This week I want to talk about the Walk for Old Dogs but it won’t be a complete report with lots of photos. You’ll have to wait until the September E-Newsletter comes out to get more detailed information and see more photos. I’d like to talk about why the event is so much more than just a fundraiser.
I was looking through Facebook this morning and ran across a post by one of our fosters in which she described Old Dog Haven as “the love project” and I think that phrase is such a good descriptor for not only Old Dog Haven as an organization but the Walk itself.
As I walked around the event I was struck by so many little vignettes that spoke so eloquently about what the Walk symbolizes for me…and I’m sure many others:
Peabody Johanson and her team, the Pacific Northwest Spaniel Squad, lounged under a canopy surrounded by more dogs than I could count. Everyone wore pink tutus, as they always do, and the love they all felt for not only their rescue dogs but for Old Dog Haven dogs took up more space in their tent than they did. Between what Peabody raised individually and what her team raised, ODH dogs scored over $18,000. Talk about love!
As each entrant in the Pageant came forward for their moment in the light, the love and the bond that existed between person and dog was palpable.
Tireless volunteers performed a variety of tasks all for the love of senior dogs and a desire to help make the event successful.
Many fosters I’ve written about in newsletters introduced me to their dogs and told wonderful stories about them.
I heard one woman talking to someone who wasn’t an ODH foster about the whole experience of fostering and how rewarding it is.
Loved watching the doxie races and listening to people cheer the dogs as they ran. Gretchen even let me use the bullhorn to start a couple of races!
I was delighted to see two dogs (Ozzie and Quigley) that I used to walk at the shelter and it was so fabulous to see them with their forever family walking happily somewhere that wasn’t on the grounds of an animal shelter.
A senior dog that not only survived Katrina but another natural disaster as well was entered in the Pageant by his person and everyone cheered for the dog as his story was told.
KayCee, ODH’s longest/oldest resident dog and oldest dog at the Pageant was living proof of ODH’s dedication to transformation as she smiled her way through the festivities.
I could go on and on but you get the point. It was huge love project.
I’ve talked about what I saw, but here’s what I felt: Old Dog Haven is a remarkable organization and the Walk was a visual representation of everything wonderful about what we do. We love our dogs. Our fosters value and respect our dogs. Our vets (well represented at the Walk) take excellent care of our dogs. Our staff works very hard for very little money…all for the dogs. We’re all committed to our Love Project and even though our lives have gone to the dogs we wouldn’t have it any other way.
Note: Thanks to ODH foster mom Bev Bowe for the great photographs!