Deck the Paws and Help a Collie

By ALAN BAUER –Elauwit Media Pet Drive Quartermaster

There are two moments from all of the years that I’ve been doing Deck the Paws and Help a Collie that stand out in my mind.

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The first one took place a few years ago. I drove into an animal shelter parking lot with an SUV filled with pet food, cat litter, cleaning supplies and even a few bones, toys and treats.

Volunteers appeared from everywhere to help unload. As we were about finished, one of them pulled me aside and told me, with tears in her eyes, that they had very little food left. They didn’t know what they were going to do. Then your donations showed up. You saved the day.

The need is there. It’s always there. No doubt it’s there again this year.

We started Elauwit Media, publisher of The Sun newspapers, in 2004. Every year, beginning that year, we’ve held our annual holiday animal shelter/rescue group supply drive.

We call it Deck the Paws and Help a Collie because, well, it needed a name, time was short, it kind of rhymes with Deck the Halls with Boughs of Holly and it includes animal references. Not saying it is the greatest slogan ever, but it seems to work.

The response every year has been overwhelming. Bad weather? A tough economy? Whatever. Failure is not an option. We fill SUVs, vans and pickup trucks with all kinds of supplies.

And we’re going to do it again this year.

Elsewhere in this paper, you’ll see a list of places that have graciously agreed to be collection/drop-off points for us. Most of these places have been a part of this drive for years. We thank them. The animals thank them, or would thank them if they could talk or send an email.

Now it’s up to you, our readers. You’ve always come through for the animals. I know you will come through again.

We ask you to find a drop spot near you and then donate whatever you can. Trust me, every can of food matters. Every box of cat litter makes a difference.

So do toys and treats, which bring me to my second memorable moment.

I was making my second or third drop at a shelter one year when a volunteer said there was something I needed to see. The volunteer took me to the cage of a pitbull who had been a guest for a number of years, and probably would be a guest for many more. He had experienced a tough life, and had the scars to prove it.

But there he was, rolling around on the floor and playing with a toy I had delivered the week before. He was as happy as he could be.

I consider myself lucky to witness firsthand the outcome of your generosity.

Every year, you make a difference, a big difference, in the lives of so many animals.

I’m asking you to do it again this year.

Questions? Comments? Want to make a donation but need some help? Want to collect items on your own and then arrange a pickup? Anything at all, just call me at (856) 528–3035 or email me at Please include “Animal Shelter” in the subject line so that I don’t think you are offering me the financial opportunity of a lifetime or a hair replacement system and accidentally delete it.

Thank you, in advance, for your support.

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