Viva Paws Vegas

First casino-style fundraiser set to save dogs and cats

Each Saturday in Chico, homeless, abused, or abandoned pets have a chance to find a new home.

Those adopted are among the many whose time ran out in overcrowded animal shelters and were at most risk of being euthanized.

It’s a sad end to an animal once loved as a puppy, companion, or pet, but fell on hard times, said Robbie Andreotti, of Colusa, a volunteer with Wags & Whiskers, a non-profit pet rescue operation that serves mostly Butte, Glenn, and Colusa counties.

“We try to save the ones that need our help the most,” Andreotti said.

Over 200 of the cats and dogs that were matched by Wag & Whiskers to new owners last year were from Colusa County, most picked up stray and not claimed or given up by their owners because of difficult circumstances.

At North Valley Plaza in Chico on Saturday, Sharon Lorenz and her son looked closely at a number of dogs up for adoption.

Lorenz has two rescued dogs and one cat at home, and was thinking about adding a third dog to the family.

“It is so hard to decide on what dog to adopt,” Lorenz said. “It’s hard to look in their eyes because their eyes all say pick me, pick me.”

Lorenz said anyone thinking about saving an animal’s life should go to a Wags & Whiskers weekend event.

“They are very good at matching pets with the right people,” she said. “If it doesn’t happen the first time you go, it may happen the second time. These animals need people willing to commit to loving them. When that happens, it’s magical.”

Those who can’t take in an animal can still save a life by donating to the cause or attending Saturday’s dinner fundraiser, said Andreotti, who along with Linda Eveland, helps see that Colusa County’s at-risk animals are given another chance to happily live out their lives.

Since Wags & Whiskers started in 2014, the volunteer-driven organization has survived primarily on donations and benefactors.

The casino-styled bash planned at The Palms this Saturday is the group’s first big attempt at raising money needed to rescue, rehabilitate, and rehome hundreds of animals left unwanted each year.

Those involved in the organization hope to make the casino-night fundraiser an annual event.

“This is our first big fundraiser,” Eveland said “We know its a long way to go, but we hope that people from Colusa County will attend.”

Viva Paws Vegas includes food catered by the Pour House (also located at North Valley Plaza off East Ave.), music, entertainment, a silent auction, and lots of prizes.

Eveland said the event is expected to be worlds of fun, and a wonderful way to support an organization that is so important to the local community.

Not only does Wags & Whiskers place many of Colusa’s unwanted animals in homes located in other counties, they have the animals spayed or neutered to reduce the animal population, she said.

Tickets to Saturday’s event are $50 and available at the Colusa County Animal Shelter or by calling Andreotti at (530) 304-2423.

You can also find more information about Wags & Whiskers at