Go for a run and help the cause

This weekend, a 5K run and a 1-mile fun run will help raise money for the cash-strapped shelter. All proceeds from the run will be used to purchase pet food, supplies and medical supplies.

The Dogtrot 5K run and 1-mile fun run is a way the public can help the shelter.

Registration is $25 for the 5K run and $20 for the 1-mile fun run. The run will take place on the Tennessee Valley Authority Muscle Shoals Reservation nature trails. Participants should meet at the main jogging trail on Reservation Road.

Check-in begins at 7:45 a.m. The 5K run begins at 8:30 a.m. The fun run will begin at 9 a.m.

A $5 donation will enter participants in a drawing of prizes, including pet goodie bags. Dogs are welcome, as long as they are on a non-retractable leash.

For information, call Alex Terrell at 256-291-7782, or Melanie Orseske at 256-443-9201.


TUSCUMBIA — With the loss of its main source of pet food, the Colbert County Animal Shelter is depending on donations from the public, and employees, to make ends meet.

On Wednesday, residents brought bags of pet food and other items to the shelter after learning of its plight. 

Employee Sue Gentry said the shelter lost its source of food several months ago when Sunshine Mills in Red Bay changed the procedure of sampling pet food.

She said the company would remove a bag of food from the production line, cut the bag open and remove a sample for testing. Since the bags were cut open, Gentry said, they could not be sold, but they could be donated to the animal shelter.

Since losing that source of pet food, the shelter has been surviving on donations and fundraisers.

"We use a minimum of 100 pounds of kitty litter in a few days because we have so many cats," Gentry said. "Dog food is a necessity. As far as dry food for dogs and cats, it's getting scary."

She said employees have chipped in and purchased dog food for the shelter.

"Unfortunately, it's not in our budget and it's never been in our budget,"  Gentry said.

Corey Speegle, a member of the Huntsville Search Dog Unit who lives in the Shoals, said he delivered 500 pounds of dog food Wednesday that was donated by the Rural King store in Muscle Shoals.

Speegle said the search dog unit planned to purchase the dog food at a reduced rate, but the store donated it when they learned what it was for. He said club members planned to return to the store Wednesday evening to purchase dry cat food for the shelter.

The Search Dog Unit is s non-profit that provides cadaver dogs, search dogs and tracking dog services to law enforcement agencies.

Despite the budget crunch, Gentry said shelter employees will not let the animals in their care go hungry.

"We're here for the animals," she said, "and we have some great employees here."


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(1) comment

Thomas Barnes

How long has it been since the budget for the animal shelter has been reviewed and updated? How can you even think of having an animal shelter when the budget for it doesn't include the feeding animals?

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