Elmira Valu Home Centers Team And Gambit The Dog


The Valu Home Centers Store Team in Elmira, NY offered some water and relaxation in the air conditioning to a woman and her dog, Gambit, who were walking out in the heat a little too long.

Brett Gardner, Assistant Manager shared the story "A woman and her Four legged friend (Gambit) were out walking and ended up stopping into Valu for some water. The customer forgot her wallet and Gambit was panting pretty hard and drooling. At this time it was close to 85 degrees and HUMID! She was just out for a walk, but was unable to get back home before the heat started taking a toll on them both. We took a Sterilite tote off the shelf and filled it with cold water for Gambit. The picture does not do justice but Gambit is a BUBBLE blower when he drinks water. Stuck his whole snout in the water dish to drink. Super funny! So after a couple drinks we turned on our fans and Gambit laid on our cool tile floor for a few minutes, and then they were on their way."

"The Kicker: We had a pizza delivery guy drop off a sheet pizza a few hours later. After Asking who Ordered it, He replied, It was paid in full from "Your Buddy Gambit". Then when we lifted the lid we had a message: "Thank you for the A/C & Water, Love Gambit." We want to reach out and say thank you on behalf of the team! The thing is we love when animals come into see us and we are more than happy to allow them to use us as shelter from the heat if caught in it such weather."

"WE more than appreciate the pizza but really want to get a thank you message out there in hopes the owner and Gambit see the THANK YOU!"

So, the search was on! We posted on the Valu Home Centers Facebook page and asked our fans to help us locate Gambit and his owner. Elmira is a pretty tight-knit community, so we were sure that someone must know them! Within hours, the post had been shared more than 600 times, and had many comments from community members who knew Gambit, or simply wanted to thank our Store Team for their kindness.


In just a few hours, we were able to track down Gambit and his owner, Chrystal Tompkins!

Chrystal commented and said "Our family would like to once again thank you for the kindness you showed our Gam. The pizza was my way of showing the store team that their good deed for my dog was wonderful and much appreciated. Every worker today loved having him in he store and welcomed us with open arms!!! We will definitely drop by again under better circumstances next time!!!"

...but the story didn't end there. In the spirit of community, we decided to pay a little kindness forward.

Our Elmira location Store Manager, Andy Hakes, regularly volunteers with is family at the Humane Society of Schuyler County. Their mission is to eliminate pet overpopulation, prevent cruelty to animals, provide quality care for homeless animals, promote responsible pet ownership, and help the community to develop humane principles toward all animals - and we thought that maybe they could use some help.


Valu Home Centers donated a $100 gift card to the Humane Society of Schuyler County so they can purchase supplies to help more animals!

"It means a lot," said Schuyler County Humane Society Animal Care Associate, Diana Frederick. "I can't thank them enough and especially Gambit and everybody else that's been involved. This is just truly amazing."


Thank you to all of our Facebook fans, customers, Valu Team Members, the Schuyler County Humane Society, and WENY News for providing this great story with such a happy ending!