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Perhaps it's fitting that we both started and ended our volunteer time with dogs. We went to a different part of Dog Town today, though, a place where dogs not suitable for children are kept. Mostly these are rambunctious, strong dogs who can knock a child over. Sometimes they are just afraid of those little terrors. We met some of each. All that we met wore green collars, which means they are safe for volunteers, safe for just about anything - except children.

Our first activity was to take one of the dogs to the fitness center for grooming. The fitness center is outfitted for grooming as well as for exercise, both in and out of water. We didn't get to see all the equipment, unfortunately.

Here's Elaine with Sheba:



When we returned I asked the staff person if she had something for me to do that involved mostly sitting down because of my knees. She said I could brush the doggies, sitting in a chair. This was actually a bit easier said than done. We pushed a chair into the first dog area and latched the door. All of these dogs are ready to take flight when they hear that door open so I had to be careful about moving the chair in and out of dog runs.

In the first run I figured out I had to hold the dog's collar while I tried to brush it out. The dogs in this run weren't all that anxious to have me doing that, although they liked my attention to them. They preferred to run in and out, to the outside area and then inside, and then outside again. I did what I could, grabbing one dog, brushing what I could, letting it go, grabbing another.

I worked my way through the enclosures, finding one more gratifying than the others. In this one were two large dogs that were shedding heavily. I just had to pet them to have hair fly all over. It took no time for me to make real progress brushing them, and, bonus, they both loved it. I could have gone on with them for hours, I suspect. But I felt a need to make it through the rest of the dog runs. See, here's what I kept forgetting: you can take whatever time you want when doing this kind of job. It's all helpful yet it's not critical. I didn't have to do a perfect job and I didn't have to rush.


A pile of fur. Took about two minutes to get this. I couldn't help but think of Susan Dennis and the Furminator.

A few of the doggies I met. Unfortunately, I cannot recall their names:








They were all so sweet and affectionate.

After brushing dogs, the staff person set me to work sweeping and later washing walls. She didn't retain that info about my arthritis, about needing to be sitting down, and I just went ahead and did it, figuring what the heck, it's only a short time. But when Elaine came back from taking some dogs on walks I went with her on the only walk I took today. I figured it would be better than what other activity the staff had in mind for me. Not that she was mean or demanding, but she certainly was driven ("I took two days off - my weekend - and everything's a mess. It's always this way when I'm gone.").

I walked Izzy, a sweet, really shy, scared female dog, while Elaine walked one dog and a third followed along off-leash. The off-leash dog discovered a rattlesnake! Elaine called him away and when we got back to the dog house she told the staff about it.


Quite the pretty little snake, yes? Elaine walked back to the snake with the staff person, to show her where it was, who then called for help. Soon a truck showed up, driven by a snake wrangler. He got the snake into a barrel and took off with it, to release elsewhere on the property in an area not populated by dog paths.

It was enough excitement for one day.

Comments

( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
madame_ugly
Jun. 29th, 2007 01:14 pm (UTC)
*puts on green collar* I'm not kid friendly, either. Maybe I should hang out with these dogs?

The white dog is so cute, like a Jack Russel on stilts.
judith
Jun. 29th, 2007 01:27 pm (UTC)
Yes, I think you'd get along great with them. That green collar isn't going to fool anyone, hough. Yours needs to be the red one.
madame_ugly
Jun. 29th, 2007 01:41 pm (UTC)
Are you implying that I'd do more than just knock a child to the ground?

*replaces green collar with red*

Does this mean I can bite? Wait. . .gross. If I bit a kid, I'd have to gargle with clorox to get the taste out of my mouth.
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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