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Joy

Utah pets can now be safely cared for while their owners get the help they need at rehab

These good boys deserve all of the head scratches while they wait for their humans!

rehab; opioid epidemic; pets;
Photo by Eric Ward on Unsplash

Pets are now safe while owners are at rehab.

Sometimes pets are what keeps people struggling with addiction and other mental health issues going. Pets provide a level of responsibility outside of yourself and they thrive on routine. For example, if you have trouble waking up in the morning, don’t just set your alarm, start feeding your animal at the time you’d like to wake up. After a week or so of this new and rewarding habit for your pet, they will be sure to remind you it’s feeding time. By simply existing, pets can give their owners purpose on top of all of the great mental health benefits. It’s no wonder that pets can also be the reason people don’t seek out treatment for substance use issues, especially if it requires a lengthy stay away from home. But now, people in Utah struggling with addiction no longer have to choose between their sobriety and their pet.

Some people that find themselves addicted to drugs or alcohol can become isolated from healthy relationships with their friends and family. Being isolated makes it difficult to find someone trustworthy to care for your pets while you’re caring for yourself. As one could imagine, if the social network is depleted and if the only people available to help with pets are other people struggling with addiction, it makes sense to them to prioritize their pet's safety over seeking treatment. When you’re deep in the throes of addiction, clinging to the one thing that is holding you together most days is understandable.


Ruff Haven Crisis Sheltering typically offers free short-term housing for pets while their owners are going through a difficult time like domestic violence or homelessness. It recently partnered with Odyssey House, Utah’s largest comprehensive addiction program, which offers residential programs for teens and adults. The nonprofit also offers sober housing and a program designed for single parents. With Ruff Haven Crisis Sheltering working hand in hand with Odyssey House, potential clients can rest assured their animals will be cared for during their time in treatment.

The animal crisis shelter can keep the animals for up to three months of free boarding while the pet’s owner is receiving treatment. Ruff Haven’s foster coordinator, Beth Henry, told The Salt Lake Tribune, “This is really person-based, like person-led.” Henry explained that the animals are kept safe in a foster home until the owner completes treatment and reaches a place of safety and stability. Before the pet is placed in a foster home, the owner must complete an application, which includes the owner’s current situation. Once the application is complete, the animal is assessed regarding its general condition including vaccinations and if it's fixed or scheduled to be. After all criteria is met, the pet is matched with a foster and the client can check in on their pet once a week via text. This includes foster parents sending pictures and videos to the owner to help ease their minds while they focus on getting clean.

Photo by Sasha Matveeva on Unsplash

Some animals are even able to get visitation with their humans at the Dogs All Day facility, where the owner can schedule some much-needed cuddles with their pooch. Ruff Haven’s Executive Director Kristina Pulsipher told the paper, “A lot of times [owners] worry that they’re gonna forget them during that period — the pets never forget their person. The reunions are why we do this. And we have many people who have been clients that volunteer with us now, or foster for us.”

This program is such a compassionate solution to a difficult situation and will hopefully catch on in other states. It's so important for people to be able to get the help they need without worrying about abandoning their pets. Since Ruff Haven opened in June 2020, it has already helped around 500 animals and 320 families.

Joy

1991 blooper clip of Robin Williams and Elmo is a wholesome nugget of comedic genius

Robin Williams is still bringing smiles to faces after all these years.

Robin Williams and Elmo (Kevin Clash) bloopers.

The late Robin Williams could make picking out socks funny, so pairing him with the fuzzy red monster Elmo was bound to be pure wholesome gold. Honestly, how the puppeteer, Kevin Clash, didn’t completely break character and bust out laughing is a miracle. In this short outtake clip, you get to see Williams crack a few jokes in his signature style while Elmo tries desperately to keep it together.

Williams has been a household name since what seems like the beginning of time, and before his death in 2014, he would make frequent appearances on "Sesame Street." The late actor played so many roles that if you were ask 10 different people what their favorite was, you’d likely get 10 different answers. But for the kids who spent their childhoods watching PBS, they got to see him being silly with his favorite monsters and a giant yellow canary. At least I think Big Bird is a canary.

When he stopped by "Sesame Street" for the special “Big Bird's Birthday or Let Me Eat Cake” in 1991, he was there to show Elmo all of the wonderful things you could do with a stick. Williams turns the stick into a hockey stick and a baton before losing his composure and walking off camera. The entire time, Elmo looks enthralled … if puppets can look enthralled. He’s definitely paying attention before slumping over at the realization that Williams goofed a line. But the actor comes back to continue the scene before Elmo slinks down inside his box after getting Williams’ name wrong, which causes his human co-star to take his stick and leave.

The little blooper reel is so cute and pure that it makes you feel good for a few minutes. For an additional boost of serotonin, check out this other (perfectly executed) clip about conflict that Williams did with the two-headed monster. He certainly had a way of engaging his audience, so it makes sense that even after all of these years, he's still greatly missed.

Noe Hernandez and Maria Carrillo, the owners of Noel Barber Shop in Anaheim, California.

Jordyn Poulter was the youngest member of the U.S. women’s volleyball team, which took home the gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics last year. She was named the best setter at the Tokyo games and has been a member of the team since 2018.

Unfortunately, according to a report from ABC 7 News, her gold medal was stolen from her car in a parking garage in Anaheim, California, on May 25.

It was taken along with her passport, which she kept in her glove compartment. While storing a gold medal in your car probably isn’t the best idea, she did it to keep it by her side while fulfilling the hectic schedule of an Olympian.

"We live this crazy life of living so many different places. So many of us play overseas, then go home, then come out here and train,” Poulter said, according to ABC 7. "So I keep the medal on me (to show) friends and family I haven't seen in a while, or just people in the community who want to see the medal. Everyone feels connected to it when they meet an Olympian, and it's such a cool thing to share with people."

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Co-sleeping isn't for everyone.

The marital bed is a symbol of the intimacy shared between people who’ve decided to be together 'til death they do part. When couples sleep together it’s an expression of their closeness and how they care for one another when they are most vulnerable.

However, for some couples, the marital bed can be a warzone. Throughout the night couples can endure snoring, sleep apnea, the ongoing battle for sheets or circadian rhythms that never seem to sync. If one person likes to fall asleep with the TV on while the other reads a book, it can be impossible to come to an agreement on a good-night routine.

Last week on TODAY, host Carson Daly reminded viewers that he and his wife Siri, a TODAY Food contributor, had a sleep divorce while she was pregnant with their fourth child.

“I was served my sleep-divorce papers a few years ago,” he explained on TODAY. “It’s the best thing that ever happened to us. We both, admittedly, slept better apart.”

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