CLARKSBURG, W.Va. — The annual Pound for Pound Challenge is back for its eighth year helping the Humane Society of Harrison County care for sheltered animals at its facility.

Roger Lehosit, owner of MCM Business Systems in Nutter Fort, started the Pound for Pound Challenge after being moved by the process of adopting his family’s dog Mumble from the Humane Society.

“We were visiting the Humane Society and found a real need, that they were running short on food and supplies and said, ‘Let’s help out,'” Lehosit said. “It just took off, and the people of Harrison County jumped in, all the schools and everything, and it’s been a success ever since.”

The goal of the annual Pound for Pound Challenge is to raise enough to feed the animals for a full calendar year, which is quite a tall order with the number of pets the Humane Society sees each year.

“Last year there were about 800 adoptions, and if you think 800 animals and trying to feed those animals on a daily basis. Food, cleaning supplies and everything is so necessary,” Lehosit said.

Lehost said he’s enjoyed working with the Humane Society’s Executive Director Franki Dennison and the rest of the staff, as they’re a truly unique group who cares about these animals in a special way.

“I believe that if the Humane Society’s space could grow, that Frankie and her crew would be willing to take on more animals and probably the adoption rate would go up,” he said.

Harrison County’s high schools pitch in on the Pound for Pound Challenge each year as well, taking up donations at each of the facilities.

“What they do is, they kind of put a challenge inside of their own schools to say that they’d all like to raise 50 to 100 pounds,” Lehosit said. “They actually collect that food at the schools and they deliver it to the Humane Society, and if they can’t we go pick it up and deliver. I can’t thank the schools enough to jump in because we need all the help we can get in such a tremendous, aggressive goal.”

Having the communities come together with this type of support allows the Humane Society to use other donations their receive throughout the year for other needs, like medical expenses the animals may need while in their care.

“They do require spay and neuter before the animals go out because they’re trying to protect the population,” Lehosit said. “The vets in the area are kind enough to donate a lot of services.”

In addition to Purina brand dog and cat food, donations can also include cleaning supplies, such as Chlorox, paper towels, disinfecting wipes, laundry detergent and garbage bags.

“I can verify that the amount of food and the monetary support 100 percent gets used at the Humane Society of Harrison County, and there’s never too much,” Lehosit said.

Donations can be dropped off at three locations: MCM Business Systems at 1315 Buckhannon Pike in Nutter Fort, the Humane Society Thrift Store at 220 Milford Street in Clarksburg, or at the Humane Society Shelter located on Saltwell Road.

While donations are accepted at the Humane Society year round, the Pound for Pound challenge wraps up Dec. 31.

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