A Flower in our Midst

On Tuesday Jon brought home a stray little hound dog that he had found wandering the street as he drove home. She is a medium size dog, but still obviously a puppy by her behavior (very high energy, playful, chewy). Anna named her Flower even as we told her we could not keep this dog. (Unfortunately Anna knows that Dixie was a stray that Jon had found, that we did keep, so I’m not sure she believed us this time.) Poor little Flower (or “Dog” which she answered to much better) was wearing a chain around her neck that had a wire “leash” of sorts attached to it, and her ribs were showing, so we did not put much effort into finding her original owners.

As a new youngster will do, Flower upset our normal routine and way of life. We had to barricade the carpeted areas of the house because she was not housetrained. We had to relocate the dog crate for her to sleep in because she cried at night when first put in there. We had to put her in the crate whenever we needed to do something in the carpeted areas of the house because she would knock the gate over and pee on the carpet. She was inconvenient, but so very sweet… a wiggly, kissy, jumpy, good-hearted pup.

On Wednesday, Anna, Will, and I took Flower to the vet for shots and a check-up. The vet estimated she’s about a year old. Flower needed three days of treatment for hookworms, but other than that, she was fine. I called around to the local animal rescue groups to see if anyone could take Flower, but all the groups have too many dogs already and are not taking anymore right now. So today, Saturday, after our church picnic, we loaded up Flower in the van and took her to the Humane Society shelter, which is where we adopted Lucy from years ago. I’m sure Flower will find some nice family/person to be her own. But even though I knew from the start that she was not for us, it was hard to say good-bye. I have such a soft spot for animals, especially dogs. We left Flower with a proper collar and a chew toy, and she actually looked happy (as always) sitting in her cement dog pen (we could see her from a distance).

The whole situation just highlighted for me again the plight of pet overpopulation and neglect and ignorance. All of these sweet dogs and cats out there, who are here through no fault of their own, are just waiting for a loving home. How many will be put to death – due to health or mistreatment that ruined them or simply a lack of interest on the part of anyone wanting to take them in? How many will wander the streets and meet their demise there? How many will grow old in foster care for one reason or another? And people breed more… because puppies are cute, because they don’t bother to spay or neuter their pets, because they want to make some money, because they just don’t care. What does it take to get the message out to spay and neuter your pets? Every animal welfare group that I looked at stated that one thing as their main purpose, and still the problem remains. Some of us are working on the problem, but what does it really take to get the message through to people? I don’t know. If I had unlimited resources and space and time, I would adopt them all and throw balls and hand out treats all day (with the help of Anna and Will, of course, who love to give dogs their treats!). Of course, that’s unrealistic, but what will it take? Spay and neuter, please! Click to go to the Savannah Humane Society page www.humanesocietysav.org and hopefully in a few days Flower’s picture will be posted.

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