Take a Paws to Scratch and Sniff


One evening as Pawn Stars played in the background, Joe and I chatted light-heartedly. Somehow the topic turned to our birth certificates. He found his and I cooed over the cute thought of him as a newborn baby. I knew exactly where to find mine.  Nestled inside the pages of my baby book is an original hospital certificate bearing a gold seal and my tiny footprints.

Inside our spare bedroom closet (aka: the hoarding closet) is a stack of 8 plastic containers. Carefully setting each one aside, I worked my way to the last box. Removing the lid I lifted out the time worn Beatrix Potter book. The front cover read: A Tale of Baby’s Days.

After showing Joe my certificate, we took flipped through the pages. Something caught my attention. There scribbled in blue ink on a two page spread were notes written to me from my parents; the left side reserved for my mom, the right for my dad.

Joe, who knows me inside and out like a tattered old cloth, chuckled and read the line penned by my mom out loud: “You love to go shopping with mommy and buy pretty clothes. When you see the stuff animals you get so excited. You seem to love animals, especially dogs.”

On the right side, my father seemed to agree as he wrote “You are very aware of your surroundings and love to go for rides {yep, still very true}. You like the outdoors and animals.”

Dumbfounded I sat in silence. My cranium digested the certainty of those words.  By the age of 6 months, my parents pierced my reflection and discerned who I am inside.

Fast forward 33 years later: I adopted 3 fury, four-legged “kids” from the local shelter, created my animal charity drive, and rescued a multitude of stray dogs, among a great number of other endeavors.

A new friend, Katie Mulford, mentioned a team she started for the South Eastern Guide Dogs Walkathon, and was looking for members to join. I complied and joined Team Woofing It.

The location of the walkathon was in St. Pete at Vinoy Park.  Afraid of long lines at the registration tent and the scarcity of parking spots, I arrived early.

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My eagerness was over blown. I found the first available space and parked. It was 8:10 am. The walkathon started at 10:00 am, however I was to meet with my team at 9:30 am.

I had an hour to kill. I headed to the registration table first to get that out of the way. The long lines I anticipated did not exist. I walked up to the very first volunteer, registered and received my goody bag: a t-shirt and bandana for my dog.

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I grabbed a free donut at the Dunkin’ Donut booth before deciding to take a quick stroll through downtown St. Pete.

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There was a great feeling of tranquility early this morning before the rush of the afternoon crowd swarmed the area. The temps were a cool but comfortable 68 – 70 degrees.

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I felt very calm and peaceful. I browsed through a tea shop, bakery, use the bathroom and admired some art work.

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It was almost 9:30 and so I quickstepped over to the blue pyramid, the assigned meeting spot for Team Woofing It.

Taking a team photo and woofing down a few more donuts and hot coffee, the team eventually made it’s way towards the starting line.

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From start to finish was about 2 miles long with lots of doggy water breaks along the way.

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After it was over we all bid each other goodbye.

Our team raised over two hundred dollars! The South Eastern Guide Dogs is a 501 c non profit foundation. It raises and trains not only guide dogs, but veteran service and facility therapy dogs. The three walkathons, Sarasota, Bradenton and St. Pete, raised over $500,000!

Animals have and always will be a part of me. Some people need to have a house full of kids. I am happy when I have a house full of animals.

Kindness is a language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.

Kindness is a language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.

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6 thoughts on “Take a Paws to Scratch and Sniff

  1. Jam and Dewey are two very different dogs. Jam is fast, exuberant and filled with charism. Dewey is slow, cautious and sweet. Jam is Dewey’s uncle. Very, very different boys. And yet, there is a strange attraction to labs.

  2. Pingback: Our little day trip to the ‘Burg | Healthy Girl Adventures

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