Two non-profits working to improve Wyoming animal laws and animal lives

Updated: May. 30, 2021 at 6:15 PM CDT
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CASPER, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) - The Animal Legal Defense fund ranked Wyoming as number 49 in the United States for how many laws it has to protect animals in the state. Wyoming Coalition for Animal Protection (WyCAP) and Laramie Animal Welfare Society (LAWS) are a couple of groups in the state hoping to get that ranking higher.

Sandra Materi, a WyCAP Volunteer, said this group conducts research about Wyoming Animal Shelters. “We are gathering information on shelters and rescue services and animal control services in the state,” Materi said.

A future goal WyCAP has is to present what they find to elected officials. They have supported a handful of animal protection that went through the 2021 Legislative Session and encouraged elected officials to vote in a way that helps animals.

The WyCAP newsletter said three out of four bills they supported passed. These bills are House Bill 46, Crime of Beastiality, SF 25, Animal Impound Proceedings -- Bond and Disposition and SF 26, Animal Abuse Statues Reorganization and Update. Materi said these bills passing is a win. “Anything we can do to support animal welfare is a definite improvement,” Materi said.

LAWS is a no-kill organization that partners with the animal shelter to provide discounts for people to spay or neuter their animals and more. “We pay for major surgery and health care needs that animals in the shelter have. We also have our own trap, neuter return program,” said Amy Williamson, a LAWS co-founder.

The trap, neuter return program involves volunteers to trap feral cats, fix them get them into foster homes and adopt them out. They adopted out about 300 cats and kittens last year. Williamson said that’s only the tip of the iceberg.

Sometimes, people try and get rid of the colonies of feral cats themselves, and they fail. “It means someone shoots them and hopefully kills them the first time. That does not always happen we’ve got several [rescue cats] with gunshot wounds,” Williamson said.

LAWS values time and patience with the cats they rescue. During that time, they learn which cats can live in your house and which ones would prefer to work for you. They have the option for people to adopt barn or warehouse cats.

“Their job is rodent control and they know it and they like it,” Williamson said. She added it’s rewarding to see a connection made between an animal with two legs and an animal with four.

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