I’ve met a lot of genuinely nice people in this business, but I have to give a shout out to one particular local effort that is being made on the behalf of our pets. We all know that the first step to controlling pet population is through responsible spay/neuter policies. And that’s what we’re talking about today.
Barry Piasta came into my store one day, asking if he could put up a poster about a coming event. For those of you that have yet to meet him, Barry is a different sort. At first I didn’t know what to make of him, he was promoting a comedy show and a burlesque show, both to raise funds for pets. Many shelters take advantage of Rumours comedy club fundraising, but a Burlesque show?
It was then that I found there is little that Barry won’t do to raise money and awareness. He has been running www.dogadoptionmb.com for a while, with fundraising usually done in conjunction with one of the many rescues he works with. His latest fundraiser was selling chocolate bunnies from Mordens. But there is no doubting his commitment to the cause, and the bunnies were being sold to raise money for his latest pet project, No Nutts.
No Nutts, as you might assume by the name, is a low cost neuter program designed to help people who can’t afford full cost neutering of their pet. So far, he has raised enough to subsidize the surgery, so that the owners can have the surgery done through the Pets First veterinarians for $65.00 for a dog, and $42.00 for a cat. The services include the pre-op exam, surgery, tattoo, microchip, vaccinations and pain meds. Barry is very adamant in thanking Pets First, without them this would never have been possible.
He started with his own funds, and committed to 12 dogs. Now he’s up to 15 dogs and 15 cats with additional monies he has raised. Even his family is not immune to his fundraising efforts, when they won the 50/50 draw at the “Raise the Woof” comedy show, a few more spots for cats got sponsored.
To register your animal to be neutered, interested parties need to call Barry between 10am – 2pm on Friday June 13 at 204.510.4299. As there are a limited number of spots available, they will be assigned on a lottery basis, drawn on June 14th, with the winners being contacted thereafter.
As I mentioned, they have so far raised enough for 15 dogs and 15 cats. Donations have come in from as far away as Florida, with a kind soul sending a $50 cheque to him. Have to love the internet. But you can help too. If you have a business that would like to sponsor some more animals, or if you’d like to contribute yourself, you can contact Barry at 204.510.4299 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Any and all donations are welcomed.
Pass a hat, raid a penny jar, sell a kidney (well, maybe not), let’s see if we can’t increase that number even more. I’ll start the ball rolling, anyone want to match my $50? (ed. first matcher? Barry Piasta, of course)
Jeff McFarlane is the owner of Aardvark Pets in St. Vital. You can contact him with questions, comments or topic suggestions at email@example.com or www.aardvarkpets.com.