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Field Trip: Making the Mean Streets a Little Kinder

In Portland, an animal welfare group keeps people in mind

His name is Cubby, and he’s here because of a mole. It’s likely harmless, that small growth on the leg of this 13-year-old Pomeranian-spitz mix. Nevertheless, his human is worried.

Of course it doesn’t take much to worry Lawrence C. (last name withheld). “I have a problem with my temper,” says Lawrence, a 330-pound giant of a man with a booming voice and a huge presence. “I used to punch people when they said ‘Hi.’ With Cubby, I don’t lose my temper as much. He knows what I need.”

Cubby and Lawrence are first in line for this month’s free veterinary clinic sponsored by the Portland Animal Welfare (PAW) Team. Being first took some doing. The pair arrived at 6 a.m., six hours before the clinic opened. The line behind them, now stretching around the block, includes hundreds of animals and their human companions waiting to get in the door.

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