Pasco News

Dog Days benefit to aid pets of elderly residents

TRINITY — Dogs may be man’s best friend but let’s face it, everybody loves a cute puppy.

Despite their general cuteness factor, dogs are great companions, especially for seniors. Many homebound seniors have trouble feeding their dogs on a daily basis. A local center reaches out to the community to raise money to help both seniors and their dogs.

The Trinity Regional Rehab Center staff held a Dog Days benefit to raise money for Cindy’s Pets. This is the fourth year that the center has put on the event. They have raised money for Cindy’s Pets in the past, as well as the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Cindy’s Pets is a program that joins together with the elderly nutrition program “Meals on Wheels” to bring food to pets of the elderly. The elderly who are helped by “Meals on Wheels” are homebound, and often have trouble feeding their pets.

Cindy’s Pets have helped feed seniors’ pets for three years, and the group supplies 1,800 pounds of food for dogs, cats, birds and even a bunny.

There were also dog-friendly vendors, including Doggy Cakes, the Boston Terrier Rescue, the Suncoast Animal League and the Labrador Retriever Rescue of Florida.

Seven rescue dogs appeared at the event that were up for adoption.

One of the rescue dogs was a female Boston Terrier named Phoebe Rose. Dina Athanassie, the Florida event coordinator for the Boston Terrier Rescue, came to the event to spread word about the organization.

“It’s a good place to come out to meet people,” Athanassie said.

The event also encouraged the visitors to bring their own dogs, and almost every guest had a little canine companion. There were guests of all ages, and there were around 400 guests that came throughout the evening.

Paula and Joe Pieretti are no strangers to dog charities and events. “We love dogs. We go wherever there’s a dog function,” Paula said. “We are always willing to donate.”

Annette Claire, the marketing director for Trinity Regional Rehab and the creator of the benefit, likes how the benefit spreads awareness for both senior and dog needs.

“There are seniors out there that need help feeding their pets,” Claire said. “It will also be awareness that there are a lot of rescue dogs out there that need good homes.”

The canine trick shows were highlights of the event. Some talented pups in the Air K-9s showed off their impressive Frisbee catching skills with Jack Fahle.

Guests also saw a dog rally, and even a doggy wedding. There was free food, as well as gift basket raffles.

To find out more about the Trinity Regional Rehab Center, the phone number is (727) 859-4100. The address is 2144 Welbilt Blvd.

To find out more information about Cindy’s Pets, call (727) 372-9333.

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