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Bottles fundraiser on Saturday to benefit The Mosby Foundation, pet food pantry

dog with injury to his leg and pet clinic
(© Валентина Свиридо – stock.adobe.com)

A Staunton-based nonprofit is celebrating 20 years of assisting dog owners throughout the United States with keeping their beloved pets healthy and in their home.

The Mosby Foundation was created in 2004 in memory of a dog named Mosby who was a celebrity of sorts in the Downtown Staunton community. His owner and founder of the nonprofit, Carole Adams, rescued the Malamute-Husky mix dog from a railroad station in Florida in 1997. Mosby became a fixture in the downtown area with politicians, children and visitors visiting stopping in to give the dog a pat on the head. In 2003, Mosby was intentionally killed, and the story got news coverage nationwide. One year later, the foundation began as a way to put donations from all over the country to good use in memory of Mosby.

Bottles in Waynesboro is teaming up with the nonprofit for its first Saturday fundraiser this Saturday hoping to spread awareness of the organization and raise funds.

Sara Outler, executive director of The Mosby Foundation, said the funds raised at Bottles will go toward its pet food pantry which offers food assistance and pet supplies to clients who are struggling with the costs of food. Outler said the cost has gone up for them from $50 a week to approximately $150 a week.

“We’re getting more and more new clients,” Outler said. “They are just reaching a point where they can no longer afford to buy food. They don’t want to give up their pets. We’re here to support them and make sure the expense of food wouldn’t cause them to surrender their dog.”

The support for dog owners in Virginia and the U.S. goes far beyond a food pantry. The ultimate goal is to keep pet owners from surrendering their dogs to shelters or choosing euthanasia due to the cost burden of food or treatment.

Nationwide, through grants, The Mosby Foundation provides surgery assistance and cancer treatment to pet owners to keep their dogs healthy. Approximately 25 percent of the pet owners who receive funds for these two programs are from Virginia.

Outler said the organization serves between 600 and 800 clients per year from all 50 states and Puerto Rico. The organization has spent $180,000 on pet care in the past 12 months. Even a simple surgery can cost $1,700 in the area, she said.

She said they see a lot of broken bones and tumors.

Applications for assistance are available online or by phone at (540) 885-2260. Household income and the severity of the injury or illness are factors in the amount of grant that is awarded to a pet owner.

Another service they offer is helping a pet owner understand an estimate from a veterinarian. Some of the costs are often optional, so Outler said, the organization can explain the charges to a dog owner to help them make informed decisions.

The Mosby Foundation also offers spay and neuter assistance for dogs in Virginia. The foundation will connect dog owners with low-cost clinics throughout the state to provide the surgery usually at no cost to the pet owner. Outler said that fixing an animal is not only about preventing puppies but also about helping the dog avoid health risks like pyometra that can be fatal to a dog.

The food pantry and spay-and-neuter program are exclusively funded by donors.

Bottles fundraiser

Bottles co-owner John Hayes said the restaurant will donate 100 percent of its entry fees from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday to The Mosby Foundation.

The organization will also host a silent auction and have information available about the nonprofit. Donations will also be accepted.

The entry fee for the gaming venue is $5 for adults and $2 for kids ages 17 and under. Bottles has a variety of indoor and outdoor games and activities including free arcade and video games, karaoke stations, corn hole, darts, basketball, ping pong, pool, air hockey, foosball and shuffleboard. Mechanical bull rides are available for an additional fee.

If the organization raises $3,500 at Bottles on Saturday, The Mosby Foundation board member Angela Smith will ride the mechanical bull.

Bottles is located at 100 Osage Lane in Waynesboro near Zeus Theater.

The Mosby Foundation upcoming events

  • The Mosby Foundation will kick off its calendar contest in coming weeks. Dog owners can send photos in, and then people vote for their favorite by donating $1 per vote. The top 12 winners will be featured in its 2025 calendar.
  • The organization will also host a 5K at Gypsy Hill Park in Staunton in November.

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Crystal Graham

Crystal Graham

Crystal Abbe Graham is the regional editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1999 graduate of Virginia Tech, she has worked for nearly 25 years as a reporter and editor for several Virginia publications, written a book, and garnered more than a dozen Virginia Press Association awards for writing and graphic design. She was the co-host of "Viewpoints," a weekly TV news show, and co-host of Virginia Tonight, a nightly TV news show. Her work on "Virginia Tonight" earned her a national Telly award for excellence in television.