Hi, my name is Amy Sharp and I have been at All West for a year now. For the first 9 months of employment here, I worked as an after hours assistant and spent a lot of time with animals in our boarding facility and hospitalized patients at night. However, in the past 3 months, I have transitioned to being a small animal assistant where I work more closely with routine vet visits and clients. Had I been asked a year ago about adopting an animal I probably would have gratefully declined, however only months after working at All West I discovered how difficult it is to work with animals, know their stories and not want to help a creature in need. Which leads me to this; a year ago my husband and I owned a very low maintenance 3 year old terrier mix.
Now we are the proud parents of a 3 year old terrier, a young chocolate lab and 2- (yes 2!) 6 month old sibling kittens. Now, you may be thinking that we are crazy to have added that many animals to our lives so quickly, and you are definitely correct- our home is quite often a madhouse because of these furry children! Nonetheless, it’s quite a challenge to see these helpless creatures come into our care needing a home and not have them pull just a little on your heartstrings.
Several of our staff can relate to this as many of them have also taken home an animal or two either from the hospital or from a client in need of rehoming their pet. At this point you may be wondering how I gained 3 pets in such a short period of time-here’s my story….
While I was in my first month of training, I heard word about a client of ours whose chocolate lab was pregnant with 11 puppies, all of which had not yet been spoken for. At the time, my husband and I had not been planning on getting another dog, yet this seemed like the perfect opportunity if it was something I could convince him was a good idea. I pitched it to him with the idea that he or she could be raised to be the perfect hunting dog- that was all I needed to get him on board. We went to visit the puppies at 2 weeks old and Fischer won us over within 15 minutes. We brought him home the first week of May when he was 8 weeks old and decided our hands were full and our family of fur children was complete.
Five months later I was working in reception when a client came and asked me about a young kitten outside of the hospital. I had no knowledge of there being any strays frequently hanging around the building so I just brushed it off as a cat from a neighboring business. About an hour after the client initially informed me about the kitten she returned to tell me she tried several times to catch 2 kittens but had no such luck. Just before my shift ended that night I went outside to try and snag a peak of these kittens and to my surprise saw 2 adorable kittens that couldn’t have been more than 3-4 weeks old. My heart dropped as we were expecting a dramatic temperature drop that night and I knew if I didn’t catch them they would surely freeze. To my surprise when I went out to grab them they fled in terror. It took 2 other techs cornering them to finally catch them and put them safely in a carrier, but they came home with me that night.
My intention was to take them to Heart of the Valley, however a day turned into a weekend, a weekend into a week, and then they just became part of the family. At the end of the day sometimes I really cannot believe how many animals we have; yet I can’t say I regret taking any of them in. They have a good home, are all healthy and receive a lot of love and that is what we work towards at veterinary hospitals all around.