There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face. ~ Ben Williams

I got to do something FANTASTIC Thursday night.  I went and spent some time volunteering at the City of Sugar Land Animal Services Department.  For anyone who doesn’t know, I used to work at the Houston Humane Society.  I worked there as an Adoption Coordinator and helped out with some dog training.  Mostly the dog training takes place every day, all day, while you’re handling the animals.  If you (and, hopefully, everyone else working/volunteering there) handle all the dogs in the same way all the time (which, unfortunately never happens) then the dog learns what is acceptable behavior and what isn’t. 

Have any of you seen those pictures on Pinterest recently for various jobs that say ‘this is what my friends think I do’, ‘this is what society thinks I do’, ‘this is what my parents think I do’, ‘this is what I actually do’ and all of these have pictures of various ‘versions’ of the same job?  I saw one the other day that had to do with a vet tech or animal control or some sort of animal-related field and I wish I had saved it because it was totally accurate.  I’m sure people think that Adoption Coordinators spend their time playing with puppies and kitties all day and let me tell you that is 100% NOT TRUE.  I spent the 45% of my time dealing with paperwork, another 45% dealing with people (85% of which were complete morons) and the remaining 10% wrangling feral cats/dogs, attempting to feed terrified and super-quick exotics (such as sugar gliders, guinea pigs, ferrets, etc), introducing dog 1 to dog 2 and breaking up the ensuing dog fights, cleaning up poop, pee, or various other bodily fluids expelled from a variety of animals, yelling at idiot people or volunteers to NOT open the cages and let the animals run free, and continually wiping the sweat from my face (and various other body parts) while I worked outside in 100+ degree temperatures.  It’s no picnic.  That being said, if you can stand the hours (which suck) and the pay (which sucks more) and have a LOVE for animals then it’s a great job.  Unfortunately, I only have one of those three requirements… and it’s the love for animals.  After a while I just couldn’t take the hours or the crappy pay anymore and I went looking for another corporate job.  I found the corporate job and now have better pay and better hours. 

But… (there’s always a but isn’t there??) … I miss it.  I miss the animals.  I miss the few parts of those crazy, insane, exhausting days that were totally amazing.  I miss teaching a family how to walk a dog correctly on a leash so that the dog knows who’s boss.  I miss dealing with the dog who hates EVERYONE and getting him/her to 1, trust me and 2, have a roommate without trying to kill said roommate.  I miss the actual animal-human interaction.  So, I signed up to volunteer at the local animal shelter right next to my house.  Thursday was my first day to volunteer and man, it felt SO GOOD.  I actually got to do the things that I love without having to deal with the paperwork or the idiot people.  It was FANTASTIC.  I can’t wait to go back.  Here are the cuties I spent my time with…

Wyatt – I’m a sweet little guy who is a bit nervous at first but once you give me time to come around I’m quite playful and my tail just wags and wags.  I am going through a bit of a puppy phase where I test everything with my mouth so I definitely need lots of chew toys and ways to keep myself entertained.  Not to worry though, this phase doesn’t last forever!  I’ll make a great companion for someone who wants to play and go for walks.  I would do best with gentle, older children as quick, grabby hands make me nervous.  I love toys and treats and to give kisses.  Come see me today!

Sonic – I should be called Super Sonic because I’m just about the cutest thing ever.  I’m very gentle and timid but I’m a love bug.  I’m not so sure about this whole ‘leash thing’ but I’m getting used to it little by little.  Really I just want to be curled up in your lap where I’m warm and safe.  I’m a sweetie pie and I have the cutest little markings.  Please come see me today!

Pixie – I am quite a dainty little lady.  I’m pretty nervous and prefer to be in a very quiet environment with another dog.  I would love to go home with my brother Wyatt or my mom Bella.  I feel much more secure with them around.  Once you have me in your arms I like to be held and I give kisses.  I will come around in time but I need someone with a quiet home and patience.  If you want a calmer dog, I’m your girl!

Laurel – HI!  I’m Laurel!  And I’m very excited to meet you! If you’re looking for an energetic, playful, and friendly young dog to add to your family, you’re in the right place.  I love to play fetch and my favorite toy is a slightly un-inflated soccer ball.  When my human friends kick the ball I’ll chase it and give it a good shake.  I even know to bring it back to you and the command ‘drop it’ so that the ball can be kicked again and we can play over and over.  It’s such a fun game!  I walk well on a leash and am a super-fast learner.  I am very receptive to the concept of ‘heel’ and with consistent direction from my human I’ll have this down in no time.  I definitely need someone with time to play with me and take me on walks.  Come down and take me home on a sleepover to see if we’re a good match!

Bella – I’m such a sweet love bug that you’ll just want to snuggle with me all day.  My favorite place to be is in your lap.  I’d be great for an older individual with a quiet lifestyle who wants someone to spend the day with.  I’m very gentle, even when I take treats!  Please come see me today!

Mandy – I may look intimidating but I’m a really wonderful dog.  I love to be petted and I’m learning how to sit on command.  I don’t jump on people because I know that I’m big and might knock them down.  I walk well on a leash but I am a powerful girl and I need someone strong who can continue to teach me how to heel.  I am looking for my forever home and I hope that it’s you!

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