Oct. 15, 2013 9:50 AM | 0 Comments
Armen Abalian of Poland starts his three-month, 3,000 mile, 48 state fundraising tour called Biking for Animals in South Hero on Oct. 1. Purchase Image
Armen Abalian of Poland starts his three-month, 3,000 mile, 48 state fundraising tour called Biking for Animals in South Hero on Oct. 1./ LYNN MONTY/Free Press
Free Press Staff Writer
Armen Abalian came all the way from his home in Warsaw, Poland, to the save America’s animals.
He began a three-month bike tour in South Hero this October to raise money and awareness for organizations and shelters that are working to reduce euthanasia rates for homeless pets across the country.
California native Abalain, 43, will bike 62 miles in each state, except for Alaska and Hawaii, in a tour he named Biking for Animals.
Self-proclaimed animal lover Abalian said he strongly respects other animals’ right to live.
“Most people don’t realize how many healthy animals are euthanized,” Abalain said.“About four million healthy pets are killed in American shelters every year, and I’d like to help change the system, and since I enjoy cycling, I decided that this would be a perfect medium for my fundraising efforts.”
Abalian set a goal to raise $1,000 for three organizations in each state he tours. In Vermont he is biking for Burlington’s Humane Society of Chittenden County, Vermont Companion Animal Neutering in Middlesex, and Homeward Bound Animal Welfare Center in Middlebury.
“I have never done anything like this before,” he said.“I have rescued four cats and have helped many people financially over the years to adopt animals.”
Abalian is a self-employed web designer.
After Vermont he headed to Manchester, NH, then to the coast. His final tour will be in Houston, Texas on Dec. 11.
“I just want everyone to look at their pets and see how much they love them, and then to think about all of those pets who need a home,” he said.