Company Donates Labor to Struggling Animal Shelter - NBC Chicago

Company Donates Labor to Struggling Animal Shelter



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    After a boiler that heats the concrete flooring at Animal House Shelter in Huntley went out, residents and supporters flocked to bring supplies to help keep animals warm.

    The shelter asked for help in paying for a new boiler and on Saturday a plumbing company installed it free of charge. 

    Black Diamond Plumbing and Mechanical donated the installation of the boiler unit at the Animal House Shelter after the learned the shelter would not be able to afford the full cost of a replacement, said Black Diamond President Rick Sperando. Animal House paid for the unit and Black Diamond pitched in the labor.

    "We're all animal lovers here at Black Diamond, and we're a community-focused company," Sperando said. "This is what it's about--helping others."

    The company said heat was restored by 5 p.m. Saturday and temperatures in the building was on the rise.

    "It was a great feeling seeing the temperatures rise," said lead technician Tim Mays. "I was truly amazed watching the response, first hand, to animals in need."

    The loss of heat to the concrete flooring caused serious concerns for the animals' well-being, according to shelter Director Cynthia Ritter.

    “Their health was definitely in jeopardy,” Ritter said. “It’s not good for the animals to be in those kinds of conditions. Concrete kennel floors get very, very cold this time of year.”

    Ritter said volunteers and residents flooded the shelter almost instantaneously with blankets, pillows and jackets to keep the more than 200 cats and dogs warm and off the cold flooring.

    “We had a tremendous outpouring of people bringing in bedding for us to keep the animals off the floor,” Ritter said. “It's been wonderful. I mean we’ve had people bringing in all kinds of bedding, blankets, couch cushions, space heaters, pillows.”

    The staff was “tearing up” because of the generosity, according to a post on the shelter’s Facebook.