Mutt-Minister Dog Show set April 8 in Central Park

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Olivia Pierce cuddles one of her furry friends - a sweet reminder of why she works hard for the ones up for adoption at the Carthage Humane Society. Photo Provided

The local 8 year old who started the Mutt-Minister Dog Show in 2012 is now a high school senior – but the mission is still the same – raise lots of funds for the Carthage Humane Society and celebrate the beauty of all four-legged friends … no matter what their pedigree.

Olivia Pierce says this year will make the fifth event of its kind but it’s going to be bigger and better than ever before – as she has teamed up with other Carthage High School Student Council members in a collaborated passion project.

“It’s so exciting to be doing this again,” Pierce said. “I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to get the show up and running for at least another year, especially seeing how the humane society could always use the help. There happened to be more students who wanted to do projects helping the humane society and our advisor, Kelsey Stenger, thought it would be an excellent idea for us to mesh our ideas together to make one big event.”

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The Mutt-Minister Dog Show & Adoption Fair is slated 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, April 8 in Central Park. Attendees can expect the dog show, adoption fair and a supply drive.

Over the years, the event was celebrated as a success – collecting an estimated total of $8,100 for the shelter.

Keegan Pierce and her daughter, Olivia, at the first Mutt Minister in 2012. Photo Provided

“I always get amazing feedback from the humane society,” Pierce said. “I get to see firsthand how my show impacts them. I also recently ran into a former teacher of mine that mentioned how excited she is to attend and hopefully find a new furry friend at the adoption fair!”

This team-effort event includes: CHS students Brielle Cartwright, Cristian Tamayo, Sage Gonzalez, Jamie Tomas, and Owen Derryberry. Find them at the event, and look for Pierce and her dogs for the demonstration parade for each dog show category.

“I want people to know that I have an amazing team behind me,” Pierce said. “Mrs. Stenger is the most amazing person for helping me every step of the way. Of course, my mom (Keegan Pierce), my “Lolly” (Piper Pierce), my godmother (Jennifer Cartright), and the rest of my family have been a huge part of getting this show back! I could not do any of this without these amazing people.”

After high school, Pierce plans on attending the University of Missouri to major in biology to eventually reach her goal of becoming a veterinarian.

The Carthage Humane Society always appreciates donations of: treats, blankets, beds, toys, food, water bowls, (even if gently used).

“I will forever encourage people to spend time at their local shelters to see how much work goes into loving and caring for those animals to eventually get them to their forever homes,” Pierce said.

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