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An Apology To My Volunteers

So I am guilty and deserve a slap on the wrist… I love my volunteers, I really do and I think and hope that they know that.  But there is something that comes over me when I see my four legged volunteers and I get tunnel vision.  Just like all those memes and gifs and posts you see on social media, I am THAT person.  All I want to do is pet the dog.

Seriously, it is a problem.  For that moment I could care less that there is a person standing at the end of the leash.  I did it twice today!  I am so ashamed.  First Axel, the German Shepherd, came in with his dad, Carl.  I totally ignored Carl, sorry Carl, and launched into a high-pitched, weird walking, hand clapping kook.  See above!  After I smooched Axel I looked up and realized I had totally ignored Carl.  Again, really sorry Carl.  What is wrong with me?  Caregiver Canines would not be in existence without these handlers and here I am treating them as second class citizens.

Then Tubs, my little valentine, came in to get his prize for winning our Valentine’s Day contest on Facebook.  Mom, Judi, took time out of her day to come to the office, got lost trying to find us and had to wrangle Mr. Lover Boy because he was so excited to be here.  There I was, fawning over Tubs and not showing any interest in Judi.  I literally have to tear myself away from the dog.  So pathetic.  I have a dog at home, it’s not like I am dog deprived.

It is a sickness and I know there are many of you that are just as guilty as me.  What is it about a wagging tail, lolling tongue and fuzzy head that makes us so immune to the humans in the room?  I will tell you what it is… it is the unconditional, non judgemental, unbridled enthusiasm that only a dog can pull off.  Therapy dogs are especially skilled at this. That dog doesn’t care if you have morning breath or if you spilled coffee all over yourself that morning on the way to work.  Heck, he doesn’t even care if he doesn’t know you that well.   He is just so happy that you have entered his little universe and that you want to love him.  What can be better than a person who could care less that they are breaking the rules by getting you all riled up?  I am so guilty of that one, my volunteers know that!

So I writing this to my volunteers to let them know that I wouldn’t be able to have such a successful program without them.  They are the feeders, groomers and chauffeurs of my doggie troop and I greatly appreciate everything they do for me and our organization.  Hopefully they realize that is is because their dogs are so well behaved and lovable that I cannot resist their super powers.  I stand in awe every time I go on a visit and see the impact these dogs make on a lonely senior’s life.  Our therapy dogs really are super and so are their handlers.  So volunteers when I see you coming don’t be scared of my high pitched, weird walking, kookiness.  It is just because I love your dog… oh and you too!

Have a tail wagging day!!

Danielle