Into the Story


Episode 29 - Amanda's Story

Ep. 29: A Story About Adopting a Dog

Nivel de inglés: intermedio alto
Acento: inglés australiano

Esta semana en nuestro podcast para aprender inglés con historias reales y emocionantes escucharemos a nuestra protagonista de hoy, Amanda, contando una historia sobre el proceso de adopción de su perro. Mientras escuchas a Amanda relatando su experiencia viviendo con Granny el galgo, aprenderás vocabulario súper útil, tal como ‘picky‘, ‘to turn up‘ y ‘to get through‘. 



No se trata de cualquier perro, ¡es un galgo de carreras retirado!, ¡an ex greyhound racing dog! ¡Escuchemos a Amanda contar cómo fue llevarse a casa un perro adoptado! Today’s story is about adopting a dog.


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Transcripción del Podcast

Bree: In today ‘s episode we’ll hear Amanda share a story about adopting a dog. Escucharás a Amanda contando una historia sobre el proceso de adopción de su perro. Pero no cualquier perro, un galgo de carreras retirado – an ex greyhound racing dog. 

Amanda: She was saying that they were really lazy and don’t need any running at all. So they spend all their time sleeping and they are really good at running short distances really fast. So I thought that a greyhound would be the perfect breed to get. 

Bree: For Amanda and her partner, the situation was complicated by the pandemic that caused the city of Melbourne, Australia to go into lockdown for over 6 months. Now it seemed that everyone was also looking for an adoption dog to keep them company while at home. After weeks of waiting, Granny, the greyhound becomes available. Amanda jumps in the car, drives to the pet shop and buys everything she needs for the dog’s arrival the very next day. ¡Sigues escuchando para saber si Amanda consigue llevar a Granny a casa!

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Ok antes de escuchar la historias, veamos 5 palabras y expresiones interesantes que utiliza Amanda en este episodio: 

  1. Firstly, ‘to be up for adoption’ or ‘to be put up for adoption’ is the English expression we use to mean ‘dar en adopción’. In today’s episode, listen out for Amanda talking about greyhound dogs, galgos, being put up for adoption on the adoption centre’s website. To be put up for adoption.
  2. Next, ‘to get through’. The phrasal verb to get through has various uses in English. It could be used to mean ‘superar’ as in ‘I need to get through this difficult time’ or also ‘hacer comprender a alguien’ as in ‘I can’t get through to my friend. She just doesn’t listen to what I have to say.’ But today, you’ll hear this expression used when talking on the telephone. To get through has a very specific meaning in this context. It means to connect or reach someone by phone. For example you could say ‘I want to get through to the manager of the restaurant but he’s not answering his phone’ – ‘Quiero comunicarme con el gerente del restaurante pero no contesta el teléfono’. To get through.
  3. Picky. A picky person in English is someone who is very selective and difficult to please. En español diríamos tiquismiquis, quisquilloso, o selectivo. For example, you might hear people use the expression ‘a picky eater’ to describe a person who only likes particular foods. Picky.
  4. The next expression is ‘to run somewhere’. Sometimes we use this expression literally to mean that you’re going to put on your sneakers, las bambas, and actually run to a place, but it’s very often used in colloquial English to mean ‘ir rapidamente’. For instance, if you noticed that you ran out of milk, you could say ‘I’m going to run to the grocery store’. To run somewhere.   
  5. And finally, ‘to turn up’. This word, to turn up, is used in different ways in English. Firstly, we use turn up to refer to someone or something appearing unexpectedly. For example, ‘my keys turned up after I lost them last week. I found my keys’. Secondly, turn up is used to mean increase, as in ‘turn up the volume’. Or finally, in today’s story we’ll hear turn up being used to mean presentarse. You’ll hear Amanda explaining the protocol of turning up to a carpark where she had to collect the dog. 

Don’t forget, para bajarte la transcripción, la ficha de vocabulario, y un test de comprensión te dejamos el enlace en las notas del programa. Let’s get into the story…

Amanda: My name is Amanda and I live in Melbourne, Australia. I’ve always loved dogs. I had a dog growing up. And then when me and my partner moved into our house we were really desperate to get a dog. We always knew we wanted to adopt a dog because we didn’t want to have a puppy and we also thought that there were lots of dogs in the world without homes. So we had to think about what dog would fit in our house and also fit with our lifestyle. But then I will still be able to adopt because lots of the like little poodle dogs are really popular and so it’s really hard to find one up for adoption.

Bree: Now that Amanda and her partner had decided to adopt a dog, they started to investigate different breeds – razas de perro. Greyhound racing in Australia is a popular gambling sport, apuestas deportivas. In the past, it was often difficult to find a home for the race dogs after they retired from the sport. But thanks to dog adoption programs, these dogs have a way of finding a new family. 

Amanda: So originally I never thought of getting a greyhound. I assumed that because they’re racing dogs they would need a lot of running. I definitely didn’t want a dog with… that needed a lot of exercise because I don’t like waking up early to run my dog. But I actually had a colleague who had an auntie who had Greyhounds and she was saying that they are really lazy and they don’t need any running at all. Because they are racing dogs, they are sprinters, they are not endurance runners. So they spend all their time sleeping and then they are really good at running short distances really fast. Then I thought, that would be really good because Greyhounds are really easy to adopt  because of the racing industry in Australia. There are heaps of Greyhounds that are ex-racer who need a home after they have retired from racing. So I thought that a greyhound would be the perfect breed to get.

At the start of 2020 we decided we wanted to adopt a greyhound. So we signed up to this program called the Greyhound Adoption Program. So they work with the racing industry to re-home all the ex-racing dogs but then two months later, Covid obviously hit. So everyone had the same idea as us, that they wanted a dog because they were stuck in there homes. So they went from having like 25 dogs on their website to having no dogs within like 3 weeks. The process after Covid hit of adopting a dog was that every Tuesday and Thursday at 11 o’clock they would upload a photo and a profile of a dog on their website and you had to call the company and try and get through but because everyone was calling at the same time it was impossible to get through on their line. One day I called 15 times this phone line to try and get through and then for weeks every time I got through they would just tell me that the dog on their website had already been adopted by someone else who had got through on the front line earlier. 

Bree: The more that she couldn’t get a dog the more she wanted one! Amanda was getting pretty tired of calling the adoption centre every day only to be told that she was unsuccessful… until one day..

Amanda: One day, I called up because I saw this other dog that they had put on the website and I called her about this dog and I managed to get through which was great and they told me like every other week that the dog was not available. But then she said hang on we’ve got another dog that we haven’t put up on the website but I was just about to and her name is Granny and I said okay can you tell me a bit about Granny. And she said yeah Granny was a bit of an older dog, Granny was seven at the time so she said are you interested in Granny and I said ‘yeah! Like can you tell me anything else about her?’. And all she told me was that Granny was 7 years old and she was black and I was… I was just very desperate for a dog. I was… I didn’t want to be picky or anything so I said yes I’ll take her straight away. And then they told me, and this was on a Tuesday. They told me you have to pick her up the next day at like 2 o o’clock in the afternoon and so then I had to finish work that day and drive straight to the pet shop because we had nothing for the dog. We were not prepared at all. It was like telling someone they’re going to have a baby and then to buy all the stuff for the baby with 10 minutes to go before the shop closed. 

So I had to run to the pet shop and I was just like to the lady at the pet shop. What do dogs need? Just give me anything that dogs need! And she’s like food and I was like just grabbing random things and I spent an absolute fortune that night. 

Bree: Amanda has everything she needs to welcome Granny to their home. The next day comes and it’s time to pick up her new dog, in her tiny hatchback car, un coche muy pequeño. But because of covid protocols, the situation is more complicated than usual.

Amanda: Normally you would drive to their property and meet the dog and be able to spend some time with the dog before taking the dog home but because of Covid. They drove to a  different location which from my house was over an hour away and you had an allocated time slot to turn up and you weren’t allowed to go anywhere near the staff and they would just what’s the dog in their doggy caravan and you had to, when you do your name was called, you would have to go by yourself and just take the dog out of the caravan. I was super excited. I went up to this caravan and Granny was really excited. I could hear her tail wagging and then she jumped out of the caravan and then I saw how big she was! And I was like, oh no! I’ve made a huge mistake because she was just so massive in real life, like higher than my belly button! And then I had to pull her over towards the car but she was so excited because she had been in this caravan for like an hour and a half that she was really hard to get over to my car. So I opened the backseat of my car and I was like ‘Granny get in!’ and I just expected that she would jump into the back seat because that’s what most dogs do and she just like, was standing there wagging her tail and she just looked up at me and stared at me.  I was like how am I going to do this? I’m only a small person and she’s a huge dog and I’m trying to get her into this tiny car as well. I drive a tiny hatchback car. And I was like oh no! How am I going to do this because I’m all by myself and I’m in this like massive carpark and everyone else has left already the staff from the adoption program are in full hazmat suits with masks and goggles and gloves and everything and they can’t come anywhere near us because of covid protocol. So I like, open the other side of the door. I was just like, from the other side ‘C’mon Granny! C’mon. Get in the car!’ and she just stared at me. 

I finally got her front paws in and then how do I get her bottom half in? And they were like just scoop from the bottom! What, what do you mean just scoop? I finally just did it and lifted her. Even though she was ridiculously heavy and she was so unhappy about it. 

Bree: Granny and Amanda drive home. On the way, Amanda is thinking to herself: Is Granny too heavy for her to get out of the car? Is she going to be too big for their small house?

Amanda: And when we got home she actually jumped out of the car which is good so I didn’t have to carry her out of the car. And I was watching her run around the unit and I was like this dog is way too big for our house like she looked ridiculously big standing in my kitchen cuz if she stands in my kitchen, no one else can stand in my kitchen. She takes up the whole thing. But she ended up being absolutely perfect for a house. 

The best thing about having Granny’s unconditional love, I think. It’s like coming home and seeing something that’s so happy to see you. One time she was so excited and she was running around the house and my partner was outside and she saw him and she got so excited she ran straight through the fly screen cuz she didn’t realize there was flyscreen there and she broke the door. And she’s just so full of love. Especially during lockdown, it was really nice having that love. 

Bree: Adopting Granny turned out amazing for Amanda and her partner, Andrew. Granny not only greets them happily when they arrive home at night, she also motivates Amanda to get out of the house for a walk when she’s not feeling very motivated. For more information about the greyhound industry and dog adoption in Australia, you’ll find a link on our website.

And if you want to learn more about the curious life of living with a greyhound and why for example greyhounds sleep upside down – por qué duermen con las patas arriba? There was a lot more information and stories that we couldn’t fit into today’s episode so here is a little bonus section from Amanda explaining the weird and wonderful things about life with Granny.

Amanda: Greyhounds are really weird dogs. There are lots of things that Greyhounds do that are really strange. For example, they sleep upside down with their legs in the air, like a dead cockroach. The first time she slept upside down, I thought something was wrong but then I Googled it and it’s a Greyhound thing. And the other thing is that they also have very vivid dreams. So they have racing dreams. So she will run her legs in the air like she’s racing. She also likes to talk in her sleep so she also makes whining noises like she’s running. I think she’s probably dreaming of her racing history or something I don’t know. It’s a very Greyhound thing to have these racing dreams.

Bree: ¿Qué te ha parecido este episodio? Dinos si tienes una historia similar o si te ha gustado dejándonos un mensaje de voz siguiendo el enlace en las notas del programa. And if you have a friend that’s learning English please share this podcast with them! Ok then that’s all of today, until next time we hope you have a good time, or at least, a good story to tell.

Quote of the episode

‘...when me and my partner moved into our house we were really desperate to get a dog. We always knew we wanted to adopt a dog because we didn't want to have a puppy and we also thought that there were lots of dogs in the world without homes.’

Test de comprensión

Complete these sentences with a word that you hear in the podcast.











Significado de 'to get through' en inglés

Y la expresión que hemos escogido para nuestro episodio hoy es… ‘to get through‘ en inglés. El phrasal verb ‘to get through‘ tiene muchos usos interesantes y muy prácticos. 

En primer lugar, ‘to get through‘ (something) se utiliza a menudo como sinónimo de ‘survive’ o ‘overcome’. Por ejemplo, en inglés es bastante común decir a alguien ‘don’t worry, you’ll get through this difficult time’ ‘no se preocupe, ya atravesará este momento difícil’.

Pero con otros usos de esta expresión, la traducción al español no es tan sencilla. Por ejemplo, cuando tenemos ‘to get through’ (to someone), seguida de una persona, ese phrasal verb suele significar ‘convencer a alguien de algo’ o ‘hacer comprender algo a alguien’. Podríamos decir: ‘He wasn’t listening to me at first, but I got through to him in the end’, ‘al principio no me estaba escuchando, pero al final, acabé haciéndole comprender’. 

Por último, en el episodio del podcast de hoy, escucharás a nuestra protagonista, Amanda, utilizar la expresión ‘to get through’ en el contexto de hablar por teléfono. En este caso, este phrasal verb adopta otro significado. Aquí utilizamos la expresión para significar ‘conectar con alguien’ o ‘ubicar a alguien’ por teléfono. Veamos como Amanda utiliza esta expresión cuando habla de intentar llamar varias veces al centro de adopción de perros: 

‘…every Tuesday and Thursday at 11 o’clock they would upload a photo and a profile of a dog on their website and you had to call the company and try and get through, but because everyone was calling at the same time, it was impossible to get through on their line. One day I called 15 times this phone line to try and get through and then for weeks, every time I got through they would just tell me that the dog on their website had already been adopted by someone else who had got through on the front line earlier.’ 

Como puedes ver, ‘to get through‘ tiene una expresión similar que en castellano sería ‘llegarle’ a alguien. En el sentido de comunicarse, establecer una conexión telefónica, verbal, o emocional.

Learning materials

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