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Mutt Struts and hurricanes

Our Animals, Ourselves: Keeping the animals we love safe and sound

September 28, 2017
By ANNOEL KRIDER , Lake Placid News

On Sunday, my dog Addie and I ran in the Mutt Strut around Mirror Lake in Lake Placid. The fun run/walk was a fundraiser for our two local shelters. The Tri-Lakes Humane Society and the North Country SPCA both serve our area "providing refuge for cats and dogs who have been surrendered, abandoned or abused." Along with the support of some local businesses, they created this event not only to raise funds but to bring continued awareness to the public that they exist.

I have images of the pre-race activity of dogs and people gathering together preparing for the 5K event. Dogs of all shapes, sizes, breeds (mutt and otherwise) were either nose to nose in friendly greetings or staying off to one side in preparation for the 3-mile journey. There were actually two semi-blind dogs in the event. One beautiful Australian shepherd had sunglasses on to protect her tender eyes from the brilliance of the day. The other sweet dog looked like a chihuahua that appeared to be completely blind. Both prevailed with their person by their side.

My husband opted to watch along with our "mutt" Arlo, who had been limping lately, so being the observer was just fine with him. So it was Addie, my non-mutt, and I doing the warming up in preparation for "running" around the lake.

Article Photos

Photo provided by Annoel Krider
People and dogs participate in the Mutt Strut Sunday at the Olympic Speedskating Oval in Lake Placid.

The air gun alerted the start of the event, and off we went, all at varied paces, walking and running through town, weaving in and out of pedestrians on Main Street who all seemed willing to step aside for the dogs on a mission.

There were numerous water stops along the way for dogs and people to stay hydrated on this very hot day; however, by the time we completed the run, it was apparent that jumping into the lake was our next move. Addie and a myriad of other Mutt Strut dogs were in heaven, splashing around the water and feeling rather proud of their recent achievement.

I noticed some dogs with "Adopt me" vests on and realized they were from the local shelters and would be strutting as well, with the help of some giving volunteers. I immediately approached and engaged in doggie conversations. At one point we began talking about the animals lost or homeless as a result of the recent hurricanes. Apparently the NCSPCA became involved in this emergency situation and brought up some shelter dogs from North Carolina and gave them a home in the Elizabethtown shelter. So I had to find out more.

I talked with Tara Powers, the executive director of the North Country SPCA, and she filled me in with some of the details. She expressed first and foremost that the NCSPCA was a North Country animal shelter serving local animals; however, under emergency situations when their help is requested from afar, they do make exceptions.

They work with a shelter down in North Carolina called the NC Vance County Ruin Creek Animal Shelter. In light of the fact that this Southern shelter will euthanize to make room for other animals, there is a volunteer group called the Ruin Creek Animal Protection Society that steps in when a dog is facing the death sentence and reaches out to other shelters for help. When the latest hurricanes hit the South, all the animal shelters felt the pressure. They not only had their own shelter animals to contend with but thousands of dogs and cats that had been displaced from their homes as a result of the storms. These animals probably had their family members looking for them, but in the meantime, the roaming critters had to be placed in shelters until their families came and got them. This group recently contacted the North Country SPCA, and it responded.

On Sept. 16, three staff members from the NCSPCA drove down to New Jersey, where they met the dogs from North Carolina who would soon find their home in the Elizabethtown shelter. These dogs, and many other dogs like them, were driven to New Jersey from North Carolina by an animal-friendly transport operation to be dispersed to shelters willing to take them in.

So now nine more dogs will be available for adoption at the NCSPCA. These dogs are still being checked out and observed, but by next week they'll be ready to go ... so here they are.

Three puppies, Shepherd mixes: Hickory, male; Raleigh, male; Charlotte, female

Two adults, 1-year-old hound mix: Erica, female; Frances, female

One adult, 1-year-old Lab mix: Turner, male

One adult, 3-year-old Lab and black mouth cur mix: Manny, male

One adult, 1-year-old boxer mix: Javier, male

... and finally, one more dog who has some medical issues and is being fostered until all is well. Info on this dog will be provided at a later date.

If you are interested in any of these dogs, you can phone the shelter at 518-873-5000.

Their photos will be posted on the website when they are available for adoption.

In the meantime support all our local shelters, including the Tri-Lakes Humane Society, whether it be through a check in the mail, adoption or running in a Mutt Strut. They are here to help with the animals, and we are here to help them.



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