At age 17, I was desperate to work with animals. I was certain I’d pursue veterinary medicine and needed to start getting practical, hands-on animal experience. So, I got started volunteering at my local animal shelter in Cincinnati, Ohio. I went every weekend with my Mom, to bathe dogs and prepare them for meeting potential adopters the next day. We’d head back to “show” these dogs to people who were thinking about expanding their family by 4 feet. Fast forward a few years and my love for helping shelter animals was completely cemented. I changed course at school and decided, whatever it took, I’d spend my life saving the animals in need in Cincinnati.
I have been with Centre County PAWS for 14 years now and the dream of helping the animals in need in my hometown has stayed with me. In October of last year, there was a major shift in the animal control contract in Cincinnati, which meant homeless animals would be working with a brand-new shelter. That organization, Cincinnati Animal CARE, immediately reached out to the community for help. They needed and wanted rescue partners, so that no adoptable animal in their care would be needlessly euthanized. I excitedly reached out on behalf of PAWS and we have proudly worked with them on 3 small transports in the past several months.
I am very grateful for PAWS and the community of compassion that has led our team to expand our partnerships with other shelters. This recent development is especially meaningful to me. Not only am I helping animals from a city that is very important to me and giving them a new life in wonderful Centre County, but I also get to work closely with my family in the process. Pictured are the dogs we most recently transported to State College on February 21 as well as pictures of my brother and I meeting halfway.