Dogs on the furniture

Posted on 20 Sep 2007 at 6:05pm
By Arnold Wayne Jones Staff Writer

Gay owned home store Needless Necessities helps dogs find families



PETS OF THE MONTH: Sam Stidham holds Shalamar and Don Hatfield holds Sye, two of the 81 abandoned or neglected dogs that have been adopted at Needless Necessities, their Henderson Avenue store, since June. (PAT RODRIGUEZ/Special Contributor)

It’s a clich? that house pets are like children to gay couples, but clich?s are usually based in fact. So it probably comes as little surprise that partners Sam Stidham and Don Hatfield have opened their doors to some four-legged friends.

Since June, they have hosted bi-monthly dog adoption events outside Needless Necessities, the furniture store they own on Henderson Avenue, helping find homes for more than 80 pups.

Stidham and Hatfield teamed up with Paws in the City, a no-kill animal shelter, as a way to benefit the community.

“We wanted to do something without tapping into a religious organization, and pets are near and dear to us,” says Hatfield. “And with our location on Henderson, we get a lot of traffic.”

Initially, the store held a few adoption events and donated five percent of its June sales to Paws in the City. But the event proved so popular, it has continued every other Saturday throughout the summer, and will go on through the end of October at least.

“The holiday season and weather will play a part in how we continue,” Hatfield says, although they are committed placing as many dogs as possible.

Hatfield admits, however, that he and Stidham no longer leave the showroom floor on adoption days or else they’d be overrun with pets.

“We don’t go outside except to pass through I can’t even pet them,” Hatfield says. “You start hearing their stories and it just breaks your heart. The general neglect people turning a domesticated dog out and thinking it will make it on its own it’s awful. You think, “‘I’ve got to give this poor dog a decent life.’”

Hatfield is especially proud that of the 81 dogs adopted so far, “58 were city dogs, so they were probably on some kind of kill list at one point. That’s heartwarming to know you played a part in finding them homes.”

The next adoption event is from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sept. 22, followed by events on Oct. 6 and 20. Needless Necessities, 2626 N. Henderson Ave. 214-824-0700.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 21, 2007

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