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Niagara-on-the-Lake
Sunday, October 2, 2022
Furry friends celebrate pet store’s 10th anniversary in Virgil
NOTLers Mark and Sammy Dempsey bring their St. Bernards Denver (big) and Cleo for micro-chips on Sunday. Somer Slobodian
A French bulldog named Macy sits in a stroller with her brother Ben at Pet Valu's 10th anniversary in Virgil. Somer Slobodian
A German shepherd named Luna participated in Pet Valu's 10th anniversary celebration on Sunday. Somer Slobodian
People and their pets gather around at Virgil's Pet Valu to celebrate its 10th anniversary. Somer Slobodian
Stormy, a 13-week-old lilac Merle French bulldog. Somer Slobodian
A St. Catharines man with Stormy, a 13-week-old lilac Merle French bulldog. Somer Slobodian

Dogs and cats alike put aside any differences and came together for Pet Valu’s 10th anniversary celebration in Virgil on Sunday.

The day had a bit of a fun, carnival atmosphere as tables and tents were set up in the parking lot.

Pet owners brought their furry friends to NOTL from across Niagara for the party.

“Today is all about thanking our customers,” said Carol Thibault, owner of the Pet Valu franchise in Virgil. She’s been with Pet Valu for 18 years, and has owned the one in Virgil for ten.

Dozens of raffle prizes were available and many local organizations, like Grape Escape and Simba’s Salon, donated items.

“All these awesome gifts have been donated by local businesses,” said Tanya Rice, a volunteer with NOTL Cat Rescue.

All of the money raised from Sunday’s raffle and barbecue – $2,892 – goes to the rescue, Rice said.

The money helps the organization cover veterinary bills, food, toys and whatever supplies a foster home might need to adopt a cat, she said.

“NOTL Cat Rescue provides the volunteers with what they need to take care of those kittens,” she said.

She’s been volunteering with the rescue for five years. Last year, she started fostering cats along with her husband.

“I’ve been an animal lover my entire life,” she said.

The rescue is always looking for good-hearted people who will open up their homes to foster a cat, she added.

In the store, the rescue had two black and white kittens – Toby and Tessa – who were available for adoption.

The Niagara SPCA and Humane Society was on hand with its mobile spay and neuter clinic at the fundraiser. The mobile facility is sponsored by Pet Valu as part of its Giving Back program.

Microchipping – to track pets if they get lost – also was available.

The Virgil fundraiser was the first of the year for the mobile clinic as COVID has curtailed operations since 2019.