We Do This for Buddy and Others Like Him
I first met Buddy a couple of years ago at the Long Beach Animal Shelter. I had just become a "fully-trained" volunteer; that is, I had completed my training, received my official volunteer apron and badge, and was now able to take the dogs out of their kennels for exercise. As I walked past the dog kennels one day, Buddy caught my eye, calmly laying there and curiously looking at me.
Rumor had it that he couldn't walk but the first time I took him out, much to my surprise, he was able to do just fine, although a bit wobbly at times as he had some issues with his hind legs. He was an incredibly majestic and sweet soul, strikingly handsome, and I decided I would do whatever I could to get him out of the shelter. This wasn't going to be an easy undertaking as he had several strikes against him: he was a large breed, a senior dog and he had what appeared to be nerve issues with his hind legs. The public is hesitant to take in dogs like him; however, the longer these dogs are in a shelter, the more likely they will deteriorate, as they need daily exercise, good medical care and good nutrition. In Buddy's case, he was a German Shepherd and his breed thrives being with their humans.