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About this blog: The Raucous Caucus shares the southpaw perspectives of this Boomer on the state of the nation, the world, and, sometimes, other stuff. I enjoy crafting it to keep current, and occasionally to rant on some issue I care about deeply...  (More)

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Pet Safety Net?

Uploaded: Apr 3, 2020
Originally posted this on Next Door, and got several good responses. Thought I’d try it here to a wider potential group of volunteers. NB: we live on the northern end of this distribution - if someone wanted to take clearinghouse responsibility for Dublin/Pleasanton/Livermore environs, kindly let me know! - TFC

On the wall in my office, there’s an old cartoon where the wife tells her writer’s-blocked husband, sitting glumly at a typewriter surrounded by a dozen canines: “Write about dogs!”

I have felt like that writer recently, wanting to do Something in our community, beyond hunkering down to avoid making the pandemic worse. I do know dogs, having fostered 150 of them over a decade, and having sampled an alternate career in the humane movement as Associate Director, Nevada Humane Society.

So, maybe what I can contribute should have something to do with canines (felines, too!).

Here’s the idea: I believe there’s a core group of folks who’d be willing to be called-upon to assist their neighbors when companion animals are put at-risk by the pandemic. That assistance could take a variety of forms – from an occasional walk to a sleep-over or an extended stay. The point is to develop a safety net – easing the family burdens of illness and improving the odds that Rover or Fifi won’t themselves become victims of this plague.

Crunch time is coming over the next month we’re told, and the best thing we can now do to help companion animals in the community - and those now in the shelters – is to avoid adding to those numbers. Shelter operators are starting to put that word-out. They will tell you that their first priority is keeping animals ‘out’ in the first place; conversely, killing-for-space is among the worst things they can be called upon to do. I’d expect to work closely with shelters and humane orgs.

There are inevitable issues and bugs to be worked-out, but I think the concept’s sound. So, if you are willing to consider being called-upon to assist your neighbors with animal issues, please email me - - I will reply with a one-page attachment in MSWord – kindly fill it out and return it. Sue and I will be a clearinghouse ‘node’ for our neck o’ these woods. Join us?

I will follow this note with ways that persons in-need can contact us for assistance. Obviously, the best outcome would be if this is a fire drill and we never have to use it, but I prefer this extra measure of protection for our furriest family members.

Thanks for considering, helpers-out!
Local Journalism.
What is it worth to you?


Posted by Doug Miller, a resident of Country Fair,
on Apr 5, 2020 at 1:24 pm

Doug Miller is a registered user.

Great idea Tom. I will send you an email. In the meantime, stay safe.

Posted by Karl Aitken , a resident of Pleasanton Valley,
on Apr 5, 2020 at 4:21 pm

I've contacted Tom and applaud this effort!

There are a few of the at risk seniors in my neighborhood with dogs and I'm making myself available to them if they need dog walking help. I've known them for almost 50 years - they live alone like many seniors and their dogs are vital company while they are asked to stay isolated.

Please help Tom if you can or just look around your neighborhood and see where you can help the at risk seniors in this and any other way.

I'm also activating the lawn mowing service I had as a teenager in the 70s, offering my help if the latest health restrictions cause these seniors to need help in this way.

These challenging situations can bring out the best or the worst of people. Do what you can to have it bring out the best in you...

Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore,
on Apr 5, 2020 at 5:24 pm

An excellent idea. I'm partially disabled and I don't get about with such ease.

I provide food for two senior's that are very good friends who need the assistance. They also visit me for Sunday dinner and get a healthy meal and can stay overnight if needed.

I love the company and the talk! It takes covid to help us all realize that we have responsibilities outside of ourselves. I used to bathe and walk dogs for free but that's more difficult now.

Covid is waaaaaay real, be careful!

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