This past Christmas Day, I walked a dog at Pima Animal Care Center’s adoption event. That seems like a simple enough thing for a dog-loving holiday-hater to do, yet I had scores of reservations.
My primary two:
— It would be depressing, and I already have enough reasons to be depressed.
— What if I couldn’t resist adopting a dog?
And here, in a subcategory of the second reservation, I went into the myriad reasons I wasn’t ready, prime among them disloyalty to Frankie and a desire to travel.
Suffice it to say that I’m glad I got over myself. I’m not sure who looks happier in the picture, me or Pretty Girl, the dog I was assigned to walk.
It Cuts Both Ways
I posted my concerns — and how I got over them — on my Will My Dog Hate Me Facebook page and got the following comment: “I had the same feelings and just recently began to volunteer at the local shelter. I know there is a forever home for them and I am just some walks and pets along the way.”
What a wonderful way to look at it, both for the human and the dog. I wasn’t tempted to adopt Pretty Girl; in addition to the fact that I’m not ready to bring any dog into my life, I think I’ll always want a dog small enough to travel with in the cabin of a plane (famous last words, right? I never know where my heart will take me and look how plane travel worked out with Frankie — not!). But I gave a wonderful pup a little love and a little exercise — and was more than rewarded in kind.
This is hardly wordless, but it is Wednesday and the post is far less wordy than usual.
I’m curious: Has anyone else experienced fear of volunteering after the loss of a pet? How did you get past it?