GOLDENS ON BOARD
Our extraordinary transportation team generously donates their time and resources to answer the call to safely transport a dog in need from their home, a vet or a foster home. Led by Coordinator Sue Angle, this team logs on average 800 miles per month and supported, with meticulous coordination, 30 drivers logging more than 4,500 miles moving 21 rescues across the state in one of our busiest periods. In many cases, transports are done tag team style and one dog could have multiple drivers based on the distance they have to travel. Each transporter equips their vehicle with a variety of pet care items like water, leash, towels, comfortable bedding and a special treat or two! As the need for rescue care and transportation continues during the period of the COVID pandemic, we are so thankful for our volunteers who continue to raise their paws to help. Why are we so proud of our transport team? Their stories of special memories say it all about their passion, joy and heartache of being the first volunteer many of our dog’s meet to bring them safely into our rescue.
Deb Frederick – My favorite memory was Winnie who thought the windshield wipers were chase toys and was fascinated with these magical sticks swaying back and forth to keep her entertained! I never tire of looking in my rearview mirror and seeing one of our rescues snoozing, knowing that dog just hit the jackpot. Some transports are easy, but ones I remember most are the special dogs badly needing medical care, ones getting out of a dire situation, or the ones left after their human passes…those dogs always get a special piece of my heart.
Judy and Jerry Sheehan – A special transport was a dog lovingly surrendered to us by a man getting up in age and afraid he would fall over the pup (from his other dog’s final litter). He wanted to keep him, but living by himself he wouldn’t be able to get back up after a fall. We remember him kissing the pup on the top of the head, placing him in our back seat and this big, burly man wiping tears away from his eyes as he slowly walked back into the house while the momma dog barked in the backyard. We cried all the way to Melbourne (and still are as we write this).
Jan Casey – Seeing a dog torn from all they know, broken-hearted people separated from their beloved dogs, dropping off a scared dog at the intake vet – why on earth would anyone volunteer for this? The reasons are these:
- Rescues are in need of calm assurance that their lives are now on the path to loving homes.
- The number of sweet, resilient dogs we meet is astounding.
- Having a golden you transported and then meet them again and the dog remembers you from transport is beyond rewarding.
- Seeing some of these dogs in need of quality medical care and knowing they will receive it helps reinforce that rescue is one of the best options.
- Meeting other transporters, vet staff, and fosters who are truly committed to helping the rescues helps me keep faith in humanity.
- Rescue dogs never make rude comments about my singing as we drive.
There’s nothing quite like transporting a teenage golden. Sammy, a two–year–old cream-colored boy, reminded me of the contagious joy of life these young dogs exude. I was available for one leg of his transport to a new foster home and when I arrived, we played a bit in the yard and enjoyed his teenage antics. With help from fosters Cindy and Mike, the not-so-petite Sammy was loaded into my car for his excursion. He rode calmly as we discussed life, canned vs kibble, and what kind of new home he would have. He really didn’t have much to say, but he was a great listener. I know whoever was lucky enough to add Sammy to their family has one fabulous boy!
Isabella Acampora – What impacts me most is these trusting dogs show their confusion and concern in the changes facing them. They woke up in their own home and bed that morning with their people and are now being given to total strangers and taken on a scary adventure that they cannot comprehend. As transporters, we recognize their fear and confusion and do our very best to help them, knowing they are going to be safe and secure for the rest of their lives. It is what comforts me and keeps me dedicated to this mission.
Carol Forsberg – Transport is my favorite “job” in rescue. Being able to give love and hugs and receive kisses as a reward, especially on the side of your face and ears while driving, make for special memories. Ensuring my golden passengers are comfortable and safe when traveling sometimes may call for a crate. One golden of memory was Junior (who at 100+ pounds was anything but junior) who did not want to leave his crate. It took fellow transporter Sue Angle and I to gently tilt the crate to coax him out. Once out, he joyfully jumped into Sue’s van ready for his next ride.
Sue Angle (Coordinator) – Besides the rewarding experience of “Driving Miss Daisy” — a sweet golden in the back seat of my vehicle — I’ve been blessed to be able to arrange the trips for our GRRMF goldens to and from veterinarians and fosters over the past 20+ years. I’m so thankful for the dedicated and caring transport volunteers who make sure our goldens arrive safely at their destinations. It’s a joy to be in contact with such willing volunteers who love the reward they find through transporting our goldens on their way to their forever homes. When I thank them for being available, I often hear “It’s my pleasure.”
Roles supporting this area:
- Transport coordinator
- Transport administrator
Time/Frequency needed to support:
Diverse and as needed based on dogs arriving in the program.
General Skills needed:
Strong interpersonal skills to support empathic, positive and supportive conversations with contacts
Work well with teams
Familiar with Google Sheets/Excel data entry
Familiar with Gmail for email communications
Familiar with Google Map and Map quest searches for transport planning
Complete your volunteer application today and our coordinator will be in touch with you ASAP.