How to clean out your garage and help out our furry friends at the same time

Gatsby was found wandering the streets.
Gatsby is one of several foster dogs in the charge of Janeye Pitchford, a Dallas resident, and not necessarily benefitting from FlipIt4Paws (photo by Danny Fulgencio).

Ready to throw out that old VCR? Have some furniture that doesn’t work with your living room redesign? There is a new business in town that will pick your unwanted stuff, sell it, and split its profits with organizations that help animals.

Lakewood neighbor Dustin Lawrence grew up in the neighborhood and worked in film production for 20 years before founding FlipIt4Paws, which sells donated items on Ebay and donates proceeds to animal groups. He used to work on the show “Wishbone” where a clever Jack Russell Terrier helps reenact classic literature, and has owned over 20 dogs throughout his life, so he knew he wanted to do something for our four-legged friends.

Lawrence is what is called a power seller on Ebay, where his high customer satisfaction rating and ability to move merchandise give him a platform to reach more people. Six months ago, he decided that he could put his skills to use to help animals, forming FlipIt4Paws. He began sifting through thrift stores and accepting donations, and was impressed with the profit margins that he would then pass along to animal rescue and support groups.

Lawrence says he can sell a VCR for $40 on Ebay after purchasing it for $5 at a thrift store. “You name it there is a market for it,” he says. Over the last six months, he says he has received everything from camcorder batteries to a 1910 era wagon, raising $3000 for animal rescue organizations.

Lawrence hopes to find a storefront in the neighborhood where donations can be dropped and items purchased. He also plans to have garage sale style events at local businesses where neighbors can shop for items knowing that the purchases will benefit animals. He says 50 percent of the profits will be donated to Dallas Pets Alive! and the Dallas Companion Animal Project, two non profits that support pet rescue and care.

“Groups like those are doing the hard work,” Lawrence says of the rescue organizations. “They need funds.”

Lawrence believes the convenience of having donations picked up will help generate more funds for animals than other options. “It’s easier to reach into their closet instead of their pocket books,” he says.

If you want to donate an item, find out when the next garage sale event will be or learn more, check out FlipIt4Paws online. If you want someone to come pick up an item from your house, call or text Lawrence at 214-981-4048.


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