CHATHAM, NJ —During the holiday season and any time of year, dogs in many ways are much like kids, in that they love having their toys nearby.
When moms reached out to St. Hubert’s Animal Welfare Center in Madison after the Brownies of Chatham Troop 97952 had it in their hearts to help out the shelter, Kirstin Kelly said when asked what their needs were, at the time, St. Hubert’s said they could use dog toys.
Leader Beth Purdy has guided the troop, enlisting the help of moms like Kelly, at monthly meetings, to come up with an activity with their daughter and share that with the group.
With it being their turn, Kelly said her daughter Riley loves pets, calling her “obsessed with animals,” especially her nanny Amelia “Mia” Fairley’s two pups, Ava and Bella. In spearheading the activity with the group, the mom and daughter team, with Fairley assisting with the project, decided to focus on choosing and caring for pets.
As part of this meeting on the Southern Boulevard School playground, the Brownies kicked it off by reading a Dr. Seuss book about pets, each taking turns reading.
For the service component, Kelly said they scoured the internet and Pinterest for toy ideas, the Brownies and their moms collectively deciding to make tug toys, to help fulfill St. Hubert’s wish.
“The toys are easy to make and with a little prep work, cutting up colorful and inexpensive t-shirts from Michael’s,” Kelly said.
“The girls were able to braid colorful toys for the dogs,” she added, handcrafting about 50 of them.
Among the girls who helped with the project were Riley Kelly, Celia Santorelli, Elle Miller, Cate Purdy, Olivia Kudrako and Charlotte Bottoni.
St. Hubert’s gave a shout out to the Chatham Brownies for the gifts they made for their dogs.
“Let’s hear it for Brownie Troop 97952 from Chatham,” the shelter wrote. “They made these great tug toys for our shelter pups. Thanks so much, girls.”
“I liked making the tug toys because I love dogs and I was excited to make the them happy,” said Celia Santorelli.
“I am so happy to be a Girl Scout and help the shelter dogs get some new toys,” Olivia Kudrako said.
“Anyone who can braid can make dog toys,” said Riley Kelly. “It’s so fun and easy. Everyone should do it.”