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Humane Education Leads to Progress
For Informed Dog Owners

Vision Statement: We envision a society free from discrimination, where responsibility, education, love and compassion allow humans to fully respect and understand man's best friend.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

I buried your dog today

Today I buried your dog. I don’t know what your story is or why you wouldn’t try to find your dog. He was a great dog. That cold December day when I found him wandering the streets, cold and emaciated, I thought for certain someone had to be looking for this kind, old soul. When I called animal control to come and pick him up, I did it with full certainty, knowing I was making the call that would reunite this happy, old boy with his family. When I found out three days later that he was never claimed, I drove to the shelter to pick him up and bring him home, certain I would see Lost Dog signs somewhere. We never did see those signs, our found dog ads were never answered. Trying to keep some faith in humanity, I imagined that perhaps he had an elderly owner who had died and the remaining family didn’t know to look for him. Once upon a time he had a family who must have loved him. He was housebroken, loved to lay in doorways and was elated to go on car rides. Somewhere, he had to have a family that had loved him for the past 14 years. But that family never appeared.

So in December, we argued with the local shelter in order to get the old guy released to us. With his being emaciated, eye infections, ear infections, horrible teeth, deaf, mostly blind and covered in lumps and tumors, he was deemed by the shelter to not be a candidate for adoption – “not even to a rescue” With some persistence, we were finally able to get him released from the shelter and headed towards our home. That’s when “Tucker” or “Old Man” moved in.

From the start, it was his house. He walked right in, met all of our resident pitties and settled right in. He quickly became one of the gang and a best friend to Charlotte and Izzy, a patient chew toy for the foster pups, and the bane of Rags’ existence. He was an attention hound who loved having the little spot right above his tail scratched and would turn and head butt you if you dared to stop. He would take turns lying in doorways blocking all entries, only raising his head every now and then as both humans and dogs stepped over him. He would get so excited and bark his hoarse bark, urging you to hurry and get him his food, and “whoooof, whooof, whooof” again if he wasn’t happy with what he found in his bowl. Over the course of the next month, Tucker put on weight, going from 44 pounds up to his goal weight of 71 pounds. His ear infections were cleared up as were the eye infections. He got to experience the fun of being groomed and thought the high powered blowers were pretty nice.

He had the most perfect winter. He loved the snow and would spend hours rolling around like a horse, making his own little snow angels. His face was almost always blanketed in the cold white powder. When he wasn’t out in the snow he could be found lying next to my Grandson’s bean bag chair or Hoovering through the house looking for stray pieces of kibble. When spring arrived and the snow melted, Tucker’s new love became rolling in mud puddles. There were many days he would walk back into the house completely covered in a thick, sludgy layer of mud, the only red fur showing would be a strip running down the center of his back which would leave us scrambling to find enough blankets to cover the carpeting before he could plop down and take one of his famous eight hour cat naps.

We thought that summer would bring new joys for Tucker, days being spent out under the shade trees or splashing in a baby pool. Unfortunately we were wrong. Tucker had a couple of strokes which he bounced back from but they worsened his Laryngeal Paralysis. The warm summer weather would only exacerbate the condition and make it nearly impossible for the poor guy to breath. Today as Tucker lay next to me, looking up at me with those soft brown eyes, gasping for breath, it became clear that it was time for Tucker to move on to his next destination.

So today, I buried your dog. I no longer care what the reason is for your not looking for him. I only wish you would have lost him a little earlier so that we could have had more time with him. So whether you care or not, please know that in his last months he brought so much love and joy into our home and left an impression that will never be forgotten. He was loved, so thank you.

Tucker came into our home December 11, he took over our house but more importantly he took over our hearts. Tucker will be greatly missed.


Lacy Marshall said...

Beautifully written, Lisa. Made me cry! Rest in peace, Tucker.

poohemk said...

Tucker looks like he was a golden retriever. That's mostly what I have owned for the past 13 yrs. They are wonderful dogs and some have had to go to their new destination too due to old age and ailments, but I am do glad Tucker had the love of a wonderful family in his last days. I will never understand how anyone could give up their pet without finding it a good home. I could never give up any of my pets period. God Bless you guys! Sincerely Ellen Krenn

Anonymous said...

There is a special place in heaven for people like you.

Eileen said...

I am sure that Tucker was grateful to have found you, that he might spend the last few months of his life happier and healthier than he had been for some time.

On behalf of Tucker, thank you!

Meggles said...

I can't begin to tell you how much your story means to me. You are wonderful people! I will never forget this story and I wish everyone in the world could read it!

Rest in peace Tucker...

Sarah said...

Awww, poor babe! It makes me SEETHE when people don't care for their pets...pit or otherwise! You get a dog, and it becomes part of your family, PERIOD!

Heather M said...

So sorry to hear about Tucker. You are a very kind and loving person. Your dog Tucker is very lucky. Rest in peace Tucker.

Heather the paid surveys mom

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