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Nemo Paws honors pit bull's memory

Ever since her dog, Nemo, died in August 2015, Megan Wedel has been looking for a way to honor his memory. "He was such a great little boy. He was the dog that trained in all of our other foster dogs," Wedel said. This spring, Wedel found a way. ...

 

Ever since her dog, Nemo, died in August 2015, Megan Wedel has been looking for a way to honor his memory.

"He was such a great little boy. He was the dog that trained in all of our other foster dogs," Wedel said.

This spring, Wedel found a way. As a member of the Duluth Area Chamber of Commerce's Leadership Duluth program, Wedel needed to participate in or create a service project.

"A lot of people go for programs that have been done in the past, but I'm more of an animal advocate, so I wanted to create my own," Wedel said.

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Inspired by a tour she took with the program of the Churches United in Ministry (CHUM) food shelf and shelter, Wedel created a drive to raise supplies and funds for pet supplies to donate to the shelter.

"When we were there, I noticed there were cars sitting outside that had cats and dogs in them. I asked if they ever have supplies for pets and our tour guide said it's very rare," Wedel said. "And they have such a small budget and need to prioritize people first when buying supplies."

Wedel's drive, named Nemo Paws in honor of her late American Staffordshire terrier, a type of pit bull, runs throughout the month of May. Donations of collars, leashes, food, toys and cash can be dropped off at US Bank, 1337 W. Arrowhead Rd. She also has a fundraising site at gofundme.com/NemoPaws .

Wedel plans to create care packages with food, a leash, collar and toy to donate to CHUM.

"That way people have everything they need while they work on transitioning into potential housing," Wedel said.

Wedel plans to continue the drives quarterly for various causes, including supporting local animal shelters such as Animal Allies, and rescue operations. Anything to continue the legacy of her beloved dog.

Nemo was the first Staffordshire Terrier Wedel and her husband adopted after they got married. He was notorious for ripping up dog beds and staring out the window and sleeping with his belly up in the air.

"See, look at that, belly up in the air. That's how he slept 90 percent of the time. Typical Nemo pose," Wedel said, as she pointed to a photo on her computer screen.

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Nemo was also known for his gentle nature. Wedel said people would sometimes be afraid of him because of his breed, but they would often warm to him when they saw how gentle he acted.

"He was a good ambassador for the breed. All our dogs are," Wedel said.

Wedel has adopted six pit bulls over the years. She also fosters pit bulls and finds them permanent homes. Someday she'd like to add foster care to Nemo Paws, but for now she's just taking donations.

Megan Wedel's dog Nemo died in August 2015. Wedel is collecting cat and dog food, leashes, collars and funds for the CHUM food shelf in his honor. (Photo submitted)

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