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Gifts for Your Pets during the Holidays

‘Tis the season for gift giving and warm holiday cheer. It is important not to forget the furry members of your family during the Holidays. To help you, we have created a list of fun gift ideas for cats and dogs!

  1. Home-made treats: Try some of Martha Stewarts Paw Print Dog treats or Becky Hardin’s Catnip Croutons: Homemade Cat Treats or Paw Print Dog Treats

    Martha Stewart's Treats

    Martha Stewart’s Treats

  2. Catnip Sock Toys: Have a sock that you cannot find the mate to? Try turning it into a fun new toy for your kitty! Just fill the sock with some catnip and either sew the parts together so the sock is sealed or tie tightly with a piece of yarn, which will allow you to refill the sock in the future.
  3. Personalized Pet Bowl: You can purchase ceramic bowls at any craft store, pet store, or home supplies store. You will also need some food-safe ceramic paint. Decorate with your pet’s name and get crafty. You can also try-out Martha Stewart’s tutorial for these beautiful hand decorated bowls.

    Martha Stewart's Cat Toy

    Martha Stewart’s Cat Toy

  4. Cat Teaser: We all know how fun it is to dangle brightly colored jingly things in front of our cats. For Christmas, you could give you cat a new toy made with love. Have some left over fabric? Cut this in strips. Tie the middle of the strips together with another piece of fabric. Use a jump ring or old key ring and attach the fabric from the middle. Tie to a piece of satin cord, or something that is comfortable for you and your kitty. You can also try Martha Stewart’s project plan for a feather teaser.

    Craftbits' Tugga Toy

    Craftbits’ Tugga Toy

  5. Dog Tugga Toy: Do you have some old stretchy t-shirts or pants that you no longer wear? Well instead of throwing them away, these can be used to make a fun chew toy for your dog. Just follow the easy guidelines in Craftbits’ tutorial and you will have a new play toy for your dog.

However, DIY may not be for you around this busy time of year.

Fortunately, Pawmetto Lifeline’s pet store offers great gifts for cats and dogs of all ages and sizes.


Some of the items on offer include our new 2015 Midlands First Responder calendar, limited edition Pawmetto Lifeline t-shirts, and our special hot/cold beverage tumblers!

All of these gift items and more are available on our online store or at the Pawmetto Lifeline facilities at 1275 Bower Parkway. And remember, 100% of proceeds from all of the times sold by Pawmetto Lifeline go back to helping homeless pets in the Midlands!


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Cats make great pets…no seriously!

Everyone knows the age old argument, “Cat or Dog?” The debate has been on-going since the beginning of time, and cats are often not celebrated the way they should be. We would like to take a moment to appreciate all of the sweet and sassy cats that have been a part of our lives.

Annabelle Done

We should never forget that cats adapt to their owner’s personality. They won’t scratch you or howl until you play with them while you are busy eating Chinese food. You can house train them in a matter of minutes, and cat’s keep themselves very clean. On a cold, rainy day in December, you do not have to worry about taking your cat for a walk.

Cats are perfect for both families with or without children. They adapt to the behavior of their owners and will react if raised in a very playful family. They will also leave you alone if you prefer not to interact too much. Even if a cat is generally independent, they sure do love to cuddle. Just be careful when they want to head- butt you in the morning. Never forget that cats are great excuses for procrastination.

Cat sleep

“I am sorry, I could not finish sending that email. The cat would not stop sitting on my keyboard.”

It is no wonder why there are over a million cat memes on the internet and videos of them playing in boxes. Cats provide us with a wealth of entertainment. You may even end up saving money on your cable bill after you adopt a cat. A cat will entertain you all on its own. However, if you have a laser pointer lying around, that can add some extra fun. Cats are great hunters and extremely thoughtful gift givers. Invite them to any event and they will remain calm, cool, and collected as well as bring the best hostess gifts.

Cats have been important figures through-out history. In ancient Egypt, the noblest cats were mummified along with their owners. They were used to keep houses and fields safe from rodent infestations. It was actually declared illegal to kill cats during this time period because of their essential service to society

When choosing what pet is right for your family, it is important to consider all of your options. Cats can be an amazing addition to the right family. They will offer you plenty of love and companionship.

sweet kitty

At Pawmetto Lifeline, cats are spayed or neutered, micro-chipped, brought up-to-date on vaccines, and dewormed before leaving to join their forever home. You can see our cats available for adoption at To adopt a new family member, fill out an application and begin our adoption process now!

Please call (803) 465-9150 or email if you have any questions!

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You have heard of #BlackFriday, but do you know about #GivingTuesday?

The media has done a good job teaching us about #BlackFriday and #CyberMonday! But do you know about #GivingTuesday?

Giving Tuesday
What is #GivingTuesday?

#GivingTuesday is a global day dedicated to giving back! This campaign, created in 2012 by New York’s 92nd Street Y in partnership with the United Nations Foundation. Together, with a team of influencers and founding partners, they launched a global movement that has engaged over 10,000 organizations worldwide.


Why give to Pawmetto Lifeline this Tuesday?
Pawmetto Lifeline was recently honored as an Angel Charity by the Secretary of State of South Carolina. This designation shows our dedication to our mission of saving lives, our fiscal responsibility, and our ability to do the most good with the resources we have. Just ten charities in the state were given this honor, and of those ten, we are the only agency in the Midlands, and the only agency dedicated to solving the pet overpopulation issue to make the Midlands a no-kill community. What better investment could you ask for?

Sugar (3)

How will your donations be used?
Donations will be used to save more animals from our local municipal shelters. Did you know that more than 17,000 animals enter our local municipal shelters, and over 62% never make it out alive? With your donations, we can pull animals from death row, get them medically ready, and help them find their perfect forever homes.

We rely on generous donors like you to achieve our goal of reducing pet overpopulation so that no healthy pet is every euthanized for the simple fact that they are homeless.

You’ve donated; now what?
Help spread the word! Tell your friends and family why you chose to support Pawmetto Lifeline and be sure to use the hashtag, #GivingTuesday, on social media.

Giving Tuesday 2


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Put “Vaccinate Your Pets” on the To Do List!

Vaccinations are a critical part of your pet’s care and the easiest way to help your pet live a long, healthy life. Many canine and feline diseases can be prevented with safe and effective vaccinations. Most contagious diseases are airborne; therefore it is important to vaccinate both indoor and outdoor pets.

Essential vaccinations for your dog include:

DHPP- (commonly called the “distemper shot”) protects your pet against Distemper, Hepatitis, Par- influenza, and Parvovirus.

  • Distemper is a devastating disease that can wreck a dog’s health, specifically its nervous system.
  • Hepatitis is a blood disease that affects the liver, initially affecting the tonsils and larynx causing sore throat, coughing, and occasionally pneumonia.
  • Para-influenza is a respiratory infection that is highly contagious and can produce a persistent cough and lead to persistent bronchitis.
  • Parvovirus is the most common disease amongst canines and the hardest to kill. Parvovirus is most often fatal and can kill in a matter of days. Parvovirus causes bloody diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain, dehydration, and even shock.

Rabies- Rabies virus is fatal and all mammals, including humans, are susceptible to infection. Rabies vaccinations for dogs are required by law in South Carolina.

Bordetella- (commonly called “kennel cough”) The Bordetella virus causes an extremely contagious upper respiratory infection. Your veterinarian may recommend this vaccine before your dog goes to a dog park, groomer, boarding kennel, doggie daycare or dog show.

In additional to vaccinations, your pet should receive a monthly heartworm preventative beginning as a puppy, and be heartworm tested annually. Heartworm disease is a serious and potentially fatal disease. Heartworms cause severe lung disease, heart failure, and damage to other organs in the body.

Essential vaccinations for your cat include:

FVRCP-(commonly called the “distemper shot”) protects your pet against Feline Viral Rhinotracheatis, Calicivirus, and Panleukopenia .

  • Feline Viral Rhinotracheatis is a viral infections respiratory virus often resulting in chronic, often life long, infections with intermittent reoccurrences causing respiratory and eye disease.
  • Calicivirus is a viral infectious respiratory disease causing mouth sores resulting in sever oral pain.
  • Panleukopenia is a severe, highly infectious, sometimes fatal disease of the gastrointestinal tract, the immune system and the nervous system.

Rabies- (see above for information)

Feline Leukemia- Feline Leukemia is a viral infection that is only transmitted through close contact. The virus commonly causes anemia or lymphoma, but because it suppresses the immune system, it can also predispose cats to deadly infections.

When to Vaccinate Your Pet



1st Round: DHPP Vaccine, General Dewormer (6-8 weeks)

2nd Round: DHPP Booster, General Dewormer, Bordetella Vaccine (9-11 weeks)

3rd Round: DHPP Booster, General Dewormer (12-14 weeks)

The rabies vaccine is given between 12-16 weeks of age based on your pet’s maturity.

4th Round: DHPP Booster, General Dewormer (15 – 16 weeks)

Annually: DHPP, Bordetella, Rabies, Heartworm Test



1st Round: FVRCP, FELV/FIV Combo Test, FELV Vaccine (If Negative Combo Test), General Dewormer (9-11 weeks)

2nd Round: FVRCP Booster, FELV Booster, General Dewormer (12-14 weeks)

The rabies vaccine is given between 12-16 weeks of age based on your pet’s maturity.

3rd Round: FVCRP Booster, General Dewormer, Rabies Vaccine (15-16 weeks)

Be sure to get  your pet’s vaccinations before the craze of the holiday season! We will be open Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday before Thanksgiving (Nov. 24-26) from 10:00 to 4pm each day to provide low cost vaccines for your pet with NO EXAM FEE! Visit our Vaccine Clinic Webpage for pricing and other information!

by: Caitlin Gomez, Officer Manager, Pawmetto Lifeline Spay/Neuter Clinic

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Vote “Yes” for Amendment One

On November 4, South Carolinians across our great state will enter voting booths to cast their vote for candidates and issues of importance. One of those issues entails amending our state Constitution to legalize nonprofit raffles for charitable purposes.

As a nonprofit leader in the Palmetto State, I encourage the Midlands citizens to vote YES for Amendment One – Raffles on the November Ballot.  Let’s make this important change a reality in 2015.

Countless nonprofits, schools, civic clubs and even churches across South Carolina conduct raffles on a routine basis, despite the current illegality of those raffles.  Enforcement is haphazard, exposing unknowing citizens attempting to do good for their communities to substantial embarrassment and wasting of nonprofit dollars when raffles must be cancelled.

The South Carolina Association of Nonprofit Organizations (SCANPO), our state’s leading association run by nonprofit leaders for nonprofit leaders, worked closely with state legislators to pass necessary legislation to properly address concerns and design regulations to allow this creative way of encouraging charitable giving.

Our own nonprofit organization, Pawmetto Lifeline,  as well as hundreds of others across the state, will benefit from this common-sense approach to allow what is often already done as a simple means of raising money for charity to be put on solid legal footing instead of worrying about haphazard enforcement of existing outdated laws.

On behalf of our donors, volunteers, employees and board members, I encourage all South Carolina voters to support our churches, civic groups, schools and nonprofits. Vote yes on November 4 for Constitutional Amendment One – Raffles –  and give these organizations the tools and legal backing they deserve to keep doing good in the world.

Charlotte Berry

Charlotte Berry
Vice President
Pawmetto Lifeline

*A version of this blog was submitted as a Letter to the Editor across South Carolina days before the impending election to help share more about this important issue.

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Adopt A New Family Member In Just A Few Steps


Every day at Pawmetto Lifeline we have numerous homeless pets that are looking for a forever home.  The Adoptions Department works hard each day to make sure that they find that home.  Many people who come through our doors want to know how they can welcome one of these homeless pets into their home.  It is easier than you think!

If you are interested in dogs, you can tour our Canine Adoption Row.  If you are interested in cats, you can look at them through the glass into our Cat Room or see kittens in our upstairs kitten area.How do you meet the pet you are interested in adopting?  The first step is to fill out an adoption application.  This helps us know what type of home environment you have, if you have other pets and/or children and if you live in a home or you rent.  All of this information is needed so that we can help your find the right match for your home.   Remember this pet will be with you for many years and we want to match you with the right pet!

Once you complete the adoption application and talk to an adoptions counselor and you are approved it will be time to meet some of our pets.  Remember, applications are active for three months.  Even if you don’t find the match on that day we can continue to help you search for the right pet.

Time to meet the pet!  Once an approved application is on file, you can meet and greet with pets in a private room where you can touch and love on them.   You can meet several pets on the same day.  If you decide one of them is the one for you, we can facilitate the adoption.  Sometimes the pet may have to be spayed or neutered and may not be able to leave the building the same day but most of our pets are ready to leave with their loving home!  You will be asked to complete an adoption contract and we will go over all medical information which includes when their shots were given and what date you need to give their next heartworm/flea preventative.

If you do not find your match we have several programs that could benefit your search for your next pet:


Breed Specific Program – This program is designed for those potential adopters who are looking for a specific breed (dachshund, poodle, great dane, etc.).  We add you contact information to this program and when we have a breed that matches what you are hoping to adopt, we contact you via email or phone with information about the pet.  The potential adopters that are in this program are contacted before the pet is placed on the website.

Puppy Love Program – This program is designed for those potential adopters who are looking for a puppy.  We add you contact information to this program and when we have puppies, we contact you via email or phone with information about the pet.  The potential adopters that are in this program are contacted before the pet is placed on the website.

Cat Special Request Program – This program is designed for those potential adopters who are looking for a specific breed (siamese, ragdoll, etc.).  We add you contact information to this program and when we have a breed that matches what you are hoping to adopt, we contact you via email or phone with information about the pet.  The potential adopters that are in this program are contacted before the pet is placed on the website10570491_749440471779968_680062844956682162_n.10599280_765884803468868_2898889471953218274_n

We hope that you will find your next pet through our Adoptions Department. If you have any questions, please fill free to contact us or at 803.465.9142

by: DeeAnn Jones, Director of Adoptions, Pawmetto Lifeline

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Mews from the Cat Room Vol. 2

Location: Lexington PetSmart

October 12, 2014

Welcome back to Pawmetto Lifeline’s Mews from the Cat Room blog – bringing you the latest and greatest of our adorable adoptables from your local PetSmart stores.

This entry treats you to a double feature: Monard (left) and Samuel (right).

(No tricks… we promise!)


These boys have been together since their early days, which wasn’t too long ago since theyaren’t even one-year-old yet. Both are stark black with stunning gold eyes, which unfortunately might deter some people due to the notion that black cats are somehow “bad luck.” This is nothing more than a superstition that likely stems back to the Middle Ages during notorious witch hunts, when the cats were believed to be associated with witches. In fact, some cultures (like Asia and the UK) believe owning black cats bring good luck!

You’re probably wondering how to tell them apart. If you look closely, Samuel has prominent cheekbones, whereas Monard’s cheeks are slightly fuller. The easiest way to tell, though, is through their personalities! During playtime, Samuel is both faster to begin and continue going after a toy, while Monard is the huge jumper. Samuel also “chirps” at toys while playing, which is something cats would do in the wild to mimic birds in order to successfully hunt. Monard tends to be laid-back and independent, leaving Samuel to be the more mischievous twin.

Monard and Samuel have been neutered, have received their microchips, are up-to-date on vaccinations, their FIV/FELV combo tests, and are on monthly flea and heartworm preventatives. By adopting these two, you’re sure to have many entertaining years ahead. You know what they say: Double the trouble, double the fun!

**Note: Since this posting, Samuel and Monard have been moved back into the Bower Parkway Adoption facility for more play time!






By Courtney Long, Pawmetto Lifeline Volunteer

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The Premier Fall Event: The Eighth Annual Fur Ball Moonlight Gala

On November 8th, the Columbia Metropolitan Convention will dazzle for the arrival of the Eighth Annual Pawmetto Lifeline Fur Ball, sponsored by Jim Hudson Lexus. This annual black tie event raises money to support the mission of Pawmetto Lifeline; to reduce pet overpopulation by providing funds for low cost spay and neuters for pets, as well as rescuing unwanted pets from being euthanized at the local municipal shelters.

Denise Wilkinson, Pawmetto Lifeline’s CEO, is excited for the event this year! “Everything that we do at Pawmetto Lifeline is about moving our community to a No-Kill status, meaning no companion pet dies simply because they are homeless. This is a community problem that will take a community to solve.  We hope people will come to this spectacular event, have a great time and support our No Kill Initiative.”
The even promises to be one full of food and adult beverages with music by Men of Distinction. The guests are invited to wear their most ravishing formal wear and the bars inside the ballroom will boast tasty signature drinks for the event, including “The Tail Wagger”, a long time Fur Ball favorite.

The Fur Ball is held every fall as one of the major fundraising events for Pawmetto Lifeline, along with Bark to the Park in the spring. For its eighth year, volunteers are working very hard to ensure that last year’s record of lives saved through the funds raised is broken.

Deloris Mungo 1

The celebration benefiting homeless pets includes both a silent and a live auction. Live auction items at past Fur Ball Gala’s have included trips to Spain and Blue Sky paintings. This year promises new items and some of the old favorites.  The silent auction is held throughout the event and includes items like handmade couture clothing to special get-a-ways to desirable destinations.

During the live auction, the Fund-a-Need portion of the evening will take place.  The Fund-A-Need raises money for special projects at the facility that are not included in the annual budget.  “This evening is a representation of the dedication of our staff, sponsors, and volunteers to the homeless pets of the Midlands,” Denise Wilkinson, CEO of Pawmetto Lifeline, said. “For our guests attending the Fur Ball, we know they will give from their hearts and are dedicated to our vision of becoming a no kill community.”

Special Guest, Leeza Gibbons

Special Guest, Leeza Gibbons

“Pawmetto Lifeline’s Annual Fur Ball is absolutely one of the best charitable events in South Carolina.  The money raised goes to support over 35,000 animals each year through spay and neutering, health care and adoptions.  In addition, approximately 4,000 animals are rescued from Richland and Lexington County’s shelters each year.  Instead of being euthanized, these animals end up in loving homes as family pets.  It has been said, ‘You can judge the character of a community by the way it treats its animals.’  I encourage all of the Midland’s animal lovers to join us on November 8th at the Convention Center for this worthy cause,” Ron Roe, Fur Ball Chairman and Pawmetto Lifeline Board member encouraged.

To participate in all the fun and attend the Eighth Annual Fur Ball Gala, you can visit or contact Sarah Johnson at 803-465-9174 or

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TNR Saves Lives

Feral Cats

Each year in the Midlands, more than 17,000 dogs and cats are euthanized due to the pet overpopulation epidemic and more than 50% of those euthanized are cats.  Feral cats who find themselves in the local municipal shelters are statistically euthanized more quickly than other cats. The only way to put an end to this tragic loss of life is to spay and neuter every feral cat possible.

A feral cat is defined as a cat that lives outside and is not socialized to humans. Feral cats can have the same lifespan as companion cats, living long, healthy lives, contented in their outdoor environment. Feral cats typically live in a “colony” where they have access to a food source and shelter. An unmanaged colony can become a problem with rampant breeding, and the onset of problems that come from mating behaviors (fighting, yowling, etc.).

As an organization, Pawmetto Lifeline is committed to working with groups and individuals on trap-neuter-release (TNR). TNR is the most humane and effective method available to end the severe feral cat overpopulation crisis faced in this country. This method has been endorsed by national animal welfare groups, as well as many animal control departments. TNR stabilizes colony size by eliminating new litters and also reduces the nuisance behavior associated with unaltered cats. TNR’s most measurable effect is that fewer cats/kittens flow through animal shelters, resulting in lower euthanasia rates and increased adoptions of shelter cats.

Feral Cat Colony  feral cat family

Here is a step-by-step explanation of the TNR model and how it works:

  1.     A feral cat colony is identified.
  2.     The cats are trapped humanely.
  3.     The cats are transported  to a clinic for a spay/neuter surgery & rabies vaccination (at minimum).
  4.     The cats have their left ear “tipped” for future identification.
  5.     The cats are returned to their colony within 24 – 48 hours.
  6.     Volunteers feed and care for the cat colony on a daily basis.

It is our hope that our flexibility and pricing will allow you to help more cats in your community. For the Feral Cat package ($25), we provide spay/neuter surgery, rabies vaccine, ear tip, and pain medication. Each of these medical services helps to stabilize the colony and to control the population.

To find out more about the Feral Cat Package at Pawmetto Lifeline, please click here.

Appointments are necessary for 3 or more feral cats. Contact 803-465-9100 to speak to the clinic about scheduling.

by: Caitlin Gomez, Clinic Office Manager, Pawmetto Lifeline 

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Heartworm Prevention-Not just for the Summertime

A brief Q&A with a Resident Smarty, Ashley Konon!

What is the percentage chance that my dog will get heartworms?
Dogs that are bitten by a heartworm infected mosquito have a 100% chance of contracting heartworms, UNLESS they are on prevention. That means if your dog is not on heartworm prevention it only takes ONE BITE from an infected mosquito to pass on the parasite. Just one bite!

But I only need to worry about heartworms in the Summertime, prime mosquito months, right? 
Heartworms are a constant threat, especially in warm climates. In South Carolina we have one of the highest numbers of reported cases of heartworm infection in the country! Dogs and cats need to be on prevention year-round, even those pets that stay inside!

So I just need to be sure my dog is on heartworm prevention, but what about my cat?
Heartworms can affect cats too, and unlike dogs, there is no current treatment for a heartworm positive cat. All it takes is one bite from an infected mosquito.

So what symptoms should I look for to tell if my dog has gotten heartworms?
Unlike hookworms, roundworms, tapeworms, and whipworms, you are unlikely to notice your pet has been infected until it is a major problem. Have your pets tested and make sure they are all up to date on their heartworm prevention.

How do the tests work for heartworms? When should I have my dog tested?
Heartworms take about 6 months to develop into adult worms, so it is important to start puppies and kittens on prevention before they reach the age of 6 months. If you have an adult dog you can have him tested for heartworms, a simple test where a small blood sample is taken and tested for the presences of heartworms. Cats don’t need to have a test before they start on prevention.

So what does prevention of heartworms include?
You can prevent heartworms in your pet with a once monthly prevention (pills or ointments). Prevention is a safe, cost effective, and easy way to make sure you and your pet never have to go through the pain of heartworm treatment.

You can also get a combination prevention that will take care of fleas, hookworms, roundworms, AND heartworms. There are multiple options for heartworm prevention in your pets, so you can find one that best suits your needs. The heartworm test takes about 10 minutes to run (and is only $20 at our Care A Van!)!

What does it mean if my dog tests positive for heartworms?
While a positive test result is not good, it is not a death sentence. The sooner you know your pet has a heartworm infection the sooner you can get rid of them. The longer a dog or cat has one or more adult heartworms the more damage they will do.

If your pet does come up positive, you need to seek treatment advice from a full service veterinarian ASAP. There are different options for treatment, so be sure you discuss all the benefits and risks with your veterinarian. Make sure to ask questions so that you can understand what your pet will be going through.

To find out more about prevention options on the Care-A-Van, contact

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