Let the cat - and dog - out of the bag at Saturday’s SPARC grand opening

May 25, 2012
Santa Paula News

You can let the cat out of the bag and prove it’s true that a house is not a home without a dog when you come Saturday to the grand opening of the Santa Paula Animal Rescue Center (SPARC).

Homeless felines and canines will have a place to call their own with the May 26 opening of Ventura County’s first no-kill animal shelter. SPARC will offer a whole day of fun for the entire family - and their pets - from noon to 4 p.m. 

SPARC is located at 705 E. Santa Barbara St., at the corner of 7th Street. It will be a great day for lost abandoned pets as well as your own family’s favorite - animals are also welcome to attend the celebration to “sniff around” the long-vacant corner complex that soon will also hold a pet supplies store.

According to SPARC President Diane Rowley, “Many dedicated folks have devoted countless hours to making this a reality for the community,” which will be realized with the 12:30 p.m. ribbon-cutting. Tickets will be on sale for a chance to win one of the numerous door prizes, or “You can even get a free ticket for the door prizes if you donate a bag of dog or cat food.”

Rowley said the celebration will include dog-agility demonstrations and about 20 informational booths. Actress Danielle Harris - best known for her roles in such thrillers as “The Victim,” “Devil’s Night” and “Cornered” - will be making a special appearance in support of SPARC. There will be a jolly jump and a face painter for the kids, and some hot foods and sweet snacks for all.

“Your pets,” noted Rowley, “are invited along for the low-cost vaccination clinic, their new Santa Paula animal license and a dog-behavior class. Tour our new facility and take advantage of the opportunity to help support SPARC’s humanitarian efforts by participating in the Silent Auction of many great items.”

The opening of SPARC is truly a history-making event that involved years of planning and wide volunteer support that included transforming a long neglected corner complex - located right on the popular Bike Trail - into a showplace.

SPARC will provide living and play areas for its animals, licensing and support for current and future pet owners through training classes, and a food bank. Shelter animals will be handled in a variety of ways: direct adoption to new homes, care in foster homes, or transfer to other rescue organizations. It will also offer community education and advocate spay and neutering of cats and dogs to not only make healthier pets, but also to cut down on the number of unwanted animals. 

Cats have their own large room to roam, while dogs will have access to an outdoor play area during the day and be kenneled at night. All adoptable pets will be up-to-date with vaccinations and have other perks for their new owners, who will pay a $100 adoption fee for dogs, $60 for cats. Each animal will come with information including its level of training, how it wound up at the shelter and its personality traits.

The center will be fully operational by June 1. For more information call 805-613-7753 or email info@SantaPaulaARC.org.

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