A Day with a Homeless Dog

A Day with a Homeless Dog

Monday, September 22, 2014

Long Time, No Blog...

It has been way too long! Without making too many excuses, I did move into a new house, I got married and I enjoyed an amazing honeymoon. Not to mention work has been busy and I recently took on the role as President of our Kansas City media organization, Media Mix. With all this craziness going on, it's no wonder that I skipped right past my first trimester and didn't realize I was pregnant until I reached 15 weeks...SURPRISE!!

Initially I was completely shocked, then terrified and finally excited. While I am figuring out what I am supposed to be doing, not doing and preparing for a huge life change, I am very concerned about my passion for volunteering with KC Pet Project. Honestly I have already had a couple of meltdowns, darn hormones! I have been consistently volunteering at the KCMO shelter for over 6yrs. I have seen it at its worse and now at its best. Being involved with Kansas City's homeless pets has had a huge impact on my life. My favorite day of the week is Sunday. It's the day I've dedicated to spend time with the homeless dogs that need some love and attention. I rarely miss a Sunday and feel guilty when I can't make it. I am constantly sharing their stories on social media, helping friends with their pet issues and connecting friends with their new best friend. I might be a little extreme, but it is what I love to do.

Today was a huge reality check for me. I was again reminded how important it is that I come volunteer. Way back in the day, dogs didn't get outside unless volunteers came to walk them, playgroups were not even a thought. There were many Sundays I would leave the shelter crying because all the dogs didn't get out for just a short walk. It was horrible walking past dogs that were barking at me to get them out, but I couldn't get to them all. These days, having playgroups has totally changed the life of a shelter dog at KCMO. Dogs get out and interact with other dogs. We get to learn so much about them and their personalities. This is why it is so important for there to be runners for playgroups to help ensure all the dogs get some outside time. Today I was the only runner :( What if I hadn't gone early today to help out? To think about all those dogs that might not have gotten out for some fresh air. It took us from about 830am to 11am to get the available dogs out for some playtime. If we would have had a couple more volunteers we could have finished up sooner and gotten out some dogs that needed more one on one time. I really want to encourage volunteers to try out playgroups. It's an early morning activity so you can be back home and still enjoy most of your day. It's really pretty easy and knowing you helped those dogs get some fun time with friends is priceless. Check out this short video to see just how fantastic playgroups are and I am sure you will want to help...

I also make sure that all new dogs get photos taken on Sunday. I have been lucky enough to have a backup here when I can't make it. I do make it my goal to be there and not miss any new dogs. I mark the boards so the volunteers know which dogs to take out, I check with staff if I can't find a dog and I try my best to get bio sheets filled out on each of the new dogs. Again this is another easy way to volunteer. You really just have to run the dogs to the photographers and they do all the hard work. Then you get some one on one time with them and can enjoy their company. I do love photographs and being able to meet the new dogs and learn their story. I try to share them on social media when I meet them in hopes someone will fall in love like I usually do :-) Again this is an important part of my weekly volunteer work and the thought of not being there makes me sad.

When I left today all dogs hadn't gotten out for a walk. I put in almost 6 hours of volunteering and still wished I could have done more. I know this is just volunteer work, but it would be so great to see more faces at the shelter pitching in. Life can get busy, but the animals, staff and fellow volunteers would love to have some more help on site at the shelter.

My life is so flexible now and this whole having a baby thing will make it a lot harder. I am almost 18 weeks pregnant and plan to continue my volunteer routine as long as I can. I really want to encourage volunteers to try and make some time for the shelter animals. I know that will be my goal once this life changing baby comes along. Until then...

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