Animal kingdom

Andrew Wagstaff
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Shelter telethon surpasses goal

Animal kingdom

Amherst - The economy may be facing a downturn, but dont bother telling that to animal lovers.

They came out in full force last weekend for the Lillian Allbon Animal Shelters annual Telethon of Love, which surpassed its goal of raising $15,000 for Cumberland Countys homeless dogs and cats.

We were concerned because people talk about the economic downturn, and I thought probably we wouldnt do as well this year, said shelter president Kirsteen Thompson. But we need funds like everyone else, and our expenses have gone up this year, so the telethon was wonderful.

Close to $16,000 was pledged, although the exact total raised will not be known until the money comes in.

Aside from the financial support, the telethon also put on a great show with EastLink cable on Sunday, featuring a variety of interesting guests, including an RCMP officer with a police dog, Judy Richards with an obedience dog, and a woman speaking about a palliative care cat at a nursing home in Pugwash.

The show also saw the return of several happy animals that used to live at the shelter, which appeared on the show with their owners.

It was a good year, said Thompson. The telethon went very smoothly, with no hiccups, and we had a lot of really good guests.

The telethon was once again co-hosted by Pam Harrison and Peter Hoar, who entertained viewers and kept the program on schedule.

Harrison was once again impressed with the result of the event.

For 21 years the telethon has been supported by the generous people of Cumberland County and area, she said. We are truly amazed by the love and dedication of those who support the animal shelter.

The money raised will go towards the general operation of the shelter, and will also help support a costly new program that offers to help pay for the spaying and neutering of stray cats that people are willing to keep, according to Thompson, who thanked EastLink and all the donors that supported the cause.

She credited the success of the telethon to the good work that the shelter has done in the community, and the awareness among the people.

I think people do care about their animals, and that awareness of animal needs and the importance of taking care of animals has increased over the past few years, said Thompson.

I think a lot of people out there out their animals ahead of other luxuries they might have.

Organizations: Lillian Allbon Animal Shelters, RCMP

Geographic location: Cumberland County, Amherst, Pugwash

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