07 February 2015
By Ellie Joos, FOTAS Director, On-Site Activities Coordinator
It was a busy afternoon at the shelter last Wednesday, when FOTAS hosted another Dog Ears Reading Program in conjunction with the Aiken County Library.
Jenny Beck from the library waited with me for our first arrivals, along with volunteer Sharon Kahl and several Serteens.
Shortly thereafter, the first mom showed up with her daughter Lane, Lane’s friend Megan and her little toddler. They had been at the shelter the day before and heard about the Dog Ears Reading Program and came back to read specifically to the five adorable Chihuahua puppies on the adoption floor. Sharon sat on the blanket with Lane, Megan and two of the Chihuahua puppies on blankets in the outside portion of the kennel while the girls took turns reading to the puppies and loving them up. What fun!
More kids arrived over the next 2 hours. Stella read to Owen, an enthusiastic border collie mix, with Serteen Stephanie, while her brother Sam read to the bouncy and ever so eager Belinda, a sweet hound dog mix who loves the attention, with help from Serteen Jade.
Young Christian and his mom came to the shelter to read to the cats – he can’t have one at home since his dad is allergic. First he read to a kitten he had selected from the new cat condo in the lobby with Jenny, then he repaired to the shelter feline house with Serteens Kate and Brandon to share the love with the feline residents residing in the colony.
Cindy from the “Aiken Standard” was on hand to photograph the activities. She told me how much she enjoys being assigned to the shelter to cover these events, which is evident from her terrific photos published in the on-line edition the next day. If you missed them, be sure to look them up – she really captured the joy of the participating children and the animals.
I also set up a craft table with all the necessary supplies, like paper, markers, stickers, rubber stamps and such, so the kids could make their own cards when they finished reading with the help of the Serteens. They created some samples for the kids to see so the children could make their own cards when they finished reading.
Lane said she was making her Valentine card for the puppy she had named Cupcake. She had mounted a serious campaign to adopt little Cupcake, but her mother was not having it. Too bad for Lane and Cupcake – they did make a cute couple.
Next up at the shelter is the Valentine’s Day Yard Sale and Bake Sale to be held from 10 am to 1 pm, on Sat. Feb. 14. Come on over and check out the great bargains on pet supplies, household items, toys, books, maybe even some tack and equine supplies, and of course, some fabulous baked goods. The Valentine Card craft table will be set up for the kids to show their artsy side. In addition, photographer Janice Freeland will be on site to take photos of attendees with their pets in front of a Valentine backdrop. The address is 333 Wire Road.
And don’t miss our Valentine’s Cat Adoption Special – only $2 to adopt a fully vaccinated and spayed or neutered adult cat, one day only — Sat., Feb. 14. If you’ve been thinking about adding a feline friend to your brood, now’s the time.
The Dog Ears Reading Program will be held at the shelter on the first Wednesday of each month, which is early release day for the schools. Be sure to check the FOTAS web site at www.fotasaiken.org for reservations information.
Thank you, and as always, remember – their lives are in our hands.