June 12th, 2012 | Uncategorized | 0 Comments
The week started off normally with my Monday AFCD visit, knowing in advance that there was a very small shih tzu who had been surrendered (because volunteer Catherine had already seen it). It turned out to be a she, incredibly sweet and very pretty – that’s if you didn’t count the terrible yeasty skin and flakes that fell from her like a snowstorm every time she moved. After her examination at Acorn, the consult table was covered in a carpet of white while Twinkle’s (new name) skin was a contrasting bright pink. The smell and the heavy dandruff were two obvious reasons for surrender, because there’s nothing else that would justify throwing such an adorable and tiny dog away.
Another surrendered inmate was one of those types I call Big-Small dogs, that is big in the body but with short legs. This poor old girl also had bad skin (and mammary tumours), but what was worse was that she had obviously had many, many litters of puppies. Why would anyone breed a dog that was not only a mongrel, but not a very beautiful one at that? I’m guessing it was accidental, that the owner didn’t have two brain cells to rub together and kept more than one dog – of opposite sexes. The number of times I’m asked to take puppies from people whose dog has “accidentally” had a litter is astonishing. What do these dog owners think happens when a male and a female live together freely? Have they never wondered where babies come from, canine or otherwise? (and no, I don’t help such owners as I believe that they have to take responsibility for their own stupidity).
The third dog I took was one that had been at AFCD for a while. Once again I thought it was a puppy, albeit an older one, and it had very bad skin when it first arrived. I assumed it was demodex and kept meaning to take the puppy, but there were more urgent cases that kept delaying the day. I knew I had to make a decision, as hard as it is, and today she got lucky. I’m so glad I made the call I did, because as soon as I got her out of her kennel there was a huge change in her and she was bouncing all over the place with joy at being free. Not only that, but I also noticed that during her confinement her skin had improved to the point that I doubted it needed any further help. I used the words “once again I thought it was a puppy”, because just like the not-rottie pups, this girl turned out to be a young adult with a full set of grown-up teeth. I guessed around eight months.
Continuing the story of the pug puppy that was surrendered on Sunday, I thought there was an immediate adopter (who had been referred by someone else) so I was sure the pup would be gone by early morning. When the would-be adopter turned up it seemed she hadn’t yet discussed the dog issue with either her landlord or her husband, which would have been a good idea before saying she wanted the pug. It wasn’t that we were short of offers, but as this baby had already been in two homes in her short life I wanted to be absolutely sure that her third would be for life. In the end she went to a lovely foster home which gives us time to pick and choose her final one. One of the people who wanted to adopt the pug told me that her first owner had advertised her on the internet for $2000, and presumably the one that actually surrendered her (after one day) to us had paid that money to buy her. The mind boggles, doesn’t it? (Update: I have just had an offer of a home from a known adopter so I think bidding has now closed).
And here’s another one to demonstrate how little people think when buying or adopting a dog: someone brought in a poodle that had been abandoned in North Point Dog Park, still in its carry bag. There’s no microchip and also no possibility that the dog had simply got lost, because as far as I know even intelligent poodles don’t run off with their bag and then jump into it, zipping it up behind them. And I don’t think you can forget that you have left your dog behind when you take it to a dog park either. Is it any wonder our Homing Centres are always full?
OK, those are the bad and sad stories, but there are lots of happy ones too. Gatsby the (very cute) shih tzu and Pirate, the not-as-beautiful but very sweet senior, were adopted by the same person. They have really landed on their paws because this is a wonderful home and there’s no thought about a dog being too old to enjoy a full life. Here are the two very lucky boys enjoying a paddle in the sea, and I bet it’s the first time ever for both of them.