By Eric Keaton
For more than 80 years, SPCA Tampa Bay, a For-All Shelter and pet hospital, has supported a healthy community and animal well-being. The organization’s annual Pet Walk has brought together families and their canine companions (and last year a goat) to celebrate and spread what the SPCA calls “humanimality,” the almost indescribable joy that animals bring to our lives for 32 of those 80 plus years.
This year’s Pet Walk is right around the corner, set for Saturday, April 15, at not one but two locations: North Straub Park along St. Petersburg’s beautiful waterfront and the OCC Roadhouse and Museum in Clearwater.
What can you do to help? Sign up! It’s FREE! Form a team with friends and family or join an existing team to help make a difference in the lives of homeless pets and wildlife in SPCA Tampa Bay’s care. The community’s support at Pet Walk helps SPCA Tampa Bay continue to offer a variety of services to Pinellas County and beyond. Here’s a few examples:
- Adoptions program: SPCA Tampa Bay cares for thousands of animals admitted to the shelter each year. Most of them like dogs, cats and critters- we are striving to help them find their forever homes. Adoption counselors focus heavily on matchmaking, which helps families experience a successful pet adoption and pets gain a home where they will thrive.
- Wildlife program: The animals we care for go beyond cats and dogs. We also care for wildlife at our animal shelter in Largo. Our team, in collaboration with local partners, provides medical attention and rehabilitation services for possums, blue jays, squirrels, rabbits and more animals native to Florida.
- Pebbles Food Bank: SPCA Tampa Bay’s Pebbles Food Bank provides free dog and cat food to families facing unexpected financial hardships, which can help keep families together. SPCA Tampa Bay understands that financial issues often lead a family to have to make the difficult decision to surrender a pet.
Pet Walk is presented by Hill’s Pet Nutrition, Jabil and sponsored by a number of other companies, and it’s one of SPCA Tampa Bay’s largest fundraisers of the year.
It’s more than just a walk – it’s a community party with a variety of activities for families and canine companions, including a fun-filled walk, pet costume contest and a vendor village featuring local businesses.
Pet Walk details: Saturday, April 15 at North Straub Park in St. Petersburg and OCC Roadhouse and Museum in Clearwater. Day of registration opens at 8:30 a.m. and activities run from 8:30 a.m. until noon. The walk at both locations starts at 10 a.m. Start your team today at www.PetWalk.org. The sign-up fee is free. Participants who raise $25 or more receive a customized Pet Walk T-Shirt and participants who raise $100 or more win prizes for you and your pet.