Sonya Kamp is one of my favorite shelter workers.

She’s always got a grin on her face when I stop by her shelter. Even on the days that would choke some of us with sorrow, Sonya soldiers through them free from rage or harsh words. I am in awe of her state of perpetual good cheer.

When I walked into the Richmond Animal Protection Society near Vancouver yesterday, Sonya was working the front desk while cuddling this bit of pup who looks like a cross between a Shih Tzu and a guinea pig. Four-week-old Katie was away from her mom for the first time. While Mom was being groomed, Sonya was keeping Katie warm and mothered.

As soon as I pulled out my camera, Sonya started to give me a little show modeling the pup as her accessory. I told her the pictures were going to make the blog. Let’s see if I can make her blush.

This one’s for you, Sonya. Keep smiling. ☺




Carreen Maloney can be contacted at