Shelter dogs are great dogs. I love each dog that I work with. I know that when you get to know them, you will too. Whether you adopt, foster, volunteer, or donate to these amazing dogs, your help is desperately needed.
Who Are Coral Dogs?
Coral Dogs are the dogs that I get to know at my local animal services, Alachua County Animal Services. Their journeys are why I go back to Animal Services week after week and they will inspire you too.
Some of these dogs are at risk of being euthanized because of behavioral problems when they come in or that develop over the months in the shelter. Others are passed over for adoption for one reason or another week after week, month after month. I work with the dogs who, for whatever reason, are running out of time.
These dogs overcome overwhelming odds to find happiness and love in their forever homes. In the kennel it is impossible to know who they are, but when you give them the chance they reveal their personalities: funny, whimsical, careful, goofy and loving.
Before they came into the care of Animal Services some were abused or neglected. Others were loved and have been displaced for no fault of their own. Some of them were strays, some were yard dogs. Their time with me is a time when they don’t belong, love is hard to find, and they long for a person to call their own.
Dogs want more than anything else to give their love and devotion to someone. In the absense of a family of their own, they give their love to whoever will accept them, even for a little while. I come to love these dogs so quickly, perhaps because they are so desperate to love me back after having been in the kennel for months and/or going through terrible circumstances.
What I Do
This site is a place for me to tell the stories of the dogs that I get to know, share useful information that I learn while working with these dogs, and recommend the products that I’ve found through my work in product reviews to be best.
With the Dogs
I work with dogs at the shelter, take them for outings, and keep them for brief periods at my home. I get to know them well, work on any behavioral problems that they may have, teach them manners and basic training, and create marketing material in the form of photos, videos, and social media posts. I also take dogs into the community to increase their chances of being adopted and to increase aweareness about Animal Services.
Product Reviews and Informational Articles
I am a freelancer writer, photographer, and artist. The vast majority of my work centers around dogs. I have a win-win-win relationship in which the dogs, my clients, and I all benefit. Product review and informational articles are commissioned primarily on the freelance platform Upwork.
I use products or demonstrate training techniques with the dogs, take pictures, and write articles. Products are then donated to my ongoing work with the dogs. Pictures and video taken may be used for product reviews or promotion, as well as adoption marketing material.
If you would like to commission an article, don’t hesitate to contact me.
Writing, Photography, and Art
In addition to the work that I do for clients, I also create my own writing, photography, and artwork centered around the dogs that I work with at Animal Services. From informational articles about topics like, “How to Handle Nervous Shelter Dogs” and, “Bonding With Your Foster Dog: 10 Tips” to photo galleries, to art and creative non-fiction about shelter dogs, I love to make art about the dogs that I love.
If you would like to commission a story or portrait about your dog, don’t hesitate to contact me.
I believe in positive, reward-based training. I use whatever motivates at the moment, whether it is treats, toys, affection, freedom, or an interesting new smell or place.
If I want to change a behavior, I use a verbal marker like “neh” and stop the unwanted behavior while encouraging an alternative behavior. I don’t punish.
Active bonding and relationship building are the foundation of a positive relationship with any animal. Every dog wants to learn. It is up to the human to learn how to teach the dog that she’s with. Each dog teaches me new ways to motivate, techniques to distract, and ways to bond.
I only use positive training tools. All dogs always wear a harness, a martingale collar with Animal Services tags, and an Adopt Me vest. Whatever kind of training tool I am using, the leash is also attached to the martingale collar and harness in case the training tool fails.
- I am NOT a not-for-profit organization. I do not have and am not trying to achieve a not-for-profit status. I donate 50% of profits from this site directly back into my work with the dogs.
- I am NOT a private rescue. Animals that I work with remain 100% the property of ACAS or a participating private rescue at all times. My involvement is entirely through their volunteer and foster programs. Adoptions, foster applications, and meetups will be conducted through ACAS or a private rescue.
- I am NOT a certified dog trainer or animal behaviorist. I do not have any kind of certification in dog training. My knowledge comes from experience, observation, and research. My techniques can be applied by anyone who loves dogs.
Please Foster, Volunteer, Adopt, or Donate to Your Local Animal Services. Joel and Dogs Like Him Need You!