The annual Enid Pet Costume Contest in Atwoods again featured a variety of pets, from a bearded dragon to dogs of many sizes and breeds dressed up for Halloween. It also represented one of the latest pushes in a pet food and supplies campaign to benefit Merry Melodies and FURever Friends, two animal rescue operations in the Enid area.
Mary Pickering, with Atwoods, said both organizations were present at the costume contest to try to provide future homes for rescued animals.
“We’re sort of killing two birds with one stone,” Pickering said. “The Enid Pet Costume Contest is kind of a tradition we’ve done here at the store, but we’re also trying to collect pet supplies and food for FURever Friends and Merry Melodies. So we’re running this food and supply drive until October 31, and they’re here today, they’ve brought adoptable cats and dogs.
Jeanie Winsett, director of Merry Melodies, said she saw the need for a rescue for cats with special needs. She said she had been rescuing cats for seven years and started Merry Melodies in October 2021. She said she saw the need to help cats with special medical needs. She gives them a home and is able to provide individual care for blind, aggressive cats and even pregnant cats that were going to be euthanized in a shelter. She said 22 kittens were born to cats she rescued from euthanasia.
Winsett said being able to attend an event like the costume contest is a way to raise awareness and an opportunity to find homes for the cats she has rescued.
“We had two adoptions today. These are the first for about a month,” Winsett said. “The reason this is so important to me is because I’m doing all of this out of my home. All the animals I bring in get individual care…it’s very important to have this kind of events and to be invited to them.
The costume contest had three categories, the first being pets under 20 pounds, a category for pets between 20 and 100 pounds, and a final round for large pets. The winners of each category went on to the final round, where the judges chose a grand champion. There was also a Manager’s Choice Award, which was chosen by Atwoods. Winners in each category received a variety of prizes, including treats and supplies such as feeders and water bowls.
The winner of the under 20 pound category was Sema, a rescue mix dressed as a shark. The winner of the 20-100 pound category was Buddy, who was dressed as a unicorn. The winner of the big category was Raven, a poodle dressed as Belle from Beauty and the Beast. The Grand Champion selected from the three winners was Sema, and the Manager’s Choice selection went to Sammie, a husky/shepherd mix who was dressed as the wolf from Little Red Riding Hood.