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Always dog days for volunteers

Connie Fleck of Canine Companions Rescue Center, with Laddie, an 8-week-old collie beagle mix from a litter of nine. All are up for adoption. Photo by Phil Custodio (click for larger version)
February 09, 2011 - Volunteers with Canine Companions Rescue Center found homes for almost 700 dogs last year, but more are always needed.

"The ongoing need is pretty intense," said Connie Fleck of Independence Township, who founded the group with her husband in 2004. "All rescue groups do what they can to spay and neuter stray dogs, but there are still lots of puppies."

They also have many adult dogs for adoption.

"Adult dogs already know how to take care of themselves," Fleck said. "A puppy is like a baby in the house, they need more attention. Adults adapt to their new home it's amazing how quickly they become part of the family."

The non-profit, all-volunteer group accepts dogs from animal control agencies around the state.

"They can't place all dogs, so they look to rescue groups to help," Fleck said.

About 35 volunteers work year round, fostering dogs and working at pet adoption events to find homes for them.

"We can always use more volunteers," Fleck said. "Many of them have volunteered regularly for quite some time. It's habit forming."

Foster-care volunteers receive pet food, medicine, and medical care for the dogs.

"They have to give the dogs up, but they know they're saving more dogs," she said.

They host adoption fairs every Sunday, 12-4 p.m. at Petco, 4820 South Baldwin Road in Lake Orion.

Camp Bow Wow, 6374 Sashabaw Road, hosts Cupids and Canines Adoption Event, 12-3 p.m., Sunday, Feb. 13, benefiting Canine Companions. They will also have refreshments, professional photo of pup in Kissing Booth, and a contest to win an iPad, tickets $5.

"It's rewarding people who adopt dogs come back and tell us how they're doing," she said.

Adoption fee is $185, unchanged since 2004, and the same for puppy or adult, purebred or not fee includes spay or neuter, and age-appropriate vaccination.

"We look for ways to adopt dogs make sure the dog is a good choice for each family situation," Fleck said.

For more information, call 248-834-9419. For information on Camp Bow Wow, call 248-620-WOOF (9663).

Phil is editor for The Clarkston News. He is a veteran of the first Iraq war, having served in the U.S. Army.
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