Lives saved, smiles made at pet adoption last weekend

by | July 19, 2019 5:00 am

Last Updated: July 17, 2019 at 11:11 am

By JASON JONES
moseywest2@gmail.com

An old, vacant video store across the street from McDonalds in downtown Walterboro came to life this weekend with the sounds of meows, barking and children laughing and cooing over pets being rescued during the Pick Me statewide adoption event, hosted locally by the Colleton County Animal Shelter (CCAS). Also sponsoring the event in conjunction with CCAS, were the Petco Foundation, No Kill S.C., Bobs from Sketchers and the Friends of Colleton County Animal Shelter.
CCAS’ main goals are to heal stray and surrendered pets, and save the lives of healthy and treatable cats and dogs, which they encourage the public to spay and neuter in order to cut down on over-population.
Pets were discounted down to $35 for cats and $45 for dogs in order to persuade people in the county to rescue these furry friends and provide them with a good home. Shelley Thomas, coordinator of the local event, said that the CCAS’s weekend goal was to adopt out 75 purring and panting little ones to loving families.
According to Thomas, the final adoption total in the county-wide event was eight dogs and 16 cats. Even though the number did not meet the stated expectation, Thomas said, “We are always happy with an event that gets animals into a caring home and out of the shelter’s care, so it’s always a success in our eyes.”
Over the weekend, CCAS also partnered with No Kill S.C. in order to help rescues become a reality.
Justine Cordoba and 10-year-old Mary Hickman came to the event to play with the pets and were won over by one adorable purring furball named Theo. Mary said she already had two other cats at home, and though she was allergic to them, it was worth a few extra sniffles to rescue another one. Reeling from excitement over the fortune of adding another kitten to her furry family, Mary immediately had a new name for her new friend — Phoenix. When asked about adopting another cat despite her allergies, she shyly, yet boldly, said, “I don’t care. I love them anyway!”
Frolicking around the dogs’ section of the air-conditioned building were a black-and-white pup named Ripley and a light-brown one-year-old pup named Rosa. Though they were both happy at play, Rosa might have been the more excited because she just found a new home. David Burris was excited too, since he was now the proud new parent of this hyper little once-stray. He already owned hunting dogs, and even another pet dog, but said he went to the event to take home another best friend, simply because, as he said with a smile, “I love dogs.”
A few people and families came just to enjoy being around the pets, and to leave with a smile and education about CCAS’s efforts to save the lives of these healthy and treatable little ones, the shelter’s humane care and the ever-present importance to spay and neuter.
Thomas, director of the adopt-a-thon, said that there were about 30 cats and 15 dogs presented for rescue over the weekend. She was also quick to stress that animal care is not just up to the shelter, it is a community effort. As well, she wanted to express her gratitude to the willing and tireless efforts of the nearly 30 volunteers without whom the event’s success could not have been possible.
CCAS Director Laura Clark said, “We love to see the community members involved. Thanks to Paul Walker and Jennifer Platt for the use of the building, and Mary Foster from Farm Little Food Services LLC for sandwiches and pasta salad to feed the crew on Friday and Saturday. We wish all the dogs and cats happy lives at their new homes.”
As far as the statewide goal of 1,500 adoptions over the course of the weekend, though Thomas did not yet have an exact figure, she did boast that “from the looks of my shelter friends across the state it has been successful!”
Lastly, she wanted to take the opportunity to let the public know that anyone interested in adopting a shelter pet can research them online at adoptapet.com. However, Thomas highly suggested that potential parents come by the shelter at 33 Poor Farm Road in Walterboro so they can meet the pets in person to experience each furry feline and canine’s particular personalities to find their perfect match.
For additional inquiries, Thomas can be reached at shelley.thomas@colletoncounty.org.

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