Uncomfortable Conversation

December 10, 2021

Okay, let’s talk about something that’s super uncomfortable for me….


I try hard to keep it in perspective.

When my husband and I have to spend large sums of money on something truly un-fun or unexpected but necessary like a car or home repair, or we make a stupid mistake and waste money, or one of our kids costs us some serious dough, I always say, “It’s just money. That’s why we have it.”

I work hard to pinch pennies and cook in and shop smart. I’m all about the use-it-up, make-do, don’t-waste-a-bit. ‘Shopping’ as an outing is one of my least favorite things to do. Money, for me, is a means to an end.

Or a necessary evil. It can do so much good, and it can also create a ton of stress.

One of the reasons we formally organized our work with Who Will Let the Dogs Out was to allow us to raise money to not only help the rescues and shelters we visit, but also so that Nancy and I could stop funding our shelter tours out of our own savings.

Who Will Let the Dogs Out was created to find and tell the stories that have been largely ignored by national media and the larger rescue organizations. We believe that by sharing their stories and images of their work, we can help save lives. So we will press on, and find a way to fund our trips.

This next trip is the biggest yet and we’ll drive the furthest yet and possibly visit the most shelters/rescues we’ve visited in one trip yet.

We’re headed to Florida, by way of a quick stop in North Carolina and a little longer stop in Georgia, then swinging through Alabama, and possibly Mississippi and Tennessee on our way home. (We are still putting our itinerary together, so if you know of a Georgia or Florida shelter or rescue organization deserving of some positive attention, please email me pronto.)

Since we’re going so far, we’re trying to cram in every possible visit we can.

And that means this is also the most expensive trip we’ve made.

We travel on the cheap, utilizing friend’s couches and cheap motels, packing most of our food, renting the smallest vehicle that can handle the supplies we take to the shelters.

And yet the costs still add up.

For all of that, we could use your help.

If you’ve got a few dollars to spare, please consider making a donation via our website, our Facebook fundraiser, or by sending a check to ‘Who Will Let the Dogs Out’ (128 W High St, Woodstock, VA 22664).

You can also support our work, and do a little holiday shopping, by purchasing one of our 2022 Great American Shelter Dogs calendars (or a set of our Who Will Let the Dogs Out notecards coming to the website soon!). They feature the gorgeous photography of Nancy Slattery and the beautiful faces of some of the souls we met on our last shelter tour.

If you’d like to send donation items for the shelters, you can shop our Amazon Wishlist.

Any and all of your support is HUGELY appreciated!

Shew. There. I did it. It’s definitely not a comfortable thing, asking for money, and I’ve done a ton of it this year (that’s how Amber’s Halfway Home got funded). The only reason I can do it is because I know the money we raise will enable us to help more dogs and the heroes who are working on the front lines every day saving lives.

I hope you were able to join us for the watch party for Amber’s Halfway Home, our Emmy-nominated, award-winning documentary about rescue in western Tennessee. If you missed it, you can see the film on our YouTube channel.

It is our greatest hope that this film will be a catalyst for change in an area that sorely needs it. Please help us spread the word by sharing the film far and wide. We’d also appreciate it if you commented (and subscribed) to our channel.

Until each one has a home,


Please help us by subscribing (button on right side) and sharing this blog. You can also keep track of us on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.

The mission of Who Will Let the Dogs Out (we call it Waldo for short) is to raise awareness and resources for homeless dogs and the heroes who fight for them.

Amber’s Halfway Home is a short documentary film we produced in partnership with Farnival Films. It follows the work of a remarkable woman and one day of rescue in western Tennessee. Selected for fourteen film festivals (to date), it’s won eight awards (including Best Short Doc, Best Soundtrack, Best of Fest, and Audience Choice), and was nominated for an Emmy! It is a beautiful, heartbreaking, inspiring story we hope will compel viewers to work for change. Please watch it and share it far and wide.

You can learn more about what is happening in our southern shelters and rescues in the book, One Hundred Dogs & Counting: One Woman: One Woman, Ten Thousand Miles, and a Journey Into the Heart of Shelters and Rescues (Pegasus Books, 2020) it’s the story of a challenging foster dog who inspired me to travel south to find out where all the dogs were coming from. It tells the story of how Who Will Let the Dogs Out began. Find it anywhere books are sold. A portion of the proceeds of every book sold go to help unwanted animals in the south.

For more information on any of our projects, talk about rescue in your neck of the woods, or become a Waldo volunteer, please email whowillletthedogsout@gmail.com or carasueachterberg@gmail.com.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

First time commenting? Please fill out your name and email address to comment. (Your email address will not be published)

2 Years Ago

I have shared Ambers video on my twitter page, and asked my buddies to watch the video and see what people like you, and this lady, do for us dogs. We are all truly appreciative of the efforts of those who try to help us.

Cara Sue Achterberg
2 Years Ago

Thank you so much!!