Clarksdale Animal Rescue Effort & Shelter (CARES) is a 501c3 not for profit organization designed to improve the condition of our community's shelter while ensuring the livelihood of our shelter pet population.
The CARES' mission is not only to provide a safe haven and find loving homes for these animals, but to also promote a sense of pride and ownership throughout our community. CARES, along with the people of Clarksdale are working to make the vision a reality.
At the end of the day, Clarksdale has historically had a stray dog problem due to a being a poverty-stricken area. It's a problem that affects many other areas in our state, but instead of turning our heads and driving past, we accepted the challenges and work to overcome them for the betterment of our community.
CARES' goal has always been to purchase/build a building that allows us more space, more visibility, and a better quality of life for the dogs and cats here. In October of 2017, the dream became a reality as we moved our operation into it!
We purchased a large, empty structure on the Blues Highway in Clarksdale. The vacant building was completely repurposed to fit our needs, and now it has everything we were initially seeking. Our animals are housed indoors, away from the cold of winter and heat of MS summer. Diseases have lowered. The cats have their own wing. The dogs have outdoor exercise yards as well as indoor training areas. There is an adoption room, an isolation room, and an educational room for children. Even a room for birthday parties, after school programs, and summer camps! This is no inexpensive project, and we'd love your support as we continue to progress.
Another objective is to provide spay and neuter services for those who cannot afford local veterinary care. Thanks to Petsmart Charities, CARES is realizing this goal by providing 500 spay neuters to underserved dog owners in Coahoma County. It's been proven in city after city that this type of preventative program pays for itself with the reduction of animals that have to be picked up, fed, cared for, and often euthanized in the future. This is the first opportunity for CARES to change the landscape of our community strays. Before this, CARES was a recipient of the Guardian Angel Foundation grant and a partner with Mississippi State University Veterinary School in spaying every shelter animal prior to adoption.
The third objective, and possibly the most important, is to engage the public and humanely rehabilitate these animals. It's imperative that both young and old find the reward in saving lives and learn the impact of animal cruelty, safety, and welfare. In collaboration with area schools, local veterinarians, and other nonprofit groups, we are working to provide support for our diverse population and the socioeconomic disadvantaged each day. We look forward to offering programs such as Break the Chains, Kids n' Kritters, and after-school programming in order to grow and change a community mindset from one of neglect to compassion. Our Pet Food Pantry not only benefits the community who needs it, but also other animal rescues that are in dire situations.