Our Volunteer Tail this month, Marnie Cox, moved to the New York City and immediately found a shelter where she could lend her time. "When I found Bideawee, I fell in love," she says.
Even when she was a kid, Bideawee volunteer Marnie Cox knew that animals would be a huge part of her life. "I have definitely always had a love for them," Marnie says. "I never had an imaginary friend, but I did have an imaginary dog when I was five."
It wasn't just imaginary pets that Marnie fell for, either. "I started volunteering at the animal shelter where I grew up in Connecticut when I was 12," she said. "I even got my first dog from the shelter where I volunteered."
When Marnie moved to the New York City, one of the first things she did was find a shelter where she could lend her time. "When I found Bideawee, I fell in love," she says. "All the volunteers know the animals really well there, so they are good at finding them homes to match."
Marnie has been volunteering with Bideawee for three years now, and her time and efforts have not gone unnoticed.
"When Marnie first came to volunteer, she hit the ground running," says Deborah Green, senior manager of volunteers, education and outreach. "It wasn't so much the time spent here as her competence, her willingness to do whatever needed doing. If a dog lifted his leg in the lobby, she had the mop out before anyone could get up from their seat."
Marnie is a Jill of all trades at the shelter, taking on outreach, animal care, socialization, matchmaking and completing adoptions.
She makes it her business to know all the animals and their personalities, and she's warm and caring, needing very little direction, Green says. "And from the start she identified herself as a Forham law student who had founded an animal rights group on campus and intended to dedicate her life professionally to the welfare of animals."
As far as the animal rights group goes, Marnie is proud of her accomplishments there as well. "I was one of the girls who started the Student Animal Legal Defense Fund on my campus," she said. "It's a national organization, and we started our chapter with events to raise awareness about animal rights, fundraise for animal charities, and by doing volunteer work. We even got our first course at Fordham for animal law."
And at Bideawee, Marnie has managed to make a difference in one particular little animal's life, especially. "I can't have my own animal right now, but my parents ended up adopting my favorite dog from Bideawee," she says. "She's a 5-year-old shepherd mix, and I had spent so many months telling my parents about her and sending them photos that they ended up coming in from Connecticut, meeting her, falling in love and adopting her."
Petside.com is donating $500 to Bideawee as a big "Thanks!" to Marnie Cox.
BONUS SECTION: Try Our Tails Take Action Challenge!
We asked Marnie Cox to pose one simple, impactful challenge to you, our readers, for the month of November.
"I think a great challenge would be for people to feed a homeless animal for Thanksgiving."
- Click here to donate food directly to an animal at Bideawee.
- Donate to your local shelter.
Or, earn a whopping 50 bowls of food, donated by Iams Home 4 the Holidays to shelters in need (including Bideawee), by:
- Commenting on this story. Our goal is to reach 100 comments (5,000 meals for needy pets!) by Thanksgiving, November 25! You can write anything. (Well, let's keep it PG, but you know what I mean). Tell your friends to do it too!
- Tweeting it out.
- LIKEing it on Facebook.