WHEELING, W.Va. (WTRF)
The Winsers came with a goal.
“We would like to take a dog home with us,” said Shirley Winser of Glen Easton. “We used to have four dogs.”
“We figure it’s about time for some more ‘kids,’ as my wife says,” said John Winser.
WTRF Web Manager John Lynch meets a new friend.
People and animals came from everywhere.
Rose is an eight-year-old American Bulldog mix from Brooke County.
“She’s looking for a good retirement home,” said shelter volunteer Steve Tennant. “She’s mellow. She just needs somebody to love her, somebody that can handle a big dog.”
If an 85-pound dog is a bit much for you, there were kittens, some of them getting their first glimpse of the outdoors.
“They’re all having a big time, because they haven’t been out of the shelter,” said Candace Fleagane of the Belmont County Animal Shelter. “I think they’re really enjoying the outside spaces.”
As the Belmont County Humane Society well knows, this is kitten season.
“We have no shortage!” said Angela Hatfield, Humane Society executive director. “We have an ample supply for everyone to come down here today and adopt at least one or two!”
Some of the animals have a back story that could break your heart.
“We’ve got that little orange group over here that’s getting quite a bit of attention,” Hatfield pointed out. “They were taped in a box and found by the road.”
Happily, kittens were going like hotcakes.
“He’s just so adorable,” said Mary McCray of Moundsville, as she held the kitten she just adopted. “Just so sweet. You know, he just came to me. He asked me to take him!”
“Any of these animals would make somebody such a nice pet,” said Bill Fowkes of Moundsville. “You could sit and watch football games and your dog or at could sit there on the couch with you.”
Wherever we looked, we saw a little boy named Grayson, a serious animal lover.
So his mom, Ashleigh, said yes.
“Much to my husband’s sadness I’m sure, yes, I’m going to fill out a couple of applications,” said Ashleigh Griffin of Bridgeport with a smile.
“With the storm this week, we really weren’t sure how much of a turnout we were going to get,” said Katie Richardson, WTRF Creative Services director. “People are hurting now.”
Thanks to some quick work by the city, the Fitzsimmons Family Dog Park was ready and it came together.
“We did have some damage as the result of the storm,” said Wheeling City Manager Bob Herron. “But we were able to get the small dog portion of the park open for this very wonderful event.”
“We don’t have many animal lovers!” joked WTRF News Director Brenda Danehart. “Just so many animal lovers! I mean I can’t tell you what a great day this is, because this is right up our alley.”
Fourteen dogs and cats were adopted, and many others were noticed by people who are now seriously considering adopting a pet.