly for the medical, social, and behavioral issues that arise with our animals until they find their forever homes,” shared board member, Glen Harris. “Almost 100% of our funding comes from our supportive community throughout the Morongo Basin and beyond.”

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The Joshua Tree No-Kill Shelter, operated by the nonprofit Morongo Basin Humane Society, began in 1972 in the midst of a homeless and/or abandoned pet crisis in the Morongo Basin. Kay Baker, the operator of the Hi-Dez Kennels in Yucca Valley, donated a 3.5 acre property in Joshua Tree to the newly formed Morongo Basin Humane Society, and the Shelter finally opened in 1981. The Shelter struggled through the years, but with community support, established a reputation for the caring and nurturing of abandoned animals that included upfront medical care in advance of adoption and long-term sheltering.

The Shelter officially became No-Kill in 2005. They now provide veterinary care, animal sheltering, animal rescue, pet fostering, and pet adoptions, plus Pet Responsibility Classroom Education Programs. “We have rescued and adopted out thousands of dogs and cats throughout the decades, including many from other shelters scheduled for euthanasia,” Harris explained. “We work hard to find them responsible and loving homes, but sometimes, they live out their entire lives with us, cared for and nurtured by our incredible staff and volunteers. Every one of them is precious and deserves to have a full, healthy, and happy life.”

The shelter is currently in the beginning stages of rebuilding with all new, state-of-the-art facilities which will guarantee and strengthen their future success. “We are working tirelessly to make this happen,” Harris shared. “On behalf of our Board of Directors, we thank our community for their compassion, and appreciate any financial support that will help us build our new No-Kill Sanctuary for the many lost, abandoned animals throughout our area. It’s an exciting and new era. We are Rebranding, and Rebuilding!”

Rebranding! Formerly known as the Morongo Basin Humane Society, they are now officially registered as the JOSHUA TREE NO-KILL SHELTER. “We are building on the internationally recognized name of our Joshua Tree community and are emphasizing the No-Kill purpose of our mission,” explains Harris.

Rebuilding! Addressing the most critical need, the shelter is well on its way towards the building of whole new facilities which will be able to house more of the animals that need them. “Thanks to our most generous donors, community leaders, and businesses, we are well on our way to reaching our $1,000,000 goal the first phase of our new building fund, but we still have a long way to go,” says Harris! “We are actively seeking additional groups, organizations, individuals, foundations and businesses for partnership and sponsorship opportunities. We are not government or county funded, so we rely on folks to help us in this most meaningful way.”

The plans for the new JOSHUA TREE NO-KILL SHELTER consist of several brand-new buildings that will include housing for cats and kittens, dog kennels, plus several shaded dog parks for doggie free play. So come on down and join in on this fun packed, love fueled, community event. Registration for walkers begins at 9 am. A fun day that includes a performance by award winning musician, Jesika Von Rabbit, begins at 10 am.

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