Alexandria, VA

At a little over a year old, Buck is an excitable and energetic young pup looking for a home in Alexandria.

Buck is a 19-month-old Bluetick hound up for adoption at the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria with the usual preferred puppy past times of chasing balls and chewing on toys.

“He’s also pretty smart, and when treats are involved,” said Gina Hardter, spokesperson for the Animal Welfare League. “He’s excited to learn all kinds of new games and tricks.”

Hardter said Buck is also an enthusiastic cuddler.

“[He] is happy to crawl in your lap for some vigorous ear scratches and belly rubs!” Hardter said.

Anyone interested in scheduling a meet up with Buck and potential adoption can sign up to do so at the AWLA website.

Also, as a quick update, last week’s adoptable pet Mr. Patterson has found a new home.

Photos courtesy Animal Welfare League of Alexandria

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Mr. Patterson may be cute, but the staff at the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria where he is currently awaiting say that prospective owners should make no mistake — he is a true gentleman.

“Mr. Patterson may be a bit leonine, but he’s actually just a lionhead rabbit (though he’s just as proud of his majestic mane as any big cat would be),” said Gina Hardter, a spokesperson for the AWLA. “This 2-year-old gentleman’s favorite spots are a well-filled hay bin or a snuggly enclosure with lots of blankets.”

Like most rabbits, Mr. Patterson is highly intelligent and enjoys puzzles or challenges to help stimulate his brain.

“Chew toys and places to dig will help you win Mr. Patterson’s heart,” Hardter said.

While all rabbits require some grooming, Hardter said Mr. Patterson’s intense mane requires some special preening.

“As anyone with a fantastic coiffure (or coif-fur) will tell you, you will need to dedicate some time to brushing Mr. Patterson,” Hardter said. “Make sure to find the right type of brush to keep him detangled, because lionheads far prefer brushing and the occasional spot-clean to a bath!”

Anyone interested in learning more about caring for a lionhead rabbit, or to meet Mr. Patterson for potential adoption, is encouraged to schedule an appointment with the AWLA.

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Lucy is not quick to fall in love, but if she can find the right owner, this 13-month old kitten will be a friend for life.

Lucy is a cat up for adoption at the Vola Lawson Animal Shelter (4101 Eisenhower Avenue). Gina Hardter, a spokesperson for the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria, said that Lucy can be reserved at first around new humans.

“She can be shy at first with new friends, but patience and treats are the way to win her heart,” Hardter said.

Like many young cats, Hardter said one of her favorite pasttimes is napping — particularly in covered places.

“Lucy is a Nap Queen, and can often be found in her covered bed, snoozing with the best of them,” Hardter said. “She has the skills to go pro.”

Perhaps most adorably, Lucy has a little dance as she tries to figure out how to approach a human.

“When she meets new people, she occasionally does a little ‘dance’ while she is determining how best to make their acquaintance,” Hardter said.

Due to the pandemic, potential parents have to schedule an appointment for digital or in-person visits.

Photo courtesy Animal Welfare League of Alexandria

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Shyla may not have the fur of her canine and feline neighbors, but the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria’s adoptable gecko is still hopeful she can find a local to hang out with.

Shyla is a green gecko who is at least three, though AWLA spokesperson Gina Hardter said she could be older.

As a reptile, Hardter said Shyla is a cold-blooded pet who will need a home that can provide a heat source for her enclosure. Shlya is also an insectivore, but there are a variety of nutritional products that can keep her well-fed with the protein and calcium she needs.

As for the adorable gecko’s pastimes, Harter says Shyla is an avid climber.

“She loves hanging out… and upside down,” Hardter said. “Geckos love to climb, and you can find Shyla exploring her vivarium in a wide variety of interesting poses.”

Due to the pandemic, potential parents have to schedule an appointment for digital or in-person visits. Potential adopters can also reach out to the shelter to learn more about the food and environmental requirements for Shyla.

Photo courtesy Animal Welfare League of Alexandria

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Dub is a little different from most cats.

The eight-year-old cat is up for adoption at the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria. Gina Hardter, spokeswoman for the AWLA, says Dub has a certain unique trait among the shelter’s cats.

“He’s a polydactyl, and he loves to show it off,” Hardter said in an email. “[Polydactyl] means he has extra digits, which he loves to use to grab things like toys, treats and attention.”

Perhaps one of the most famous polydactyl cats are the residents of Ernest Hemingway’s home, where the cats are descended from a six-toed cat Hemingway once owned.

Hardter said while Dub is up there in years, he’s still spry and active.

“At 8 years old, this stately senior is nowhere near retirement,” Hardter said. “[He] loves to play with toys and chase after wands and feathers. Dub also enjoys his downtime, alternating between relaxing naps in the sun and sitting around, looking handsome (in case anyone is nearby with a camera).”

As with other pets at the shelter, Dub is only available for virtual or in-person visits by appointment due to coronavirus.

Photo courtesy Animal Welfare League of Alexandria

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Smokey isn’t half as grumpy or serious as he looks.

The Animal Welfare League of Alexandria is hoping to find a home for a staff-favorite pup: Smokey the three-year-old pitbull terrier mix.

“[Smokey’s] a supersweet little guy just looking for a family who can show him the ropes!” said Gina Hardter, the spokesperson for the AWLA. “Don’t be fooled by his serious and formal look; Smokey is a big goofball at heart.”

Though Smokey is three years old, he’s still a big puppy at heart. Hardter said Smokey has the same manners and energy of a young dog. Hardter said Smokey’s favorite thing to do is curl up in the lap of a best friend.

“No one can convince him that he might be just a bit on the big side for a lapdog,” Hardter said. “He’s looking for a family who can help him take advantage of all of his energy and maybe teach him some tricks and skills along the way.  He’s clever and treat-motivated and would love to give additional training a try.

Due to lingering COVID-19 concerns, interested parties should schedule an appointment to meet virtually or in-person.

Photo courtesy Animal Welfare League of Alexandria

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Harmony is the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria’s friendly mystery cat and this weekend she’s showing solidarity with her canine cousins in promoting the St. Patrick’s Day Fun Dog Show.

“Everyone’s getting into the mood for the Fun Dog Show, even Harmony, who’s happy to show off her St. Patrick’s Day spirit with a hat custom-made for her adorable head,” said Gina Hardter, spokesperson for the AWLA.

Harmony is a three-year-tabby who is something of a socialite at the AWLA (4101 Eisenhower Avenue), according to Hardter.

“[She’s] always at the front of her kennel to make new friends,” Hardter said. “Harmony traveled to Alexandria all the way from West Virginia and can’t wait to get a taste of city life, starting with this little St. Patrick’s Parade she’s heard a thing or two about.”

The AWLA and the Ballyshaners will host the 2020 Fun Dog Show tomorrow (Friday) at 11 a.m. Dogs can be pre-registered online or registered at Market Square (301 King Street) beginning at 10:45 a.m.

Harmony will have to miss out on the parade, Hardter said it’s a dogs-only affair, but she’s hopeful the curious kitty will be in a new cozy home by then.

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Sadie Kay is an eight-year-old boxer mix at the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria hoping for adoption.

Gina Hardter, spokeswoman for the AWLA, said Kay is beloved at the shelter for her silly side, though she is looking for a home with adults.

“She’s a complete goofball who is as happy on a hike as bouncing around the yard, hanging out with other pups, playing with her toys or just enjoying a quiet night in with her favorite people,” Hardter said.

Kay is currently staying at a foster home, but Hardter said interested adopters could schedule to meet up with her by calling 703-746-4774 or emailing [email protected].

Photo courtesy Animal Welfare League of Alexandria

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If you’re tired of going out for yoga and meditation with bunnies and want a partner for your own at home, the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria (AWLA) has the perfect companion.

Meet Tiger, a two-year-old white rabbit available for adoption at the Vola Lawson Animal Shelter (4101 Eisenhower Avenue).

“Tiger first hopped into local attention when she was spotted near the Shell Station in Alexandria,” Gina Hardter, spokeswoman for the AWLA, said in an email. “A kind resident scooped her up and brought her to the AWLA.”

Hardter said she is “hoppy” to try new things like games and clicker training.

“[She’s] one smart cookie and can sniff out a treat from a mile (or at least several feet) away,” Harter said.

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Franklin is a smart, good boy who loves to cuddle and doesn’t want to be alone today.

He is up for adoption at the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria (4101 Eisenhower Avenue). Gina Hardter, the spokesperson for the AWLA, said Franklin is an intelligent dog who can sit and shake among his tricks.

“He’ll show off his special ‘Smile’ for a treat,” Hardter said. “He’s a big cuddler, and he’s happy to show all his new friends that any lap is just the right size for him.”

His profile indicates that Franklin gets along well with other dogs.

If Franklin’s not your Valentine, the AWLA also has a quiz to pair you with the right pet.

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Onyx is a curious kitty and a bit clumsy, but this sweet cat would love a new human to take him.

The short-haired black cat is six years old is available for adoption at the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria (AWLA) at 4101 Eisenhower Avenue.

Gina Hardter, spokeswoman for the AWLA, said Onyx is an office pet, like Sugar and Cali.

“[Onyx] really takes his office duties seriously,” Hardter said. “Onyx the Office Assistant is happy to help with filing, typing, organization or any other office duties you might need an extra paw for.  He has exacting but particular standards, so while the job might not be finished exactly how you would have done it, you can be sure it will be up to his high Onyx standards.”

Hardter said Onyx is also a hide and seek champion who likes exploring small spaces, but he loves human company and happily shows human friends his hidey-hole he’s found.

A video shows Onyx trying to help with filing but having a little difficulty.

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Try saying “no” to Cocoa. Seriously, look at those puppy eyes.

Cocoa is a three-year-old brown and white pitbull who — like Sugar — works as an “office dog” at the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria (AWLA) at 4101 Eisenhower Avenue.

Gina Hardter, spokesperson for the AWLA, said Cocoa has devised the perfect “puppy dog stare” to get what she wants. Usually, that’s snuggling and big hugs, with Hardter said Cocoa is very fond of.

“Sometimes Cocoa needs a little time to warm up to new things, but other times, she’s happy to give them a try,” Hardter said. “Check out Cocoa’s first experience with carrots.”

There’s just one catch: if Cocoa moves into a home with a cat or another dog, they should meet first at the shelter to make sure they’re compatible, according to shelter staff.

Photo courtesy Animal Welfare League of Alexandria 

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