Dog walk raises funds, awareness for at-risk animals

A dog checks out the cats inside the Adopt Force One mobile at the Washington Humane Society\'s D.C Walk for the Animals and Pet-A-Palooza Saturday. (WTOP/Kathy Stewart)

Kathy Stewart, wtop.com

WASHINGTON – The second annual Washington Humane Society’s D.C Walk for the Animals and Pet-A-Palooza was held Saturday in Adams Morgan. Pet owners and their pets were walking to end the problem of homeless animals.

Scott Giacoppo is the vice president for external affairs and chief programs officer with the Washington Human Society. He says the money raised is vital to the society’s programs but he adds, “For us, it’s more of a way to share the organization with the community.”

He says this is a daylong event with a small walk around the Adams Morgan neighborhood.

The fundraising event was held on the field of the Marie Reed Elementary School. The event had previously been held at the National Mall but organizers wanted to be in a neighborhood parks so they could engage with they community it serves.

Polo

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Giacoppo says they’ve raised nearly $80,000. And the money helps dogs like Polo, a rescue dog. Bethany Barrett, a WHS volunteer, who also works at a veterinarian’s office in Fairfax County, did not give up on Polo.

“She had more than 100 wounds on her face, neck and front legs,” Barrett says. But the dog’s owner denied the dog treatment. Even though the dog was only 11-months old the owner wanted to euthanize it. But a Humane Society law enforcement officer fought to keep Polo alive, Barrett says.

Within weeks with special treatment and a whole lot of love and the blue-eyed beauty made a comeback. Now Barrett, who is Polo’s new owner, wants to train her as a therapy dog for people who have gone through a lot of trauma, Barrett says.

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