Welcome! We are pleased to add your name to the growing list of Goldstock Fund volunteers. We understand that you are setting aside valuable time to help the dogs reach their forever homes and we appreciate all your help. Here are a few guidelines to help keep you and our dogs safe.
Remember, the dogs we transport may not be well trained (or trained at all!). Make sure you have a good collar. It's a good idea to keep a collar as well as a leash in your car just in case the dog you're picking up doesn't have one or the one it does have is in bad shape.
If the dog is wild and crazy, it's sometimes a good idea to transfer the leashes by clipping your leash on the dog before the other leash is removed. Believe me, we know from experience that a dog intent on escaping can bolt between the time one leash is unclipped and the other one attached. We recommend a choker collar, either chain or nylon. We have been amazed how some dogs can slip out of a regular collar.
You should have a good sturdy leash. A 6 foot one works well as it keeps you close to the dog for those moments when you need to control the dog in a hurry. A Flexi leash isn't a good choice because when they are extended the dog can be far enough away to get into trouble and very difficult if you need to reign him in quickly.
Although we all consider ourselves dog savvy occasionally something will happen that we never saw coming. Here's a little story about a woman who had been doing transportation for YGRR for a number of years. She had just picked up two goldens from a shelter in Connecticut. She had a large SUV and she had the rear seat folded down. She put the two seemingly sweet goldens in the back and headed to the vet clinic where they were to be checked out. She was on Rt. 495, in the middle lane, when the two goldens started fighting. Within seconds, one of them jumped into the front seat to escape the attack. The other golden was right behind the first and the fight continued. The poor woman, all the while fearing she would be involved in the fight, managed to get the car over to the side of the busy highway. She jumped from the car and watched helplessly while the fight continued. Finally they settled whatever disagreement they had and the woman was able to get back into her car. She kept one dog in the front with her. She made it to the clinic, dropped the dogs off and went home where she called and told us the story. She realized that she was very lucky. Things could have turned tragic very quickly. Since that time, we have asked that everyone who does transportation's for us have a crate or a barrier. Sure there are times when you will transport that 12 year old sweetie and make the exception to the crate rule, but that should be just that - an exception. Barriers are fine when you are transporting one dog. Crates are best with multiple dogs. Of course if you're transporting brothers and sisters, they can ride together.
Some of you will be doing rather long distance drives (Thank you!!). I know you know this, but I've got to say it anyway. Remember that dogs need to drink occasionally..then they will need a "pee and poop" stop. Depending on the temperature, we would recommend that you stop no more than every four hours. Watch the dog. Some of the older guys may have weak bladders or a greater need for water so your stops may have to be more frequent.
Transporting dogs can be a very rewarding experience. You know that you are providing that link between the dogs past and it's future. The dog may not know it, but from the time you pick him up, his life has turned around and the best times are ahead. We just want to thank you for volunteering and warn you that you may not hear from us for weeks, even months...but you will get that call some day and you will be asked to help change the life of a very lucky dog.Chandler Rudd