Normally I write about the dogs, but sometimes I come across a story that shows an extraordinary human. Renee is one of those people. I discovered her while on Jessica Painter’s blog. This photo of Renee working with a senior dog at the shelter caught my eye.
From Jessica: “Renee has been involved with rescue for a very long time. She has been with Regional Animal Shelter since January 2012. She is their treasurer, Adoption Coordinator and Media & PR liaison. But she is so much more than that. She works tirelessly with their dogs, helping to prepare them for their forever families.
I’ve known Renee for about a year now, and I can’t say enough good things about her. She gives her all, and not just to her shelter dogs, her own dogs, her friends and family but to pretty much anyone. She is truly selfless in every way possible. Just being around her makes you smile.”
From Renee: “My story is pretty simple really. I’ve always been an animal lover. My first dog on my own was a shelter dog and was my best friend for 13 years. He was the reason for my love of pit bulls that exists to this day. But it wasn’t until I adopted my dog Oliver that I began to actively do rescue work. He was abandoned and left to die. He was thankfully found by animal control. One look at his sad face, his emaciated bony body and I knew that I had to do more to help the other dogs like him that were not so lucky to be adopted so quickly.
Oliver was the catalyst and I tell him and Redmond (my other dog) everyday that I do all of this for dogs like them…the ones that were once alone and scared. Experts say dogs don’t understand but I like to think my boys know.
Working at the shelter is by far the most challenging work I have ever done. Its also the most rewarding. Every dog that comes into the shelter captures a piece of my heart and when they get adopted, they stay in my heart forever. The shelter is an extension of my home and many days I feel like I live there. However if given the choice to do it over again, I would. Every shelter dog is special to me. Each one I treat like my own. I had a special connection with Suzie (in the top photo).
There are thousands of dogs like Suzie and Oliver out there that never get rescued. They never get to know safety and love and hope. I know I can’t save them all but the dogs that do cross my path will continue on their journey knowing what its like to be loved and be a part of me forever.”
You can read more about Renee on Jessica’s blog. Follow Jessica Painter Photography on Facebook to see adoptable dogs, beautiful weddings and more!
Thanks to Renee and the thousands of other volunteers who do so much to help homeless dogs and cats! I’m joining Blog the Change for Animals today. I hope you’ll visit the other blogs and see how others are helping animals.
About Jessica Painter Photography: Based in Albany, New York, Jessica Painter and her husband are wedding, portrait and special event photographers available to travel.