Whyld River's mission is to ensure that pets everywhere are healthy, safe, and loved. One of the ways we fulfill this promise is by donating one DoggyBag (or cash equivalent) to Portland Animal Welfare Team (aka PAW Team) for every ten DoggyBags we sell.
In November of 2018 Whyld River wrote our first check for PAW Team based on sales of our DoggyBag during our Kickstarter campaign and beyond! Here's the story of our day spent at one of PAW Team's drop-in veterinary clinics and how your purchase has helped to support this wonderful organization:
On November 4th of 2018 I kissed River goodbye and hopped in the car to check out one of PAW Team's drop-in clinics. PAW Team offers drop-in clinics about once a month in order to provide veterinary care for people who are unable to schedule appointments during the week for their pets.
When I showed up at 9am there was a line around the block of people waiting with their pets. I got some treats from PAW Team's supply closet and walked the line, chatting with people, hearing about their pups and letting everyone know their wait in the cold was almost over.
One gentleman flagged me down to ask if I could hold his place in line. He wanted to grab a carrier for his pup, to help ease their anxiety at being surrounded by so many other dogs. I was struck by how this man, waiting in the cold for maybe more than an hour, was more concerned for his pup's well-being than his own comfort.
For many of the people I've met their pet is a constant companion for them, a continual source of love and forgiveness when the going gets rough. For some, their pet might be the only one left in their life that still believes in them and trusts them, which can be essential for mental health and motivation when every day feels so difficult. PAW Team exists to help ensure that this essential bond isn't broken by astronomical vet bills or by a particularly hard week or month in someone's life.
As people and pets make it through registration and come into the warm supply room for bagels and coffee (for the humans of course) I start making some new friends,
Kalista & Lord Pound:
Patty Faye & her family:
In the supply room dogs get their nails clipped while flea and tick medicine is handed out. (These are very expensive and PAW Team is always in need of supplies, Click here for a list of current needs)
The sun is beginning to come out and burn off the chill of the morning. Chairs are provided outside and everyone relaxes, waiting patiently to see the three volunteer veterinarians upstairs. These rockstar vets work tirelessly to make sure everyone is seen and treated.
PAW Team is always in need of veterinarians and technicians to help with drop-in clinics and regular appointments, if interested please click here.
Volunteers run back and forth all morning, making sure that everyone has previously registered with PAW Team before checking them in. PAW Team does require that animals they treat be spayed and neutered, but they offer this free and schedule transport to and from the appointment.
My first volunteer experience with PAW Team was offering transport services, which I found very fulfilling for minimal time expenditure on my part. They are always in need of transport volunteers, or volunteers to hand out food and supplies, if interested please click here.
I tried to help by keeping the bagels and water flowing, finding the right flea medications, and calling names when people were up. It was a whirlwind! I felt a bit overwhelmed by the sheer number of people and animals, but the staff at PAW Team took it all in stride! They calmly clipped nails, treated paw-tients, and scooted people right along. Before I knew it there was no one else in line and just a few more people waiting around with their pets.
At the end of the day I stopped by and chatted with the executive director of PAW Team briefly and handed over our check for $1,500 and 3 DoggyBags! (I later learned that one of the DoggyBags was used at a raffle that raised an additional $2,000 in raffle ticket sales - score!) She was so stoked about our help and we're both looking forward to growing together and helping more people and pets adventure together for a very long time.
PAW Team saw 42 paw-tients on the day I was there and Whyld River's contribution will help them to see and provide for even more.
Thank you for being a part of the Whyld River pack and providing hope for pets in need!
Pack Leader, Whyld River