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The Ruff Report: Dogs and Adoption

Recycling used to raise money for homeless pets

Saving the lives of homeless animals takes great mettle, and in the case of a Tennessee humane society, it takes metal, too.

The Clarksville Humane Society has been collecting aluminum cans and scrap metal to raise money to benefit the shelter's pets since 2004 and the program is beginning to really pay off, humane society official Amy Shaver told Love of Dogs.

The humane society recently received its first check from the local recycling center for $2,000, and Shaver believes the Cans for Canines and Cats program - along humane society's ink printer and cell phone recycling efforts - could potentially net the humane society $4,000 to $5,000 annually.

Cans for Canines and Cats appears to be catching on with business, citizens and city hall workers in the Clarksville, Shaver said. "The city hall employees are definitely our largest group of collectors," she said. "There are approximately 30 other businesses that also collect for us."

David Cummings, a humane society board member and local insurance agent, came up with the idea to raise funds for the shelter's spay-neuter and pet care assistance programs, Shavers said. He coordinated it with Heimansohn Industrial Park, a scrap metal recycling business in Clarksville, which created an account for the humane society.

The humane society actually collects no cans or scrap metal, Shavers said. Businesses and individuals take them directly to the recycling center and ask that the payments be placed in the humane society's account.

"We arrange for volunteers to pick up large quantities of cans and metals when needed if the individual or business can't do it themselves," Shavers explained. "Mr. Cummings also placed a large dumpster at the rear of his business that people can use to drop off their cans."
City of Clarksville employees have become a big supporter of the program, the Leaf Chronicle of Clarksville reports.

Valerie Catignani, the mayor's receptionist, began organizing a citywide effort in August by asking department heads to place collection receptacles in their employee break areas where aluminum cans could be collected rather than thrown in the trash. Several city departments are participating, the newspaper reports.

The Clarksville Humane Society also collects ink printer cartridges and cell phones for recycling to help raise money to benefit its animals, Shavers told Love of Dogs. The humane society receives $1 to $12 for each cell phone, ink jet, laser and toner cartridge collected.

Shavers encourages other humane society's to start similar environmental efforts to raise money. "A program to help animals and save our landfills from so much garbage? We absolutely recommend it."

Visit for more information about the humane society.


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