Sometimes It Goes to the Dogs

Outside of volunteering, my expertise is mostly in writing, marketing & communications. A shelter like the Animal Rescue League of Boston relies on a lot of donations and volunteers, but it still has a paid staff, including a marketing & communications team. So when I decided to volunteer some “off-hands” work (i.e. not directly with the animals) I turned to an organization that really needed my help.

gdrne_web_logoThat’s when I found the Great Dog Rescue of New England. Its founder, Betsy Herald, is an alum of my college and it was through the student job board that I originally found her request for someone with my skill set. So I set about composing their monthly newsletter and helping out at the occasional Boston-based event.

Today I just finished my tenth monthly newsletter with Great Dog. You can check it out here (I recommend reading the volunteer spotlight for the story of an amazing man named Stephen McGovern):

Great Dog is a wonderful organization that is 100% volunteer-run, many of whom have full-time jobs. They rescue dogs from high-kill shelters in Tennessee and bring them into foster homes (they don’t have a shelter) until they get adopted. The work they do is entirely out of the kindness of their hearts and at a personal sacrifice of time, money, and energy. Yet they manage to adopt out an average of 35 dogs per week!

Great DogWhat I especially like is that they are often able to take whole litters of puppies, including pregnant mothers who would otherwise be spayed or euthanized.

They also have a Prison Dog program, where dogs in need of basic training are paired up with prison inmates, which helps rehabilitate both human and canine. Again—it’s all volunteers.

Working with the Great Dog Rescue of New England is a constant reminder that in addition to local animal shelters, there are dozens more small rescues all trying to save animals. So there is no excuse.

This season, don’t shop. Adopt. ❤

Sandy Cats

Here is a video from IFAW, featuring Bill from the Animal Rescue League of Boston:

Rescue technicians Bill and Mark are back in Boston now, in part due to the well-organized animal relief efforts.

I’ve seen a number of news articles about animal disaster relief and it’s shocking how many people in the comments sections say that the owners don’t deserve their animals back after they abandoned them. During an emergency, it can be extremely difficult to take pets along. Some authorities won’t let you take them; many shelters won’t admit you with cats or dogs (this has started to change since Hurricane Katrina, but still persists). Continue reading “Sandy Cats”