MIRAMAR BEACH — A dachshund owner donated $250 in his pup Odie's honor after winning a "Pet of the Month" contest in Miramar Beach.
Jim Sheppard, along with his wife Nancy Sheppard, were on a week-long vacation in South Walton with their pet Odie when they stopped at the Residence Inn by Mariott Sandestin for a night.
The Residence Inn, which is pet friendly, conducts a "Pet of the Month" contest on its Facebook page. Jim Sheppard was walking through the lobby with Odie when a front desk worker asked if she could take a picture for the contest.
The Sheppards shared the contest information with the Atlanta-based DREAM Dachshund Rescue, where Odie was adopted. The volunteers at DREAM jumped in to support Odie.
In celebration of Odie's victory, the Sheppards gave the prize, a $25 PetSmart gift card, to DREAM. The couple also donated $250.
When Odie's owners told the Residence Inn staff about their donation, the workers decided to match it.
"The effect of one trip through the lobby with Odie .... produced a nice donation and a gift card for the organization where we adopted Odie," Jim Sheppard said. "Doing adoption right is expensive and I know the donation means a lot to DREAM."
Kim Hembree, president of the DREAM Board of Directors, said the organization is extremely thankful for the donations.
“We had no idea that a simple act would generate the fabulous and generous donations from both the Sheppards as well as the Residence Inn by Marriott Sandestin," Hembree said. "All donations go straight to our veterinary care fund, where we continue to help more dogs in need."