K9 passion leads Glenn to golden opportunity

Oct 21st, 2010 | By | Category: Campus News, Oct. 21

Golden tickets don’t always come hidden in candy bar wrapping.

While it worked for Charlie, many people find their golden ticket to happiness in a variety of places.

Kathy Glenn, assistant to the dean of the College of Engineering, discovered her golden ticket in a slightly livelier form.

“Anyone who has golden retrievers or knows the breed, knows that they are lovable, happy and loyal dogs,” Glenn said. “Everyone’s their friend from the minute they meet you.”

Glenn is the caseworker coordinator for Golden Retriever Rescue in Nebraska, a private, nonprofit organization devoted to rescuing golden retrievers and finding them new homes.

“What we do in GRRIN is oftentimes labor intensive (because) some days it’s really busy and there are emergencies that come up with our dogs,” Glenn said. “But like anyone who volunteers, we do our best to balance what we do.”
Ann Selzer, program manager for the Nebraska Center for Energy Sciences Research, said Glenn plays a crucial role in making the adoption experience comfortable for prospective owners, including her.

“(Glenn) was one of a number of different people I worked with,” Selzer said. “She was a really important cog in the wheel and made the whole process very professional.”

This level of professionalism, Selzer said, can be easily attributed to Glenn’s established career at the university.

“She’s a tremendous professional here at UNL. She does an outstanding job combining her love of golden retrievers with her skills of organizing and communicating all of the contracts and paperwork.”

Glenn became involved with GRRIN seven years ago after deciding she was interested in adopting a rescued dog. She joined the organization’s rescue team a few years later and has helped golden retrievers find forever families ever since.

The GRRIN adoption process is highly personalized, beginning with a home visit to ensure a prospective owner’s lifestyle compatibility and ending with a match made in canine heaven.

“We want to make sure that our dogs are placed in the best possible environment for them to thrive and be happy,” Glenn said. “We work really hard to make sure that prospective owners get the right dog.”

The amount of dedication put forth by GRRIN during the adoption process led Selzer to her new best friend — a 5-year-old golden retriever surrendered by his previous owners because they were a military family whose duty station had changed.

“My husband was in the Army, Vietnam and the Nebraska Air National Guard,” Selzer said. “Being a military family, we thought that was just one more reason to adopt him.”

Selzer and her husband nicknamed their newly adopted golden retriever “Major” to bring their military and life experiences full circle.

“It was really a perfect match,” Selzer said. “He was waiting for us and we were waiting for him.”

This serendipitous spark between a well-matched dog and its new owner proves that Glenn’s service helps create a certain tangible happiness among all those — canine and human alike — who come under her care.

Glenn channels her passion for golden retrievers through the passion that they emanate by nature and recommends the breed for anyone in search of a little extra affection.

“Golden retrievers are a constant source of unconditional love. You can come home after a very long day and they are so happy to see you — no strings attached.”

– By Mekita Rivas, University Communications

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