If you love dogs, then this next voluntary position might be right up your alley. Unlike many dogs that are a member of a loving home, shelter dogs usually have had some trying times in their lives. That is why the Humane Society of Tampa Bay is looking for volunteers to cuddle with dogs at its shelter.
Here are the details on this dream job and how you can volunteer as a dog cuddler
The Perfect Job for a Dog Lover
Workers with the Humane Society of Tampa Bay say it is important to cuddle with dogs, especially the newer ones who have just entered the shelter. Many come in and are spayed and neutered up front, or are recovering from an accident. This can leave them scared and confused. Cuddling can help them relax and well as give them the comfort they need.
As Liz McCoy with the Humane Society of Tampa Bay says, “It makes me emotional just thinking about it. Nothing happy brings animals through our doors. So when volunteers come in to make things better, it’s just a moving thing to be a part of.”
Why the Humane Society of Tampa Bay Needs Cuddlers
Normally, the Humane Society is full of volunteers, many of them students, willing to spend their time cuddling with the dogs. But, this is usually when the students are out of school. When school is in session, the Humane Society finds that dog cuddling volunteers are harder to come by. This is why they put out the call for some helping hands.
One such volunteer cuddler is Jeff Honig, a retired depute. And while he might not strike some as the type to volunteer for such a position, he loves doing it, and feels he is absolutely perfect for the job. In fact, he doesn’t regret his decision to become a dog cuddler at all. In fact, he realizes the importance of what he does and tries to donate 10 hours of his time each week, despite his often busy schedule.
According to Honig, “It’s very soothing for me, it’s very soothing for them. It’s just a great experience.”
Why it is Important to Cuddle With Dogs
Like many animals, dogs cuddle to keep warm. The act of snuggling close with another animal or a human also releases chemicals in the dog which make it feel good. In fact, cuddling with a dog can release the same “feel good” chemicals in humans, so the relationship is beneficial for both.
Cuddling with a dog at the shelter can also have a longer lasting impact on the dog’s eventual adoption and being placed in a loving home. A big part of adoption is the demeanor of the dog. Improving that through cuddling and the showing of affection makes it easier for the dogs to adjust to home life.
The Humane Society of Tampa Bay Could Use Your Help
If you think you would make a good dog cuddler, you can contact the Humane Society of Tampa Bay at their website. All it takes is a little love and the time commitment to snuggle up to one of the shelter’s many dogs. Learn more about the job of volunteer cuddler and Honig, a big supporter of volunteer cuddlers.
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