Shelter needs money, but so does BSB team

In late January I drove across the state of Montana with a mission: to adopt a dog from the Butte-Silver Bow (BSB) Animal Shelter.

At the time I was unaware of the public debate regarding the disbursement of a generous donation given to the shelter through the friends and executors of Mr. and Mrs. George Huston.

I have since read the published articles surrounding the discussion and understand that the foundation of such debate should be centered on the fact that animal shelters and rescues are in constant struggle to obtain funding to continue their operations. The Huston donation provides daylight for the management of the BSB shelter in its critical role of providing safe shelter for animals in need.

In communities like Butte, animal safety is always competing against nonprofits and local government agencies for funding. Also important is to be cognizant that the shelter opens its doors to all animals that have been abandoned, abused, neglected, and thrown away. BSB recognizes no medical or behavioral intake restrictions as they provide services to all animals in need.

After my visit to BSB, I do understand why Mr. Huston recognized that its shelter desperately needed attention during his own visit to adopt a dog. The living conditions for the animals as well as working conditions for Jacki Casagranda and her team need critical improvements. With that being said, I respectfully acknowledge that most of the dollars need to be spent on shelter infrastructure as well as medical attention for the animals.

But I acknowledge that the hardworking drivers traveling the entire county in all weather conditions to secure the safety of an animal must feel confident in their vehicles. This is a safety issue for the BSB team, including the animals, and should not be minimized in its importance when discussing the Huston’s donation.

An important person in my life once told me this regarding gifts and donations:

“Once I write the check, I have completed the transaction, and I trust the recipient to do what is best, and I never look back."

Hopefully others will provide donations no matter the amount, because it is significant. I am grateful for this adoption process with the Butte-Silver Bow animal shelter as it is a commitment for life.


Brenda Milne Rusty and Hope (now Misha)


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