Using Facebook, I 'friended' the Seagoville Animal Shelter and received a welcoming message from one of the group's members. She shared statistics about the shelter, ' Right now we have 9 kennels, 2 quarantine kennels and 40 dogs. Needless, to say we have problems but we are still managing to keep them all alive.'
I got more and more excited as I prepared for my visit with the Seagoville shelter folks until I was at last driving into the town itself. I stopped to ask directions and check out the local 'buzz' on the shelter. A man and his two daughters pointed me in the right direction, and told me they were friends of the shelter. They had heard about the recent improvements, but did not know the 'no-kill' description, which I shared.
Arriving at Walgreens, I saw a tent, table & chairs were being set up, with a banner to attract attention to the animals. An Australian flag flew in honor of a visitor from that country. She traveled much farther than I had! A handful of volunteers were hustling across the parking lot to carry armloads of pet supplies where they were needed. Kennels with several adult dogs and active older puppies, an exercise pen with three young pups and a small kennel with three kittens were all set up on the sidewalk along the wall of the store. Volunteers arranged adoption information on the tables and settled the dogs in their kennels.....the adoption evening was starting!
Visitors to the adoption event walked along the kennels, saying 'Hi' to the animals, while volunteers shared facts about each one. 'Business' was slow but steady, since a local football game was going on that evening. Still, the group was hopeful that adoptions would take place. The adoption event took on the flavor of a campground as we sat with our canvas chairs arranged in a circle and dogs joining the group of people sitting and talking together. We talked about shelter activities, marketing ideas, and 'hometown news.' Teambuilding, for sure! All we needed was a campfire.
As darkness fell, a mother and her daughters stopped by to visit with the puppies, and they fell immediately in love with a yellow lab mix pup. With the paperwork filled in, the interview completed and puppy care tips given, the new family member posed for a photo with 'his girls.' And then it was time to 'break camp.' As quickly as our little encampment had gone up, it was disassembled and packed into the volunteers' trucks and vans. After goodbye hugs for people and pets, dogs rode 'shotgun' on their way back to the shelter.
For volunteers, this is the life we choose....some at the event had worked all day to get dogs bathed and combed, and had driven to vet visits and on other errands. This was in addition to the everyday shelter activities of cleaning kennels, scooping poop and feeding and watering the animals. Then they spent the evening with the dogs, kittens and puppies. What keeps them going? That Friday night it was the smiles of two little girls holding their new puppy under the big Texas sky.
If you would like to help the Seagoville Animal Shelter continue to be No Kill, 'friend' them on Facebook. They recently requested wire kennels, to use at the shelter and adoption events like this one. Their wish list also includes small stainless steel water buckets for the dogs at the shelter. They can always use donations of time as well as money.