Detroit Lakes woman creates heartfelt gifts for area animals up for adoption

Colleen Schmit has sewn and delivered about 70 "Second Chance Quilts," and cat toys for area animal shelters. WDAY First News Anchor Sarah Rudlang tagged along on one of her deliveries to Homeward Animal Shelter in Fargo.


FARGO — While many folks watched one or two or 10 new TV shows during this pandemic, one Detroit Lakes, Minn., woman used her time and talent to make and donate homemade gifts to area animal shelters.

In January 2020, Colleen Schmit began sewing together quilts from extra scraps of fabric she had around the house. Those creations turned into a passion project for newly adopted furry friends to bring home to their forever families.

“The cats seem to love them. Animals are so non-judgmental,” Schmit laughed.


She has sewn about 70 “Second Chance Quilts” and cat toys and delivered them to The Marshmallow Foundation in Detroit Lakes, as well as Cats Cradle and Homeward animal shelters in Fargo.

“I really appreciate what these humane societies do and the families that adopt them,” Schmit said. “What a wonderful thing that they’re going to an animal shelter and taking in these animals.”

Homeward Animal Shelter Executive Director Tasha Haug said the heartfelt gifts mean a lot for the pets and their new families.

“These gifts are such a beautiful way of giving and sharing and just letting the animals have such a special little something of their very own to go into their new families,” Haug said. “It’s a beautiful gift to the new families to say, ‘thank you for adopting,’ because that’s what this is all about.”

Schmit says this is the perfect retirement project after working 42 years for the Detroit Lakes Public School District.

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