The Voices for the Voiceless Animal Club has been a good friend to cats and dogs this fall.
Most recently, the club invited representatives of Operation Freedom Paws to speak at Middle School Assembly on December 1. The organization, based in nearby Gilroy, teaches veterans how to train their own service dogs. The group's president, Mary Cortani, and one of the veterans who went through the program, David, brought dogs CJ and Laddie to demonstrate how service dogs are trained to keep an eye (or nose) on their humans.
The dogs showed off their sense of smell and their ability to find people—or, at least, a student who tucked herself away behind a group of boxes—as well as how they can create a safe buffer around their human in a crowd. Students also learned the proper way to pet a service dog (step 1: ask first!).
The animal club has interacted with other local groups throughout the year:
They made blankets for adoptable dogs at Peace of Mind Dog Rescue, which finds homes for dogs whose guardians can no longer care for them and for senior dogs in shelters.
They made cat toys for Golden Oldies Cat Rescue, which re-homes older cats through fostering and adoption.
They made bags of dog food to donate to Gathering for Women, which will hand them out to homeless women with dogs.
The club has truly shown a love for animals and the people who care for them.