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East Central University and the Pontotoc Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) announced its receipt of a new $1,553.89 grant from PetSmart Charities, the leading funder of animal welfare in North America.

The new grant will support the daily operations of PAWS so they can continue their efforts to help local shelter pets thrive as they continued their journey to finding forever homes and families.

The PAWS operations grant is designed to enhance the improved the intake process at the shelter. PAWS will update technology, and with the help of the ECU Mathematics and Computer Department, develop a new software system to better track the animals during their time at the shelter. Implementation of the software will continue through mid-2018 and be supported beyond that as a project with the ECU Mathematics and Computer Science Department.

“We are excited to get help with the homeless pet population in Ada,” said Dr. Nicholas Jacob, assistant professor of mathematics. “This grant gives us an opportunity to continue supporting PAWS mission and applying some of the findings from previous students’ research. It gives our students great opportunities to work in real life settings.” 

Junior computer science major Billy Andrew and Dr. Vladimir Ufimtsev have been working throughout the fall establishing an app especially for PAWS.

Under the direction of the ECU faculty, students have studied intake patterns of the shelter that increased adoptions and will set up a local software for tracking the animals.

In animal welfare, funding for general shelter operations can be scarce which is why PetSmart Charities identified the Ada area of the great need to its adoption partners and grantees and developed this new grant category.

PAWS serves Ada and Pontotoc County, supporting the county’s homeless pet population with spay, neutering, immunizations and adoptions. There are approximately 165 homeless animals at the location on 1200 Sandy Creek in Ada.

Shelter operations is just one of PetSmart Charities’ 10 grant categories designed to support animal welfare organizations and nonprofits as part of their newly-expanded mission to find lifelong loving homes for pets by supporting programs that bring people and pets together.

Funding from PetSmart Charities supports best practices that help pets thrive in a shelter environment until they find their forever family and offers funding for shelter-based programs that improve adoptions, reduce pets’ length of stay and strengthen infrastructure.

About PAWS

Pontotoc Animal Welfare Society serves Ada and Pontotoc.  Supporting the county’s homeless pet population with spay, neutering, immunizations, and adoptions.  With 165 homeless animals excited to greet you at our location on 1200 Sandy Creek in Ada, come by and help one of our animals find its forever home.  Check us out at or like us on Facebook Pawsnada.

About East Central University Department of Mathematics and Computer Science

The ECU Department of Mathematics and Computer Science offers four program degrees. A variety of classes are offered each year with an emphasis in both the abstract and practical application of the disciplines. The department regularly participates in research including undergraduates involving theoretical and applications sometimes with links to local businesses.  The faculty has received numerous grants over the past years from NSF, NIH, OSRHE, OK-INBRE and other organizations.  Prospective students are encouraged to visit the department’s website

About PetSmart Charities®
PetSmart Charities, Inc. is a nonprofit animal welfare organization with a mission to find lifelong, loving homes for all pets by supporting programs and thought leadership that bring people and pets together. In addition to finding homes for almost 500,000 shelter pets each year through its in-store adoption program in all PetSmart stores across the U.S. and Puerto Rico, PetSmart Charities provides funding to non-profits aligned with its mission through four key areas of grant support:  Preventing Pet Homelessness; Helping Shelter Pets Thrive; Supporting the Bond Between People and Pets; and Emergency Relief and Disaster Support. Each year, millions of generous PetSmart shoppers help pets in need by donating to PetSmart Charities using the pin pads at checkout registers inside PetSmart stores.  In turn, PetSmart Charities efficiently uses 90 cents of every dollar donated and has become the leading funder of animal welfare in North America, donating about $300 million to date. PetSmart Charities, a 501(c)(3) organization, has received the Four Star Rating from Charity Navigator, an independent organization that reports on the effectiveness, accountability and transparency of nonprofits, for the past 14 years in a row -- placing it among the top one percent of charities rated by this organization.  To learn more visit

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