The 6-hour event combined a canine fashion show with a competition, and allowed patrons an opportunity to adopt both cats and dogs.
The proceeds from the event benefit Animal Welfare of Surry, which aims to provide low cost spay and neuter services to the community to reduce pet overpopulation.
Melanie Morrison, who heads the non-profit organization which operates solely on donations, said despite the inclement weather she was pleased with Saturday’s event, and looks forward to future fundraisers.
“I appreciate the community’s support,” she said. “We want to do more pet events to increase awareness about animal welfare and overpopulation. The more we can do the better we can inform people. We plan to do more, and I hope it’s a better and better turn out each time.”
The event also featured a motorcycle benefit ride with more than 30 riders, a pet parade and about 20 dogs that participated in the fashion show and best trick/most obedient competition. The awards were most original, most macho, cutest, most obedient and best trick.
There were also various booths including information for pet owners and those interested in adopting. The biggest push of the day was informing people about spaying and neutering and getting homes for animals.
The Spay and Neuter Transport program by Animal Welfare includes a pet shuttle that transports animals to and from Forsyth Spay and Neuter Clinic in Kernersville from Pet Sense. The shuttle meets every other Monday from 7 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. for registration. Low cost immunizations are also available at the time of procedure. An appointment must be made for pets prior to registration.
“It’s a common myth that dogs should have a litter before they’re neutered,” Morrison said. She said it’s important that people not breed animals that cannot be care for, and that pet owners have their animals spayed and neutered to prevent overpopulation.
“Overpopulation is all of our problem,” she said. “It’s costing the taxpayer from the shelter.”
She said getting animals spayed and neutered keeps them from straying and can add years to their lives whereas they are not “in-heat” and more likely to roam.
Chris Sinclar, a volunteer with the organization, said that she doesn’t discourage animals being taken to shelter, but just rather they find homes to avoid being euthanized.
“It would be better if we had more foster families,” she said. “There is a 90 percent kill rate in Surry County.”
According to Animal Welfare of Surry that means that the shelter has limited amount of space for animals, meaning many are euthanized.
“There are no kill communities and no kill shelters,” Sinclar said. “And, I want Mount Airy to be one of them.”
“There’s just a lack of space,” Morrison said. “We certainly don’t want people to not take their animals there, it’s much less cumber than animals living in the streets.”
As part of its efforts to rescue animals, the organization will start to adopt animals out of Pet Sense on Hwy. 52.
Morrison said animals can only be housed during the day, and is asking that anyone who has extra space in a building and is interested in donating it to house the animals to contact the organization.
The Animal Welfare of Surry will also hold a yard sale and pet event sponsored by Little Caesars on May 9 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. in front of Becky’s Glass on Hwy. 52. The event will include crafts, baked goods, concession, raffle, a pet food drive, information booths and a adopt-a-thon. The proceeds form this event will also benefit the Animal Welfare of Surry Programs.
For more information about Animal Welfare of Surry visit www.animalwelfareofsurrync.com or call 786-5256.
Contact Erin C. Perkins at firstname.lastname@example.org or 719-1952.