• Larry Di Giovanni/News Bruno, a mixed breed dog with some poodle, pug, yorkie and beagle in him, receives a toenail trimming from volunteer veterinary assistant Beth Trivett during Saturday’s Clear the Shelters event at the county dog shelter.
  • Larry Di Giovanni/News Dogs Tonka, left, and three-legged Jack Russell terrier mix Tripp — here with Knox County Dog Shelter volunteer Heather Parker — came into the shelter together in early August. They were both adopted by the same family during Saturday’s Clear the Shelters event, and will become part of their new family this week.

MOUNT VERNON — Nine of 18 dogs available for adoption at the Knox County Dog Shelter received new homes during the weekend’s nationwide Clear the Shelters event. The impressive turnout of people interested in providing “forever homes” for dogs, while enjoying ice cream and touring the shelter kennel, resulted in what Dogs of Knox Fund President Marla McCutchen and other volunteers called a successful outcome.

The well-attended event included a chance to adopt a dog — or two in one case — at a reduced price of half off the normal cost of $120. The reduction came through a special offer for the day provided by the Dogs of Knox Fund. The deal included all the dog’s vaccinations, microchipping and spay or neuter service.

Two of the dogs adopted Saturday, a large shy dog named Tonka, and a small, happy-faced, three-legged Jack Russell mix named Tripp, came into the shelter in early August with a third dog that had already been adopted. Tripp, though with three legs, eagerly jumped up and down out of his chair before his and Tonka’s photos were taken inside the “socialization room,” perhaps sensing he and his large friend would be with a new family soon. That is scheduled to happen this week. In addition to missing a left hind leg, Tripp also is blind in his left eye, but more than made up with his challenges in life with energy and enthusiasm.

“He’s really friendly,” a dog shelter volunteer remarked. “There’s really nothing he can’t do.”

Clear the Shelters served two purposes locally. One was to find forever homes for as many dogs as possible, and that goal, with half of the adoptable dogs soon to go to new homes, was achieved. The second goal was to raise as much money for the Dogs of Knox Fund. That was done by selling ice cream, raffle tickets for gift baskets, dog toenail trimmings and accepting stand-alone donations. McCutchen said all donations to the Dogs of Knox Fund are used to continue its assistance to the Knox County Animal Shelter, which include vaccinations.

The one disappointment of the day was that none of four adoptable Pittie Paw Rescue dogs were adopted — despite being at the shelter now for close to a year following closure of that animal rescue operation in Mount Vernon earlier this year. A special price of half off was being offered for their adoption, with all long-term dogs offered for $50. Their price for the day was set at $25. One of the PPR dogs that greeted visitors outside with its handler, a female pitbull named Nola, touched noses with Tripp and was commended for being friendly toward other dogs.

“They have the stigma that goes with being Pittie Paw dogs,” a volunteer said. “But we still hope for them to find forever homes.”

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Larry Di Giovanni: 740-397-5333 or larry@mountvernonnews.com and on Twitter, @mountvernonnews



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