Animal shelter to honor former commissioner

Pat Mulieri was not always one of the biggest public supporters of the Pasco County animal shelter. But time made a difference, and Pasco County Animal Services will honor the dedication of her time over recent years on Dec. 20.

Pat Mulieri spends some time with Rocket, one of the dogs rescued by Pasco County Animal Services. Mulieri will be honored with her own window room at the shelter Dec. 20. (File photo)

Pat Mulieri spends some time with Rocket, one of the dogs rescued by Pasco County Animal Services. Mulieri will be honored with her own window room at the shelter Dec. 20. (File photo)

The shelter, located at 19640 Dogpatch Lane in Land O’ Lakes, is set to dedicate its window room to Mulieri’s Mutt Room of Hope. It will take on the kind of catchy turn of phrase that the former county commissioner and retired college professor enjoys.

The room will include a plaque at the entrance that will commemorate Mulieri’s years of compassion and generosity, according to a release. An informal dedication ceremony will take place Dec. 20 at 11:30 a.m.

“Pat Mulieri has been a champion to both the staff and animals at the shelter,” county animal services manager Mike Shumate said, in a release. “We are absolutely delighted that we can honor her in this way.”

But Mulieri wasn’t always a common sight at the shelter, especially during her earlier years in office. She explained why in an October interview with The Laker/Lutz News.

“I came to this shelter years ago when I had lost a pet,” Mulieri said at the time. “My husband didn’t lock the screen door for our two little dogs. One came back, and the other didn’t.”

What Mulieri found at the shelter, however, was something she was not ready for.

“They let me in with the place closed when they only had one building out here, and that’s when I saw the dead cats,” Mulieri said. “They had killed so many cats a day, and I didn’t even realize it. I couldn’t come back.”

But those cats haunted Mulieri for years, to the point where she realized staying away was not going to help them. So she became more involved, championing programs that would help save animals from being put down, and working to increase adoptions at the center.

Following that same theme, the shelter will host a free pet adoption event following the dedication ceremony. For more information, visit PascoCountyFl.net/PAS.

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