Pasco News

Tail Wagon provides close encounters with canines

Mary Reese knew her family would love Tulip, a German shepherd-husky mix, the moment the puppy extended a warm greeting to her 5-year-old daughter with a big lick across the giggling girl’s face.

The Reese family visited the Regency Park Branch Library during the “We’re Going to the Dogs” adoption event. The Tail Wagon, the mobile pet adoption van of Pasco County Animal Services, brought the animals for the visit to the library.

The event occurred in sync with National Homeless Pet Day, so adoption costs were reduced to encourage family adoptions.

Reese and her daughter were able to rescue a young, innocent life from the overburdened county shelter in Land O’ Lakes.

“We’ve had some pets adopted from these events before,” library worker Pam White said. “Even if it lets people know that they can go to the county to adopt a pet rather than purchase from a breeder, to me that helps because they have a very large homeless pet population.

“These animals are sheltered and unfortunately my understanding is that the shelters are crowded right now and I know that every shelter in this community is overwhelmed by the number of pets they’re taking care of.”

Pasco County Animal Services head volunteer Shivana Sismilita introduced her pal, an affectionate youngster named Cupcake, an Australian cattle dog mix.

“I’ve actually been fostering Cupcake for the last two months,” Sismilita said. “He came into the shelter with a broken leg and he’s been in the shelter system for about three years and four months. Some of the other dogs have been here from a couple of weeks up to a couple of months.

“Most of them are just strays that are otherwise healthy,” Sismilita continued. “They don’t have any issues or anything but before they leave they do get a full vet check, are micro-chipped, vaccinated, spayed and neutered.”

Other dogs at the adoption event included the Shepherd-husky mixed Tulip, a pointer mixed breed named Barbie and another playful pointer mix pup named Bianca.

Volunteers brought along a wading pool shaped like a giant green turtle for the dogs to lap up some much needed water for the two hours they were mingling with their potential forever families.

Jeanne DeMont and her 5-year-old granddaughter Livia Goggin were admiring the dogs.

“it’s such a great idea to bring the dogs to people because a lot of people don’t get out there to the shelter, so I think it’s a wonderful program,” DeMont said. “It’s just awesome.”

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