WEST DOVER — Over the last two decades, Pete MacDonald has welcomed and helped guests at Mount Snow.
But now MacDonald, who runs the ambassador program at the ski resort, is showing the same compassion to four-legged furry creatures — he's saving Weimaraners and finding them homes through The Grayter Good Weimaraner Rescue.
"It's so rewarding, so time consuming," said MacDonald, who founded the organization with his wife Susan. "I just can't imagine us doing anything else."
The New York-based nonprofit's first ever Doglegs Golf Outing is being held at Mount Snow Golf Club in West Dover on Saturday, Aug. 12. All proceeds will go to support The Grayter Good, which is focused on rescuing and rehabilitating purebred Weimaraners.
MacDonald said the Mount Snow benefit will be "our first real big event."
"I've seen others do golf outings at Mount Snow as a fundraising venture," he said. "My affinity for Mount Snow goes back almost 20 years. I just thought we should try it. My goal is to hit a double — I'm not looking to hit a grand slam — and see what we have to do next year to make a bigger and better event."
MacDonald estimates that each dog requires about $1,000 more in care than the organization takes in for individual adoption fees. He said every dog is treated as though they are his family's dog. That means medical treatment, microchips, shots and spay or neuter services.
MacDonald said the journey to create a rescue started when he and his wife adopted their first Weimaraner about nine years ago. He had seen one in a dog show.
"I opened my mouth and said, 'If we get a dog, that's the kind of dog I want,'" he said.
The rest is history: MacDonald soon found a Weimaraner on Petfinder, a pet-adoption website. The couple joined several Weimaraner-related groups on Facebook that only grew in popularity as the social media site took off. Then they started helping other rescues. And by 2015, they had started their own.
The Grayter Good's name came via Susan, who works in advertising.
"We spell it that way because Weimaraners are known as the Gray Ghost," MacDonald said. "So we just launched. There really was no in-depth thought or business plan, just a desire to be helpful to the Weimaraners that came into our view that needed our help. We had a very small vision for what we were going to be. We were amazed by how quickly dogs were heading our way and how well we we're being received by the community."
By the end of July, The Grayter Good had saved 120 dogs since January 2015. The organization handles rescues on the East Coast but it has also built relationships with other rescue groups throughout the United States. An Arkansas family was recently guided to a rescue closer in proximity with the help of The Grayter Good.
Asked why the specific breed, MacDonald said, "I loved Weimaraners all my life. They're very sensitive and they're very smart. They're like having a child. We seem to have a knack for speaking to them."
MacDonald said there's still room to sign up to play in the golf outing. A maximum of 144 participants can sign up. Businesses and community groups are being asked to sponsor holes.
"We live and die by the generosity of others," said MacDonald.
Player registration for the Doglegs Golf Outing is $125 per person. The cost includes 18 holes of golf, dinner, "a goody bag" and more. A silent auction will be held following the scramble-format shotgun tournament, which tees off at 1 p.m. Attendees can come to just the auction or dinner; the golfing isn't mandatory.
For more information on the event and the organization, visit thegraytergood.org. The group can also be found on Facebook.
Reach staff writer Chris Mays at 802-254-2311, ext. 273, or @CMaysBR.