RUFF boils clams to help furry friends in Warren

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shelter1 DSC_0318Animal lovers, and those fond of steamers, potatoes and fish, spent Sunday afternoon supporting one by feasting on another, all to benefit RUFF, the non-profit group trying to raise funds for a new animal shelter in Warren.

“It was great,” RUFF member Betty Brule said of the clamboil that drew about 185 to the Central Fire Station on Railroad Avenue. “This is one of our biggest fund-raisers.”

RUFF stands for Residents United for Furry Friends, and the group is trying to put aside funds for a new shelter while waiting for the town to make a move toward replacing the town’s aging, low-lying shelter at the end of Wood Street. The shelter is small, outdated and cramped, and it often floods during storms that hit at high tide, like Hurricane Irene the summer before last and Sandy this past October.

“It’s just so stressful for the animals,” Ms. Brule said. “There really needs to be a better shelter.”

RUFF members haven’t yet come up with figures on how much it could cost to build in town; they’re waiting to see if town land can be made available. Ms. Brule said the plan is to consult with contractors and those in the field to come up with an estimated project cost, while continuing with fund-raising.

RUFF received a $4,000 grant at the end of last year from the Island Group, a charitable non-profit. Like all other funds raised by the group, it goes into an account to help cover future project costs.

If you’re interested in learning more about RUFF, call the shelter at 245-4569. The group meets monthly, usually at the Senior Center, though meet times vary.

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