Sometimes quiet words are the greatest gift to those in need.
RedRover Responders volunteers experienced the power of this gift after helping to care for hundreds of dogs rescued from a massive dogfighting ring last week.
Volunteers performed their regular daily care responsibilities like cleaning cages, feeding and providing much-needed socialization to the rescued dogs, but our RedRover Responders volunteers went above and beyond: Volunteers took time after finishing their general duties to sit and quietly read to the previously abused dogs, helping them find solace – rather than fear – in the sound of human voices.
Bob, a RedRover Responders volunteer from Austin, Texas, read articles from his favorite magazines to some of the dogs. After Carrie from North Carolina completed her daily duties, she chose to read snippets from Star Wars to help the canines get used to being around people without fear. Janese, another RedRover Responders volunteer, sat outside a very nervous dog’s cage and simply read the daily paper aloud. After a short time, the timid dog became curious about Janese’s voice and slowly approached the front of the cage. Seeing the dogs respond to this simple offering – a calm, caring human presence – was so humbling and rewarding for our volunteers.
Reading to the dogs wasn’t just a fun way to pass the time; reading aloud to the abused animals helped them associate positively with the sound of human voices. By reading out loud to these dogfighting victims, RedRover Responders volunteers gave them a chance to understand that, after all the dogs had been through, there were people out there who cared.