The mission of Animal Humane Society (AHS) is to engage the hearts, hands and minds of the community to help animals. The Volunteer Services department plays a major role in this exercise. The goal of the department is to cultivate a dedicated, capable Volunteer community that is meaningfully engaged in achieving the mission of AHS.
Meet some AHS Volunteers who have been recognized for their outstanding service.
Couple Makes a Date to Volunteer!
Dale and Sandra Wucher decided after they retired four years ago, that working together at AHS in Coon Rapids would be a fun "date”. What Sandra really loves about the adoption floor animals is that they are always full of surprises. For example, there once was a big tomcat named Warrior, who looked rough and tough with scratches all over his face. As it turned out, he was actually a little kitten in disguise. Sandra noticed that he seemed so happy to be well cared for and well fed. Every time she took Warrior out for interaction, he would grab her apron strings and untie them. He played and played, and sat in her lap and purred. She realized that even though he had had a rough life, it hadn't hardened him! She thought his name was not well chosen, because it hinted at aggression in a cat that already looked so rough. He got passed by for weeks, and when he finally got a home, it was a happy day for Sandra.
Another eventful day was when she took a cat out for interaction that was a "hider". You couldn't even see him rolled up in his blanket. He didn't look like he wanted any interaction, and Sandra had put off visiting with him for near the end of her shift. She was surprised when he turned out to be so playful. Who would have known? Right at the end of the shift, an acquaintance of hers came in and asked if Sandra could recommend a cat. The “hider” was all rolled up and hiding again, but Sandra hesitantly took him out for a visit. He went home with the woman minutes later, just at closing time. Sandra knew her words about the playfulness of the cat had made a difference. She felt really good about that!
Dale usually walks the dogs. It’s especially heartening to him when one of the animals that he walked and showed gets adopted. He enjoys the interaction with the customers, staff and other volunteers. Both he and Sandra volunteer at the Whisker Whirl each year and love seeing all the benevolent people with their dogs attending.
At home, Dale and Sandra have two cats. Stella is a six-year-old ragdoll, who came to them with a “litter box behavior problem”.
“She has never had a problem while with us, and for that reason, I like it when I see that a cat with a litter box problem gets adopted, Dale says. “They may well be an angel in their new home, and need a second chance.”
Their other cat, Polo, is a two-year-old domestic longhair tabby. His favorite sport is flinging ice cubes out of his water dish onto the floor, and washing his foot after every fling. When the ice cubes are all gone, he scoops out cold water for good measure!
Thank you Dale and Sandra for all you do at the Animal Humane Society!
By volunteer Cindy Parsons