Why I volunteer?
I was at the Humane Society of Utah for my normal volunteer shift, taking photos of the animals for the website and social media to help them find loving homes.
I passed a mother and daughter who were walking through and looking at all the little dogs. They asked me a question, so we started chatting. The mom said that they were at the local hospital, undergoing treatment. The little girl, no more than 7 years old, was wearing a hospital mask and you could tell that her hair just started to grow back. We chatted for a short time, and then I continued taking the dogs to get their pictures taken.
A little later, I again passed the mom and daughter and noticed the little girl was crying. I just happened to be holding the most adorable little puppy and thought the little girl would probably love to pet the puppy. I walked over to where they were and asked the little girl if she wanted to see the puppy. She looked up at me with eyes bursting with crocodile tears and started petting the puppy. She didn’t say a word -- no words were needed. I soon noticed that her tears were gone and she lit up -- as much as the puppy did with her petting it. Every time she stroked the puppy’s little head with her little hand, his tail wagged so fast. I could feel the wagging tail as I was holding the puppy, so I turned the puppy for her to see what joy she was bringing to this puppy. It was as if the puppy just knew that she really needed some extra love that day. She just smiled.
For me, watching this moment between the little girl and the puppy was magical. These little nuggets while volunteering makes my world complete.
When her mom said that it was time to go, I said my goodbye’s and walked away. I just wanted to cry. I can’t even imagine what this little girl and her family were going through with her illness. But, kudos to this mom for bringing her little girl to the shelter for some unconditional love from the animals and time away from the hospital.
I didn’t realize what a profound effect this moment in time had on me under later – then I cried.
Animals have hearts that I don’t think we fully understand.