Some 15 pets are currently vying for the title of 2012 PALS Spokespet at the annual Pet Cotillion, the spring fundraiser for Pets Are Loving Support, this year set for May 6 at Piedmont Bark.
Last year, Pet Cotillion raised about $14,000, according to PALS Executive Director Kevin Bryant. The money, Bryant says, goes to veterinary care, like heartworm medication, spay and neutering services and flea medication.
Pets competing in the Pet Cotillion have profiles listed on the PALS website (palsatlanta.org) and can be voted on ($1 per vote) leading up to the event. The pet that raises the most money will be crowned this year’s winner.
When Eric Adelberg lost his sister four years ago, he got three new family members by adopting her pets: a miniature pinscher, a chihuahua and a nine-year-old cat.
“I just couldn’t let anybody take them away from the family,” says Adelberg, who had previously avoided being a pet owner due to the associated costs.
The price of food and pet care became an additional challenge for Adelberg, who has been HIV-positive for 20 years and lives on a fixed income.
“My HIV is pretty much under control, my problem is with the medications,” Adelberg says. “I have a very difficult time tolerating any of the medications, so I’m usually pretty nauseous most of the day.”