Fur-tastic time

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 17, 2009

More than 800 people attended the 2009 Fur Fest hosted Saturday by the Pike Animal Shelter/Troy Animal Shelter Coalition, Inc. at the Troy Recreation Center.

Su Green, organization adoptions and programs chair, said all expectations for the event were exceeded. Even the weather cooperated.

“It was an absolutely wonderful day,” Green said. “The weather was perfect. We had 300 more people than last year and all six of the shelter dogs were adopted plus three dogs from Dr. Jack Jones Veterinary Clinic in Brundidge. We are very excited that Harley now has a home. It was just a very good day all around.”

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Harley is a “hound” that had been up for adoption before and had to go back to the shelter at day’s end. On Saturday, he left for his new home with his tail happily “wagging behind him.”

Green said the dogs were adopted by a “handful” of college students, couples, families and individuals.

“All dogs were adopted, ttendance was great and so was the volunteer support,” Green said. “We had 150 volunteers and, if it were not for their dedication and effort, Fur Fest would not have been the great success it was.”

Although fundraising is not the sole concentration of Fur Fest, it is an opportunity to riase funds for the building of a modern animal shelter on the Henderson Highway in Troy.

“This is the first time that we have charged admission to Fur Fest,” Green said. “Admission was $3 per person or $5 for the car and we encouraged everyone to pack as many people as they could in the car. We had six musical acts and games and contests for pets and for the kids. I don’t know anywhere you could go and have that much fun for $3.”

Faye Lunsford agreed.

“Fur Fest is a great community event,” she said. “I’ve never seen so many smiles. I don’t think anyone will leave here without a smile on their face. I’ve been smiling the whole time.”

Linda Lyons proudly displayed the “Best Dressed” ribbons that her dogs, Toto and Suki, won.

“I enjoy the contests but I also appreciate the information that is made available to pet owners,” she said. “And, Fur Fest is an opportunity for shelter pups to be adopted. The music is good and I just like to come out and support the community and the pets.”

Robert Elliot also proudly displayed the singing ribbon that his dog Slinky was awarded in absentia.

Slinky was runner up in the singing contest last year but, when no other contestants showed up Saturday, Slinky was named the winner because he couldn’t compete because his “best friend” was a judge.

Michael O’Hara brought his dogs, Dusty and Delta, along for a day of fun.

“That’s what’s so great about Fur Fest,” he said, with a smile. “You can enjoy it with your ‘best friends.’”

Green said that it’s hard to put a dollar figure on an event like Fur Fest but, excluding sponsors for the event and income from other programs, the grand total for Fur Fest was $4,000.