It's back to school month, and we're marking the occasion by recognizing one of our young up-and-coming volunteers. Maya has been spotted working with some of our rougher customers at BACS, and is even starting to take dogs to BAD RAP class. Maya, please do keep in mind that walking shelter dogs is much more fun than doing homework!
What do you do when you're not at the shelter?
Well for most of the year I have to spend all my time at school. I go to Berkeley High, going into my freshman year. Before I went to King Middle School. But now that it's summer I go to a lot of movies with my friends, gossip... normal teenage stuff. I spend a lot of time with my extended family too, and lately I've been educating them about pit bulls whenever I see them (they're not huge fans to say the least.)
Why did you initially decide to volunteer at BACS?
I've always loved dogs, especially big ones, but have never been able to have one for multiple reasons. I've actually always loved pit bulls, even when I was a little kid. I had heard all the horror stories but I met a few that were very nice, so I just didn't listen to the media. So last December I asked a friend where she got her dog, and she told me, "At that shelter down on second street. They're good but they have a lot of pit bulls..." But that grabbed my attention so my Mom and I started volunteering around mid February.
What are your favorite things about volunteering?
Probably meeting all of the new dogs that come in and getting to know them. I love dogs who are mellow but playful, and have energy but aren't hyper, so it's fun to try and pick out the dogs that I would like the most. It seems though that a dog will act the opposite with you from the way they act in their kennel, so it's nearly impossible to guess. I also love being able to help the dogs get adopted, learning skills for when I finally do get a dog, and bringing all my fearful friends and family to see how nice pit bulls really are.
Who are your favorite dogs, past and present?
Well, I was completely in love with both Red and Pony Boy, but Pony Boy just got adopted and Red went to a rescue a couple weeks back. I'm happy for them but I miss them. My first love was Blazey, an old lab mix back in March. Then I fell for Horton, the small brown and white pit bull. Now I guess my favorite would be Rory. He seems so scary in his kennel but he really is the sweetest dog, and I've actually seen him get scared of the cats in the office. I also love Cece, she is so stubborn but there's just something about the way she struts, or suddenly decides to jump and spin in the air because she is just so happy to be outside =). I also recently discovered what a love Radar is. I love Wilbur and Oliver too.