By Linda Bak, RedRover Development Manager

There’s a first time for everything. For me, this is my first deployment, my first time sleeping in an animal shelter, and my first time sleeping in a room with a snake.

Our gracious accommodations at the animal shelter for the first few nights of our deployment, with Smiley the snake.

Last night a water main burst in the animal shelter where we are staying. The RedRover Responders volunteer I’m here with, Howard, walked out of our room into puddles of water everywhere. In one of the rooms, water was coming down like a waterfall on the poor dogs that the animal control officer had brought in earlier.

Harold wasted no time to leap into action. He pulled the crates and dogs out of the water right away. Wow, that’s one way to start your morning! Thankfully the dogs are fine.

The part of the shelter where we stayed was flooded and the water had to be turned off. As of right now, they are still working on fixing the water main and they have to ship in water for the animals. So, sadly, we said our goodbyes to our roommate Smiley the snake and headed over to Rescue Ranch for another day of grueling manual labor. (Another first: I never drank so many fluids in my life! On our first day, we both were soaked through with sweat within 10 minutes.)

Linda snuggles with a friendly miniature horse. Photo courtesy Rescue Ranch.

While Rescue Ranch is built to withstand Category 2 and lower hurricanes, the storm still blew water into the
stalls, so we have been stripping the stalls of all the wet shavings and dumping them in a far pasture
– not to mention the regular daily mucking, feeding and watering. It makes me thankful for my (low maintenance) little house, my dog and sweet kitty.

Linda and Lori walk horses at Rescue Ranch. Photo courtesy Rescue Ranch.

Thankfully we were able to get a hotel room to stay in tonight, and boy am I looking forward to a clean shower and a bed to sleep in!