An Animal Rescue Volunteer

Bits and PumpkinThese two are kittens I rescued from Animal Control, now they are full grown, but they were even smaller than this when I got them.


Im an Iowa girl, born and raised. I grew up on a farm in southern Iowa. Being surrounded by nature nurtured my love of the outdoors. Being raised on a farm surrounded by all sorts of animals nurtured my love of animals.

Growing up we had cows, chickens, pigs, horses, even the occasional wild animal we found that needed help. Today that hasn’t changed, I still love being outside, ok maybe not when it’s 100 degrees and the dew point is 76 but who does? And my love of animals is just as strong as when I was a kid. Now tho I think I am more aware, more aware of how we are their guardians just as much as they are ours.

I have done a lot of work in animal rescue. At times it brought me to my knees the depth of mans cruelty. The depth and lengths humans go to to inflict pain and agony on a living breathing thing, and yes even to other humans.

I have held puppies and kittens in my arms whimpering in fear and pain after having been beaten for no other reason than being handy. I have seen animals starved almost to death, animals so broken that they no longer had the will to live. I have seen grown men and women, me right along with them, cry at what has been done.

Animal rescue is not for everyone, it’s hard, it’s dirty and never ending. You get burned out, beyond frustrated and angry and feel like no matter what you do it doesn’t help. Even tho you know every little bit does help, does matter.

I got burned out, I needed a break even tho I’ve stayed in the shadows, waiting for a time to enter the fray again. Part of me thinks it’s time, I keep being pulled back in, but I also dread what I will see, what I would have to deal with . I remember how down I got knowing I couldn’t save them all, knowing that when I went into Animal Control I would find empty cages that just the day before had been filled to capacity. Knowing they hadn’t been adopted but put to sleep in a horrible way.

I remember a lot of the ones I couldn’t save, ones I got attached to, dogs and cats I tried to save but failed to. I can still see the big yellow lab mix with the golden eyes with his head in my lap. Wishing I could take him home or find someone but knowing I couldn’t because he didn’t get along with other dogs. He was a gentle soul with people and just wanted to be in your lap

I remember the yellow mix across from his kennel that could have been his twin wagging his butt and tail a mile a minute every time I came to his cage.
They are gone, relegated to a corner of the city dump. I didn’t know that’s what they did with them, it wasn’t something I really wanted to know but was a cold truth. An animal control officer told me that they would load all the animals up and take them to the dump at designated times, they had a special area for them.  I dont think it was really common knowledge.

I know Animal Control Officers get a bad rap, and SOME of them deserve it, but not all of them are bad. They are doing a job no one else wants to do, doing a job that shouldn’t exist. They get just as horrified as we do by what goes on, just as burned out.

I’m on the fence as to what level I can help and even if I want to get caught up in it. I just wish that everyone could in some way help, do something to end it all. I hate that cruelty in any form exists, I hate that we know better, but that knowing better hasn’t made us better or smarter.

Animals are not here for us to abuse and neglect. Why would you want to hurt something that just wants your love and attention, that just wants to be with you?



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