Villa Residents Volunteer at the SPCA

December 26, 2013

Turk, a beagle, enjoys the socialization The Villa residents are able to provide.




Doris Bellinger connects with an SPCA dog.


Helen Timmermans has Frankie Lane’s full attention.


Nan Mabry is delighted to spend time with the shelter’s felines.


Lisa O’Bannon coaxes a couple of cats into a game.


This shelter cat seemed a little shy at first.



Residents of the The Villa at Suffield Meadows, a Warrenton assisted living facility, are volunteering their time twice a month at the Fauquier SPCA. It’s a win-win: the animals get some one-on-one time and volunteers get the fur therapy that only pets can offer.  Four or five residents are dedicated to the twice-a-month visits, when they exercise the cats and socialize the dogs. When the weather gets warmer, the volunteers will be walking the dogs outdoors.

During visits, volunteers pet, brush and talk to the dogs and cats, often sharing stories about the animals  they have loved over the years and still miss. “This little guy looks like the beagles we used to have,” said volunteer Doris Bellinger during her visit Tuesday.

It was clear that Helen Timmermans was comfortable with her task.  She got down on the floor to get on eye level with one reluctant hound named Josey Wales, and eventually won him over. “He’s a sweet dog, just a little shy,” she said.

Villa Activities Director Patty Koval said, “At The Villa, we have so many community members that volunteer their time to help our residents. We wanted to think of a way to give back to the community. Jill Miller, activities assistant, explored various volunteer opportunities for our residents to grow and contribute. Fauquier County SPCA was so enthusiastic when Jill contacted them that she looked no further. It has truly been a blessing for both the residents and the animals.”

The shelter is located at 9350 Rogues Road  in Midland. To donate or find out about adopting a pet, call 540-788-9000 or go to

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