Middle-schooler trades dog petting for profit to benefit local animal shelter

Street Stories

WARREN, R.I. (WPRI) ─ An 11-year-old Rhode Island girl has a simple question for those who pass by her father’s Water Street home.

“Would you like to pet my dog?” she asks, gesturing to her furry friend Edith, a 4-year-old Schnauzer mix.

But Haleigh Flowers DeCesare’s makeshift petting booth isn’t just about befriending Edith. She’s also hoping those who stop will donate to the Potter League for Animals.

“You see those animal commercials, and it just kind of makes you sad seeing animals needing help and no one is really helping them,” Haleigh said. “So, it kind of feels good to help animals.”

That’s why, for the past several months, the 6th grader has been working hard to raise money for the Middletown shelter.

So far, she’s raised more than $500.

Edith is part of the charm, Haleigh said, adding that her dog’s white whiskers make her appear older than she actually is.

“I haven’t seen one person name their dog Edith,” she said with a laugh. “Our dog seems as though she’s old, and my dad was just trying to find old-sounding names for a female dog.”

The Potter League is grateful for the support they receive from people like Haleigh, who realize all animals deserve a loving home.

“I’m thankful that I had the opportunity to do this and I had the money for the materials and I’m very fortunate,” Haleigh said.

Anyone who wishes to make a donation in Haleigh’s name can do so online.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


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