RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Ray Elliott, a Lunenburg County Animal Control Officer, has decided to forgo Thanksgiving with his family to bring attention to the animals who will be “locked up” at the shelter during the holiday season.
He will be spending the night from 6 p.m. until 6 a.m., locked in one if the kennels at the animal shelter with only a bottle of water to raise money for the Southside SPCA’s spaying and neutering effort in Lunenburg.
“I don’t want any luxuries because these animals, they don’t have it,” Elliott says. “Someone chose to dump those animals out and why, for whatever reason it was, they come to our building and we do give them the best care that we can.”
He is hoping to raise $12,000, which breaks down to $1,000 a dog being housed in the shelter’s twelve kennels.
Elliott says the shelter is always filled to capacity, and spaying and neutering is the only way more lives can be spared.
“It’s so crucial that spaying and neutering happen earlier in these dogs lives,” adds Lea Anna Perlas with the Southside SPCA. “A lot of people feel they can’t afford it, so by raising these funds Ray is going to be able to offer this assistance out in the county.”
Southside SPCA rescues dogs of all ages from the Lunenburg shelter every week and just last week found a forever home for a 16-year-old Jack Russell Terrier.
Without so many puppies, however, many more older dogs would get their second chance with a family too.
“It’s easy to take care of one animal, but if a certain animal gets dumped out and she has puppies and stuff, that overloads our system with animals to move out,” explains Elliott.
He is welcoming in-person donations at the shelter on Thanksgiving. Lunenburg County Virginia Public Animal Shelter is located at 1320 Old Mansion Road in Lunenburg.
Donations can also be made directly to the Southside SPCA here or at P.O. Box 66, Meherrin, Va. 23954.
Watch the full interview with Ray Elliot in the video below: