One Los Angeles woman does her part to keep city shelter dogs cozy
By Kelsey Duckett
Sherry Brewer has devoted her time to comforting some of Los Angeles’s most needy and vulnerable homeless animals who take residence in shelters. She spearheaded a project with the goal of making their lives just a little bit more enjoyable.
A former volunteer at Los Angeles Animal Service’s East Valley Shelter in Van Nuys, Brewer spent her time worrying about the animals’ comfort in the shelter. After one massive rain storm hit, Brewer realized the dogs needed beds, so they could feel safe and warm.
“I was sitting with a good friend of mine and we watched as the rain wouldn’t let up,” she remembers. “It just got me thinking about these poor dogs in crates and cages, cold and possibly getting wet. I just had to do something.”
Brewer did some research and found an elevated plastic Perla dog bed that is made in Italy. After calling around, she found out that there were 79 beds in the area, and a representative right here in the United States.
Each bed cost $23.49, and she was on a mission to purchase each and every one. She sent out an e-mail plea for donations and within 24 hours, Brewer received enough funds to purchase all of the beds.
“I was shocked, but it was such an amazing feeling,” she says. “I wanted everyone who donated to know where their money went, so I posted and e-mailed pictures, which drew in more support.”
After joining up with friends and volunteers at the West LA Shelter, and hosting another fundraiser, word spread like wildfire. Within a week, over $7,000 was raised to purchase more beds.
To date, Brewer has been able to purchase 588 beds, and in all six of the LA City shelters, every kennel has a bed.
“These beds are practical and comfortable,” she explains. “Each dog has their own area to curl up so they don’t have to lay on the cold floor or hot cement. This is just one small thing we can do to provide some comfort for these dogs that are already without a home.”
Brewer has been approached by organizations and volunteers from other states to bring these beds to shelters across the country. But she said with the beds being manufactured in Italy, it has been a slow process.
At the end of the day, Brewer wants to be a “voice for the voiceless.” Her vision is to help homeless animals to feel love and comfort.
“The first time I saw a dog sniffing the bed and then crawling into it, I balled,” she says. “It has been so rewarding. I only hope I can continue to purchase and provide beds to dogs across the country.”
To get involved contact Sherry Brewer at: SheraB04@aol.com.