There is no trick to loving a dog. When I begin my volunteer shift with the old dogs at Muttville each week, I am sure to find a new furry face or five. Sure, first I have to get past the powerful smells that pour out of the rooms, made from twenty dogs waking up in the morning. Then I need to listen beyond the good morning barks. Until finally, I am up all the stairs and able to peer over the gates to offer my own greetings. It is always worth it.
I am always glad to arrive at Muttville and survey the current canine crew. Besides having the “senior dog” label in common, all of the dogs tend to overlap personalities and backgrounds. My favorite experience though is discovering the older pup who is still discovering that they hit the jackpot by having Muttville in their corner now. These dogs have this expression of disbelief that is tangible. I can feel it flowing off of them through their body language, the looks on their face and incredible gratitude.
Being on the receiving end of a dog’s attention, especially in the morning, is something special. At Muttville, it can vary from the sleepiest of faces to a dog with a virtual list of what they want to do for the day — and you’re late! Where’s breakfast? Those bouncy, early riser dogs are the ones I often question their “senior dog” status. But seriously, each time I’m reminded how simple it is to love a dog. There’s no trick to it. For me, it starts with a conversation first thing in the morning and continues over mopping, walks and laundry.
October is Adopt A Shelter Dog Month. Consider adoption when you want to bring a dog into your life. I promise there is no trick to it, only treats.
Learn more about Muttville Senior Dog Adoption in San Francisco on Rescue Row.