At Animal Ark, our volunteers play an important role in exercising and socializing our cats and dogs throughout their stay with us. This month, we would like to recognize Julie MacDougal, as our volunteer of the month for her generous contributions as a dog volunteer. Julie joined our volunteer program in July, and has gone above and beyond in helping at events, spending time dog walking, and socializing with the animals. Here is a quick Q&A about Julie and her experience volunteering with us:
What do you enjoy most about volunteering at Animal Ark?
The thing I enjoy most about volunteering at Animal Ark is seeing the dogs happy. They love being outside and experiencing all the smells on our walks or when they get to play in the Ark Park. They are so happy when it's their turn to be taken for a walk and get some treats! It's just so much fun to see the dogs so frisky when they get outside.
What got you interested in becoming a volunteer with us?
I have wanted to volunteer at Animal Ark for years and now is the time. With one daughter in college and the other in high school, it felt like I now had the time to commit to volunteering.
Do you have any other pets at home?
I have two dogs at home - River and Sky who are 7 and 4 year old Goldendoodles.
When you're not volunteering, what are some other ways you enjoy spending your time?
In my free time I also volunteer with a local theater as their treasurer and helping with the box office and concessions. I also enjoy traveling, gardening, biking and spending time with my family.
Some additional fun facts about Julie:
I'm a do-it-yourselfer. I built an A frame treehouse and a kayak stand and I did the demolition of our kitchen and bathrooms.
Again, we would like to congratulate Julie in becoming out October volunteer of the month! If you or anyone you know is interested in becoming a volunteer, please check out our volunteer information page to apply: http://www.animalarkmn.org/volunteer.html
Max is a 6 year old German Shepard that was brought into the shelter this week.
As you can see from the video, he isn't able to use his back legs. Our vet, Dr. Charlie, has done an examination on him and Max is going to need physical therapy and we are looking at what other options out there for him for a more active life.
We are raising money to get him a cart so he can move around better. The estimated cost of the cart is $800, but anything raised over and above that will go towards physical therapy and if it's needed, surgery.
Max has a long road ahead of him and we are so glad to have him in our care!
Please help Max and make a donation in any amount!
We are looking for a part-time cat care specialist. The position is 20-30 hrs and includes working weekends and weekdays.
Please stop in to the shelter to pick up an application or email us your resume at firstname.lastname@example.org
Come and be a part of a great organization saving the lives of animals!
I adopted Harley in early May of this year and we’re both still ecstatic about it! Previous to the decision to take him home, I worked with him at Animal Ark for almost a year and volunteered with him for about 6 months after that. It was heartbreaking to learn that he had been adopted and returned a few times and that he had been their for a total of about 3 years. During my time at Animal Ark, Harley underwent 2 knee surgeries and I had the privilege of doing the physical therapy with him both times, and building that foundation of trust. He didn’t enjoy it but if he received treats and love then he didn’t care. As soon as both incisions were healed he wanted to go right back to the park to play ball. He certainly hadn’t lost any of his spunk!
When I finally signed off on my own apartment I almost cried, not because I had a place of my own, but because Harley would finally be able to come home with me. The sooner I moved in and unpacked the sooner I could take Harley home, and I’m sure I talked incessantly about it to whomever would listen.
The day finally came when I drove to the shelter to pick him up. It was both a joyful and tearful experience for the shelter staff because he had a way of brightening up any space with his big goofy smile or his ability to give and receive love so willingly. I promised I’d bring him by every once in a while to say hello, and I gave my number to some of the volunteers who asked. When I walked him out to my car, you could see the recognition on his face and boy was he excited! As soon as I opened the car door to put in all of his supplies and food, he leapt right in and refused to come back out when one last staff member wanted to say goodbye.
We got to my apartment and it was as if he knew exactly where he was going. He led me up the stairs, straight to my apartment door, and sat down. He knew he was home.
Since that day we’ve been growing and learning with each other. He is a lot more snuggly and a lot less anxious. His coat is very shiny, and he continues to learn new words and tricks every day. He has settled into a routine and seems very content with his new life. But Harley has also changed me. I suffer from depression and anxiety, and he truly is an emotional support dog. He knows when I’m having a bad day and will jump onto my bed and put his head on my chest. He gets me motivated when I don’t feel like doing anything, and he puts a smile on my face every time I come home from work. He’s always waiting for me with a smile, and walks between my legs to say hello and snuggle close.
Adopting Harley is one of the best things I’ve ever done with my life. Even now he sits in front of me smiling and leaning his body against me.
I’d say we’re both pretty lucky to have found a companion.
Welcome to our blog!
Welcome to the Animal Ark blog where you can find news about upcoming events, adoptions, and more!