Oscar, a 2-year-old puppy and two-month resident of the animal shelter, sat quietly for a nail trimming. He didn’t squirm or wiggle, or protest in any way. It was a big day for him.
Out front were many other dogs and puppies, including a peculiar pair.
Bella, massive, with long, shaggy golden hair, loomed over tiny, white and short-haired Lilly. Bella sat serenely back on her haunches, sagely watching Lilly as she playfully showed off for all the other dogs, ran around as much as her leash would allow, and sniffed pretty much everything in sight.
Which was plenty.
Oscar, Bella and Lilly were among many dogs — and people — who learned and socialized Saturday at “Wellness Wag,” an event held by the Jessamine County Animal Care and Control designed to educate pet owners on taking care of their pets’ health, and to bring more awareness of the shelter and its offerings, according to April Gillespie, event coordinator and marketing director for the agency. Another goal of the event was to get people out to the new facility on Fairground Way, which opened in July 2012.
Nail trimmings, microchips and educational material were some of the offerings at the event, which Gillespie said the shelter plans to hold every year.
Dog trainer Adam Madore and his German shepherd, Hexe Von Prufenden, demonstrated training techniques. Madore helps with a lot of the training for dogs in the shelter, he said.
Also, local veterinarian Will McCaw answered pet health questions such as when to get vaccinations and how to prevent and treat parasites. A popular question was how to care for pets in cold weather, he said.
McCaw, who has been a veterinarian for 12 years, said he always advises people to provide some way for their dogs to get out of the elements.
“Whether it’s a dog house, crawl space or whatever, they need something,” he said.
McCaw said he offered his time to show support for animal control’s efforts.
“It’s important for the community to know that we have an excellent new facility, and that there are people trying to do good for some disadvantaged pets in our community,” he said.
While their owners spent most of their time learning, Bella and Lilly and dozens of other dogs mainly socialized — sniffing, playfully batting a paw, or just eyeing each other. Occasionally, a dog barked at another but most wagged their tails and enjoyed the get-together.
Wendy Corman, who owns Bella and is fostering Lilly, said she found the information being offered helpful.
“It’s been really useful, especially about the socializing and training,” she said.
Corman said she brought Lilly to the event so that anyone looking to adopt would be able to meet her.
Natalie McMillan, a volunteer for the agency who helped out with the event, said she loved being able to contribute to helping animals find good homes.
“I like the opportunity to spend time with the dogs to help them get ready for adoption,” she said. “It’s really rewarding, especially when you see them be adopted.”
She got that chance with Oscar on Saturday. He was one of four dogs adopted during the event.
“It was a really successful day,” said Barbi Pack, a kennel technician.
It was indeed for Oscar. For him, “Wellness Wag” meant a lot more than a trim, or a microchip, or the chance to socialize.
It brought him a home.