There are 100 cages at the Public Animal Welfare Services where surrendered or picked up dogs sit and wait to be adopted more often than not without a toy to play with.

Hardy Realty changed that on Friday when they donated 100 Kong toys for dogs and puppies to play with during their stay. This knocked an item off of PAWS wish list which the facility uses to alert the community of its needs.

“When we heard about the wish list at PAWS we thought we’d kick off the New Year by helping some of our four-legged friends who are looking for a new home,” CEO of Hardy Realty Jimmy Byars said. “We chose the Kong toys because they can help alleviate problems which in turn help adoptions.”

Byars, along with other Hardy staff, brought the toys to PAWS where they treated a few of the dogs there to some socialization and presented them with their brand new toys. Tank, an American bulldog, chased the Kong toy around the enclosure, almost knocking down a few Hardy Employees in the process, while Cassidy, a pit-bull mix, clung to the leg of Jeff Mitchell who is employed at PAWS.

Mitchell said each cage will have a Kong toy in it by Monday and he has ordered canned cheese and peanut butter to fill the toys with. The Kong toys are made out of a tough rubber and can keep the animals entertained for hours, he said. The facility does have cloth toys on hand, but those get destroyed rather quickly he added. The Kong toys also help the dog’s chances of being adopted because it helps calm them when potential adopters are walking by. Because of the rubber the toys can be sanitized easier once the dog is adopted and given to another dog to enjoy, Mitchell said.

PAWS is also in need of dry and wet dog and cat food (all ages), horse pellet bedding which can be used as cat litter, heartworm tests, parvo tests, combo tests, medicated shampoo as well as flea and tick shampoo for dogs and cats, collars, harnesses, canned cheese for the Kong’s and treats for dogs and cats. PAWS worker Victoria Helms said the most urgent need right now is dry kitten food. To learn more about adoptions and donations visit romefloyd.com/departments/animal-control.