Another Month Has Flown By

Wow, it's now almost October and Fall is upon us. With Fall comes the many wonderful arts and crafts festivals that dot the Atlanta suburbs.  We try to do as many as we can but being such a small group, we are limited.  Last month we attended the Sandy Springs Festival in Sandy Springs and had a fabulous time. 

This month we'll be at Pace Academy on the 2nd for their annual Fall Fair and then the Smyrna Fall Jonquil Festival on the 23rd and 24th plus the Whole Hawg Happenin' BBQ festival on the 23rd as well.  In between the Meet & Greets, we have a fun and relaxing afternoon planned on the 10th at Nancy G's on Roswell Road as we enjoy another "Yappy Hour" with our Greyhound friends on their wonderful and spacious outside patio.  On the 16th we'll participate of our first Hound Hike at Kennesaw Mountain.  This should be great fun for the humans and the Greyhounds!!

October is definitely going to be a very busy month but the wonderful Fall weather just beckons us to participate in outdoor activities!  It's a beautiful time of the year in Atlanta and we try to enjoy every minute of it!

I've been busy myself participating in evaluations through TDI, Inc. (pet therapy) so that we can become certified through that organization.  I first took Lucy for her evaluation and I am proud to say that she passed the testing with flying colors.  Actually, she and I both passed.  It's definitely a team effort.  I will next take Sami and hope she remains her calm self long enough during the testing to satisfy the requirements.  She is still so young (3 years old) and so puppy-like but it seems she knows the environment in nursing homes is "calmer and quieter" than anywhere else so she usually adapts pretty well.  I'll work with her a bit more and then when we're ready, we will pursue her certification.  Being certified as a pet therapy dog will open doors for us as we will then be able to visit other facilities around Atlanta, ie children hospitals, hospices, and the like.  I'm urging others in the group to seek certification as well.  TDI, Inc. provides $5 million liability insurance for all of its members which is quite a perk.  That, alone, is worth the time and effort it takes to become certified.

On another note, I received an email from an old high school chum on Facebook.  This is what he wrote "Just wanted to say hello and tell you the things you do for animals is great !! If I was to die and come back I want to be one of your dogs."  I have to say that really warmed my heart. 

I responded back reciprocating as I've seen pictures of his Great Danes and how they are so very loved and cared for.  It is definitely such a compliment for anyone when they hear things like that.

But the biggest compliment of all was his next reply, "actually thanks to you we joined the Mid Atlantic Great Dane Rescue so thanks !!"  Honestly, that put tears in my eyes.  If what I do helping the Greyhounds inspires someone else to get involved, then so much the better.  I am just so proud of what we do to help the Greyhounds and hope that others might find a little bit of time in their life to help just one animal along the way.  As Martha would say, "its a good thing"!

Meeting with Second Chance at Life Folks

This past Saturday we held our first meeting with Beverly and Ferg Sebastian with Second Chance at Life.  They are the folks who will be our guiding light and mentors throughout the process of setting up our program.  They are very interesting people, for sure, and love what they are doing!  I can certainly see why.  They shared a few videos with us where Inmates from an Illinois prison who are in the program were interviewed.  There wasn't a dry eye in the house, I tell you.  Everyone was truly touched by the words and feelings these Inmates had for the Greyhounds in their charge.  You could see how this program affects them and how they benefit and, of course, how the Greyhounds benefit.

I left the meeting more encouraged and inspired than ever before and feel we definitely are onto something here - something really great!!  We cannot wait to get our first Greyhounds into the program.  That may very well happen sooner than later as we do have an opportunity to place four Greyhounds into the program in Illinois while we are still setting up our prisons here in Georgia.  It's an option we are pursuing. 

Beverly and Heather have discussions set this week with several Georgia DOC officials to being talking about the program and how we can benefit the Inmates.  We are well on our way. 

Stay tuned for more updates as they become available.