A volunteer at the Columbus Animal Shelter has received approval from the Columbus City Council to use empty cages at the facility to house rescued dogs.

Vhonda Schreiner, a volunteer at the Columbus Animal Shelter for the past five years, told the council of her efforts to keep dogs alive after they have been impounded for the five day waiting period.

For the past five years Schreiner has cared for, played with, groomed, walked and cleaned all the dogs that have come through the shelter, according to her letter to the council.

After dogs have been kept in the pound for the state set limit of five days a veterinarian euthanizes them.

Schreiner, rescues the dogs after the limit, takes them to a veterinarian for shots and spay or neutering. She then keeps the dogs, at her expense, until she can find a home for the dog.

“A couple of years ago, I met Tammie Goodrich another wonderful animal loving friend. She operates a grooming  shop and dog/cat rescue called Little Treasures out of Baxter Springs. She started taking some of the small dogs whose holding time was up at the pound and were getting ready to be put down,” Schreiner told the council. “A lot of small dogs that come through the shelter are very nice and make well mannered pets.

“In recent month, Tammie’s shelter has been full (due to adoptions being down) and she has not been able to hold all the dogs that could be rescued from Columbus,” continued Schreiner. “Joe (Allison) and I have worked together the past several months in coordinating space to temporarily house some of the dogs (past their five day limit) at the Columbus Shelter. I care for those dogs along with the city’s dogs. The dogs that belong to Little Treasures are fed dog food I provide myself. I was recently told I could not keep the dogs at the city shelter without the council’s approval.

“This has prompted me to approach the council with the details,” said a letter to the council from Schreiner.

“Nobody realizes what this lady does at the shelter, I say lets give her anything she wants,” said Councilman Steve Dunlap.

According to Schreiner, she is saving the city $10 for each dog rescued, the cost of putting the dog down.

Little Treasures has taken approximately 94 dogs  from the shelter and found them new homes.

The council approved Schreiner’s use of pens not in use by the city to keep the rescued dogs from Columbus.