My name is Olivia Comaniuk. I am a Grade 12 student at A.N. Myer Secondary School in Niagara Falls. Since the age of 6, I have always wanted to become a veterinarian because I have a huge passion for animals. In February, I started a full day co-op at the Niagara Falls Humane Society.


Working at the Niagara Falls Humane Society I do a variety of tasks such as taking care of the animals, spending time with them, taking the dogs for walks and assisting our veterinary technologist. Starting this co-op, I still wanted to become a veterinarian, but now that I have learned more about the occupation I have some different options in mind. I either want to become a veterinary assistant, an O.S.P.C.A. agent, a kennel attendant or do animal control. Within these 4 months of my co-op I have been scratched, bitten and attacked 3 times by 2 dogs and a cat. I’ve also had a chance to love and be loved by many, many animals. It can be hard not to get attached to the animals at the shelter when you get to know them as well as I do. Being attacked was really painful but I never gave up on myself and continued to finish my job. I take this as a sign that I am fit for this career path.

All of us at the shelter, including me, understand that animals at the shelter are very stressed, and also that we often don’t know anything about their history or temperament, so caring for them can be risky.

Last month we had a dog come in from North Carolina and his name is Kicker.

He is extremely shy and anti-social and always decides to spend the day in the outside part of his run. Last week I felt really terrible for him so I decided to spend some time with him. I  lured him towards me with some treats and he finally chose me to be his friend. I feel that I have hugely influenced him by spending a lot of time with him and by becoming his best friend. He and I have a strong connection with each other and I try to spend as much time with him as I can. He’s a big suck and a sweetheart and a well-mannered dog once he gets to really know you. Once comfortable, Kicker would make a fantastic addition to any family.

For anyone wanting to get into this line of work, I highly recommend doing a co-op or volunteering at the Niagara Falls Humane Society. You learn so many new things there and it would also look great on a resume. We are always looking for volunteers. I’m really happy that I chose to do my co-op here and I will definitely continue to do volunteering here.

KICKER IS a tri coloured lab mix. If you think he would be a great addition to your home please click HERE.

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