Guest Columnist

Guest column by a dog: Make a rescued pet your Valentine

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Charlie 1 the “author”

Love is in the air, with Valentine’s Day, and what better way to show you care than to adopt an orphaned dog or cat needing a loving home and family?

Love is what the Cedar Valley Humane Society (CVHS) is all about, 365 days a year. Between COVID-19 and the Aug. 10 derecho, we all could use some comfort and compassion, right?

I know firsthand how great CVHS is — I am a lucky rescue dog (Welsh springer spaniel/standard poodle); my previous owners dropped me off at CVHS in early October. I was nervous, filthy and afraid of people. But CVHS cleaned me up, made sure I got my shots, microchipped and “fixed” and loved and cared for me until I could find my forever home. Then, one of the CVHS volunteers adopted me. I am now 1 ½ years old, healthy, happy and well-loved. I even have an older brother, Max, a schnauzer!

All because of CVHS, whose remarkable staff welcomes and tends any animal finding its way there, no matter what the circumstances.

Meet another Charlie: His is a remarkable story of a 15-year-old border collie who was found wandering and confused, in critical condition, underweight, covered in fleas and needing medical intervention.

Today, this Charlie is living in a happy forever home with a loving mom who is also a veterinary professional. Charlie is now a happy, well-loved dog with light in his eyes. It has made all the difference in Charlie’s “golden” years.

Dogs like us can tell you how CVHS provides critical care and support for animals but in doing so, also connects us with people who need us the most. The needs it addresses are there 24/7, as basic as food, veterinary care, shelter and kindness.

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CVHS depends on its staff’s heart-deep commitment and acceptance of ambiguous, long hours. These people wrap their lives around this shelter to save animals. Many people do not know that CVHS is a nonprofit, 100 percent funded through donations and grants. Its outreach and caring are often the lifesaving support orphaned animals need — and the connection with people who need someone to love.

CVHS is, in its truest form, a shelter. It meets any of these definitions: protection, shield, refuge, sanctuary, harbor, lodging.

You can make a difference, whether volunteering, donating or adopting an animal.

If you cannot adopt an animal, adopt the shelter.

To learn more about CVHS, visit our website at www.cvhumane.org Questions? Call us at 319-362-6288. Our hours are by appointment only (due to COVID). Hours are noon to 5 p.m. weekdays and noon to 4 p.m. Saturdays.

Charlie Doodle and Sherry Crawford, a Cedar Valley Humane Society volunteer, live in Cedar Rapids.

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