I go to the Bakersfield SPCA's Open House for two reasons. One, I want to be able to take a few photos and give them a teeny, tiny bit of publicity, unless this is one of the few blog posts to get more than four hits, in which case they'll get a smidge more. Two, because it's an excuse to go there that my husband can't argue with. Since we've been by there three times in past couple of months, he'd be well within his veto power to say no, but there's no way of getting around a special occasion. He picks where we go to breakfast before we head out, his small consolation prize.
It's busy. So busy that cars are parked a goodly distance from the BSPCA. We get a great spot just a couple of businesses down, next to a driveway so we can't get blocked in.
The bright yellow sign is the first thing I see. This is the entrance to the cat spay/neuter clinic. I love these clinics and can't figure out why we can't find the money to do more. It's desperately needed.
As we walk I take in the booths and the people who are here to support the BSPCA and get a little pet care.
Next up is a Sheriff's dog. Though I'm not a huge fan of the prong collar, as I watch him, he's definitely more "dog" than he is "Sheriff" right now, so it's all good.
Lots of vendors are at the Open House, educating folks who came by, and in many cases donating services and goods on behalf of the BSPCA's mission. I'm grateful that local businesses are willing to donate their time and services, even during this horrid economic time.
Some of the great raffle prizes that were donated.
I'm thrilled that a shepherd mix that I fell in love with a few weeks ago has been adopted I see his photo on a sign. The BSPCA named him Scruffy. Maybe now that he has a new home I won't see him in the back of mind so much anymore.
Doesn't much matter. As we walk down the rows of kennels a quiet girl, staying amazingly calm in the midst of the chaos, slowly sidles up to the fence. My heart is lost in her attempt at dignity. Note how rusted the gate is. There are a lot of places at the BSPCA that are showing their age. Wouldn't it be amazing if a fence company or fence contractor stepped up and donated some new fencing to them? What a public relations coup.
I head to the cat house, half-hoping Romeo has been adopted, half-not. If he's here, maybe today will be the day I bring him into my life forever. Romeo (my name, not one given to him by the BSPCA) is a brilliant flame-point mix with gorgeous blue eyes and a sparkly personality.
Fate holds. Romeo found a home. I apparently have a decent animal sense, as those who catch my eye catch the eye of others as well. Of course, being at the shelter, there's always another cat to fall in love with.
This week it's two grey kittens (although only one of them would sit still long enough for my pathetic photo skills). I take one look at them and have two simultaneous thoughts --- I don't have one that color and They're the exact same color as our carpet. We'd never notice the additional pet hair.
But they're kittens. Gorgeous, sassy kittens who will find a home with relative ease. It's the adult cats who are languishing here, and were I in a space where I could bring home another cat, I'd be taking one of the older ones who are as desperate for another chance at being part of a family as any kitten.
I've seen enough. My past heartthrobs have moved on, there's a really nice turnout for the event, over 100 cats will be altered before the day is out, and the weather is perfect.
I've got to get back to my pets at home. They're waiting for me.