Luis Escobar had an idea. He and the members of the St. Joseph High School Cross Country Team decided to take some dogs from the Santa Barbara County Animal Shelter in Santa Maria, California on their morning run. Each dog (about a dozen in all) was paired up with a high school track kid and ran for a couple of miles around the shelter.
Escobar also decided to film the end of the run (see video below). Most of the dogs were still as enthusiastic at the end as they were in the beginning. However, one ended up coming in at a walk and another, named Fred, was carried over the finish line. Seems Fred got his fill of running.
Due to overcrowding and a lack of volunteers, shelter dogs often don't get a chance to go out for a walk, let alone a run. This can make them antsy and depressed, which also leads to behavioral problems that make it difficult for them to get adopted.
In addition to giving the dogs (and themselves) a much-needed workout, the cross country team also wanted to raise awareness of the shelter and the dogs' plight. This way, the dogs would be more likely to get adopted.
The response to their post on Facebook was enthusiastic. Many suggested that other shelters try it out. Expect to see more "dog runs" in the future.
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