Every year I look forward to Metropolitan Washington's Council of Governments Animal Services Awards Ceremony. It's the one time that almost twenty animal control agencies take a day to celebrate the successes of prior years. An interesting fact from psychology is that we attend to threatening or dangerous cues five times more than exciting joyful cues. This makes perfect sense because that's a life saving tendency. But it contributes to burn out in animal shelter work because the number of cases that are successful far outweigh the bad but it doesn't matter if your brain gives them five times the attention. So, people quit because it's hard.
People also stay. This year there are eleven categories full of nominations from colleagues for adoption, volunteer and rescue stories that are superhero worthy. Mostly the guests will all be insiders. So the average citizen never hears about any of the amazing tales. We've tried to get press coverage. We've even rescheduled the event to make it easier for media outlets to attend. They don't. And it's too bad because reader/viewer response is greatest for animal related reporting.
So stay tuned for the results of the March 28 ceremony at the MWCOG offices in Washington, DC. And if you want to attend, consider contacting MWCOG for more information.