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Get a Dog For The Weekend or Work Day With DOGO!

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There’s another kind of housing crisis happening in the Bay Area. One in which our best friends suffer. I’m speaking of course, about no-dog apartments. I am in this exact living situation, which is why I have been confusing the hell out of my coworkers and friends by showing up with random dogs all the time. My fabulous secret was: DOGO! I made an orientation appointment a few months in advance, went to their partnered rescue group, Family Dog Rescue, and within a week…I was bringing small friends everywhere. The best kinds of friends actually: they’re furry, they don’t sleep with your boyfriend, and they never talk about their stupid diets. Here are some other important reasons you should consider volunteering with DOGO!

Never Be Without a Brunch Date

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I brought Gable to brunch with me at a friend’s house and the results were mindblowingly cute. Look at him play with that baby, and try to tell me you don’t feel joy, you cold-hearted jerk.

Office Buddies

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You know when you walk into an office and there’s dogs but they’re not yours so you’re instantly jealous? Claim some of that glory for yourself. Having a dog like Faithful on hand is soothing, adorable, and makes for a good lap warmer.

Wingdogs, Am I Right?

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When you’re walking around with a cute dog who’s wearing a vest that says “Adopt Me” on it, people are going to stop you. Eventually, one of those people is going to be a cute person. It’s a triple threat benefit: the dog gets socialized, you meet strangers, and strangers get to meet both of you. I don’t have an example of this happening while I was out because taking strangers’ photos is creepy, so here’s my cute friend playing with Fox.

Puppies

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When I brought Fox back to the shelter at the end of the day, I followed the protocol of going straight up to the kennels so there’s less chance of intermingling with other dogs who might consider him food. Downstairs, I stumbled onto a puppy party. You heard me. Puppy party. There were 6 hand-sized Rottweiler/Australian Shepherd mini-dogs hanging out with the Family Dog Rescue staff. The one I had immediately crawled up my neck and bit my ear with his tiny non-teeth.

All the Likes

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Take photos of the dogs. Let other people take photos of the dogs. Post those photos online and watch the likes roll in. I mean, it’s better than that photo of your Subway sandwich or another article about how much Donald Trump sucks. We all know he does. Instead, you can post things like this and the only people who get mad are people you don’t need to be friends with anymore.

Naps

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As you can imagine, shelters are loud and the dogs are tired. They will always want to be your nap buddy. You can nap on the couch, nap at the beach, nap by the park, nap in your car, or be like me and resent how much Bernie got to nap on the floor while some of us have to do our jobs, which doesn’t include being adorable.

Being Good, Oh Yes You Are, You Are So Good!

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These dogs are living a rough life, despite the impeccable care the shelter staff provides. Often, they were mistreated in the past or suffer physical disabilities. It’s lonely and stressful to not have a home, a forever home as they say. When you take these dogs out with you, you give them a chance to be with people in the kind of environment they’ll need to prepare for when they get adopted. You help ease some of the load of the hardworking staff and introduce the dogs to potential new families. Yes, it can be sad when you have to bring them back by the end of the day, but look at that face. That’s a happy dude.

The Complete Joy of It All

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I have always said that I like all dogs more than I like all people. It’s been well-researched that living in a big city contributes to heightened levels of depression, anxiety, and loneliness in its residents. I love doing DOGO! so much that I’m seriously considering volunteering as an orientation guide, especially knowing that Danielle Bowers and Danielle Guerin (the founders) are there every day and need more help to teach volunteers how to interact properly with dogs (please stop rushing them with your arms widespread and squealing, you wouldn’t be too keen on it either if a giant flesh monster came running at you), get comfortable with how things are done at Family Dog Rescue (don’t make the staff’s lives harder), and accommodate a wait list of 1000 people (don’t let the number scare you, just sign up and when the time comes, you will be delighted). It’s free, it’s flexible, and I can’t think of a better way I’ve spent my time all year.

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Candace Cui - Actual Unicorn

Candace Cui - Actual Unicorn

At age 2, I was getting run over by a bike in an alley in China. At age 8, I was avoiding man-o-wars on Tybee Island. At age 14, I was overdrinking sweet tea while running through the woods barefoot. At age 20, I was learning Art History and how to drop it low. At age 25, I was making fun of drum circles at Dolores. At every age, I am charming the fuck out of you. Just wait, it'll happen.