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Meet the Dog Walker


I’m Jessica Dolce, just a stubborn, high drive, well-meaning mutt.


I grew up in New Jersey, spent more than decade in Philadelphia, and now I’m living in Maine with my dogs, cats, and a gentle giant of a husband. Besides dogs, here’s what makes me squeal: drive-in movies, old post offices, vegetables, and libraries big or small.

I’m an animal welfare advocate, coach, educator, writer and speaker. I’ve worked (and volunteered) in animal shelters, a holistic pet store, and with dog trainers.

In 2013 I became a Certified Compassion Fatigue Educator via the Green Cross.

Through it all, I’ve always been a dog walker.

I’ve been professionally dog wrangling for more than 15 years and I’ve seen just about everything. I thought it was time to share what I’ve learned with all of you!

I’m also the gal that created DINOS™: Dogs in Need of Space. You can learn more about DINOS and respectful, responsible dog ownership on the new website here.

And if you’re still curious, you can hang out with me in this podcast where I talk about being a dog walker and living with DINOS or in this interview for “Why We Rescue.”

If you’re looking for Compassion Fatigue resources, check out my new website. I support animal care and welfare pros, helping them navigate the intense stressors of the important work they do. We talk about boundaries. A lot.

I’m pro-laughter. And I think you guys are awesome.

Have a question? Or a funny joke? Email me at:


Interested in reprinting, distributing, or reblogging?

Excerpts and links are always welcome. For more, please contact me!

© Jessica Dolce and Notes from a Dog Walker, 2011-2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited (except pdf handouts – those are available for noncommercial use, no further permission needed). Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jessica Dolce and Notes from a Dog Walker with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Disclaimer: If your dog is having serious behavioral issues, please contact a professional for an evaluation. For real: You will not hold the author of this blog responsible for any incidents related directly or indirectly to the materials published within this site. assumes no liability or responsibility for your actions.

Thank you for reading. Wishing all of you happy, safe dog walks!

48 Comments Post a comment
  1. Jody Frith #

    Hi Jessica. As the owner of a DINOS I just love your wonderful article. I am also head instructor of the Hobart Dog Training Club in Tasmania and I was wondering if you would allow me to reprint (with full credit to you) your article and manifesto in our (free) club newsletter. Even though I live in a small state thousands of miles away the problem is still as rampant here as it is in the US and everywhere else. People here desperately need to read this kind of info. Cheers. Jody.

    December 2, 2011
    • Hi Jody, I’m not sure if I got back to you earlier, but I wanted to tell you that you are welcome to share! Please reprint the articles in their entirety, with credit to Jessica Dolce and a link to the blog ( Thanks!!

      December 4, 2011
  2. Love your blog! As a fellow dog walker, your words are what most new and old dog owners need to read. I work in downtown NYC….I see it all and hope that your words reach these people. Down with Flexi leashes on city streets!
    Best, Judy Kaplan

    December 3, 2011
  3. Thanks Judy! Dogwalkers never get a break from this, since we’re out all day, so I think we have a unique take on what it’s like to Walk With DINOS : )

    December 4, 2011
  4. sarah #

    Love to hear your tips on keeping your back and shoulders safe while walking dogs that aren’t so easy on leash. I’m a walker and trainer and after just a few years of doing this job my poor back just SCREAMS some nights. Yoga helps, as does encouraging clients to buy no-pull products for their dogs but being yanked around is inevitable. Any secrets from a veteran?

    December 7, 2011
    • I wish I had the magic answer, but I’m creaky some days too! Back when I walked dogs 7 days a week, I used to get massages a lot! And Pilates is good for your core, which helps keep you upright when the dogs are pulling. Oh, and tiger balm is handy for knots in your shoulders ; )

      December 7, 2011
    • Marie #

      Hi Jessica,
      I want to thank you for the informative post on carabiners. I was having a hard time visualizing how everything went together and the pictures really helped. My dog is usually very calm but today she got over stimulated and backed out of her harness. It ended well but I want to make sure that never happens again!

      April 13, 2019
  5. Loving this down in Philly. One of our clients who has a DINO sent me the link. It’s so perfect we shared it with the entire staff. MDIFs – classic. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had this exact conversation: “My dog is friendly.” “Mine isn’t, can you grab your dog?” (Not sure if you heard but there was a really brutal dog attack in December in Grad Hospital. Off-Leash, pregnant dog nearly killed another leashed dog.) Now that our own pooch is getting older he’s become a part-time DINO. (Some days he’s just a grumpy old man…) We’re really getting behind leash-efforts in the City and this is perfect!

    January 17, 2012
    • Hi Carrie,
      Philly is where I dealt with some of the most “enthusiastic” MDIFs I’ve ever met, not to mention a lot of reckless owners that created really dangerous situations (like what you mentioned – that’s waaay beyond an MDIF and plain old criminal behavior), so I’m happy to hear your crew enjoyed the post!

      Have you heard of Dog Flags? They might be a helpful addition to your client’s leashes:

      And please keep me posted on any new leash law efforts in Philly – I’d be happy to promote!

      January 18, 2012
  6. I love your blog – just found out about it from another Leonberger owner on our group. We were actually discussing aggressive behavior in a training class. I have this type of issue with my Leo/Kuvasz mix. He is certainly a DINO! He has some aggressive type behavior (that is probably insecurity and feeling he must protect me) when we go to public places. We are working on it.

    I see you are in Maine. I am in Augusta. Where are you?


    January 27, 2012
    • Hi Karen, I’m down in the Portland area! Do you volunteer with the Leonberger rescue in Maine? If so, we might have met in the past. I used to work for Stella and Chewy’s and would often see that rescue at local events : ) Thanks so much for reading!

      January 27, 2012
  7. I am indeed the person with the Leos that works with a Leo rescue group – I am with LeoPALs now. I think I remember you with S&C. The boys still love that stuff but don’t get it very often. Your blog is great – you may be getting readers from the Leolist – the link to your blog was posted!

    You DINOS materials need to be posted at dog stores, parks and everywhere really!!!!


    January 27, 2012
    • Thanks Karen! There are pdfs of some of the blogs (look under the tab ‘All Things DINOS” on the homepage) and feel free to print and post them any place you think they could help!

      January 27, 2012
  8. Anita #

    You’re site is AMAZING. I am a guardian of two DINOS (Pug and boxer/staffie) and this site puts a voice to how I have been feeling for so long. Thank you so much for all that you do for DINOS!

    February 1, 2012
    • Hi Anita, Thanks for giving two DINOS a loving home! And if you’re on the DINOS Facebook page, I’d LOVE to see a photo of them ; )

      I’m glad you’re here with us – thanks for reading!

      March 6, 2012
  9. Jessica, I’m so happy to have found your blog!

    My husband and I adopted Jetta, an Australian Shepherd/Black Lab cross, last year. When we first would have her out on walks, she would sit quietly as I interacted with people. After a few months, her behavior changed, and we think it’s because she realized she was in her forever home, and she didn’t need to be on “best behavior” to avoid being shipped to another foster home. She became very reactive to people and dogs approaching or anyone making loud or sudden movements.

    I’m a first-time dog owner who’s had to do a lot of work to develop confidence around my dog, and it’s paying off. We just finished 2 months of private training with Jetta, and she’s learning not to be afraid out for our walks because I’m taking care of making sure we’re both safe.

    Even with all the successful work we’ve done with Jetta, she doesn’t take kindly to people she doesn’t know getting all up in her business, which make sense; neither do I!

    It doesn’t mean I’m not a competent dog owner, and it doesn’t mean Jetta’s not a good dog. We’re both fine. I’m so glad to see that we’re not alone, and that someone’s giving a voice to what we’ve experienced. Thank you!

    March 6, 2012
    • Hi Kelly, I’m so glad you found it too!

      It’s clear to me how dedicated and responsible you are and you should be proud of all your hard work. And Jetta is lucky to be with you! It sounds like you’re both learning a lot from each other.

      If you’re on facebook, you should stop by the DINOS page and say “hi” – you’ll find a lot of support over there and you’ll never feel alone again!

      Thanks for reading!

      March 6, 2012
  10. handvolldackel #

    I’m so exited I found your blog! The MDIF epidemic is more widespread than you might think – I’m from Germany and I swear, I’ve encountered nearly every single one described here. I’ve had people yell at me their dog “just wants to play” after he pinned my dachshund down until he screamed, then they explained the dogs were “just talking” and I would “know nothing about natural dog behaviour”. I’ve taken detours, been on the lookout for OLDs, been stared at as if I was crazy because I don’t want my dog to rush up to strange dogs. I’ve done nearly everything described, apart from throwing the dachshund in a pick-up, because we don’t have many of those.
    I’ll add your blog to my tiny blog-roll and hope to read much more from you!

    April 1, 2012
    • I’m so glad you found the blog – it’s amazing that there are so many of us (world wide!) that are dealing with these issues. Thanks for reading and sharing my blog. I hope it helps get the word out in Germany that dogs there need space too! ; )

      April 1, 2012
  11. Mary #

    I just wanted to thank you for making people aware of this. My dog has epilepsy and while people’s “dogs are friendly” they can kill my dog. Certain scents cause him to go into cluster seizures that take a dosage of Valium to wake him up. Just smelling the medication put on the back of a dogs neck used for heart worm/fleas can cause a horrible reaction.
    I’m sick of having to run away or protect my 100lb dog from these very hyperactive dogs. If we wanted to encounter off leash dogs, we would simply go to a park. It’s so very frustrating. I’m always afraid he’s going to bite back but he never does.

    I’ll be printing and posting your forms up.

    Thank you again

    May 7, 2012
    • Oh Mary, that sounds awful and so scary.

      How would you feel if I shared what you wrote? I think it’s really important for the public to understand that there are many different reasons why dogs need space, so it’s best that we all act responsibly and with respect while out in public.

      Give your big, sweet boy a hug for me,

      May 8, 2012
      • Mary #

        Absolutely you can share, he has a normal life aside from the seizures every couple of months unless we have a bad day.
        We’ve joined your FB page and are grateful we’ve found a source for flyers and information to help people understand about DINOS.
        Thanks so much for your sweetness. He’s a teddybear

        May 8, 2012
        • Thank you Mary – I hope the handouts help a bit.

          I’m going to write a blog post about your dog’s medical needs to help people understand the importance of leash laws and beng respectful of others.

          What’s your big guy’s name? And if you’d like me to use a photo of your dog in the post, I’d love to show him off!

          If so, you can email me: If not, no worries!

          May 8, 2012
  12. Gretchen K #

    Love your blogs Jessica! My 80 % blind White Shepherd would have “my dog is friendly” run up to her off leash and attack. My solution, to yell ” My dog will kill your dog”! One morning at the high school, a group of owners and their six dogs were socializing. We passed 250 feet away but all six dogs started a high speed run towards my dog. Once I yelled to the group “she will kill their dogs”, not one dog made it within 25 feet of us. Never saw 6 people react so quickly. The look on their faces was priceless. It may sound crazy, but i needed to find something that would protect my dog.

    July 21, 2012
    • Ha! I’m glad that got people motivated to get their dogs. I’m sure their faces were priceless!
      Thanks for reading Gretchen.

      July 22, 2012
  13. Ellen #

    Interesting in Spindletop?. E-mail me I’m local to area and trying to help.
    Be glad to hear from others who want to help the 300 victims. Not asking for money

    July 23, 2012
  14. Hi Jessica, I am hoping to make up a few vests requesting space in Queensland ( Australia). One of my options was the DINOS Dogs in need of space words, not your logo. Do you have it under copyright? Would you mind us using it? It may end up being a commercial concern. It is one of the options we are considering.

    Trying to put your signs up every where in Cairns, Queensland. Hope it raises awareness.


    September 7, 2012
  15. Thanks for your help, I was just checking before we finalised our options.

    September 8, 2012
  16. joe #

    first off i just want to thank you for you site, its good to see people trying to educate others on the truth about dogs, like bieng raised right or wrong. i dont know how i came across your site, somehow got offtrack when i was looking for a picture of a pitbull with angel wings and ended up here, but i love that your taken the time to run this site.your 100% right about the dogs way of being raised doesnt allways mean thell be problem free and how dogs raised wrong cant live a good happy safe life with a good family and no problems.
    heres my story, figured i write about it and maybe it will help me cope a little better, or help someone else down the line. 3 days ago i lost one of my girls roxi , she was my baby, and just died suddenly and unexpectedly, i feel its my fault from neglect. she would have been turning 6 in two weeks. she was a purebreed pitbull that i got at 8 weeks old, she was the runt f the litter, i found her on craigslist and got her because she looked like my other pit i lost a year earlier rocky,
    Rockys death was my fault and it still kills me to this day 7 years later. his leash broke on our way home, about 100 yards from home, he usually never left my side and would allways listen to me plus we lived in a quite neighborhood without much traffic, exp. that time at night, so i thought it would be ok. rocky was sniffing around a bush and i was waiting for him to finnish doing his thing, i was at the end of the street where it came to the middle of a hill, i lived just to the left on the top of the hill and across from my house was a big curve, i heard a car skidding around the corner doing atleast 100mph in a 20mph zone so i freeked out and called rocky to me and he got excited and ran right passed me and the kid was still flying down the hill, rocky tride to run across the street and almost made it but the kid clipped him in his rear on the drivers side headlight, another 6 inches and rocky probably would have made it by. but he didnt and was hit so hard he spun and hit his head on the fender. the cry he made still haunts me to this day. i wouldnt wish my worst enemy to have to see or go throu that. the kid kept going then stoped at the bottom of the hill to look at his car. rocky was crying and trying to get up but was basicaly paralized, i tride to comfort him and keep him still. i yeld to the kid to please help me carry him to my home so i could get him in my car and go to the emergancy room, but he yelled sorry and jumped in his car and flew off. i picked rocky up a 90 pound pitbull and ran home screaming for my mother, she came out saw what was going on and grabbed her keys, it was about midnight and the closest animal E.R. was in woburn ma. about a half hour away, we had to call to have a vet meet us there, i got in the back seat with him, he had his rear end on my lap and head on the other side of the car, as soon as we started pulling into the er rocky got up turned around to lay with his head in my lap. ill never forget the way he looked up at me, smiled, took a deep breath and closed his eyes. just then the vet opened the door but blood started coming out his nose and mouth. we both knew he was gone. he used everything he had left to turn around and go in my lap. i cried for months, he was a special dog, he had a human personality like most pits but was different then any other pit i ever met, he saved my life a week after i got him. he was 2 years old when i got him. he was neglected bad and raised wrong for 2 years but was the perfect dog for the 3 years i had him, (perfect example of your blog) never a problem. only way he could or would accendently ever hurt someone was by drowning them with kisses, same as roxi and my other pit harley, harley is 3 and a half and hasent left my or my wifes side since roxi passed. but all three pits never had any aggrestion and all three just love or loved to give kisses. sorry for the book im writing butt i have to get it out somehow, were supposed to setup roxis cremation today, thats why im up, i cant sleep.

    back to roxi, she was diagnosed with epilepsy at two years old, her seizures were bad at first and thought we would have to put her to sleep but the vet said she wasnt suffering and we could control them with meds, he said the siezures hurt the owners more then the dog, it deff wasnt a good sight to see, but they got better as we adjusted her meds, then only came once or twice every couple months except from late oct till about end of dec every year. they were bad during that time for some reason. one year we took her to the er because she had a bunch of cluster seizures and thought she had to be put down. they gave her valum and put her on a iv for a few hours for dehidration. then the next year wasnt too bad, last year only had about a week of seizures but not bad ones, this year me and my wife got married and went on hunnymoon lat oct. we left her with my mother inlaw and had to leave harley with my parents. when we go back we started renovations at home so they stayed untill we finnished two weeks ago. they came home and roxy was ok first couple days, then got fever and was shaking bad, throwing up, not eating but drinking tons of water. i called vet but could only get apointment on jan 2 (today) but she passed sat. her blood levels were also due today, but now we have to go and figure what to do with her, were now broke, because our home was robbed and they got our safe with all my savings plus all the wedding money, if my wife didnt have her own bank account we would prob be homeless right now. but after the money we spent renovating where now moving into my parents. to get back on track, my wife is 20 weeks pregnant with a girl, i want to name her roxi but no one agrees, sorry about going on about my horrible 2012, hopefully things are different this year, i just had to vent a little or a lot, i feel i should have taken roxi to er but i thought she just had a cold, i didnt think she would die. plus i didnt have the money for the er, im not sure i can afford cremation today but we have to take her home with us. she has a lot to do with who me and my wife are today. its killing me i feel i neglected her this past year, i wish i was with her when she went, i was just upstairs, i didnt hear any banging or sounds of her siezuring and there were no signs of struggle. all i herd was harley bark a couple times about an hour before i went downstairs and found her on the kitchen floor with harley laying with her shaking. there was no bowel movement, no blood, her eyes were somewhat closed. i guess whats killing me most is not knowing how she died and if she went in pain or peacefull or if she was scared. she was also raped or i dont know if it was rape but she was in my motherinlaws gated yard and a brown dog whos owner just lets him roam freely everyday climbed the fence and had intercoarse with her, i wasnt there, my wife tride to get him off her but he snapped at her and it was too late, they were allready stuck, yes she was intacked, our vet said because her sezures and meds it was best not to take the chance and just keep an eye on her when in heat which we did, she was in a yard with an 8 foot fence all around
    we didnt know or think the roaming dog would climb the new fence. we had problems before with the 4 foot fence and the brown dog was intact, i found the owner and told him to fix him or i would if i found him in the yard again intact, the chances of my dog being pregnant could be deadly because her condition.he was fixed now but i dont know if he could have passed a virus to roxi. now im so worried to let harley out of my site, i take here everywhere with me, shes also intact but only because i neglected her because all roxis problems , shes scheduald for getting fixed in 2 weeks she also wont go into the kitchen now. she has a vet apointment tomorrow to make sure everythings ok with her. i almost want to have her pee all over the yard so the brown dog comes back and i can get a blood or uriun sample, or just catch him and take him to the vet. it also kills me wondering if i was with roxi if i could have saved her in time. sorry for taking up your whole page, i had to vent, i do feel maybe 2% better. i guess ill have to find 49 more sites to vent on and maybe ill feel better but i know it never goes away. and im fine with that, it keeps her memory alive, i just hope she understands what she ment to us and i wish i did more for her. ive lost good close friends, family members even other animals but nothing compares to rocky and roxi. its a tuff roller coaster. but anyway if anyone made it this far thanks for reading and stay close to your furry family members.
    Thanks from a stressed,confused and very sad pit owner, joe

    R.I.P (Running In Paridice) or more like R.F.I.P (Running Freely In Paridice) rocky and roxy and any other furry friends out there

    January 2, 2013
    • Hi Joe,
      For what it’s worth, I think Rocky and Roxy were both very lucky to have you as their owner. Despite how things ended for them, both of your dogs knew what it meant to be loved during their time with you. There are so many dogs (especially pit bulls) that never get to experience what it means to be a treasured companion and family dog, but Rocky and Roxy did. I have no doubt they are both pain-free, trotting close to your side these days.
      Wishing you peace in the new year,

      January 2, 2013
  17. Hi Jessica,
    THANK YOU THANK YOU you’re an ANGEL from heaven!! great resources and info for DINOS…Cinnamin is a terrier mix adopted that is leash reactive to other dogs,we’ve worked hard i say we’re a work in progress…live in western part of NH which has very little help for us…LOVE Maine but 2 hours away one way but willing to commute to help Cinnamin have the best life possible…live on fixed income and because of my medical condition need daytime classes…any suggestions would be most appreciated. Again thank you for your work.

    January 17, 2013
  18. Hi Jessica,
    Mind if I use your latest post on self-care as a way to help others better as a reading assignment for my nursing students?

    September 7, 2013
    • Please do Megan! I’d also be happy to turn this into a pdf if that’s an easier way for you to share with your students.

      September 8, 2013
  19. Aimmee #

    I read your whole blog. Thank you! I am the caregiver of my dad who once was a full of life independent great sense of humor kinda guy. Today he is suffering from complications after a mild stroke. After some physical therapy he was strong again but not in his mind. I am the only one there for him. He lashes out at me and complains to others who don’t give a damn how I didn’t do this how I forgot about that. His home has turned into a hoarders haven. O go in we make a plan 3-4 hours later no progress. He insists on going through things and finding am excuse to keep it I oblige. I take him out to breakfast every Sunday and we do our groceries together afterwards. Sometimes he wants to go to Walmart Target kohls all in the same day. O have him over fir dinners movie nights and for him to enjoy my pool that i never go in cause i feel so fat. Until all of this evolved a was a petite size 8;thanks to my puerto rican hips that dont lie. Lol.. I am a 13 now disgusted and no energy to try and change that.Next thing you know its. 7/8 pm. Oh and I left out I have ag full time job as a parent educator for families that need support education and instruction on child development in order to prevent child abuse. Some already have a case with the system.I do my job by going into their homes. Trailers overcrowded conditions unsanitary and oh is it overwhelming to witness. I share with my dad my day job. It seems not to phase him he wants his needs met. Oh by the way I’m married 4 years in July guess how that is going. Self care? I haven’t seen a hairdresser nail salon spa or danced like I loved to do. I am so wiped out I am afraid my marriage will dissolve and I’m just too wiped out to try and make it better. Self care I read it on your blog sounds great but have no idea where to start I am also the proud mommy of 2 cats and a pug I look at the ridden in guilt because they act and look like me.God help us all. Everyone.

    September 9, 2013
    • Once you become aware that Compassion Fatigue and/or Burnout are affecting you, you’ve already taken the first step towards self-care. If you can, you might want to pick up a copy of To Weep for a Stranger. Perhaps it’s the next step as you explore ways to incorporate self-care into your demanding role as personal caregiver and helping professional. Most of all, recognize that you deserve to take care of yourself. It’s not selfish to do so.

      September 11, 2013
  20. Hello Jessica, I need your help: I was walking home in weather that was not everyone’s cup of tea but seemed to make me happy and i saw this old woman trying to walk her dog and I wished I could walk the dog myself because I love dogs and walking in weather like this, so i’m trying to start my own dog walking job for the people in my neighbor hood that have dogs and since i’m not over the age of 16 its been hard for me to get started, would you mind giving me tips on how to get started, I kinda know what to do but I’m not sure on what to get and what I need anything like a licence to walk dogs [if there is something like that]. I would really love your help, and your blog is great, its really interesting for me [not so much my sister who reads it with me though ^.^ ]
    sincerely, Sofie ^.^)<3

    November 19, 2013
  21. Linda #

    Dear Jessica, I am in hell. I’m in the process of leaving my position as the live-in caretaker at an animal rescue. I made the decision to leave after realizing that I was horribly depressed, sleeping all of the time, and having no life outside of the shelter. I love the animals and always give them my all, but decided that I had to save myself. But now, as I’m training my replacement, I’m filled with guilt and worrying that I’m leaving these animals in the hands of someone who will not care for them as well as I did. I feel AWFUL. I want to stay out of rescue for awhile, but feel selfish if I do, and feel like there’s animals out there who need me. I feel like I need to “rebuild” myself, but feel like I’m leaving a hole in the animal rescue world. Did you feel that way too?

    March 16, 2014
    • I did Linda. Everything you’re feeling is a symptom of Compassion Fatigue – from the exhaustion and guilt to the feeling that no one can do the work of care-giving as well as we can. It was very brave of you decide to leave. I know how hard that choice is to make. Please remember that taking time off to take care of yourself doesn’t diminish all the good work you’ve already done. And it will allow you to continue giving in the future.

      Please take good care of yourself. The animals would want it that way.

      Here’s a good book to read, once you have some time (she writes about everything you’re describing): Trauma Stewardship by Laura van Dernoot Lipsky

      March 17, 2014
      • Linda #

        Thank you SO MUCH, Jessica. You made me feel so much better. What you are doing here is a wonderful thing! I will definitely pick up the book you suggested. You know, sometimes just having someone who UNDERSTANDS, and has been there, is a great comfort. My family and friends don’t understand how you can just lose your heart and soul to the animals in your care. You give up your holidays, your weekends, your interests. But seeing those little furry faces makes it all worth it. But sadly, what makes you GREAT in the rescue field, your endless love, devotion, and compassion, is also what drives you out of rescue. Hard to describe to someone who hasn’t been there. I feel a kinship with these other people who have commented on here. Best of luck to all of you!

        March 17, 2014
        • Josie #

          I just came across this page. I admire all of the people who have the strength and courage to work in the rescue field. I feel guilt because I want to do more…but I am hyper prone to emotional fatigue. I have so much going on at home and at work. I have two pit bulls I adopted and the newest one needs quite a bit of medical and emotional attention. He is being treated for heartworms and needs behavioral work due to his reactivity to some dogs on walks…although he is freaking stellar with my other dog. Just volunteering at an adoption event for half a day I had to step away to cry a few times. I feel so horrible that I don’t have the emotional stamina to be more involved. Please don’t feel bad for stepping away. I have friends who work in rescues and I see the fatigue in them. I know two who haven’t seen their siblings and parents in years because they refuse to take a break. There are so few of you out there…every minute you have given counts and ripples through to inspire others to pick up the torch. It’s because of people like you, with your devotion and knowledge, that people like me can adopt, find the right fit with existing dogs, and have a resource to go to for questions and advice. Trust the person you trained…I am sure their heart and passion are there. Just know that you have done so much already. Best wishes for you 🙂 Chin up and all that… 😉

          March 25, 2015
          • Linda #

            What a lovely post, Josie. Don’t be so hard on yourself for being emotional. Believe me, there have been plenty of times when I’ve just broken down and cried, especially after feelings build up inside – sadness for the animals, resentment toward the human race, etc… It’s ok to cry.
            Strangely enough, I have returned to my job in rescue. I think I have a few more years left in me and the kitties need me. One of the hardest parts of working in rescue is dealing with the humans!
            Best of luck to you, Josie!

            May 18, 2015
            • Josie #

              My dogs are part of a team here in Houston…The Ambassabull Project…and I have a proposal I want to make to them. I am concerned about the way it seems police officers so readily shoot and otherwise disregard dogs and want to see about feeling out the police departments here…maybe put together a training program. Something to safeguard pets. This came after seeing a YouTube video about a guy who was called home from work because an officer shot and killed his dog. The officer entered his backyard looking for a lost child (which was later found sleeping at home). I also heard about an incident here in Houston where a man and his friend were stopped on a busy interstate, officers found drugs in the car and arrested the two men. One man had his blind chihuahua with him and asked to call his wife so she could pick the dog up before the car was towed. The officer refused, the dog was left by the side of the road, wandered into traffic, was hit by a car and killed. Having two pit bulls, and knowing they bark when people come into the house, it makes me nervous – you know. My other project I want to do is to see if the fire stations around here have the pet oxygen masks and if not, do a fundraiser for that. It isn’t getting into the meat of working closely with animals in desperate need, but it’s what I can do now. The Ambassabull Project also plans on putting together some free clinics on responsible dog ownership and I believe they have plans to do fundraisers to help raise money to spay/neuter in poor communities. The lady that run TAP also works with 3 rescues in the area – and she has 7 dogs of her own. Not sure how she manages it all!

              Anyway – all of you out there really putting yourselves out there – it’s so wonderful. LOL I am tearing up just thinking about it. If it weren’t for all of you I would not have Mae and Dude – I believe both were taken out of county shelters on the day they were to be put down. I can’t even imagine that. They are such wonderful, caring, soulful creatures!

              I am glad you found a second wind. Maybe you just need to step away from time to time to get your spirit rested and settled before going back in to the fray. 🙂

              May 18, 2015
  22. I’m looking forward to reading your blog!

    November 17, 2015
  23. Hey Jessica! I’m really liking your blog posts, I’m new here and I was quite confused as to what this blog was about seeing the title of your latest post…haha! Keep it up!

    March 1, 2016
  24. It’s so happy to found your blog!
    It’s very informative, Love your tips for walking dogs, Thanks for sharing.

    July 30, 2018


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