A few days ago on my way to work, I stopped for a cup of coffee at the coffee shop near my apartment. I was wearing my Animal Rescue League of Boston sweatshirt and the girl at the counter asked me how long I had been working there.
When I told her I worked for the Center for Shelter Dogs, a program of the Animal Rescue League of Boston; she told me about her own dogs that she rescued and that they have behavior problems. She continued telling me all about how she has been working with them on these problems since they first walked in her door. I was glad to hear that she was working on her dogs’ behavior problems and not giving up. What really made my day though was when she told me how amazing the work we do is. For the dogs at the ARLB and how many dogs’ lives we are saving. She told me how wonderful it is that we do what we do. It really made me feel like I was making a difference in the dogs’ lives.
I have always known that I wanted to work with animals and the conversation with the barista at the coffee shop just confirmed my desire to continue onward. As a Northeastern Co-op student at the Center for Shelter Dogs, I am involved in changing so many dogs’ lives and helping them find their forever homes. I could never imagine doing anything else with my life than this. As an aspiring veterinarian, I would love to continue helping all of the animals in shelters.
I remember all of the dogs that I have worked with so far during my co-op experience, but some dogs really stick with me. Chloe and Clyde were two adorable rat terriers that loved each other so much, but unfortunately lost their home. They ended up at the ARLB and stayed there for a few months. Each day I worked at the ARLB I spent time with them; bringing them to and from play group, visiting them in their kennel, going on walks through Boston Common, training them, and spending a lot of time with them in office foster.
It was sad to see them living in a kennel with people walking by them every day and no one interested in taking them home. We worked a lot on their barking, and I worked with Clyde on the C.L.A.S.S. program, whenever I had a chance.
When the day finally came that Chloe and Clyde were adopted, it was so exciting to see them go home! I do miss having them in the office, lying on my lap while doing computer work, but I was so happy to see them go to their forever home and to know that we really helped improve their lives in the shelter as best that we could.
Working with the shelter dogs every day, whether it is training them or just spending time with them in their kennel or in an office, really makes an impact on their lives in the shelter and beyond because it seems to help improve their chances of being adopted much faster. Like the barista at the coffee shop said, it truly is amazing what everyone at the Animal Rescue League does; dedicating their lives to helping homeless animals. I am so grateful to have to opportunity to work with everyone at the Center for Shelter Dogs, where our common goal is to improve the welfare of shelter dogs.
-Taylor Goslin, Northeastern University