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Sterling House cooks up some love

June 22, 2012
By J.T. Whitehouse , Town Crier

Residents of Sterling House in Cornersburg had their hands in the pot last week. They pulled together to form, bake and wrap more than 200 dog treats as a way to help Animal Charity in their mission to rescue dogs and cats and find them good homes.

Rachel D'Onofrio, public relations director at Sterling House, said making the dog cookies is a first for Sterling House residents.

"We try to do some every month to give back to the community," she said. "Coupled with the fact we are an animal-friendly assisted living home made helping Animal Charity a perfect match."

Article Photos

Photos by J.T. Whitehouse, Town Crier
Douglas Valentine and Sterling House Director of Activities Raenell Allen learn the property way to tie a bow on a bagged doggy treat last week from resident Louise Roche.

On June 12, the residents and staff began the day by mixing a special dough made up of whole wheat, peanut butter and beef broth. The dough was rolled out and residents used bone-shaped cookie cutters to stamp out the design. The cookies were then baked and brought to tables for cooling. Afterwards, residents bagged each cookie and topped it off with a ribbon.

The final destination of the treats was Animal Charity of Mahoning County. To pick up the cookies, Animal Charity's general manager Talia Musolino and office manager Shalyse Seruga showed up with two of the animals presently at the shelter and up for adoption. One was Buddy, a Lab mix, and the other was Ransom, a three-month-old kitten.

With the two special taste testers in the house, they decided to offer a sample. Buddy was given one, which he welcomed with an open jaw. Sterling House resident Martha Seruga decided to offer a small piece of cookie to Ransom, who quickly ate it.

"I guess the dog treats could also be cat treats as well," Seruga said.

The Sterling House residents gave Musolino some treats to take back for the animals at the shelter. Over half were kept at the facility to offer for sale during their Thursday evening car show and other events. The money raised will be donated to Animal Charity to help meet the needs of the shelter.

Sterling House also became a drop off site for Animal Charity. A collection box was set up in the lobby for donated items and pet supplies.

"What we really need right now is bleach," Musolino said.

Other items on the desperately needed list includes dry dog food, dry puppy food, dry cat and kitten food, garbage bags, brooms, newspapers, dog treats, dog waste bags, paper towels, and clumping kitty litter. Any of these items can be dropped off at Sterling House.

"This is the first time we have done anything like this," D'Onofrio said. "We are simply calling it another good deed from Sterling House residents."



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