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Fences For Fido 022518

Feb 22, 2018|

AN INTERVIEW WITH MICHELE COPPOLA, COMMUNICATIONS AND OPERATIONS COORDINATOR WITH FENCES FOR FIDO, A NON-PROFIT WITH THE GOAL OF UN-TETHERING DOGS BY BUILDING A FENCE FOR THE PET OWNER.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

This is a microscope and Entercom radio Portland public affairs program and Gary blocks of if you're an animal lover and you also love to volunteer and I think you're gonna like today show this group is doing amazing work. And so this time I would like to welcome Michelle a couple of Michelle is the communications and operations coordinator with fences for Fido things okay according. So offense is for Fido. What is that. Fits your Sino in aid nonprofit organization. And we're also an award winning organization I do have to say that. And then the bill's donor funded senses free of charge. For people who keep their dogs outdoors on chains tethers and in very small enclosures. In addition to providing offense we also provide an insulated dog house take care of spay neuter for free and any emergency veterinary care that the dog needs Islam. Wow yeah pretty green precedent that says that seems like go vote one stop shop and well is you know if he if you are person who has a dog they asked a live outdoors. Or is living out of doors and is Heather because you don't have a sense we are one stop shop we wanna basically showed you a better way to care for your animal companion. Well let me be devil's advocate mask what's so wrong about having dog tethered well there is lots wrong with having a Daunte did you know what's funny is I've been involved in animal welfare for about twenty years and I actually grew up as a small child with a dog on the tether in the backyard of the dog and change. And you know for a lot of people that's the way you do you put a dollar and chain in the backyard and that's how you handle it. But it doesn't matter is it then a domino chain is frustrated lonely isolated dogs are packing animals. And when there's not other dogs around. You're their pack and so if they are isolated for me they don't understand why and it's very damaging to them psychologically. It's a matter of fact the center for disease control and the American Veterinary Medical Association. Report that a dog and a chain is three times more likely to exhibit aggressive behaviors and bite so it's not just an animal welfare issue. Is also a people issue a safety issue and a family issue. That's really missing and never have thought about it mute button if a dog tethered by itself. Can be aggressive. But it innovative instant offense by itself with bullets that behavior like that. Tell the difference is they don't have autonomy over their own movement you know an adult and a chain in addition to being frustrated and isolated and lonely. A dog is also a victim as well if it's an intact female she can't get away from other roaming dogs today intact males. A dog also can wrap that chain around any stationary object sinking get to its. Shelter or its food or its water until somebody notices. I'm dared not interacted with as much because if so much pent up energy and frustration. And that when you do try to interact with them they're jumping all over use their crazy for attention because they're packing animals they air job and we have. Involves them to be an animal that craves attention and craves being where yes. Not isolated. In gusting yeah. So how do you how to people reach out usually need offense or one defense EO we find about dogs in need fences in a variety of different ways the first way is it a family will sell for fur. A family we'll hear about us and will get in touch with the Sissy please I would love to get my dog not to chain or the tether. And can you help rebuild offense. In the second way is passers by any neighbors family friends people who are aware of a situation where Donna is being chain or tethered. And they will reach out to listen they can do that on our website just fill out a new sense requested census for Fido that board. And we will actually keep them anonymous to the family will ask them for their information so that we can contact them but. We will keep them anonymous to the Stanley one actually just go knock on the door and say hey. We're Ventas for Fido can we help you with a fans feared job nine times out of ten family is absolutely thrilled. For the help so they don't believe us. Well in every big cats try you know there's no freelance but there isn't free sons and at the other went. Finance from animal welfare animal control agencies such as your county animal control or you are in humane society matter of fact we have a is a matter of fact we have an investigations officer for the Oregon humane society on our board of directors. OK some other tickets in my mind it seems like it to other dog if somebody is tethering their dog it's kind of abusive. But it's auto and that's always the case. Really you know I mean we would say a lot of people. Let me back up a little bay you know one of the questions we get asked the most is why are you trying to help people who shouldn't have a dog in the first place. And for a lot of us that the slot at Cheaney our dollar putting her daughter out of doors and never letting him analysis is unconscionable. We can't even imagine but the fact of the matter is most of these people love their dogs very much the families that we assist. They'd they really want them off the chain we approached them they're absolutely thrilled they just lack the resources or a lot of cases they lack the education they just didn't realize that this was not a good way to keep the dog and why. And so for us it's really important to acknowledge the fact that if we can show them a better way and their receptive to that end. The dog has a home with people that it knows and loves belittle a perfect world but there's a perfect home for every dog. And if we had the power to take their job away or they authority to take their dog the way which we don't. They would likely go out and get another dog would end up living the exact same way so why not in the cycle. Why not improve that dog's life immediately and the lives of any other dogs that the family owns after that. But so awesome fear that how many fans of the series is built we have built well over. Fifteen in the hundred a defensive I would say in the past nine years we have unchained. Almost 17100 dogs we're just shy and that will reach that goal this year. Our really close to that right now while now so who build the fence volunteers that are wonderful awesome volunteer fences for Fido army. An amazing group of people we have crews in central Oregon we have crews as far north as Olympia that handle a Thurston County area. That we have people who handle the coast area of northwest or again and then of course there's a large crew in the Portland area. East county clack in this county we have people who build trust as far south as Albany Oregon. I down into the Salem area and so forth and it's all volunteer labor. And deer everywhere and freelance. We greatly we really can be everywhere we get it. You know we get inquiries from all over the country in addition to all over Oregon and Washington. Were primarily focused in Oregon and Washington and primarily focused along the I five quarter. Although like I said we do have central Oregon has a great crew out there and we do have one of the coast. But we'd like to expand up indeed King County Seattle we'd like to expand into the eastern areas of both origin in Washington which were not able to reach at this point because we don't have a volunteer based. They require somebody to step I've been saying hail lead a crew out here you know I'll be the leader if somebody wants to volunteer how to lead them. They can go to sense is for five no dot org. Make sure it's ORG or did not dot com and you'll actually see a bunch of information rights are on our home page about volunteering. But you can send us an email at volunteer Ed senses for Fido dot org. And we will send you everything you need to know about signing up for build what to expect and so forth. The other is the Israel most of the mall and your opportunities fence building or are there other you know he's there are other opportunities. We actually need just recently as of December hired our first. Employee is I happen to be one of them we actually ran this organization for nine years with totally volunteer labor handling all the administration. Remarkable it is and everything else as large as we are and we finally got to the point where we realized we. It does what are we know there's somebody whose job it is to him volley administrative step in the communications. Aspects and so forth and so we have. Three part time volunteers and help us what their bookkeeping and fundraising and volunteer management and communications. And daily operations. And Alan and that it's all volunteer but we sure could use volunteer labor to assist us with social media can have some skills in that area we certainly need backup spore. Someone like myself who handles all the social media fight him be there. We need people to do that. We need people help us some snake Don bits you know all of our dog houses come with these dog beds and we're getting ready to have a dog may bed making party if you have buildings skills or contract in skills. We would love to have somebody who regularly makes dog houses forcible supply all of the materials. And everything. You know so if you're interested in any of that. As if you're interested in more administrative tasks like answering the phones and and take messages and maybe helping write a newsletter which ideally at this point but certainly. Could use some assistance with this in several different newsletters that go out. You know what I'd love to hear from me you can just email me at volunteer offense is refiner dot org and actually the one who'll get that email an hour. Until you awesome we are talking today with Michelle Paula she's a communications and operations coordinator with tents for Fido. Now when you build fences where rumors materials come from as our only did. Donated all donated a no we didn't Trisha not donated in kind they're actually in the result of cash donations. We purchase all of the actual fence supplies that we need which brings to a good point you know. We often. Get people do you want to donate. Olds. Remnants of fencing to us and boy and pieces of chain link in things like that and the fact of the matter is we really can't use that stuff first volley on the storage space. Secondly getting a volunteer out to go pick it up and unloaded and so forth all of our volunteers are tied up early building fences. It mean by may be exact materials we need to build the exact senses we need to build to make sure the dogs are safe. By key cash donations and that's where we focus our efforts when it comes to fundraising. So that's or looking for in terms of donations can. And what an offense is sir you are being built we filled primarily. A field fence it's six foot high welded wire fields and so with four by four pressure treated corner posts we also put ground wire on every single fence which builds the dog cannot dig out. It's usually only get there is a very athletic breeze like some of the her pit bull your pit bulls as what you call the doubles. Or Huskies are so forth you can climb the fence we have actually gone back out and put toppers on fences to keep dogs from getting out. But that's primarily what we build occasionally and especially in central Oregon with a ground it's very hard. We will also put a panel fences. And that's pre fabricated panels of fencing material and will build a sense that way but again it does have ground wire and it's sixty at all. While it just sounds so amazing to me that it could you have an organization that does this and it's. Well yeah it's it's pretty incredible you know and what's even more amazing to notice that this organization that was started by a group of friends sit around a kitchen table. Who wanted to do something to honor our friend of theirs who was a dog lover who had passed away. When the me was made aware of a dog is that had been changed for many many years in a backyard she says hey. In her honor why don't we build the stock offensive doesn't have to be on a chain anymore and maybe that's something we can do as a project is a group once a month. And nine years ago that's how it started and now we're building every weekend as a matter of fact this weekend. We have something like seven different bills going on in seven different locations. Ion there's ten dogs going to be unchained. As a result of that and and it's every weekend rains snows sons whatever the weather we're out there. While. Professing that the same blown away. We knew are building a fence for somebody do they needed to qualify you somehow financial. You know and while I will tell you that 90% of the people who build fences forward and do lack the resources and our folks of lower income. I have to be frank bill defense. For someone who makes more money than I do. Name we do not have any stipulations or any specifications with regard to income we don't check in come. Our primary reason for being there is to help the dog and even if somebody it has the financial resources to do so the fact is. They're not making their dog a priority. So we will not. DO some good stories you can share about how old are you building a fence has changed. The dog and the owners like oh gosh I'm so many stories EL one that comes to mind immediately is something that happened to us just recently Anthony. Southwest Washington area actually towards Olympia. We unchained dogs it'd been on a chain for fourteen years his name was to be. And the chain was being used as his collar as well. These folks and only black and resource is that they also lack the education to realize that what they were doing was I didn't really wrong. This toward god had lived his whole life on that chain and we got to him he also had a big tumor on the side of his face and we. And I took him to the Fed had that tumor removed built an offense and for the last six months of his life he was chain free he just recently passed away. Found that but he did had a six months that he was change free enemies seem like a little thing but believe me it wasn't to that dog. We also went and took that and stay on and it's going to be reused for another dog where are you building Kinsler is it all over everywhere in Indian city higher interest yeah. Dad you know when we started we were primarily Portland days we are Portland based and we were primarily building fences. In the greater Portland area of the urban areas and also the suburban areas just outside the city. But now we have grown and most are billing is being done in the more or rural areas of the counties that surround Portland and in southwest Washington outside of Olympia outside of Vancouver long view we do a lot of building their Kelso. In the gorge area we do you east county clack and his county. I'm down in sailor those areas but most are building is happening in early Ares at this point and that's why we are so desperate for volunteers because the largest part of our volunteer base is of course located in the metro areas and so. When you sees a group of offenses or Fido people building a fence. You know way out somewhere like in Jefferson or again Doreen when Lott Washington or something like that. Chances are almost all of those people came from Olympia or Portland or whatever they're traveling great distances to build. And weaken very much she's volunteers that are closer to these early areas some folks who live in rural Ares who actually. Had this building skills could probably do a thorough and probably more so. The near and folks do to come out and help lessen volunteer. Now besides fence building you have offer similar services that transfer final two and talk about some of those. You know and we also build dog houses and we provide a doghouse for each dog the illegal defense four. Now at some of the dogs already have dog houses but they're not in great shape. In central Oregon our dog houses are insulated because it's a very very cold air. We make sure that they had eight seater Phil dog bed keeps fleas down and it also doesn't get wet and moldy like a blank it would. Inside their. We provide free spay and neuter services for our Fido is a great many. Dogs that we come in contact with have not already been spayed or neutered him we take care of that because we wanna be part of the solution of pet over population as well. And we provide emergency veterinary care for the dogs that we assist and that is not just. At the time of the fence built. Many times years later we have had people who had a fence built by ask contact us. And their dog has a dire veterinary emergency and we have stepped up to the plate in cared that dog because. As far as we're concerned once a Fido always a fight out. And we are also involved in not just plugging the holes are building fences or we eat. Had gotten involved in helping pass legislation Oregon as a 2014 has an anti tethering law. In large part due to the efforts offenses refiner and several other animal welfare organizations. In that in the state so what does that mean what. Well or anti tethering law on me basically spells out how long underdog can be tethered and how long the dog can and what a dog can be tethered to. It says that a dog can be tethered for more than ten hours a stationary object without the owner president. That can't be on aid trolley system tether line for more than fifteen hours. That the dog must also have access to food water shelter. And that kind of thing Washington State last year passed a law as well there is is less specific but it still gives animal control tool to go out and say. Pave the way your chaining a star or the amount of time this dog is change for is inhumane in our estimation and we'd like to help you with that. Do you suppose that most people tell other torching their dogs when they go to work is that. The reason is. Or when they can't be their arm but a lot of times there are people who just don't believe dogs belong in the house there are a lot of people who grow up that way. We don't think the dogs belong in the house and so their dog lives out of doors. And if that's the case we wanna make dad's situation is humane as possible what's interesting one of those things that we find is that. After we build a fence for a dog. That will go back in check on the dog some months later in the next year and the Donaldson being allowed in the house. Who and the reason being is smoke because the relationship between the owner and the dog. Improves immensely when that dog is off to change the dog's behavior improves. They're able to get closer to the dog in interact with the dog more and play with the dog more all of a sudden that dog becomes. More of a family member. While that's a very sleep yet again and that's the outcome they you knew I don't work yeah that's what that's what we hope for a matter of fact. Whenever possible we mandate that one side of defense that we build is attached to the house. To put the dog is close to its owner is possible because that's I Dili the way it should be again. We're the ones huge domesticated dogs and they have now evolved to consider us is pat members'. And they don't do well. When their isolated by themselves. So who in your organization knows all this stuff about dogs it's amazing. Place. A lot of weight kept a lot of the we have learned but we did a lot of research I mean we do have people on our board who were quite knowledgeable about dogs and over time that we've been involved with so many different animal welfare organizations and animal control agencies that I think is just a matter of osmosis that we have learned an awful lot about Don behavior and about what dogs need end and so forth and also about the relationship between people and their pet. It's the vet military services that you provide to those provided free of charge but in the body of veterinarians know ball not at all clear stepping up and paying for them toss and it's through donated funds we actually. Have a speech didn't fund that is for older dogs many times when we entry in a dog that dog's been on the chain for very long time and it's a senior pat. And has some health issues the cause of that long term chaining. As he signs QB's case. And so we just step up to the plate and paid a veterinary bills some of the vets are very kind and give us a bit of a discount but. Certainly not for free and they can't afford to do that we do a lot of veterinary care for our finance. Awesome so are there any size restrictions at all. As far as the dollar is the big dog little vote no hey everyone know in no way bits of Fido we've we've done. Everything from Chu wa was so all the way up to big master of so there's. There's no size restrictions as far as the dog is concerned as far as offense is concerned we do some limitations but. We may society there are fences on what the dog needs and also what our resource is our we have to be very mindful really wanna try to help as many dogs as possible so. No limit on and you know London side's offense that we can build although we have. It's actually know a little little bit at times we have multiple dogs on a property York. There's a need for a larger cents. If summoned some listening in their neighborhood they and they know there's a tethered dog somewhere in the neighborhood and what sort of their steps. Tootsie get in touch with you and interest to see if they can remedy that situation. You know the first thing that they can do is go to our website census refiner dot org. And you'll see at tab at the top this is request offense. And you can click on that ill give you some information about filling out the request offense form. Go ahead and fill that out give us your contact information NTELOS is my cheese you know. About the dog situation but specifically we do need the address and and then you can just hit submit once you've got that filled out and as soon as we can. We'll get one of our volunteer Klein outreach coordinators out to them the site. And see what the situation is knock on the door our first services to help and take it from there. You know there are occasions when we go out and we see that a dog is living in. Neglect full situation more abusive situation. And at that point we will turn it over to animal control or any organ humane society. Or whatever I agency is in that vicinity to check it out because. We are not a law enforcement agency and we don't have those powers nor are we have that authority and there are some situations they're beyond our ability to help and they really need intervention from law enforcement. And occasionally we have referred situations to them but apple lock on the door and we'll see Alaska we can help. And he said do earlier in the interview that about nine out of ten people are excited to see Yuen and welcome your service. The move and then at ten people are are thrilled or there shocked. But okay he put it. Unless people are a little embarrassed. You know that conceivable we have a philosophy and policy. Of non judgment we don't. Go to these families who say this is terrible that you are keeping your dog and a chain we go to them and say. Hey we know you love your dog would you like us to help you have a pension and so they can have a better life. You know it's just that symbol there's there's no judgment here because we understand. That we are not going to be applied helper dog if we approach in family with judgment. Makes perfect sense here. So in the last couple minutes we have here let's talk about again how people can volunteer and help they can reach you guys sure if you offense is your Fido dot org. You will see on dear all kinds of information about volunteering you can send us an email a volunteer census for Fido dot org. And asked about volunteering even if you don't or cans or building fences just isn't your thing I have to be honest are you. I don't sense is fairly regularly but not all that often because it's not my biggest thing my big thing is talking obviously. It's good that's said that's Intel and I use the most for fences refine it but we need people to do all kinds of things if you'd like to donate money. That we certainly can use that and it is one of the greatest things you'll ever give your money to in my opinion because. We help not only animals but people go to our YouTube channel. And see if you're not inspired we have offense is vita YouTube channel full of beautiful videos. A dogs being and chain and if that doesn't inspire you to be involved and that's winless in some way. I don't know what will tell I got involved is through there YouTube channel. And we have a great social media. Presence on FaceBook as well. See you can reach out to assert any of those avenues and we will be glad to take whatever energies and abilities you have and put them to good use. Faults obviously you and you're obviously an animal lover big dud and everybody opens is provided over our animal big sand notes again. We're doing great work I think you very much appreciate we've been talked they wanna sell a couple of communication and operations coordinator with fences for by the that was up. Thank you so much Gary. May microscope is an Entercom radio Portland public affairs program I'm Gary blocks and if you're involved with a nonprofit public affairs organization or do you have an idea for an upcoming show I'd like to hear from you. This is the microscope PDX dot com and submit your ideas you can also go to the station's website and submit your information there. Thanks for listening to metals go and enjoy the rest of your weekend.