Funds raised, animals adoped and pet owners educated at Wonderland
By Steve Herring
Published in News on March 31, 2013 1:50 AM
With her face painted as a cat, Parker Faircloth, 8, works on an arts-and-craft activity during the Animals in Wonderland fundraiser held in downtown Goldsboro on Saturday.
Being dressed as a giant mouse didn't keep 12-year-old Alexis Godwin of Goldsboro from walking around to look at the dogs available for adoption. She saw several she liked, but with three dogs already at home, she knew she couldn't have another.
Instead she was satisfied with her role in Saturday's events to help the animals in the county.
"I think it is good," said Alexis, one of the actors in the production of Animals in Wonderland. "I think it is going to help the animals a lot. I think it is really good because some people don't know how bad animals have it."
Welfare of Our Furry Friends members decided not to bring any animals to the event since it was scheduled to last only a couple of hours. But it was still a popular booth because of its fundraising T-shirts and wealth of information.
Also popular was the poster featuring photos of the dogs and cats the group has available for adoption.
"Some of the people are aware of our organization, some of them are giving donations," said WOOFF member Sherry Davis. "Our T-shirts are really doing well. We are here to support this event to bring awareness to all of our local animal rescue groups.
"We are promoting our rescue group Welfare of Our Furry Friends. We are selling some of our T-shirts and stuffed animals and accepting donations to help with our animals that we have that we are looking to adopt (out). We recently had an adopt-a-thon in Kinston and we had one of our dogs adopted out. We were happy about that and he is doing well."
Mrs. Davis said she was very pleased with the turnout and the mild weather.
For more information about the organization visit www.woofff.org or call Mrs. Davis at 919-658-9539 ext. 106.
For Nancy Reeves, Wayne County Humane Society treasurer, Saturday was not only an opportunity to help the animals, but to educate people about the importance of being responsible pet owners.
That is the key to controlling the pet overpopulation, she said.
"Our two major focuses are to offer a spay-neuter assistance program for people who are in financial need," she said. "We are at the (county) animal adoption center the third Saturday in each month from 10 to 12. It is an application process. You do need to bring proof of income and if you qualify, the Humane Society will pay a third of the cost of having your animal spayed or neutered. The vets in Wayne County are gracious enough that they come and do a complementary one-third and then the pet owner is responsible for the other third.
"We also will pay for one half of a rabies shot. But any other shots the owner is responsible for. This is one of the main things that we are trying to get information out to people that we do have that service available if you meet the financial criteria."
Also on the third Sunday of each month, the organization sponsors a pet food distribution to assist families in need.
"They don't get enough to feed for a month, but they do get enough to use it as a supplement," she said. "Those are our two main focuses -- to get out information and to help get some of these animals from the shelter adopted instead of having to be euthanized. We just want to make the whole Wayne County more area of the needs of animals in Wayne County.
"I think it (event) is wonderful. We are absolutely delighted and so grateful to Dr. Zwerling and Heritage Dance Foundation for volunteering to do this for us.
Carla and Dwight Hudson are self-proclaimed "boxer fanatics."
They are members of Carolina Boxer Rescue, an organization that works exclusively with boxers and has a network of like-minded boxer lovers across the state and South Carolina that works to find homes for rescue animals.
The group has been in existence since 2001 and has helped find homes for nearly 1,000 dogs during that time.
Both the Hudsons are from Goldsboro, but said they work with other members of the organization throughout the Carolinas, helping find good homes for unwanted boxers.
The breed is very lovable and very child-friendly, Dwight Hudson said, making them a perfect companion. They have served as foster dog owners and also helped transport dogs from one location to another.
All the organization's adoption fees to pay for medical costs for the dogs. Each dog has been spayed or neutered, given its shots and had a full medical check-up before being adopted, the Hudsons said.
At Saturday's event, they were helping find homes for several dogs. They said that before a dog is placed with a new owner, the owner has to be vetted to be sure he or she can provide a good home.
Vickie Falconer, Wayne County animal control director, brought eight dogs she hoped to adopt out.
"I have adopted one out and I have two that are possibles," she said. "It is great. I would rather all eight go, but I will take any. The crowd had been amazing. It started before 11 and they have been walking through getting all kinds of information, asking questions. We brought different thing on rabies on spaying and neutering."
She also brought a book full of photos of animals at the animal center just in case people at the event didn't see an animal that interest them, she said.
Mrs. Falconer also was bust passing out brochures about animal control in general and the for shelter.
"It (event ) is a wonderful idea," she said. "I am hoping that the play with everything goes well. We have been talking about doing it every year. That would be great. It gives people the time to come out. They can bring their pets or just come down. There are demonstrations, there are vendors that do different things.
"It is good for the kids, too. We have coloring books and puzzles that teach kids about dogs biting, how to approach them. I think it will be good for them."
-- News-Argus Managing Editor Dennis Hill contributed to this report.