Dec 30, 2011 8:48 AM by Christina Lysacek (KBZK Bozeman)
LIVINGSTON- When most people think of adopting animals they think cats and dogs. The animal shelter in Livingston has looked beyond that, taking in exotic animals which does not come without an extra cost.
"There are a lot of extra expenses that come along with sheltering exotic animals," said Kris King, the Livingston animal shelter's development director.
In addition to the extra expense small and exotic animals have, King said they tend to be at the shelter for longer periods of time than cats and dogs.
Stafford is the only shelter within hundreds of miles that carries any animals besides cats and dogs and it may be the only shelter in the state that has exotic animals.
"We have six rabbits, four guinea pigs, five exotic birds, two ball pythons, and a rat up for adoption right now," said King.
Rachelle Roope and her family adopted four guinea pigs from the shelter within the last year. At first Roope was hesitant to adopt a small animal, but she has no regrets.
"I think they have made our home happier," Roope said.
In order to keep sheltering small and exotic animals, Stafford needs more donations.
"We still need to raise at least another $10,000 to get near where our goals are for 2011," King said.
King suggests that people make their tax-deductible year-end donations now.
"As long as we have a check or any communication that is post-marked on the December 31st then we can make it for 2011 taxes. It is great that you can reduce your taxes as well as help care for the animals."
You can donate to the Stafford Animal Shelter at staffordanimalshelter.org; credit card donations can be taken over the phone at (406) 222.2111 or (406) 222.1311; and donations can also be mailed to 3 Business Park Road, Livingston, MT 59047.