Kvas a haven ‘til home

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KVAS . . . a haven ‘til home

That tag line above says in four words our entire reason for existing.  We take in animals in need...the homeless, the lost and the unwanted; 

and give them a place where they will know safety, warmth and comfort until their forever home can be found. We are a bridge of sorts be-

tween one phase in a needy animal’s life and the next. We care for them along the way, and pave the path to their new home. But is it the des-

tination or the journey that truly matters?  Is it the haven that KVAS provides, or the new home, that is important? At the Kinnelon Volunteer 

Animal  Shelter we say that “it’s both.” But we are only the storytellers---the answer can best be determined by you, the reader. So, please take 

a few moments during this busy Holiday season to read about JIGGLES, LOGAN and CAT and make your own decision...if you can.

JIGGLES’ Journey

It was June when a kindhearted Kinnelon resident found the stray black and white cat 

on their property. They offered the cat food and water which it clearly needed.  Wanting 

to do the right thing...and knowing that adopting this cat was not an option, they did the 

next best thing and called the Animal Control Officer (ACO) who was able to help them 

capture the friendly feline.  He meowed so very much that the ACO suspected illness. The 

cat’s next stop was a veterinarian’s office where he was found to have some wounds and 

an infection. (Note: Surviving outside in Kinnelon for any length of time, even during the 

summer months, can be life threatening to a cat!) It took some time for the antibiotic 

to work but finally he improved and took up residence in the Kinnelon shelter where 

he was named JIGGLES because he would routinely jiggle the water in his dish until it 

spilled out. JIGGLES was quite the talker.  He meowed a greeting to each volunteer, let-

ting us know that he was eager for food...or a good brushing...or some quality petting...

or perhaps all three! After being fed and groomed he often uttered a Thank-you meow.  

He was very polite and quite the gentleman. Accordingly, he  was subsequently dubbed 

MR. JIGGLES. As MR. JIGGLES had traveled without a passport of any kind, the KVAS staff 

had no idea where he came from, or how long he has been a stray, but his sweet de-

meanor and chattiness made us think that he had once been in the company of humans 

who loved and cared for him. In an attempt to find his lost family, or a new family, the KVAS volunteers posted his picture on Facebook and 

Petfinder.com. We also brought him to Petco (on Rte. 23 in Kinnelon) for regular showings and added his photo to posters placed in the front 

window of the store...and waited.


In late August came an email. Someone has seen the KVAS adoption poster and thought they recognized JIGGLES as having been a past resi-

dent of the West Milford Animal Shelter Society.  Closer examination of the photos on Petfinder.com made the likelihood a bit more certain 

from their end.  We at KVAS were not so sure. Then in a latter paragraph of the email they had written, “His name is CHATTERS, and he was 

with WMASS for over three years before being adopted. He meows a lot when he is hungry and loves to splash water out of his bowl.” There 

could be no doubt...JIGGLES and CHATTERS were one and the same cat!

We learned that he had been adopted by someone as a “barn cat” for several months but had run away. The staff at WMASS had been con-

cerned about CHATTERS and wanted him back. When they came to retrieve him, there were tears from the volunteers of both shelters. 

WMASS was so happy to have found their wandering gentlemen safe and sound, and KVAS was so pleased to see him in their loving arms.

As a postscript, CHATTERS is still with WMASS and available for adoption to a good  home...but until then he can be found splashing his water 

and meowing a hearty hello to all who visit him.

118 Kinnelon Road  •  Kinnelon, nJ 07405  •  973-283-4120  •  www.KvasnJ.oRg

Continued on page 3

newsletter 2013

Dear Friends of KVAS,

As we approach the end of another year, I want to share with you what your local animal 

shelter has been doing. In this world of technology, it is the kind word and simple touch 

that makes the most difference. While we value our media partnerships and could not 

reach the audience we need without them – let us not forget how important personal 

interactions can be. How extraordinary it is to see the gratitude in the eyes of animals 

once they are in a safe and loving place. How remarkable it is to have them lick your face 

or hand. How rewarding it can be when a team comes together to make a difference in a 

lost animal’s life. This is the purpose of the Kinnelon Volunteer Animal Shelter and why 

we exist.

What a year of abundance this has been for KVAS. Once again we find ourselves touched 

by the kindness of long time supporters and new friends. We are continually amazed by 

the lengths humans will go to when helping our four-legged friends. 

Our gratitude extends to:


•  Our supporters and partners who contribute in so many ways


•  Our volunteers, who give of their time 


•  Our adopters, who open their hearts and homes to an animal in need

We have some amazing stories to share with you this year – our third year, as the 

Kinnelon Volunteer Animal Shelter. These are tales of generosity and kindness, sacrifice 

and loving gestures. We hope you will find them heartwarming and that they will inspire 

you  do what you can to help our local homeless animals.

Please take the time during this chilly season to reach out and help. The warmth you 

receive in return will carry you through the year and beyond. We all need a safe place to 

land – be part of the journey by joining and  supporting KVAS.

May your holidays be wonderful. 


Debbie Shepherd, President

Letter from the President

As a non-profit animal welfare and adop-

tion organization, the Kinnelon Volunteer 

Animal Shelter (KVAS) exists to provide 

a haven for homeless and unwanted cats 

and dogs until their forever homes can be 

found.  Some of our animals come to us as 

strays who would have not survived very 

long on their own. Others find their way 

to us through situations where their pre-

vious owner can no longer care for them. 

Regardless of their journey to our door…

once inside they are provided with warm 

and wonderful care.

Management Team


Debbie Shepherd

Vice President:  Kathy Magaw


Ann Shagin


Cheryl Canale


Dorothy Watkins 

Cat Manager: 

Debbie Shepherd

Dog Managers:  Dee Maharg



Location Mgr.: 

Linda Then

Mailing Address

2 Kiel Avenue - #252

Kinnelon, New Jersey 07405

Shelter Address

118 Kinnelon Road

Kinnelon, New Jersey 07405





web site - visit web site to join our 

email list


Adoption Hours





Rt. 23, Kinnelon



11 am - 2 pm



or by appointment

To schedule a private viewing at the 

shelter call 973-283-4120 and leave a 


Kinnelon Volunteer

Animal Shelter

... a haven’till home

An open letter from the all the KVAS Animals who have found their forever homes.

Dear KVAS Volunteers and Supporters,

We  were the unwanted ones.  Some of us were abandoned by people who no longer wanted us...

or who loved us, but could no longer take care of us.  Some of us came as newborns, others as 

seniors. We often arrived with fleas, runny noses and empty bellies. Because we were scared and 

unsure, we hissed, scratched and barked at you. You could have turned us away...but you didn’t.

You took us in and made us feel safe and warm.  You made us well and provided a grooming when 

needed.   You made sure we saw the doctor and got vaccinations to keep us healthy.  You had us 

spayed or neutered. 

You took us for long walks, petted and brushed us. You showed us that the touch of a human 

could be warm and wonderful. You took us to Petco showings to allow prospective parents to 

come and look us over. You told them our stories and made all of the introductions. Sometimes it 

took just one look. Others of us spent long periods at the shelter but you never gave up on us.  You 

knew that someday we would find our FOREVER home...AND WE DID! We have all been adopted 

through KVAS. We want to thank you (and all of those who support your good work) for provid-

ing us with ...a haven ‘til home. You changed our lives. You SAVED our lives.

With love from all the ADOPTED cats and dogs,

Amaya, Bella, Buddy, Buttons, Buzz, Callie, Cat, Chewie, Chloe, Danny, Ethel, Fable, Fallon, Fletcher, 

Forest, Freddie, Frisco, Fritz, Goldie, Isabella, Issy, Jack, Jiggles, Juliet, Kayla, Logan, Lucy, Michael, 

Millie, Oakley, Oreo, Picasso, Rachel, Regina, Sally, Sassy, Scottie, Simon, Smokey, Tickles, Timber, 

Toby, Willow, Woody and Zeus

LOGAN’s Journey

It was mid-Fall of last year when an adult male dog without any tags, chip or other form of 

identification was found wandering around Kinnelon. The pads on his paws were a bit scuffed as if he 

had been journeying for some time, and his coat was dusty and dull. He was taken in by the Animal 

Control Officer and turned over to the Kinnelon Volunteer Animal Shelter when left unclaimed. He was 

not outgoing  but he was friendly. The first order of business was to have him groomed and seen by a 

vet for medical assessment. The grooming revealed a stunningly beautiful coat of red/brown and the 

shy dog with his down-turned eyes had become a beautiful chocolate Labrador. LOGAN was handsome...

not young but not too old, and with a very pleasant disposition. Off he went to the veterinarian for a 

thorough exam and all of the required shots, etc.

LOGAN’s Home

People talk about love at first sight, but unless you have 

experienced it for yourself, you may not believe in it. 

Well, seeing is believing. This vet and this dog fell hard 

for each other and LOGAN went to live with the vet and 

became a key member of a truly loving family...but that is 

not where this story ends.

LOGAN  had it all...a yard, kids to play with, a vet as 

his owner and a ‘job’ where he could meet and greet 

all of the vet’s patients.  His life was perfect in oh so 

many ways! One day at home however, LOGAN suf-

fered a seizure. Thank heavens his owner was right 

there and helped him through it. But the questions had 

started...”Would  there be a recurrence? What could have 

caused it? Had he ingested something he should not have? (Note: Labradors are noted for eating just 

about anything.)  Or, was it something else entirely? The vet explored every possibility and kept an even 

more watchful eye on LOGAN. No further seizures were detected but tumors were. Everyone’s heart 

sank when cancer was diagnosed but this family was not about to give up on their beloved LOGAN 

and he seemed willing to fight as well. There has been surgery, treatment and trial therapies. A full six 

months has gone by and LOGAN is running and playing with gusto. He is alive and well at home, and at 

the job, where he helps other “patients” to relax when visiting the vet. LOGAN is a wonderful dog with 

a fabulous family and terrific vet. His initial visit to the vet’s office turned out to be so much more than 

love at first sight.  Some would call it fate. Some might call it kismet.   LOGAN calls it going home.

KVAS . . . a haven ‘til home,  

continued from page 1



Kvas’ wish list for the Holidays has just three items on it... 


Lisa Agront

Brian Agront

Beate Amos

Cheryl Augusta

Larry Augusta

Joni Bender

John Bender

Janet Blondek

Adele Boonstra

Doug Bernegger

Mary Buda

Cheryl Canale

Doug Canale

Lisa Crane

Paula Evans

Steve Evans 

Nicole Evans

George Finckenor

Carolyn Gacio

Lynn Gaines

John Gaines

Bill Geiger

Kathleen Gillen

Sandi Gros

Elaine Hamill

David Hoenig

Nancy Huber

Karen Jameson

Pauline Kania

Eileen Kitchell

Debra Lautenberg

Lauren Lent

Joann Luterzo

Kathy Magaw

Dee Maharg

Anne Mandanayake

Megan McCann

Pam McKenna

Lynda McTigue

Jennifer Natale

Linda Nebesni

Denise Persico

Lindsay Persico

Jean  Pokorny

Greg Pokorny

Lisa Pokorny

Joann Raso

Lynn Schaper

Ann Shagin

Judy Shepard

Debbie Shepherd

Karen Simpson

Tom Snyder

Linda Then

Jeanne Valentine

Caitlin Ward

Robert Ward

Dorothy Watkins

Jeanne Wilkes 

Dawn Zaremba

Ken Zaremba

Kvas’ Terrific volunteers

There simply are not enough adjectives 

to describe our fabulous volunteers... 

tireless, devoted, caring, generous


close but that would leave out dependable, 

experienced, warm-hearted, nurturing, and 


 and even those words fall short 

of accurately defining this fine group.

The truth is that with all the attention we 

give to the homeless animals, we some-

times fail to shine the spotlight on the 

extraordinary people who run every facet 

of the Kinnelon Volunteer Animal Shelter.  

We have no paid staff whatsoever...every 

minute of time is donated!! Whether is 

it walking a dog, planning a fundraiser, 

transporting an animal for grooming or a 

vet visit, cleaning cages, interfacing with 

the municipality, fostering a very young or 

ailing animal, introducing pets to potential 

adopters, paying the bills, composing 

newsletters, or scooping poop...it is a 

volunteer who is making it happen.

 “If you want to get a job done, give it to 

a busy person.” (Anon.)  That has never 

been more true than it is at KVAS. Most 

of our volunteers hold down full time 

jobs and raise families and still find time 

to help.  Some are retirees or empty-

nesters. Others are caregivers to elderly 

parents.  Some live in Kinnelon...others 

somehow find the time to commute to the 

shelter from Ringwood, Wanaque, Towaco 

and Boonton. One tele-commutes from 

Wisconsin and another from Ohio. 

These are good people who make great 

things happen for homeless animals. We 

are in awe of them.  They have earned our 

deep appreciation and admiration. 

Our volunteers are...

Kvas sincerely appreciates (and deeply cherishes) our relationships 

with the following:


•  Borough of Kinnelon and the Department of Public Works 


•  Butler Veterinary Hospital at 417 Main St. in Butler 


•  Ringwood Animal Hospital at 72 Greenwood Lake Tpk. in Ringwood 


•  Totowa Animal Hospital 819 Riverview Dr. in Totowa


•  D’Angelo and D’Angelo, Attorneys at Law, 1395 Rte. 23 South in Butler


•  Petco store located at 1483 Route 23 #14B in Kinnelon and the Petco Foundation 


•  Mike’s Feed Farm at 90 Paterson-Hamburg Turnpike in Riverdale 


•  Kinnelon Country Wine & Liquor at 86 Boonton Avenue in Kinnelon 


•  Acu-Data Business Products Inc. at 1572 Route 23 North in Butler 


•  Anserve America at 1250 Route 23 in Butler 


•  Flowers Galore and More at 178 Main St. in Butler


•  Sir Speedy Printing and Marketing Services at 122 Ridge Rd. in Lyndhurst


•  The New Jersey Center for Physical Therapy at 49 Hamburg Tpk. in Riverdale


•  Marston Chiropractic at 300 Kakeout Road in Kinnelon


•  Hometown Pharmacy at 36 Main St., #A in Bloomingdale


•  BuyRite Liquor at 29 Main St. in Bloomingdale


•  Dollar Deal, Meadtown Shopping Center in Kinnelon

They support KVAS, Please support them!!!

(Note: Sadly, this Fall KVAS lost a devoted 

volunteer who gave more than 15 years of 

service to the cats in the shelter. She never 

wanted the spotlight and preferred not to 

have her name memorialized in any way 

and so we will not mention it here, but we 

all know who she was... and we miss her.)

Continued on page 4

CAT’s Journey

CAT’S trip to KVAS’ door was a sad one. She came to us in May . Within the Smoke Rise community there was a very tragic event that left 

CAT orphaned and homeless at the same time.  The shock of losing the caretakers who provided for, and loved CAT for many years, would 

have caused any feline to become stressed, but to have been immediately swept up and removed from the only home she had ever know was 

almost too much for her to bear. CAT arrived at KVAS shaken, bewildered and frightened. Clearly, she was a “Senior Animal” but we had no 

idea of her actual age..nor did we care. We knew that she needed to be stabilized, calmed and that she needed to eat and drink.   We quickly 

brought her to a local vet and as luck would have it..it was CAT’s very own vet. Special food was obtained, soft voices were used and calming 

therapies were employed. As her remaining family could not take her in, she was officially surrendered into KVAS’ care and our work began 

in earnest.  We learned that her owners had taken great care of her and while she had once had a longer name, she had long ago been re-

christened CAT.  CAT was 16 years old...84 in human terms. There were times that we thought we might lose her but she held on...and so did 

we. More than anything, we knew she needed a home, a place she could live out the rest of her life in peace. We reached out in every way we 

could think of, hoping for a miracle.

CAT’s Home

Our prayers were answered when a very kind and caring man from Kinnelon stepped for-

ward.  He had known CAT’s owners and had even seen her once or twice...as  she scurried to a 

hiding place when he visited them in their home. Our “hero” as we liked to call him, took CAT 

to a home filled with exceptional patience, tenderness and even some classical music!  In time, 

CAT adapted. She selected her very own comfy chair for long naps in the sunshine and a win-

dow perch from which to view the local bird population. Best of all, she knew love once more.

CAT left this earth on October 10th with her longtime vet and new best friend at her side. We 

think of her now...and all of the animals to whom we have provided a haven. We miss them 

at the shelter but our wistful thoughts are quickly replaced with smiles when we think of the 

journeys  we have shared, and the forever homes that have been found. And so the question of 

journey versus destination remains.  Is it the haven or the home that made all the difference?  

CAT, JIGGLES and LOGAN know the answer. 

KVAS . . . a haven ‘til home,

  continued from page 3

Kinnelon Volunteer Animal Shelter

2 Kiel Avenue - # 252

Kinnelon, NJ 07405

Join the KVAS Team . . .


Always Welcome!



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