Last month I took Jim out after dark to Ray At Night, an arts event that happens in North Park on the second Saturday of the month during the summer.
We saw lots of artsy stuff that we would like to have, might even have bought if our home wasn’t already full of stuff.
One of the vendor booths was occupied by Second Chance Dog Rescue. They had the cutest little bulldog puppy named Bulldozer. I could have stood there all night long and watched that little fellow, wondering why such a little cutie needed a Second Chance. He should have been long gone to a forever home way before his First Chance was up. I thought I had a picture of Bulldozer, perhaps even a video, but I don’t; sad and depressed am I. Bulldozer apparently has been adopted because he’s no longer on their web site.
The next day I completed a volunteer application for Second Chance Dog Rescue. I’m scheduled to go to a 2½-hour Volunteer Organization this coming Saturday. I’m excited.
I grew up with many dogs in my youth, the first of which was an alley mutt named Bosco. Bosco would always greet me when I came home from school. One day he was not there. Never saw him again, and it was heartbreaking for a young boy to lose his dog and not know what happened to it. After that we had a Welsh Corgi, an indoor dog, named Bougher. He was a riot. We only had him about six months before I graduated from high school and took off to………..
………Texas A&M University, where I was petless for four years. It was another three years of living in Houston after A&M before I got another pet. In fact, two pets. I adopted a pair of male Beagle puppies, naming them Union and Pacific after the Union Pacific Railroad. In 1983, when I moved from Houston to College Station — 90 miles — I had to give up Union and Pacific because I couldn’t find a place to stay in College Station that allowed dogs.
I had adopted Sugar from the Bryan/College Station animal shelter. Sugar hated it when I left home, and one day as I was putting my motorcycle helmet on, she jumped up on the back seat. That gave me an idea, and I took her for a ride around the neighborhood. Ultimately, she rode with me just about everywhere while sitting on the back seat without a seat belt or a helmet. We went from College Station to Houston, Waco, San Antonio, Austin, and Dallas many times, all without an incident or any problems. She was my motorcycle mama.
Penney was a different kind of rescue dog. One of my good friends had one of Penney’s litter siblings and brought to my attention the plight of that litter. The puppies belonged to a Chinese couple who were going to eat them for Thanksgiving and Christmas. The Chinese couple didn’t think anything about eating dog, but everyone in the neighborhood were trying to get the dogs adopted and get the Chinese couple acclimated to the American way of life. Poor Penney was tied up on a short chain behind the washer and dryer in the garage. Never got any exercise or love.
Sadly, Penney had been spayed too early — early spaying apparently helps fatten up dogs — and she became incontinent at about 1½ years of age. Vets were not able to solve Penney’s problem so I gave her up to the Texas A&M School of Veterinary Medicine so they could work with her at no cost to me to try to understand incontinence in dogs at such a young age. My hope was that the Vet School would learn something that would be useful to vets throughout the world in managing such a problem.
I’m spent much of my life volunteering to help animals and those less fortunate than me, beginning with Key Club in high school and Alpha Phi Omega National Co-ed Service Fraternity at Texas A&M University. I have volunteered with the ASPCA, local animal shelters, and gone out to help rescue pets, livestock, and wildlife after hurricanes, tornados, and floods in Texas, and wildfires here in San Diego. I have volunteered with Red Cross, Muscular Dystrophy Association, American Heart Association, community arts organizations like the Houston Symphony and the Houston Grand Opera. I sang with the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus and the Gay Men’s Chorus of San Diego and got to do a lot of volunteer work while with those organizations.
There have been times when I haven’t been a volunteer, and I always felt incomplete during those times. I think volunteering with Second Chance Dog Rescue will add a lot to my life, and I hope I can add a lot to the lives of our fine, furry, four-legged canine friends.
No, I won’t be adopting or fostering a dog. Zoey the Cool Cat is as much as I can handle. Yes, Zoey the Cool Cat is a rescue cat from the El Cajon Animal Shelter. If you’re looking for a dog or cat, please adopt from a reputable organization or an animal shelter.
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