13-year-old Bensonhurst resident Sofia Annunziata has decided to devote herself to healing sick animals. So far, she’s raised $1,200 to save two Pomeranians, worked with a rescue group called NYC Teens for Animals, provided care for several other animals from New York City shelters and has no plans to stop.
Annunziata’s passion for animals runs deep. She hopes to become a veterinarian when she grows up, but in the meanwhile she’ll keep her volunteer gig at the Pet Haven Animal Hospital and spending her free time helping sick and rescued animals in need.
“It makes me feel so happy when the animals get better and I get to see them blossom,” Sofia said to the New York Daily News.
It was Annunziata’s rescue of John, a black lab and pit-bull mix, that got her noticed by animal lovers all over the country. John, a puppy, was found barely alive on the streets last month in Kensington. The puppy was malnutrition and neglected. He was rushed to Brooklyn Animal Care & Control Shelter. As Annunziata began to post pictures of him, her rescue group’s Facebook page was flooded with support and donations.
Eventually, John ended up at Pet Haven Animal Hospital. Annunziata went to the animal clinic everyday to feed John and show him affection. Her mother, a veterinary technician there, followed his progress closely along with her daughter.
“Imagine how one teen can make such a difference,” said Pet Haven veterinarian Jill Caruso.
If you want to get involved, on October 13, NYC Teens for Animals will collect dog coats and blankets for shelter animals at the Walk Against Hunger. To donate, click NYC Teens for Animals for more information.