Volunteer of the Month for September 2014

This month we honor Susan Elliott-Bryan as volunteer of the month! Susan began working with Last Hope when she contacted Critter Crusaders that had a dog that wasn’t doing well in a cage. Last Hope agreed to take the dog and Susan agreed to foster him. The dog was Tommy and she worked with him for a year before he was put to sleep. It was a difficult situation and Susan thought perhaps her fostering days were behind her. But then she was asked to foster two feral dogs and they are coming along well.

 

Susan says, “What I like to do for Last Hope, when I’m not fostering in my home, is work with the dogs who will be more adoptable if they had better social skills.  I took training last winter with a fabulous woman in Austin, Texas who works especially with pit bulls and who expects owners to be the leader in the relationship with their dogs.  I also went to a Clicker Training Expo in California and learned about how clicker training works – I love it!  The dogs get clear messages and quickly learn which behaviors are rewarded and which are ignored. When a dog sits on command and shakes hands for instance, it is more apt to get attention from potential adopters.”

 

When she’s not fostering for Last Hope, Susan enjoys bicycling around the country. She says most dogs can learn to run alongside a bicycle and she enjoys the exercise for both her and the dog.

 

“I’ve had my share of difficult dogs and sad endings, but so many dogs can be saved!  With clear and realistic expectations, persistence, love and patience, anxious shelter dogs turn into loving family dogs. I like helping that happen.”
Thank you, Susan, for all the love and help you provide for our fosters!
julia sig

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