Saturday, January 13, 2007

Love your Pup

Lots of stuff rolling around in my head today. First of which is dogs. I don't know, maybe its because my dogs are my kids, but I can't understand the 'outside dog' thing. I know, I know, its perfectly acceptable, and they're dogs, but I just can't help feeling so sad for dogs who have to watch their families looking in from the outside.

Today I was visiting my parents and there was a loose dog outside. There were some neighbors out there trying to catch him, but he was totally unaware. I walked over to him, and as soon as he saw me he wagged his tail and came straight for my outstretched hand. I took him back to my parents' house, and noted the registration number on his tag. Arizona participates in the wonderful Pets 911 program, so I was
able to call and the automated voice gave me his owners' phone number. I immediately called, but no one answered. I left a message. We put up signs. We waited. That was at 11am. It is now 8:30pm and our new furry friend is still hanging with my parents. He's really sweet, and very obviously in need of some human love.
I finally figured out (bonehead that I am) that I should have just done a reverse look-up on the phone number. The dog comes from 4 houses down the street. So my dad goes down to check it out. The gate is open. It has been over 9 hours and not a single person has noticed that this dog is missing because he's been dismissed outside so they just wouldn't have noticed. And there's no one home, which means
our furry friend probably would have missed dinner if he was still in the yard.

I can't tell you how much this frosts me. I may complain about how I plan my day around letting my pups out, or making sure they aren't home alone for a super long time, but I just don't think I'd feel right if I didn't make them a priority. I'm their human and I've taken responsibility for their well-being. Don't you agree?

So what happens when my parents' neighbor comes home and finally gets our phone message? I know I'll think often about that dog and how he's going back to a
situation where no one notices him. And that's just sad.

Let's end on a cheery note, shall we? I spent the day with my mom today. She had enough energy to make homemade split-pea soup (I made grilled-cheese sandwiches to go with), then we took her hat shopping. The lady's got some style! She's got some kickin' new hats. She was pretty sapped after that, but baby steps!

And also, here's a picture I neglected. My dad dressed up in a full Santa suit for Christmas Eve at the hospital. It was meant to cheer up my mom so she wouldn't be thinking about our traditions that she was missing (and we had a GREAT time
opening gifts and hanging out), but truth be told my brother and I were a little embarassed about the whole thing. Until we got to the hospital. I can't tell you how people (patients, nurses, and visitors alike) changed when they saw 'Santa' walking down the hallway. It was so amazing. My dad's got this big voice and when he "Ho Ho Ho" 'd down the hallway, people were thrilled.

It was one of the best Christmases ever.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Our neighbors, no, strike that, the idiot relatives that are staying with our neighbors, have two dogs. One is a black lab, the other is some sort of spaniel. I can't say how much it irritates me that they leave the spaniel outside in the cold by himself most of the day, everyday, while the lab is inside enjoying the warmth of the house and the love of the family. And it's damn cold here...mid 20's and often a cold wind. This poor dog has thin fur and sits outside with no shelter or even a bale of hay to sit on, shivering.

I just don't understand that logic. Why is one dog better than the other and allowed in the house? And if that is the case, if you love one dog more, why not give up the unloved pooch and let him find a nice home with loving owners?

Oh, and I love that your dad dressed up on Christmas as a change of pace. I think it is wonderful.

11:28 AM  
Anonymous Kross-eyed Kitty said...

What a sweetheart your dad is! That is the most loving thing I've ever heard of! It even brought tears to my eyes.
I also don't understand the whole outside-all-day-all-night dog thing. You have a dog, you treat that dog with love. End of story.

6:39 AM  
Blogger Mia said...

What are the laws regarding animal cruelty in Arizona? I mean if you left a child alone for 9 hours, you would have social services called on you.

My next door neighbor has a boxer and I am always sad to see him out because all they do is attach his long lead to the post in the yarn and let him be. He is a great dog who wants some one to play with him.

1:26 PM  

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