Some family members enjoy sending us lots and lots of text messages. They might be random comments, cute pictures, or even memes. And they’re awesome.
However, if you’re Andrea Richardson, then you’re even luckier than most of us. Her dad volunteers at an animal shelter and takes the dogs there for walkies. Once in a while, he sends his daughter photos of the doggos along with very brief but very cute bios of each one.
Bored Panda reached out to Andrea who spoke to her dad on behalf of us. Here's what he had to say about his volunteering: "When I retired, my wife and I were at dinner with some of our neighbors, getting to know other couples in the area. Two of the guys mentioned that they walked shelter dogs on Wednesday mornings. And, after a few beers, I agreed to join them walking in support of the Canyon Lake Animal Shelter Society (CLASS)." Scroll down for the rest of the interview and for Bored Panda's interview with a representative of the RSPCA about volunteering at animal shelters.
"They are a no-kill shelter, taking in dogs from other shelters that may not be around for much longer. CLASS is probably the best home these dogs have ever had. When I walk the dogs, I sometimes take photos of my furry friends to send to my family. I never expected it to explode like it has—people have responded! Everything we do is to support CLASS, the animals and all the volunteers. They are the true heroes."
When you’re done reading through this article, check out Bored Panda’s other doggo posts. Like the one about an online community dedicated to sharing the silliest dog photos where they show their teeth. And another about a woman documenting her “dumb as a box of rocks” sled dog.
Andrea’s viral thread got 101.2k likes and 8.7k retweets. Some Twitter users demanded that her father create his own account where he could upload his wholesome content.
Andrea used the attention her post got to urge others to help out their local animal shelters, whether by donating money, volunteering their time, or even adopting an animal. Inspired by her example, people shared photos of their rescue doggos and the stories behind them.
According to Andrea's dad, they are a family of dog lovers: "Each daughter now has two dogs with their spouse, and we had two Cocker Spaniel siblings when our girls were growing up.”
Andrea's dad suggested that people support the same shelter he volunteers at: people can donate money to CLASS, adopt animals from there, and even sponsor a specific dog or any other animal!
A representative of the RSPCA told Bored Panda that there are lots of different ways that people can help their local rescue organizations. “They may like to set up a regular donation or even organize a fundraising event. Or they might like to adopt an animal into their family. Alternatively, they could give up some of their time and volunteer!”
“The RSPCA has thousands of volunteers helping in lots of different roles. Some people may have specific skills but many are people who simply want to give a lending hand to the animals.”
The representative also told Bored Panda that the RSPCA conducts lots of checks before sending an animal home with a new family. This is done to “ensure that it's the perfect match for the pet and the people.”
“We always encourage potential adopters to visit our website or their local center to find out who might be suitable for their lifestyle. Our staff will then arrange meetings between the family and the pet, carry out a quick interview or Perfect Match form, and organize a home check before the animal can go home.”
In case you’re not sure about spending your free time surrounded by cute animals, the Central California SPCA has several good reasons why you should volunteer at an animal shelter. First of all, volunteering (any volunteering!) feels good. Doing good things feels good— who woulda thunk it?
But some of you might need something more than feeling warm and smiley inside (not to mention improving your emotional, physical, and mental health, teaching you responsibility, and how to be a better citizen).
In that case, you should know that volunteering teaches you new skills (like time management) and opens up future professional experiences. Who knows, walking dogs could turn into a full-time job or even into an up-and-coming business.
So, dear Pandas, which doggo bio was your favorite and why? Do you volunteer at your local animal shelter? Perhaps you have a family member who sends you cute animal pictures? Share your thoughts with everyone in the comments below.