"Our Best Friend" is a weekly installment to honor just a few of our outstanding Best Friends LA volunteers. This is your chance to get to know some of the shining stars in the Best Friends LA volunteer program! Volunteers are either nominated by Best Friends LA staff or other volunteers in our program. If you would like to volunteer, e-mail the Best Friends LA Volunteer Department at volunteerLA@bestfriends.org
Sara Mayer – honored October 25th, 2014
Sara, tell us.....
What programs and projects do you volunteer with at Best Friends LA?
Dogs and Cats (mostly Dogs though)
Why do you choose to volunteer with Best Friends LA?
At first, it was for purely selfish reasons: pet-less me wanted to spend more time with animals. Taking dogs for walks and playing with cats seemed like a win-win situation for all involved. Then I met, fell-in-love and adopted my NKLA alum, Wally, and I was lucky to become a "parent", receiving the benefits of this incredible organization's work. I continue to volunteer because the powerful compassion demonstrated by staff and volunteers, along with the unconditional love the animals express, make my life richer.
How long have you been a Best Friends LA volunteer?
One year in November!
What type of fun stuff do you do when you're not volunteering?
I'm an actor, so I love creative projects. I've performed with other NKLA volunteers... before we even realized we had NKLA in common! I love all kinds of adventures: traveling, nature, arts, spiritual. I have two incredible little nieces (who love their "cousin" Wally"), and playing with them is a favorite pastime.
Do you have a favorite story to share about an experience volunteering with Best Friends LA?
Oh man, there are so many good ones! I've over-night fostered a couple of pups to allow them a break from the shelter and me a chance to observe their behavior. Both were little spazzes in kennel, but turned into puddles of calm affection in my apartment. It really illustrated to me how kennel-behavior is not necessarily the dog's natural behavior. But I think my favorite experience was volunteering at the La Brea Tar Pits Adoption Weekend. I was blown away by the scale of the event: so many animals, so many people advocating for them, so many new families formed. I was so moved to be a part of such a collective act of love.
Do you have any pets?
WALLY! I've been waiting all of my adult life to be "ready" to have a dog. As a volunteer, I remember the day he arrived and how cute he was. When all the other dogs in the cottage were barking, he'd just put his little puppy-like paws on the door and wiggle in anticipation. I'd take him for walks and play fetch with him. When he returned with his toy, he'd lay on my leg to chew it. Once while visiting him in his kennel, I dropped my bag on the floor and sat down. He picked my bag up and brought it over to me. It was over for me at that moment. He was my dog. We love taking training classes together, and we're working towards becoming a therapy dog/handler pair so that we can share his healing cuteness with those in need.
What others are saying about Sara Mayer:
“There are not enough words to say how fabulous Sara is!! We are so blessed to have her be a part of our volunteer program. I always have a smile on my face when I see Sara and she is more than a volunteer she is also become a friend! Love you Sara!!!” Tamara Gvozdenovic, Volunteer Coordinator