A new relationship with animals, nature and each other.

Volunteer Violet Celebrates 90th Birthday

Canadian is renowned for working with feral dogs and cats

By Linda Somers – guest post

Slowly and painstakingly, Violet Clermont coaxed the dog up to her by holding out small pieces of hot dog treats. The dog was not only frightened but extremely uncomfortable. She had a face full of porcupine quills. Once she was in front of a dog carrier, a gentle shove toward the treat had her in the carrier. This pooch would soon be feeling a whole lot better.

It was Violet’s way of celebrating her 90th birthday. She’d left home at 5 a.m. with her daughter, Anna, and driven three hours to a remote Native American community in central Alberta where the people were asking for help with their feral dog population.

Violet started volunteering for the Alberta Animal Rescue Crew Society at the tender age of 85. Five years later, she’s still as active and passionate as ever about the work she does in Native American communities.

“The dogs seem to know they have been rescued,” she said, “and that life will never be the same.”

Her first outing was when a man named George called the shelter from the O’Chese First Nation Community asking for help with a litter of stray dogs. Violet helped rescue Booker and Barker, and she’s been part of some of the most difficult rescues ever since.

One of those was Minna on a cold, stormy winter day, in which “Grandma” Violet managed to persuade a mother dog and all her puppies to come out from under a shed.

When not out on rescues, Violet goes around second hand stores picking up quilts and other items to turn into blankets for kennels and beds for the doghouses that AARCS provides to the community.

At the age of 90, Violet has no intentions of slowing down. She looks forward to every day she is out there, making a difference and saving lives.

“We grew up on a mixed farm,” said her daughter, Anna, “where she cared for the animals, milked cows, gathered eggs, and tended the land right alongside our dad. Life was difficult, but she always kept going, and still does every day. Joining rescue has added so much to her daily life.”