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For Good

Local artists team up, support Pets in Need

Mara McCalmont's sculpture, "Peter Max" Painted Pet, will be part of the Petcasso fundraiser.


Calling all pet lovers: Pets in Need of Greater Cincinnati will host its third annual fundraiser, Petcasso, on Nov. 19, at The Carnegie Center of Columbia Tusculum.
 
New this year is the “Painted Pets” auction of unique artwork by Mara McCalmont, local artist and creator of the “Peter Max” Painted Pet, and other artists who are donating their work.

“Ninety-nine percent of my work features animals,” said McCalmont. “It’s hard to put my love for animals into words — it’s unconditional — it doesn’t matter if you’ve had a bad day. They don’t care what you look like. They’re like children that never grow up; they just stay your sweet little baby.”
 
The organization, which provides food and low-cost veterinary care for pets in homes of those living at 150 percent below poverty level, currently serves 1,800 households.
 
“I’ve seen first-hand how Pets In Need helps people keep their pets, when it would have otherwise been impossible,” McCalmont said. “Their work is so important because pets are just such a big part of our lives.”
 
The nonprofit’s function stretches far beyond providing food and low-cost veterinary care for board member and volunteer Lexie Stevenson.
 
When one client’s canine companion, Beowulf, was euthanized, her niece requested memories of Beowulf from better times.
 
“She told me later how much it meant to her aunt to have those pictures,” Stevenson said. “At Pets In Need, we provide amazing low-cost veterinary care, but we also provide something intangible: respect, compassion and dignity to people who are often worn down by poverty, illness or age. It means almost as much to me as it does to them to be able to provide a memento of their dear companion.”  

Do Good: 

•    Register now for Petcasso, Nov. 19 from 7-10 p.m., $85, 3738 Eastern Ave., 45226, includes open bar, live entertainment, cocktail buffet.

•    Can't attend Petcasso? Support Pets in Need by donating.

•    Connect with Pets in Need on Facebook.
 

Read more articles by Brittany York.

Brittany York is a professor of English composition at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. She serves as project manager for Charitable Words and edits the For Good section of Soapbox Media. 
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