Animal rescue groups were anxious to get the word out on their various projects to people who brought their pet to “Pets in the Park” held Wednesday (August 8th) during the Farmer’s Market at the Rotary Park in Constantine. It was sponsored by the downtown Brainstormers group, John and Pat Touse (owners of Happytales), and the Constantine Community Art Association.
One popular fun event was having your “dog” put his paw in clay for a “print to take home.”
The free pet treats from Happytales were also a hit.
Lee Ann Farmer, president of the Animal Rescue Fund (ARF) distributed information on neutering and spaying of dogs and cats.
“Operation Fix-It is a low cost program sponsored by the Kalamazoo Humane Society in partnership with ARF,” she said. “Cost is $75 for male and female dogs, $45 for female cats and $35 for male cats.”
“We’re close to neutering/spaying our 5,000th animal. I’m so excited, I’m tingling.”
The animal will be named, and an event will be celebrated at Wine for Whiskers, a wine tasting fundraiser which will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 10 at the Riviera Theatre in downtown Three Rivers.
ARF has 45-50 members and tries to have one fundraiser a month, Farmer said. “We also collect and distribute dog and cat food. We distributed 19,000 pounds of it to people in need last year.
For spaying/neutering information call Tom (dogs) at (269) 718-3775 and LeeAnn (cats) at (269) 718-3826. The ARF website is www.ARFund.org.
Shawna Kline, the founder of Up-Cycled Pets brought a golden retriever-mix to the park. “It was one day from getting killed,” she said. “Animal Control is a ‘kill shelter’ that puts animals down once it starts getting full.”
Both Kline and Farmer said there was a great need for more people to both foster and adopt animals.
Kline also said their group hoped to work with officials to make animals more adoptable. “Animals at the shelter should gets shots, then be quarantined for at least ten days, so when people adopt them there’s no fear of any disease,” she said. “We all want to make sure they’re healthy.”
Kline said her group is having a “Meet and Greet Adoptathon” from 10 to 11 a.m. on Saturday (August 11th) at Diamond Creek Country Store in Three Rivers. They are also having them from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on August 18 at TSC in Sturgis, and from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on August 18 at TSC in Three Rivers.
For more information on Up-Cycled Pets call (269) 273-1514 or go to www.upcycledpets.com.
Judy Truman, owner of Back Country Kennel in Marcellus, brought along her granddaughter Maci Preston, and a golden retriever “Lexie.” “I got him Sunday. I’m going to train him for Chandler McBride,” Truman said.
“McBride was injured in a diving accident last June, and is paralyzed from the neck down. We’ve had a lot of fundraisers, including Camp Courageous to help the family,” she said. “You can look up information on Facebook or the Caring Bridge at www.caringbridge.org.”
Ada Arnold stopped at Back Country Kennel to tell them she was interesting in training her dog “Snoopy” a brown spotted Dalmatian she brought with her. “I’ve been looking for a Dalmation since Christmas. Snoopy’s an Animal Rescue dog from Greenville,” she said. “It’s nice to see all the families and their pets. It’s good for the community.”
George Murphy brought “Kenji,” a Boston terrier he acquired three months ago after his companion dog “Boris” died. “Kenji wanted to see what it’s all about. He worms his way into your affection,” he said. Murphy also has two cats. “The nine month old cat ‘Kiso’ and the dog ‘play tag’ and my 12-year-old cat ‘Tsubake’ sleeps up high when they do,” he said.
Alicia English brought grandchildren Isabella and Macey Ball to the park. “I wanted to bring the girls to see the pets.They love their American Bulldog ‘Jacey,’” she said.
Rita Ganus owns an English bulldog “Lulu” and a Shih Tzu “Lola.” She brought Lulu to the park in a special pink pet stroller. “I couldn’t get the two of them to fit in it, so I decided to bring Lulu,” she said. “She’s seven, and an easy pet. She likes to ride.”
Jim and Joyce Shidaker brought their Shih Tzu “Louie.” “We wanted to see what’s here. We’d love it if they added a dog park,” Joyce said.
Jerry and Micael Burgess brought their Weimaraner “Zibby” to get his paw print done in clay. “We named him after Thomas Zbikowski, he’s a NFL football player for the Indianapolis Colts,” Jerry said.
There was one animal that attended that was not a dog. Austyn Papke brought his pet ferret “Slinky.” Papke got the ferret three months ago from an aunt. Slinky has a backpack, leash and harness for traveling. “I have three cats. They’re kind of scared of him,” he said.
Downtown Brainstormer Jamie Hudsen said she used to raise ferrets. “They used to follow me all around the house, and especially outside when I watered flowers,” she said. “I think they’re good pets.”
Slinky had his paw print made and enjoyed a drink of water and a pet treat.
Source: Story and photos contributed by Angie Birdsall.