Saturday’s adoption event for rescued Hurricane Katrina dogs brought families from around the area to the Greenbriar Pet Resort & Veterinary Center in Urbana. Hosted by Greenbriar and PetConnect, the Potomac animal rescue organization, the event provided locals an opportunity to adopt one of the many pets brought up from the Gulf area.
Balloons, Mardi Gras beads, music and munchies were a backdrop for more than 250 visitors who arrived during the afternoon to meet the dogs who showed off their best manners in the busy reception center. They played with the children and won the hearts of families who, in turn, applied to adopt the 25 available dogs and puppies.
They all have histories, such as the little terrier-mix who had been living on the streets for months with fur tangled from dirt and mud. Consider his fright when left in an abandoned house as the flood-waters rose, of never seeing his owners again, and his terror at being caught and sent to a shelter where he spent long days and nights in a cramped crate, waiting.
For this little dog, like so many others, the wait paid off through the efforts of hundreds of volunteers who went to the Gulf area to help. They fed and walked the dogs, cleaned their crates and then arranged their transport to a new life.
At Saturday's event the little terrier found a home in the arms of Cheryl Mendonsa of Arlington who picked him up and wouldn’t let go.
“For PetConnect, it was mission accomplished,” said co-founder Lizette Chanock.
But, the story isn’t over, she said. There are now puppies being born to the dogs still at large and as they are brought in, they need homes. PetConnect’s adoption events take the pressure off shelters in Louisiana and Mississippi allowing them to rescue more dogs and puppies.