Lighting up Helping Strays

Pictured, Harry Breitenstein and Helping Strays Director Scott Spinner pose beside an Ameren truck getting ready to install a light post along the Helping Strays pet walking path.

Helping Strays of Monroe County animal shelter will now have an easier time walking the dogs at the facility, located at 4221 Hanover Road in rural Columbia.

On Friday, Ameren crews were at the shelter preparing places for five light posts on the grounds of Helping Strays. 

The lights were made possible through a generous donation by Harry Breitenstein, Helping Strays Director Scott Spinner reported. 

The light poles were placed along the main entryway to light up the walking path, parking lot, and training field.  

“We are so thrilled to have additional lighting for our staff and volunteers,” said Spinner.  “We are committed to giving our animals significant time out of their kennels each day, which includes multiple walks. The new lighting will make evening walks much safer and more enjoyable for our staff, volunteers, and animals.” 

The lights were completed and functional as of Sunday. 

This is not the first time Breitenstein has made a significant contribution to Helping Strays. In fact, Harry helped donate the Helping Strays sign that will now appear a bit brighter, thanks to the new lights.  

“If I can help the staff and animals, I’m happy to do it,” said Breitenstein. 

Helping Strays is open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and noon to 4 p.m. on Sunday. No appointment is necessary to visit with adoptable pets.  

For more information about Helping Strays, visit the shelter’s Facebook page or go to

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