Kaye has been a volunteer with Lort Smith for the last eight years and currently sits on our Volunteer Advisory Committee. Initially starting her volunteering through the Lort Smith Pet Therapy Program, Kaye later moved into our kennels to support the dogs that come through our doors.
Kaye spends every second Wednesday onsite at Lort Smith in the kennels. In her role, she takes care of dogs who are ready for adoption, or who we are providing temporary care as part of our Emergency Welfare Assistance Program.
After making sure the dog enclosures are clean and they have fresh food and water available, Kaye says her favourite part of the job is spending quality time with them.
“I think the most important job we have is to make sure the dogs are feeling loved. What they really crave is human interaction and connection,” says Kaye.
“The dogs didn’t choose this – they come to us through no fault of their own. If it were one of my dogs, I’d want them to be loved and looked after, to have cuddles and some time with people who really care.”
For Kaye, the most rewarding part about volunteering with Lort Smith is seeing the journey the dogs take, from when they first arrive at Lort Smith, all the way through to being adopted.
“We make their time here as enjoyable as possible, and always try to make them comfortable and happy. You know you’ve made a difference when they come over and rest their head on your lap, or when you see them rolling on their backs in the grass on a walk,” shares Kaye.
“At the end of the day though, we want to see them go home – as much as we love spending time and getting cuddles with them!”
Kaye recalls a time when she was asked to take a dog over to the Adoption Hub, as a couple had decided to adopt him after meeting him earlier in the week. They were standing at the front desk finalising their paperwork when Kaye arrived with him.
“As soon as they turned around and the dog saw them, he ran over to them, tail wagging, ears up, obviously having recognised them from last time. They hadn’t said a word but he was so thrilled to see them again.”
In addition to her onsite volunteering roles, Kaye is also a foster carer. Currently she is looking after Tessa, a bull terrier mix who has been looking for a home for nine months.
“Tessa’s a beautiful girl, and she keeps me entertained I’m really grateful to have her around – she even came on a holiday with us a few weeks ago!”
Outside of volunteering with Lort Smith, Kaye is a carer for her mum, enjoys gardening and has recently taken up home improvement projects. She’s particularly enjoying learning how to transform older pieces of furniture.
Kaye is just one of our amazing volunteers we are so excited to celebrate for National Volunteer Week.