Shelter workers do the best they can to make the dogs feel comfortable. Ultimately, a shelter is a transitory home, and some of the luxuries of the living room don’t make their into the dog kennel.
At the Knox County Humane Society No Kill Animal Shelter in Galesburg, Illinois, employees are going the extra mile to make sure their guests feel right at home. Of course, if it weren’t for Buster Brown, none of it would have happened.
The Knox County Humane Society didn’t know what to do with Buster Brown, an affectionate couch potato who kept stealing people’s seats.
Buster had developed a habit of stealing someone’s chair when they stood up. Occasionally, he wouldn’t even bother to wait for them to get out of the chair before trying to sit in it.
While it was adorable, it was also an inconvenience for the staff at the shelter.
“We have Buster Brown behind the desk and he kept sitting in our chairs with us and there wasn’t room,” shelter director Erin Buckmaster told Our Quad Cities.
A local plumbing and heating company that was throwing out their old furniture donated an armchair to the shelter. They put it in the office and Buster loved it so much, they figured the other dogs might like chairs as well.
“We thought it would be a good idea if they all got a chair,” Buckmaster said.
The shelter put the word out in their community. The response was overwhelming.
The chairs have all been donated by people in the community. The shelter’s maximum capacity is 50 dogs—they currently have 22 chairs.
“We never dreamed it would take off like this,” Buckmaster told People. “I really just wanted the dogs to feel more comfortable while staying at the shelter.”
The shelter, which doesn’t euthanize dogs due to space limitations or length of stay, likes to make the space feels like home as much as possible. A video of the dogs enjoying their chairs was unexpectedly viewed more than 16 million times on Facebook.
Since then, calls have been coming in from all over the country.
“Even from Tennessee, we’ve had them from all over. You know, everybody loves animals,” Buckmaster said.
The idea has spread to other shelters around the US, which will hopefully lead to more adoptions.
Buckmaster is thrilled that other shelters are attempting to implement the idea at their facility. She likes to imagine that “every dog in every shelter is going to get a chair,” according to Today.
The shelter said it has no intention of slowing down in their search for armchairs.
“We know they’re gonna get torn up, we know that,” Buckmaster said. “So as we go through the chairs we’ll just have to dispose of them and get new ones.”
“We’ve just seen that it’s been a wonderful thing for the dogs, they love it,” said Buckmaster.
Watch these shelter dogs relax in the comfort of their very own chairs!
Posted by Today Show on Friday, March 9, 2018