When the Escondido Humane Society asked me if I would pick a pet to champion in support of their running in the ASPCA $ 100K challenge, of course I said, “Yes!” This week, I took a drive up to the shelter to get a special tour, and decide who of all the deserving pets there I was going to mentor.
When I got there, touring this wonderful facility that is bursting with about 700 animals (it was built to house maybe 3-400), I talked with their PR Director Katie Woolsey about lots of things. I found out I used to work with their head veterinarian. I was overwhelmed at the number of rabbits they are taking care of. We commiserated over the reluctance so many people have to go to a shelter because they think it will be depressing, while watching a local YMCA camp unload a busful of chattering kids for a glimpse inside the sunlit facility.
Katie told me they were fortunate enough to get a good response from lots of local people in the media who are picking pets to champion during the challenge, newscasters and radio personalities and the like, vying with each other to see who will get the most pets adopted the fastest. And that is awesome. In their first day of the challenge, they set a new one day adoption record- 62, up from the old record of 48. And you know, good numbers are amazing, but sometimes it’s about other things, too.
I’ve always gone for a different approach. So after getting to meet everyone, I said, “Who’s been here the longest?”
Since the Escondido Humane Society does not euthanize adoptable animals, some of them have been here quite some time. I followed Katie to a quiet kennel, expecting a dog who was either senior, spazzy, dealing with a chronic disease, or simply unphotogenic.
But this is who peered back at me:
Well, the fact that Estelle is a pit bull and is black are two of the random strikes that have no bearing on her adoptability but do statistically work against her. But she is young, only 2. Half of her life now has been spent in the shelter, a full year, where she calmly sits, watches DogTV, and waits for someone to take her for a walk. Or, maybe, home. She remains hopeful. You can see it in her eyes.
After a year in house, the volunteers know her very well. She is gentle, treat motivated, and runs a mean track after a frisbee. She likes other dogs, knows basic commands, and is smart and affectionate.
So what’s the deal? This dog isn’t even close to being a hard sell. Estelle rocks.
The guys can’t get enough of her, either. Her BFF Patches, above, her friend Aston, below- all charmed.
So what’s a social media person to do when they have a sweet, sassy, good to go girl in need of a lifelong companion? Start her a Twitter account, of course. I just learned Estelle is a Ryan Lochte fan. I know, I know. But can you blame her? Give her a follow- maybe this is just the ticket she needs to find the right home.
I will be doing some more posts and a giveaway with the ASPCA as this goes on in support of the 100K challenge, but for now, I’m working on a micro level. One year is way too long for a girl like this to be cooped up in a shelter, even one as lovely as the Escondido Humane Society.
Any ideas for busting her out ASAP, please pass em along. I would love to see her with the man (or woman, or family) of her dreams by August 26th- my own Olympic feat. Help me get the word out! Estelle the Great rocks!