Thursday, November 26, 2009

Some People Should Not Have Dogs

Wednesday morning I saw an email from an animal loving friend. The title was Emergency! Before I opened it, I knew that some domestic pet was in need of rescue. Sure enough. My friend had received an email from a friend who had received an email from a friend begging for a foster or permanent home for a four year old, male Pekingese. His owners had taken him to a vet who had told them that the little dog required eye surgery. They said they wouldn't pay and told the vet to euthanize the dog. Funds were found to pay for the surgery, but there was no point in performing the surgery if there was no one to give the dog a home.

I wracked my brain, thinking of everyone I knew who might take in this needy little dog. The sad fact is, most people I know who really care about domestic pets are right at the upper limit of the number of animals for which they can be responsible. Or they have a special needs animal as a friend of mine who rescued a very temperamental Rottweiler who will not tolerate another dog in the house. Then, I remembered a friend who always has toy dogs and had "only" two.

She was immediately touched by the little Peke's plight and agreed to "at least" foster, if not adopt him.

The surgery was performed late Wednesday afternoon and the Pekingese should be making his way to his new home by Saturday.

But I had little time to celebrate.

After we came in from our evening walk, Bingley and Magic became very agitated. They would not settle. Bingley started to bark at me with great urgency. So, thinking that a potty break was being requested, I took the dogs out on the back deck, where they became even more agitated. A dog--it sounded more like a puppy--in the next block up was crying pitifully. Bingley and Magic raced up and down the yard, trying to find a way to reach the distressed puppy.

Between attempts to reach the crying dog, Bingley and Magic came to me, looking up with their soulful eyes, clearly expecting me to "do something". But my husband was out and I did not feel safe yet leaving Magic alone, especially when she and Bingley were so agitated. The puppy continued to cry.

I called a neighbor who can always be depended upon in an emergency and explained the situation. He agreed to investigate.

What he found was a 4-6 month old Spitz type puppy attached to a pulley lead in a backyard of a darkened house. The puppy was crying and straining to get free.

I called the Sheriff, and miracle of miracles, the puppy managed to free itself before the Deputy arrived, making it eligible for an emergency rescue.

Bingley and Magic made one more trip to the deck, listening intently. Assured that the crying had stopped, they came into the house and curled up for a good night's sleep.

I know times are tough. Vet bills can be high. But most vets will accept some payment arrangement if surgery is really necessary. At my vet's it is not unusual to see a collection jar for funds for surgery for a needy dog or cat. We all chip in a dollar or two, and the animal gets the required treatment. There are also organizations that will assist with emergency vet bills for needy pets.

Thanksgiving through New Year's is a busy time for kennels and pet sitters. But if you have a pet and need or want to be away for extended periods, you are responsible for the care and welfare of your pet. That's part of the deal. Maybe an old dog can tolerate hours of being alone in a dark backyard, (I don't think ANY dog should EVER be asked to do that, but I am VERY opinionated)--but a puppy???

Some people should not have dogs. That's all there is to say.

But at this time of Thanksgiving, a Big Thank You goes out to all the people involved in rescuing a needy Peke and a distressed Spitz Puppy!

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