Good news, Toy Boy, one of our featured Twelve Strays of Christmas, found his forever home.

Wouldn't it be wonderful if all the others found a loving home in time for the holidays too? Give the gift of love and a happily-ever-after to Bosley, Brutus, Bashful, Stacy, Tai Pei, Otis, Kibosh, Caesar, Patchwork, Hootie and Horton, and to all the animals at the shelter. Adopt if you can.

Speaking of strays — did you know that more than 50 percent of the animals we receive each year come in as strays? Sadly, too many of them are never reclaimed by their owners. Nearly 600 stray cats come into the shelter each year, with only two percent ever being reunited with their families. Dogs fair far better, with more than half being reunited with their owners.

State law requires that we keep stray dogs for six days and cats for 48 hours before they are available for adoption. While we make every effort to reunite pets with their families, a loving home is a far better place for a pet than the shelter, so time is of the essence when your pet is missing. Give them the best chance of getting home should they become lost. Have them wear a collar with an ID tag and get them microchipped (available for $25 at the shelter). Don't forget to file a lost report with PMHSKC and surrounding shelters and hang posters in your neighborhood to alert your neighbors. We're happy to be here for pets in need, but we'd rather they be safe and sound at home.

Fantasma, a striking black-and-white cat, came in recently as a stray from Owls Head. Beautiful Shoals was found wandering in Warren. These are just two of the dozens of stray cats and dogs currently at the shelter waiting to go back home or to a new home. If you're missing a pet or looking to add one to your family, stop in and meet these sweet, loving pets. During our Whisker Wonderland promotion, now through the end of the December, adoption fees on all adult dogs and cats have been reduced. Adult dogs can now be adopted for $100, and cats for just $25.

Holiday Pet Bags are at Hannaford in Rockland with much-needed items from our wish list: dog and cat food and cleaning supplies. Please consider purchasing a holiday pet bag. These bags, priced at $10, are instrumental in putting food in the bowls of our animals and other necessities to help us help the animals. We appreciate your support.

Looking to get your dog or cat "fixed"? We host a free monthly transport to the low-cost Community Spay/Neuter Clinic in Topsham scheduled the first Tuesday of each month. The next transport is Tuesday, Jan. 5. To make an appointment, call the clinic at 721-8395.

Wish list: Canned cat food (poultry pate preferred), large black garbage bags, peanut butter, dog and cat toys, catnip, 6-inch paper plates, paper towels, stamps, latex gloves, gift certificates to Wal-Mart, Staples, Amazon and other local businesses. Thanks for your support.