Tag Archives: animal rescue

Power of a Howl

There is something so magical about the sound of dogs howling in unison.  I don’t know the exact reason for why a howl begins or the exact purpose of a howl but I do know it must have a hand somewhere in bonding dogs.  Whatever the reason, the power of it is undeniable.

Usually it begins with sounds of a scuffle.  One dog having overstepped their boundaries or another simply having a bad day.  The fight breaks out and the thought goes through my mind every time whether to rush to the enclosure where the scuffle broke out and try to intervene.  Somehow like magic however the sounds of thrashing and growling slowly turn into a howl.  Not from either of the fight participants, but from a nearby dog.  The sound of one howl turns into three, then seven, then eleven until within just a few seconds every dog (including those who were previously fighting) stops what they are doing to join in.

It reminds me of 101 Dalmatians where the dogs are sending messages across the town because it begins in our shelter and all the dogs join in for the song, it then starts to spread across the shelter like a gentle wind eventually infecting the neighboring street dogs to join in as well.  Where the howl began turns silent as peace settles back into each dog and the echo of howls continues on away from the origin until finally silence descends all around.  The after howl silence is so serene.

Fights I’ve witnessed in person are often broken up by us throwing water on the animals just to get them snapped out of what they were doing for a split second.  It only works for that split second however and you have to get in between them before they jump right back into their fight.  They hold grudges for a while even when separated.  Though my instinct always works toward reaching for the nearest water bowl, I often wonder if instead I should simply start howling myself to see if it catches on to break up the fight peacefully.  Fights never restart after a good howl.

The community dog howl is a sound I’ve come to absolutely adore.  I must admit I’ve joined in myself on full moon nights just for the heck of it, probably freaking out passersby, but I’m not much of one to care what others think of me anyway:)  I will admit it is annoying when they break out in song at 3am, first thing in the morning, just before bed when you are trying your hardest to sleep, or any other random time when you are simply praying for silence, yet it’s still one of my favorite sounds.  Or maybe it’s just the peaceful silence that comes after the howl…

On to Modern Bangkok

Back to Thailand

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One for the Dogs

For this post, I just wanted to put up some pictures of a few of the wonderful dogs at the sanctuary.  Enjoy the pictures:)

Noodles sleeping in his favorite position:

Noodles
Noodles Favorite Sleeping Position

Piglet eyeballing me nervously (she won’t let anyone touch her but loves being a porch dog).

Piglet
Piglet

Puppy playtime with Shadow, Sky, Bo, Bella and Serena

Puppy Playtime
Puppy Playtime

Bo pinning down Sky… Notice Bo is pinning another down with only 3 legs:)

Bo Pinning Sky
Bo Pinning Sky

Shadow having a lick

Shadow
Shadow

Bella with her cone

Bella
Bella

Bo seeking attention

Sky getting the big bad shade

 

Sky
Sky

Blind, old Wiley with his tiger print wrapped tail

Wiley
Wiley

Xena relaxing

Xena
Xena

Everyone wanting attention

Xena, Xyla & Nunu
Xena, Xyla & Nunu

Bang having a stretch

Bang
Bang

Wilma (lost the use of her back legs in a car crash)

Bang and Blaze chilling

Blaze & Bang
Blaze & Bang

Crash (who also lost use of his back legs during… well, a crash)

Gizmo (can actually use his back legs, but chooses not to.  He bit me once just above the knee and took out a large chunk.  He really didn’t mean to though, he was aiming for the dog I was carrying but since he can’t jump just ended up getting me instead, lol!)

On to Power of a Howl

Back to Thailand

Gone to the Dogs

After ferociously posting, catching up on all my travels, once again the silence (i.e. lack of posting) has begun… I figured I should tell you all why exactly.  See, I’ve literally gone to the dogs!

I’m in Sangkhlaburi, Thailand near the border with Burma (Myanmar) volunteering at the Baan Unrak Animal Sanctuary.  I may have mentioned before that my ultimate goal in life is to start an animal sanctuary of my own, and well, in order to get there I first have to actually see what its really like…

Most days are good, just the basics: feed, water, play, change blankets/mats, laundry, give meds, play more, walk the dogs with paralyzed back legs in the doggie “wheel chair”, more play, night feed, rest.  There are approximately 40 plus dogs and puppies, most are regular dogs, several are 3-legged and 3 other precious dogs are only able to use their front legs.  Well, Gizmo technically CAN use his back legs, he just chooses not to:)

Dogs rule the streets here (which I adore) but on occasion or rather more than ever necessary that means hit and runs.  While many people love their animals and actually take care of their dogs and other pets, far many more don’t.  Animals are purposely poisoned, cuts and gashes are ignored leading to very serious maggot infestations (we had to put one down because it was literally infested with THOUSANDS of maggots from his mouth to his tail, which was acutally missing, nothing more than a hole filled with squirming maggots) while others are simply abandoned or starved.  Vet care is free (donations are welcome) yet some people simply prefer to choose a grisly life for them instead of seeking help.

But, while there is that heartbreaking side to volunteering here, there are so many joys to it too.  They bring such an unconditional and pure love to my heart that is hard to match.  Unfortunately, the nature of caring for any life (human or animal) includes having to deal with every aspect of it, the good and the bad.  We help where we can, do what we can, but of course not all can be saved. Just the nature of the beast.

So you see, it’s not just for any random reason I’ve been M.I.A. on my blog, I’ve just been busy loving and caring for dogs:)  I do of course plan to catch up on about 5 other posts I have in mind, but the other excuse I have for not posting is I’ve been dealing with a super crazy virus on my tablet that kept rerouting me to a website called adfoc.us (do NOT click that!!) and some other thing called mobo market kept trying to download on my computer.  But after 4 factory resets, I think it’s finally gone:)

On to The Death Railway

Back to Thailand