Growing up, my heart would break for animals that I would see roaming the streets and highways alone. They needed a loving home, and I always wanted to give it to them. I was that little girl who gave guinea pigs as birthday gifts in elementary school. Sadly though, I think I was more excited to give them than my friends were to receive them.
We all have moments in our lives that mold us into who we are. When I was 19-years-old, I lived in Salinas, California. One day as I was driving, I spotted a small huddle of people surrounding an injured dog on the side of the road. I parked my car and began to hurriedly make my way over. The dog looked severely hurt, and the pain in his whimpers brought tears to my eyes. None of the other bystanders wanted to approach the injured dog, as she had begun growling and showing her teeth out of fear. I slowly kneeled down and looked softly into her eyes, assuring her that I was a friend. The whimpers slowly subsided and she began to slowly move her snout in my direction. I gently reached my hand to her head and began to comfortingly pet her.
She tried to get up but her back legs were paralyzed and could not support her weight. I asked the man standing there to open my trunk and take out the back board covering my spare and to bring it over. He brought it and we slid her on to the board and gently put her in my back seat.
I rushed her over to the pet hospital. When we arrived I had an emergency vet help me bring her inside. As I supported her head in my hands, I shouted that my dog had been hit by a car and if there was anything they could do to save her. That poor angel looked into my eyes one last time, and passed away in the arms of people who loved and cared about her.
Pets occupy such a large place in so many Americans’ hearts. The connection we forge with these animals goes so much further than we even realize. It’s so important that we as people care for these animals that have been neglected and not given warm, loving homes. I’ve made it my mission to help as many dogs as I can. My passion for pets has since led me to launch my own company, ZuGo Pet. Through ZuGo, I created the first multifunctional pet carrier for small pets that incorporates a carrier, purse, leash, bed and carseat into one innovative safety product. Additionally, for every product purchased, we donate a portion of the sale to Dogs Without Borders.
It’s no secret why we refer to dogs as, “Man’s best friend.” One quick glance and their loyal, unconditional love is made clear. That is why I feel so strongly about caring for dogs and animals. Shouldn’t we reciprocate the same love and loyalty they offer to us? Keep that in mind the next time you see an abandoned or hurt animal. We’re all here to be loved and cared for. Be sure your pet knows how much you love him or her by giving him/her the love, safety and care they deserve.