This past Sunday, Anne and I spent the day with Save-a-Life Pet Adoptions, a animal rescue organization that we originally got Sheepa, our dog, from. (http://www.sheepa.com)
You see, every weekend, Anne & I work from 2PM-7PM at a PetCo where Save-a-Life brings their dogs and cats. Ever since we adopted Sheepa a year ago, we’ve been volunteering there to help get other dogs adopted and take care of their needs. On the average, they bring 6 or 7 dogs to show while at PetCo and we seem to get about 2 of them adopted a day, which is quite good considering that there’s not a lot of traffic going through PetCo.
So Sunday was a big day. Thousands of people were coming to see the 65 different adoption organizations that were setting up shop to showcase their adoptable dogs. We were to bring 12 dogs and an unknown number of cats (I work with the dogs so I don’t know much about the cat side which is completely separated from the dog side.) to help find them homes.
TED’S TRIATHLON IN THE MORNING
The problem was that I had to support my friend Ted in the morning. Why? He was doing another Triathlon – only his second in his life. This one was in Redondo Beach and frankly looked like a real bitch because the surf was pretty strong and the bike run was sort of uphill initially which is really tough when you’re just coming off a long swim. In fact, while I was watching the swim, I saw 2-3 guys fall out of the race just after hitting the water and trying to get through the breaking surf. It was that strong. Ted said that he’d swallowed a fair amount of water getting through the swim.
In any case, the triathlon required me to be up by 5:00AM and he finished up by 9:00AM which left me enough time to get to the fair with my wife along with the 6 dog cages we had in the back of our BMW Convertible. (The fact that we drove up to the event’s unloading area in a BMW Convertible with the cages was a funny thing in it of itself but I’ll write about that at another date.)
After we got set up, it was time to turn on the sales… uhhh… I mean the adoption charm. Over a period of 4 hours we proceeded to get 7 of our dogs adopted, breaking the original record of 6 dogs from our last Best Friends Super Adoption. Most of the dogs were the 5 remaining lab shepherd puppies that we had had trouble getting adopted – primarily because our hunting grounds for adoption families is in an area that is dominated by condo complexes and apartments, where larger dogs like our puppies wouldn’t be as welcome.
Not so at this gig though. The puppies went one by one to new families… and to REALLY GOOD adoptive families too. We had one NBC Programming Executive… a couple Registered Nurses… a couple lawyers… a TV Station Marketing Executive… and a family with 6 occupants where someone would be home all the time. A great group of families indeed and it was great to see the puppies go before they were "no longer puppies" and lost their "cuteness advantage" with the public.
That was the good news… but the "glass is half empty" part of the day was that there were still 5 dogs that went unadopted… and these were the 5 that REALLY needed adopting. That’s sort of what this blog entry is about. I’ve got photos of almost every remaining dog that still needs homes.
A WORD ABOUT BEST FRIENDS
Incidentally, I have the utmost admiration for the people at Best Friends. I keep looking for some indicator that they’re not all "honey & roses" and that there is something somehow wrong with the organization (call it the skeptic in me) but these folks are absolutely phenomenal. They have coordinated help, they have great leadership, they fund so much of the assistance at the event… and they manage to remain 100% positive about everything.
And that’s a huge thing: 100% positivity. I can’t say that I’m like that because that requires the tolerance of a saint. The forgiveness of the Amish. The steadfast smile of Pollyanna. However it’s totally the right way to go about things. They never bring up the petty arguments between adoption organizations, they never complain about the abuses animals have, they never put the call out to "damn" anyone doing evil in the animal kingdom. All they do is concentrate on the positive aspects of animal adoption and animal care and keep things from deteriorating into angry fighting and finger pointing. (If you want an example of this, read their free online magazine at http://www.bestfriends.org – it’s so amazingly uplifting because of it’s positive nature, you can’t help but feel good when you read it. It also comes in physical magazine form if you want to subscribe to it or you make a significant donation to the organization.
The dog’s names are in this order:
- Shams the Terrier
(http://www.sheepa.org/friends/shams.htm for more information on Shams)
- Cowboy the unknown dog
- SusieQ the Pointer
- Cookie the Boxer