There’s no denying it: paying taxes can be rather stressful. Luckily, Hempstead Town Receiver of Taxes Don Clavin, Senior Councilwoman Dorothy Goosby, Councilwoman Erin King Sweeney, Councilman Anthony D’Esposito and some avid animal advocates, have invited the Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter to bring some furry friends to the Receiver of Taxes Office in order to help taxpayers pet the stress away. During the last three days of the collection period, beginning Wednesday, August 8th, the Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter will be visiting the tax office along with some eager cats and dogs with enough love to go around. What’s more, taxpayers can bring home a little “tax dividend” by adopting a cuddly dog or cat.
“It’s a running joke that whenever I’m introduced as the Receiver of Taxes, everyone boos,” said Clavin. “It’s all in good humor, but it just reinforces the fact that taxes are all work and no fun. Well, I’ve enlisted the aid of some loveable animals to make my office a more exciting, fun-filled place to pay your taxes. And, you can make the fun never-ending by adopting a cat or dog while paying your taxes.”
This is the first ever pet therapy program to be held in a tax office. Interaction with an endearing animal has been linked to lower stress. According to the National Center for Biotechnical Information, contact with pets can counteract everyday stress and anxiety by lowering stress hormones and heart rate. What’s more, the National Institute of Mental Health states one of the best ways to deal with stress is to spend some quality time with a kitten or a puppy.
“The best part about this idea is that it promotes the practice of adopting a pet instead of shopping for a pet,” commented Clavin. “We receive an abundance of taxpayers who prefer to pay their taxes in person at the last minute. By showcasing our beloved animal shelter pets, we’re putting our ‘best paw forward’ and garnering interest in visiting the shelter.”
Hempstead Town Animal Shelter boasts one of the highest adoption rates in the nation. All adopted pets will be spayed or neutered, will be microchipped and will receive all required inoculations free of charge. Located at 3320 Beltagh Avenue in Wantagh, the shelter is open from 9am to 5pm on Sunday and Monday, 9am to 8pm on Thursday and 9am to 6pm on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. For more information regarding the Hempstead Town Animal Shelter, please call the shelter at (516)785-5220.
“Playing with a cat or a dog is a great way to reduce the stress that can be associated with paying your taxes,” said Goosby. “I’m proud to support this program that benefits not only our residents, but also the rescued cats and dogs of the Hempstead Town Animal Shelter.”
“This pet therapy initiative makes the tax office a more enjoyable place to visit as well as showcasing some adoptable, loving animals. Remember to adopt, not shop when looking for a furry friend of your own,” said D’Esposito.
When paying your taxes, be sure to pick up a “Pet Fire Rescue Sticker” courtesy of Receiver of Taxes Don Clavin. A Pet Fire Rescue Sticker is a waterproof decal that details the amount of pets living in a household. The stickers can be placed on the front door of a residence to inform first-responders as to the number of pets in the household in case of emergency.
“I want to thank the Hempstead Town Animal Shelter for bringing a few furry friends on over to the tax office to help reduce some tax-related stress,” said Clavin. “I look forward to inviting some of the shelter’s furry family to future collections and am confident that this exposure will lead to more rescue animals finding forever homes.”