found a new home!
Plenty of my friends are looking
for one too. Find a pet to adopt.
I am already spayed, purebred, and a special needs pet.
Willow came to us today as a tiny mass of shivering fear and confusion. She had been found wandering down the road our shelter sits...a scruffy and minuscule tuft of fur, bones, and not much more....so small, she really didn't stand out among the usual roadside scenery of rocks, weeds, etc. Alone and with no direction in mind, willow hobbled down the shoulder, her aching paws encountering sharp stones and ragged sticks and dry dust clouding her horizon. Willow's saving grace was a soiled and grimy pink doggy shirt- a color that helped make her a bit more visible to passing cars. With all of the walking she had done, her shirt relented in its fit, and one of her front legs became caught in the neck. This made for her wanderings to take on an unsteady and hobbling gait. It was this unbalanced movement that caused her to tumble in front of an approaching car, and the first of her saviors. The driver instantly scooped her up, and after a night of food and rest, willow arrived to our shelter this afternoon.
It took one look to realize it had been *ages* since someone took the time to look at her. Inch long nails on all her feet curved and curled back towards her pawpads. Straggly fur held clumps of old feces, and provided a home to so many fleas and flea dirt. What should be a regal coat for a purebred Maltese instead was sparse, caked in waste and dirt, and stained with her tears. Her teeth told the story of neglect better than anything, loaded with a heavy brown gray tartar..some missing completely, some loose, and most horrifying, some wedged in her throat.
Willow wore a filthy shirt, and an ineffective flea collar intended for a dog 5 times her size at least. Beyond that, she wore a cloak of uncertainty and sadness..likely wondering who else would cast her aside again and again. Wondering when, if ever, her 4lb frame would be noticed. When she entered our lobby, her whole body shook...you could tell, the only thing on her mind was 'please don't hurt me.'
The heartbreaking part to her story is the rice sized microchip just between her shoulder blades. A chip that never was bothered to be registered. A chip that originates with a breeder in Arkansas. A breeder who boasts on her webpage of lovingly kissing each puppy in the terminal of her airport before shipping that furry face to a home that they were selected by. That selection which meant someone looked at those dark brown eyes, the snow white locks on a tiny body, and began envisioning the future with that dog. Going on adventures in fashionable and trendy purse sized carriers. Sleeping in corners of the home with plush beds. Snuggled on ones lap at night. Excited yips of glee to announce that person's arrival from work, etc. A life that would carry beyond the silly puppyhood days and into years of shy but unwaivering devotion and companionship.
What caused those moments of thoughtful inclusion to come to a screeching halt? No longer able to be pictured when someone thought of their life in the near future. No longer a part of family celebrations. Mentally whiting out food dishes that sat on a kitchen floor. No longer accounting for dog food on a weekly shopping list. What happened to cause Willow to be unceremoniously removed from her family?
Unfortunately, its a mystery that gets played over again and again in the lives of so many strays who enter our shelter and others like us. And even papers and pedigrees can't prevent apathy and neglect from occurring. For everyone who sets in motion a plan of breeding their animal, without a twinge of doubt because 'I'll make sure my animals go to good homes', I respectfully point willow to you. Willow is not the exception. Shelters house purebreds and exotic breeds on a daily basis, once the allure of trendy pet ownership has diminished, and the owner is hit with years of daily expenses,and a pet that lost their puppyhood charm and grew up.
Tonight this forsaken girl rests her head on a pillow that is temporarily hers. No longer obscure and with a newfound identity to start her life anew. Having been kicked aside, it would have been so easy for her to lay under a cluster of branches and wait for oblivion to claim her. But instead she walked, a desire to see what loomed ahead. She traveled hard roads, dreamt of the luxury of regular meals, and ached for the love of another to find her. Tonight, that ache is subsiding, as she relearns how to be pampered and spoiled by our staff.
She is plucky, she is brave, she has a heart as vast as the landscape she saw repeatedly, she is...