Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Pied Piper of Lost Dogs

I swear, that is us. This morning, we had Lost Dog Number Three run up to us during a walk with the dogs to the little park down the street. The last time this happened (2007), it was 8pm and 22 degrees (yes, in California - it was the winter where our state lost most of its citrus crops to frost). One dog followed my husband into the garage from the mail box and as we drove around with the dog looking for a potential owner, another ran up. Both without tags. Both turned out to be from the same house, one in heat. Yeah, and this was the day after Nikki had surgery to repair a gash made by our other dog when they had an all-out I'm-going-to-destroy-you fight. Very far from ideal to have two more female dogs to have to put up for the night. So far from ideal that it resulted in Nikki getting attacked by our other dog again (with 4 female dogs together, one in heat, it was a dog-pheromone disaster waiting to happen). But anyway. I digress. I will bitch about shelter hours later.

So this morning, a little shi-tzu ran up to us, all wet from the grass and wherever the heck he ran from. He had a collar and a tag with a phone number! I figured we'd find the owner lickety-split. Um. No. The number on the tag was no longer in service. Seriously? Why have tag then? At least put your damn address on it so I can maybe find you that way. Not only was he wet but he managed to get dog crap on him, likely his own, on his paws. Me, not really realizing it, after carrying him down the block, just threw him in the car to drive around and see if anyone in the neighborhood recognized him. Of course, no one did. Then my car smelled like dog crap since he managed to flit about to every seat, smearing it everywhere. I spent 10 minutes trying to clean febreeze it in a HURRY seeing as I have a day job I had to get to that doesn't include dog rescuing and shit cleaning.

It's pandemonium enough that we have a new puppy that is still not entirely housebroken, and an older lady dog that is still coming to terms with sharing her humans, so we weren't going to attempt to keep the dog and find the owner ourselves. I felt bad that we had to drop him off at the shelter, but as far as I know, our local shelter is no-kill. Also, if his owner his stupid enough not to claim him, a cute little shi-tzu like him will get adopted pretty quickly.

And speaking of shelters, I really don't like their hours. I'm not saying they should be open like Wal-mart, but both times I have "found" lost dogs, it has NOT been between the hours of 10am and 5pm. And both times, it has been inconvenient (the first time nearly catastrophic for Nikki) to house the dog(s). And there is no way to drop the dog off outside of those hours, unless it's rabid and violent (then you call the police and who knows what happens - maybe they kill it, I don't know. I'd be lying to the cops if I said it were any of those things, anyway). It's ridiculous to expect all people who find dogs to "house" them overnight. Some can do it, others can't and the alternative is to leave the animal outside to potentially get hit by a car? Freeze in 20 degrees? Get eaten by a coyote? I don't know. I just think there should be one shelter per county or something where you can drive and drop the animal off at any hour, if you're in a situation where you can't house the dog. Maybe that's crazy talk, but, it seems to me it would be better for the animals and people might be more apt to turn in strays if they weren't emotionally forced to keep strange animals during off-hours.

I was gonna post more puppy picturesfor you guys but, seriously, this puppy is monopolizing my time. I was happy just to be able to fold a basket of laundry that I had been done this past weekend. Nevermind get the camera and download the pics to the computer, upload, etc, etc, etc. Maybe I'll just do one post of a bunch of pics - the hubby even took a video, so maybe I can put that up too.

4 comments:

  1. Well congratulations on the new puppy...are you crazy? Kidding...I have 3 dogs so I really can't say much. I have a soft spot for lost dogs...or maybe they can sense my dog weakness from a mile away. It seems I'm rescuing them often. I kept a pit bull and labrador in the garage one cold night. The owner finally picked them up right before I was about to cave in and let the kids keep them.

    Let me know if you need potty training advice. :-)

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  2. I tottttaly agree wicha- & love the pic of the sweety in your last post A-dor-able!!! THANK goodness you have such a big heart, that lil dog may have never found a warm pace! xoxo LA

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  3. You've just made me stop and think what I'd do if a stray came up to us. I'm certain that housing it for the night would be my last alternative....it'd have to stay out in our garage most likely, where who knows what is out there for it to eat and die from. Maybe I need an action plan in place for such an event.

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  4. You are a dog magnet! Or the word on the street is you won't kill or maim strays and will even offer shelter. 'Cause dogs talk ya know.

    Walmart isn't already a drop off spot for strays?

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