Isle of Wight putting on the dog

Published 10:53 am Saturday, January 4, 2014

A mid-winter evening of fine food, top-shelf cocktails and entertainment is planned in support of our furry friends by the Gimme Shelter team. The Fur Ball is a black-tie optional evening that features valet parking, a live auction, casino gaming and live entertainment for dancing hosted at the Smithfield Center on Saturday, Feb. 8 from 6 to 11 p.m.

Gimme Shelter opened in 2010 in an unheated former service station at the corner of Main and Grace streets in the Smithfield Historic District. It’s a non-profit thrift shop dedicated to the welfare of animals in Isle of Wight County and relies on the sale by its all-volunteer staff of donated items.

To date, Gimme Shelter has raised nearly $20,000 to help the local Humane Society’s operating expenses and cost of spay and neuter initiatives. It has donated goods and services totaling over $24,000 to the county’s Animal Shelter for grooming services, veterinary expenses and the construction of a 2,300 square foot fenced dog run. Gimme Shelter awarded $5,000 scholarships in 2011, 2012, and 2013 to Isle of Wight students enrolled in veterinary studies. It has also become a resource for residents seeking guidance on acquiring and replacing pets.

Owner Robin Knauth highlights three other priorities for which she has a particular passion. The first is helping animals in need by direct financial assistance to veterinarians for owners and caregivers unable to cope with vet bills stemming from emergency care and treatment. A second is helping the Isle of Wight Animal Shelter by providing out-of-budget goods and services. The third priority is helping its many customers meet their wants and needs in a fair and affordable way.

The Fur Ball will extend Gimme Shelter’s efforts for the welfare of local animals.

Ticket information and online purchasing is available at or at the shop.