New project completed to keep four-legged friends warmer this winter

TAYLOR COUNTY—The Taylor County Humane Society (TCHS), more often than not, is over run with canines in need of a loving home, making space an issue for the organization. Once additional space was constructed, they were then tasked with protecting the animals from the frigid winter weather.

According to TCHS volunteer Brenda Gerkin, when the need arose, nine additional dog kennels were added to the shelter, but there was worry about how the dogs would be kept warm through the winter months since the kennels were mostly open.

“Heaters were added, but the back of the area was still open, and we tried various door options, but those didn’t work either,” she noted.

Gerkin shared that in an effort to keep their furry friends safe from the elements, quilts and blankets were placed in each of the kennels, and volunteers used tarps to block the cool breezes.

“It was just entirely too cold, and we were wasting heat for the facility during the winter months,” she added.

Knowing the need to solve the problem was something bigger and more costly than they were able to handle alone, in 2019, the TCHS made a request to Frank Runner of C&R Construction to visit the shelter and assist in coming up with a plan to close in the kennels.

“He came up to the shelter, explained his plan, and we agreed that it would work,” Gerkin said.

Runner’s idea was to install framework to host garage type doors on each of the kennels. A project that Gerkin says her and fellow humane society volunteers were excited to get started on.

Because of the cost of the project, the organization sought out assistance for the funding of the endeavor.

The TCHS then applied for a Ruth Hornbrook Memorial Fund Grant, that was offered though the Parkersburg Area Community Foundation & Regional Affiliates.

To their delight the humane society was awarded a grant in the amount of $3,000 for the new construction project.

With the kennels now closed in and the project completed, the TCHS is confident that their canine guests will be kept warm and toasty throughout the colder months.

“Mr. Runner and his crew did a wonderful job enclosing the kennels,” Gerkin voiced. “Our dogs are much warmer, it is economically efficient and we are very pleased with the end result.”

Gerkin, along with all of those at the Taylor County Humane Society extended their deepest gratitude to the Ruth Hornbrook Memorial Fun, and remarked that as always, they appreciate the continued support from the citizens of Taylor County.

The TCHS is always looking for new volunteers, if you are interested in lending a hand, or would like to adopt a companion of your own, please contact the shelter at 304-265-4215. Shelter hours are 9:00 a.m. until noon, Monday-Saturday, and 9:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. on Sunday. Those calling outside of regular hours can leave a message.

Alternately, you can visit them on the web at,, to complete an adoption application. Donations may also be made to the organization via their webpage.


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