A blind rat was the most non-traditional pet who ventured into Langley’s animal shelter on Sunday.
But Rocky, the rat, wasn’t looking for a new home.
The two-year-old, half-pound senior rat was looking for a little one-on-one time with Santa this weekend.
And, he wasn’t alone.
He was joined by his furry siblings – two cats and three dogs (Nimbus, Paris, Lulu, Angus, and Lola) along with their humans, former LAPS trainer Amy Hazlett and boyfriend Sean Dickson – who had a visit and photos taken with the jolly old elf.
They were among close to 40 people and some 80 pets who attended the annual pet photo sessions with Santa at the Patti Dale Animal Shelter this weekend.
St. Nick made his annual appearance, and managed to carve five hours out of his busy schedule to help raise some “nice coin” for the charity organization, said Jayne Nelson, executive director for Langley Animal Protection Society (LAPS).
“Santa photos were a big hit again this year,” she said, noting that the event raised more than $1,200 for the shelter, which is currently in the midst of constructing a new cat isolation intake facility next to the existing shelter in Aldergrove.
“We look forward to Santa photos every year,” she added.
“We sell out every year and always feel lucky to have such great support from the community. We have a really amazing Santa, great photographers, wonderful volunteers all working to make Santa photos a really great event for people.”
Many times, people go to a studio or event for family photos with Santa, but their pets are often not welcome.
Well, that’s far from the case at LAPS, Nelson said, noting many of the pets that were brought in this weekend were past clients at the shelter.
“We especially look forward to seeing animals that have been adopted in years past and hearing updates from their people,” Nelson said.
Photos with Santa were once again taken by Travis Schulz of Trav & Ash Photography, and spaces were booked up weeks ahead of the event.
“We had 36 sittings, plus we were able to squeeze in a few shelter animals for photos with Santa,” she concluded.
“If they could talk, I am sure these animals would have told Santa all they want for Christmas is a home of their own.”
For those who were unable to get out to the Patti Dale Animal Shelter in Aldergrove on Sunday, there’s still another chance to get pet photos with Santa, and LAPS will again be the benefactor.
Bosley’s Langley, in the store near London Drugs (#375 20202 66th Ave.), is hosting a photo session with St. Nick on Sunday, Dec. 3, from noon to 3 p.m.
Pictures by donation, with all proceeds are going to LAPS. For information, people can call the store at 778-277-2705.