|To learn more about Mandy, click here.|
One of the employees over at Abandoned Pet Rescue took ill the other day, so I again volunteered to spend the morning cleaning up the big dog room. As I was herding dogs out to the 'back yard' so that I could clean out their kennels, the lady in charge came up to me and told me that, "You need to record your hours so we can pay you". I assured her that it wasn't necessary, that I was a volunteer who was doing it for the animals. I wouldn't be taking any money that could be spent on improving the lot of these dogs and cats. So I continued going about my duties as that morning's chief dog shit picker-upper. Unfortunately for me the dogs had, had a bad night of it. I don't know if it was a change in the food, or something else, but there was more crap than usual. As I went down the line checking each of their kennels out, some of the dogs in their excitement were flinging bits and pieces of poo and droplets of something moist out through the gates. No problem, a little soap and water and you'd never even know I had dog poo/pee stuck to my arm. I have a pretty strong stomach, which you definitely need doing that job, but I think I finally met my match. When I got to the big black Labrador retriever, Mandy, it was obvious that she had come down with a case of diarrhea. It smelled so bad that for the first time in all the years I've been volunteering at APR, I came within milliseconds of vomiting. It was sheer will power that kept my morning bowl of Honey Bunches of Oats from coming back up, and it honestly made me rethink that offer of being paid to do this. I then realized that there was no amount of money in the world that would make scooping up puddles of dog diarrhea palatable. They just couldn't pay me enough, so I'll continue to do it for free.