Tom has spent the last 5 years volunteering his time to save animals by transporting for Kindred Hearts Transport Connections (KHTC). While he loves transporting the animals he also serves on the Executive Board and runs their online shop. Tom shares with us some of his favorite stories and talks about how he found KHTC and how easy the process was to get started.
Welcome to the Professionals and Animal Rescue podcast, where goal is to introduce you two amazing people helping animals and share how you can get involved with animal rescue. This’ll Podcast is probably sponsored by do bert dot com. Do Bert is a free website designed to connect volunteers with rescues and shelters and the only site that automates rescue relay transport. Now on with our show. Tom, a volunteer transport rescuer for kindred heart transport connection, joins us today and share some feel good rescue stories. Tom was recovering from knee surgery five years ago when he stumbled across an article that caught his attention about a dog needing to be moved from Arizona to Indiana. Not quite understanding why the transport would take two weeks, you continue to read and soon learned that volunteers who were helping could only drive on the weekends. He finished the article completed and submitted an application, and with him in one week, Tom was saving animals. He’s continued his work with kindred hearts over the past five years, getting more involved in helping beyond the weekend transports. He has held a couple of different positions with Cage TC and currently serves on the executive board. Tom also manages the rescue shop online and continues to participate in the transport’s on the weekends. Hey, Tom, thanks for coming on the program today. Thanks for having me dress looking forward to this. So tell us a little bit about you and your story about how you got into rescue. Oh, I just one day while doing rehab on a neighbor placement, I was surfing the web that came across an article about this dog meat moved from Arizona to Indiana. Wow. And it was taking them two weeks. I thought I would take two weeks to do that. So I start reading this article and it was It was a cage T c. Can your heart transport connection story I got to read and I said, Well, that’s interesting. Then I got into, you know, the website and into their Facebook page, not found out that 98% of the volunteers the group in who ran it, we’re all women, and they did it on weekends. That’s why it took so long, I said, I’ll be darned. So I put in an application of volunteer and when it uprooted, went over from there Yeah, I drove at the application. There is less than a week I went down. Thio been Illinois, just about 2.5 hours from my house. Picked the dollar, Took him to warn to Missouri, which is that our west from my house. And meanwhile, I’ve been doing it. And when we dropped it out off, it just gave us the warm, fuzzy feeling it was satisfying. Known that we know only helped a dog, but I think we helped ourselves. Right. Uh, is it kind of hard to explain? But from that on, then always hook. And then I worked shift work. I’m off every other weekend, so every other weekend will do a transport. And when I’m off there in a week, I’ll even d’oh longer transport 45 hours out if needed. Uh, in just something that I think it is. Partner thing is our life. Now, if it wasn’t for our real work, probably doing it every day. Yeah. Now go. Is this that you got into it? Uh, it was August of 2013. Wow. Quite awhile. Not. Yeah, it has really been enjoy because we look forward to doing the transports Yeah. Most people afford to go into beach on the lake on the weekends. We look forward doing the transports, the metal kinds. Not all kinds of nice people transport. Interesting. In the a few of you get to know, you keep track of after cards and Facebook, the social media, and that’s really helped for us. You can’t beat this life. You know, we feel sorry for for the dogs. You know what they have to go do get on the transporting of. In a perfect world, they wouldn’t have to be transported. But they do. And this is what what we like doing? Yeah. No, Like you said it, it feeds your soul. So now you’ve been doing this for five years, and it sounds like you also got a lot more involved with with kindred hearts. Tell us. Tell us. Tell our listeners a little bit about kindred hearts, transport connection and kind of what they do And what your role is with Kendall Hart. They, uh, with more or less. I’m almost a full service transport rescue. You know, we don’t rescue the dogs, but we will transport, but there is an application process. So you know, we want to make sure the dogs we’re picking up or healthy long one thing, but they’re also going to a good situation. We don’t want to get him from take a bad situation. Put him into another bad situation, sir. So we have. So we have our presses application process to go out and, well, check out the fat for ever since, and we’ll check out if it’s going to ask you, Would you rescue checks if it’s going to end in the bedroom, would do a home check and make sure that animal is going to the proper and healthy place for him? No, we also transport other animals. Also, you know, just 99 scent dogs. But we have done cats what you could be done. We’re gonna take before a couple of steaks before and then a couple of birds, reptiles and mice and then it. That’s most closely it does in. You know, we’ll get that get the application and all this takes time. That’s one thing about it. It’s usually, uh, try to get him out within four weeks. But it’s, you know, sometimes take long. It all depends on communication between the application process or the sender receiver. Uh, f they have to fall into place if everybody if everything falls in place, you know, no problems. It’s usually for weeks. Ah, If somebody’s not in dire need to do a puppy right now, it’s It’s a good process. Is it? It is all bond here. Yeah, One thing a lot of people don’t know about the rescue transportation, you say industry, but organizations that Neanderthal bones here you can’t You can’t expect to pick up, you know? Say OK. I see this dog in Wisconsin today. I want him to California tomorrow. You know, we’re not bet. Act, sir. Raise. Yes. You get your processes to do in the can the heart in there, Birgit and looked looked at them when I first started. And in this drone to, you know, there’s been a lot of other transport groups out there, huh? Over the last few years, do Bert has been very good, and they’re growing. Could see there, uh, emails all the time. You have you There’s, uh you can what area you live in, like you know, I live in ST Louis area. You have Ah, almost eight page you got Missouri State page. You have ST Louis County. ST Louis. You know all these pages now? Just one with the dogs. Yeah. I mean, this is get the T c ase on. Duh. That felt a post on the stages in that on Ah, transporting. You know, they need help. Uh, you know, with Kendall Hart’s after the applications, it’s process. It gets on put on the schedule, gets put on schedule A transport coordinators assigned to that and there was responsible for getting the volunteers to transport. And right now we have what we caused transport coordinator assistance. And they done the ones that helped the transports coordinators when I started this, uh, you’re still the transport coordinator. Did everything thing on the thing that they would, uh, you were once a once got put the process, they would get the volunteers there so they would monitor the run. The whole run yourself. Now we have transports assistance. We have my orders. Uh, you know, my role is is a zone manager up to recently I stepped down. That being the leader of his own Manji. I’m getting getting ready. Retire here. Him starting slow down and there during, you know, it’s capable. Hands still zone manager. I take care of the shop items on our website. If you kill the website, you see shop, you go that we get items we sell as our logo on it. I take care of the manager over that, and we haven’t, uh we redid our website to read something. Then it’s it’s a lot more user friendly. And then we’re working on a new A new truth database. Pam and Richard. But they they volunteer older. Uh, they’re time service is run the website and to create the database force. Okay. Uh, so it’s just gonna be Maur. It’s a volunteer friendly for the behind the scenes people. I’m excited. That happened to go between between Richard on the database and the leads of each department. So you don’t get attacked phone calls. Yeah. So try and keep it organized. It’s been that’s been time consuming. He has his 40 hour job, too. That’s a lot of people don’t realize that, uh, 90 95% of the volunteers, the only the only volunteer for the organizations they still have their own own life in their own jobs to do, too. So it turns in a 40 hour work weeks. Normally, it turns into an 80 hour weeks. Rates depending with what you do within the organization, you know. You know what that’s like? Yeah. Seven days a week. Yeah. It’s something you have to enjoy. You know, if you don’t enjoy it, it’s not. It’s not good for you. You know our anyone else. And you know, it’s one thing I do enjoy it. You know, I’m on the executive board of the kindergarten anymore. I’m not getting I’m not like in the decisions making. I just want to do the work, sir. How? I’m a worker, you know, Just tell me what you want. Me dio What? What you went through. Excuse me? What you want done, and I’ll do it. Yeah. No, The transport being on the front lines is, uh is a very rewarding experience being able to interface with the dogs and the other volunteers. It iss and we’ve never had a bad dog. We had some that’s been really friendly. You know, when I get up in the seat and drive with you and they have this couple real skittish ones that would just wantto hunker down and not be bothered. You must have had a great stories from having done this for five years. Yeah, my favorite one is actually from last year. Yeah. I went down to Springfield, Missouri. Picked up a blind, mostly death Great Dane pups, just eight weeks old, along with every picked up. Another can’t remember what breed it was. There’s a mixed breed, but they don’t have only known in that each other for three days. One name came from Oklahoma. I went down to Springfield and the other one came from that area and there was a indulge was going to Florida. We went down, picked him up. Uh, Frank killed brought him back here to say Charles for Jackie trainer. She’s cheats alone. Business transporting on ST Louis. On the way back, we stopped at a rest area and I gave him a lifeline in England to the restaurant scene. We’d be only the dollars alone that she wanted Rescued First time, ma’am, I gave the no bone to the two one little puppy that you hear and see instead of eating it to turn around and give it to the little blind joke then he came back for Hiss. Yeah, I said that touched me. I owe me if only humans to be the act of passionate Wow. And on that they’ve only known each other to take the heat. He took care of the blind. Go on our trip. You’re going down to Springfield Coming back. It was just about for our trip down the Springfield, Missouri, performer for us, it end up in, uh, the little blind, great Danes they get. Uh, it wasn’t a shelter. Like a puppy daycare that did boarding ST stayed there for four days. Then they went to Florida down. Jackie picked him up there and took him down to Florida. The girl at the Lucky Day care. She fell in love with him, but he end up going to Florida with a after cases process. I made a trip back to ST Charles and she adopted. That’s awesome. I love hearing the stories like that. It it is so much I want I want to do so far. And I haven’t had a gent do. It would be the last hand off person to To To an adopter. I’ve been the last month from you I’ll take a dog from the same Louis area to jolly yet to Chicago Land lab risk. I don’t know that, but few times. And but this is not the same, you know, from there to take him to a doctor where that person is looking forward to it. You know one thing about being in this industry long enough people get to know your names. I’ll try it. A few people reach out to me wanting Thio get a transport going, but just didn’t know how to do what steps to take. So I got him started. There’s I mean, it’s got one gentleman in Pennsylvania genital from New Mexico named Lily a Dalmatian. Now that this was actually the 1st 1 as they will see in the beginning, helping with the application to the end. And that was gratifying to be on every step ahead. So then I still follow him. Yeah, there’s some of them, especially the adopters. They’ll keep you. Ah, you know, if you’re staying within their PM. All right? I’m just saying your friend request You could see the progress of the pumps. There was one of the first office we did was no we picked up in? Uh, nothing. Him Illinois. And we brought him. Probably her down. ST. Louis area, please. This is one of the first few ones we did, and it snows. Mom and keen friend Addison Reed available that story. Unfortunately, snow pass away this, uh, this past spring. It was so, so gratifying just in on it and just see how they grow and develop this snow. Apply one of our most kidney stones we had, you know, that’s what she don’t know their past long times, which could be a good thing, too. Is there so sad? You know, seeing that developed from what she acted one with us and they wouldn’t. And in her family, that took care of her noon rally and vibrant it. It makes you feel good. You know? It’s, um it’s proof that you’re doing the right thing. Yeah. These animals know that they’re going to a better place, don’t they? They do. It’s amazing. Just the older ones. You could tell they know it. They don’t really know. You get a dog. 234 years old. They know about the king from where they’re going to is a better place. That’s definitely one of the most rewarding parts of transport. I know for me anyway. So, Tom, what advice would you have for somebody that is sharing this and saying I would like to volunteer and like to get involved? Where did they begin? Facebook. Just typing into the search rescue transport. You’d be surprised how many organizations pop up. It’s It’s really amazing. Tell me the ami out there are the people that wants to, uh, wants to help him. Joanie Sutan. She created a state page for every state, and you should monitor it to make sure that gets on the guidelines. Say, if you type your where you live at your state name and put transport behind it. If pop up and you just you should take the first step, just click on it. I would like to help. What can I do? You and there’s people out here in this in this industry here, you want to help that more than willing to help you. If you just want to drive an hour two hours or you wouldn’t drive six hours, there’s things out there for you to do no ways to do it, you know what’s between the heart and somebody. Volunteers only fill out the volunteer application, its own manager. Just send them on Orient Political Orientation email and within that email, tell Emma subdues and don’ts. But we also have some videos that are very helpful. Even if you don’t volunteer live individuals, like for sterilizing your car for how to make a slip lead out of the A regular leash. They’re all there, and they’re for your convenience and to help you. You know, Don’t don’t be afraid, you know, if you want to help you surveillance on only driving our that’s fine. You know, every little bit helps you like you’re a volunteer organization. Every little Billy. Oh, definitely agree. So So what’s in it for me? Said you were starting to kind of step down as zone manager, but it sounds like you’re gonna be retiring and then trying to doom or transports way of life to do. Let’s get an RV and set it up for transporting in staying overnight, maybe a 24 foot R B. We could go down there, Louisiana, Texas, Florida pick up the dog and taken thio where they need to go with B risk constant or California Washington State mess down the road. That’s Ah, that’s our pipe During there’s what we want to do Nice. Hopefully a workout. You know, he never know. At the very least, we will be transporting warmer and longer distances But whether we get an RV and be usable Force Nanyang with our with what we have at home. Still, we still get one dog. Four cats here to hopefully a workout. Yeah, its’s definitely nice. A nice thing to look forward to in a nice dream to have. So is there anything else? Time that you want to share this before we wrap things up? Oh, all right, thanks. All transport organisations need help. No, we have over 8200 volunteers and in their hearts, there’s still not enough. Uh, you know, you figure we cross United States, um, from Southern California A little later, you know, main it maybe 3200 people. That’s a lot that actually, when you’re transporting dogs and we’re doing 56 rounds a weekend, it’s not still grabbing. Just gotta re proving department. That’s still looking for people. If you’re interested, all just just look into the first step. Definitely, definitely agree. We can always use more volunteers. Well, think the time for what you do. And thanks for coming on the program today. Thanks for having me, Chris. Thanks for tuning into today’s podcast. If you’re not already a member, joined the Air P A. To take advantage of all the resources we have to offer. And don’t forget to sign up with do bert dot com. It’s free and helps automate the most difficult tasks in animal rescue.