Volunteer looks back on dog years at Shenton Parl Dogs’ Refuge Home

Geoff Field with the plaque bearing his name. Picture: Andrew Ritchie                              d444337
Geoff Field with the plaque bearing his name. Picture: Andrew Ritchie d444337

FOR more than half his life, Geoff Field volunteered at the Dogs’ Refuge Home in Shenton Park.

Now retired, the 76-year-old Willetton resident said it was hard to condense his 44 years at the Shenton Park facility.

“When I was first involved in 1959, there were only two kennel blocks, no office and there was a tram we used as an office for five years,” Mr Field said.

“At the time, I didn’t know much about the Dogs’ Refuge but we’ve had really good presidents and secretaries.”

Coming from an accountancy background, Mr Field became the youngest committee member and honorary treasurer at 21.

“I’m here occasionally now but in the early days I was here once a week to bank the money,” he said.

“It’s been good to see it develop over the years.”

Mr Field, whose wife Lyn was also on the committee from 1959-64, said he grew up with dogs, cows, chickens and pigs in rural WA.

In 2000, the committee opened a training area in his name to recognise 40 years of service.

“The plaque was opened by the City of Nedlands mayor,” he said.

“It was a big surprise to me.”

Mr Field said he worked hard to get the State Government to approve tax deductions on donations to the refuge.

“They wouldn’t approve it on the grounds they can only give tax deductions for a human purpose,” he said. “I’m very pleased to say eight years ago approval was given and that has made a lot of difference.”

The Dogs’ Refuge Home published a commemorative book Tales from our Home in conjunction with its 80th birthday on October 20.

The Refuge will also host a gala dinner at the Perth Convention Exhibition Centre on October 24.

For tickets, visit www.dogshome.org.au