A howlin’ good time

June 19th, 2015 9:20 am

First Posted: 10/21/2014

Jess Farrell, co-organizer of the Griffin Pond Animal Shelter Halloween Pet Parade, said choosing her favorite costume from among the 101 pets that strolled the grounds at the shelter on Oct. 19 was difficult.

As the furry contestants paraded in their costumes, haunting Halloween melodies such as the Cruella Deville song from the movie “101 Dalmatians” played in the background and set the stage for a “frightful” afternoon.

“Choosing my favorite costume is hard because there were so many really great ones this year,” she said. “(The ones) that really made me smile were the old lady, a Shar Pei with a white wig; the Cane Corso dressed as a lion; and the Rotty (Rottweiler), Dallas, dressed as Madonna.”

One of her other favorites was led by volunteer and foster mom, Mary Kettle, “who along with Jack and Candy, dressed up as Duck Dynasty.”

Her all-time favorite is her dog Grover, who was dressed as a Ewok, a character from the movie “Star Wars.”

“I adopted him three years ago from the shelter,” said Farrell.

Amy DeLeo Kazmierski, whose dog, Leo, won the scariest award, said her daughter, Brittany, came up with the idea for the costume.

“She took red hair paint and sprayed a skeleton on him. He is an evil skeleton. We have been coming (to the parade) every year. In fact, Leo won last year for most creative. We do anything to support Griffin Pond. We did not get Leo from there, but I have gotten two pets from there in the past,” said Kazmierski.

Approximately 25 percent of the animals who participated in the parade were adopted from Griffin Pond Animal Shelter.

Vince Maletta, of Clarks Summit, owner of Piper and Bella, both Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, said, “We chose to attend the animal parade because the Griffin Pond Animal Shelter provides such an amazing service for the community. I chose the Spiderman and Wonder Woman costumes because, in the eyes of my children, our dogs are superheroes.”

Farrell had plenty of help organizing the parade from shelter staff, including humane officer Sandy Scala, who served as judge; Kristen Anderson, Arlene Arnold and Mary Kettle and approximately 40 volunteers who helped her put the event together.

On a daily basis, staff at Griffin Pond care for 250 to 300 animals and in 2014, Farrell said, “We are on track to adopt over 3,000 animals by end of this year.”