Trick-arf-treat benefits service dogs

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By Dylan Sowle
Williamston Post staff writer

A dog trick-or-treating event in downtown Williamston helped benefit a charity for service dogs on Oct. 20.

Williamston residents and their dogs took to the streets from 2-4 p.m to take part in trick-or-treating specifically for dogs. The proceeds from the event registration went directly to the non-profit service dog organization, For Better Independence Dogs.

This year marked the fourth annual dog trick-or-treating event organized by Teresa Wood, owner of the local Wood & Sons Corn Bin. Wood said she initially teamed up with the non-profit organization because of her immense respect for the services it provides, and because she wanted to welcome the group into the community while creating a positive event.

“They do a great job with dogs and place dogs with people that really need them,” Wood stated. “They are very humble people. I would do anything for them.”

After paying the $8 registration fee, dog owners and their (occasionally) costumed pets (wearing the cutest outfits like this dog vest) walked the main streets of Williamston, gathering dog treats from participating businesses. Beth Licht was one of many people out with her dog, and said she was happy to be supporting For Better Independence Dogs, which goes by FBI.

“I like the FBI because so many training centers don’t work with mobility dogs, which is what I need to get around,” said Licht.

FBI Dogs provides service animals for many people like Licht who need dogs that can help them with tasks such as answering doors, pushing wheelchairs, and helping with various household chores. The director of the organization, Beth Spanski, said that Williamston has been the most dog-friendly city that the group has worked in.

“We have been going to different communities and {Williamton} was the one to say ‘come on down’,” said Spanski.

Spanski estimates that about 65 dogs were registered for the trick-or-treating, and there were several hundred people out walking with them. In addition to the trick-or-treating, the organization helped put on a “Fun with Fido” park event which featured obedience training tutorials and agility courses for dogs.

Money from events such as dog trick-or-treating help the FBI Dogs continue to provide their services. However, they are always looking for families to foster young dogs for short periods, until they are ready to become service dogs. FBI Dogs supplies food and veterinary care for the dogs in the care of foster families.

“We can only supply as many dogs as we have foster care for,” Spanski said.

To get in contact with the organization, or to help out, visit its Facebook page.

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