Staffers at Pawsitive Pet Care helped students stay warm - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Staffers at Pawsitive Pet Care helped Waterloo students stay warm this winter

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Beth Wagner works at Waterloo West High. She's also a client at Pawsitive Pet Care on Ansborough Avenue in Waterloo.

One of her visits to the vet's office this winter spurred a project to help some Waterloo students.

"It was one of those bitterly cold days we didn't have school so I thought I'm going to go in and buy pet food," said Beth Wagner.

Wagner had a conversation with a vet tech about some students, specifically Burmese students, not having winter coats.

"We as staff had just been made aware that a lot of the Burmese refugees were without coats. They came to us directly from refugee camps, and so that was fresh in my mind," said Wagner.

After Wagner's visit, the staff at Pawsitive Pet Care were inspired to help.

"There wasn't anybody that said they didn't want to participate and it was immediate," said Deb Bristow with Pawsitive Pet Care.

The ten employees at the vet office collected coats and then called Beth Wagner with their surprise.

"I wanted to cry. I was flabbergasted. I got here that day, and they literally filled up the back of my trailblazer. The back end and the backseat were full of coats," said Wagner.

Beth Wagner took the coats to the English Language Learner classrooms at Greenbrier school. There's a clothes closet there with donated clothes for families in need.

"The employees here gathered coats of all sizes so we were able to help entire families with coats. The employees also brought scarves and mittens and those were just as welcome as the coats," said Beth Wagner.

Lots of help just because of a one conversation and a desire to do something.

"Something as simple as pulling an item out of your closet can mean so much to someone who doesn't have anything," said Deb Bristow.

"These people are so caring. They deal with my pets so I know first hand, but to open their hearts to the community like that, it was wonderful," said Wagner.

The vet office didn't keep track of how many coats were collected, but staffers believe they reached their goal of at least 40 coats.

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