Tag Archives: rescue

The Saga of a Rescued Dog: Chapter Three

22 May

 

 

 

The Saga of a Rescued Dog

Chapter Three: The Hoosegow

by L. Stewart Marsden

 

Previously:

I moved in quickly, but stealthily, wary of any other animal, or that some kind of trap had been set.

Nobody and no thing. Just slices and slices of bacon stacked up high.

Oh! I dove in with unabandonment. And the taste! The aromas! The crunch of the pan-fried meat! I was inundated in ecstasy — euphoric — totally out of my mind with bliss!

As I wolfed huge bites of bacon down, at the corner of one eye I spied the mister approaching slowly, carefully from around the building with that rod with the wire loop at the end of it.

And you know what?

I did not care one iota.

____________________________

While bacon is indeed an incredible culinary experience, it is not without its consequences. The first being the euphoric state of mind that renders you incapable of normal reactions.

So when the mister slipped the wire loop over my head, I did not budge from engorging myself on the diminished pile of bacon strips.

And when he slowly tightened the noose, I was not distracted from licking the morsels and bacon grease from the metal bowl.

And when he gently tugged me away and into the animal shelter, I followed willingly. Maybe a growl and a snarly look at the first tug. But because the bacon was all gone, there really was nothing for us to fight over.

We walked into the waiting area and around the counter to a second door in the back of the room. That door led to the animal compound.

The compound was a long room situated perpendicular to the front of the building. A concrete aisle ran down the center of the room, and on either side were caged spaces with doors — five to a side. Nearly all the spaces were occupied by a dog, and all were barking their little heads off when the mister and I entered.

We walked down the aisle and stopped midway at the door of an empty cage. The mister opened the cage and walked in with me, then crouched down carefully.

There, there, little buddy. This is your new home for a while. And these are your companions.

I sat and wagged my tail a bit to show the mister I wasn’t going to be a threat. He slowly reached his big hand out, which I sniffed, then licked. There was bacon smell and taste on his hands.

Here’s some water, and here’s the bowl where you’ll be fed — once the bacon works through.

That’s the other thing about bacon — and dogs. It’s a consequence of eating bacon at all — but especially of eating a whole bowlful in the matter of a few minutes. If you understand what I’m saying.

So, for the next day and a half, my stomach and my bowels gave me  and the mister  a fit. But he was understanding, and happy to have his little misters clean both my cage and me following the aftermath.

My cage was a cubicle — not too small, but definitely a downsizing from the space I was used to. It was simple. Concrete wall at the back with a rectangular space left open that led to a small fenced-in yard where I could go if I chose.

The cages were also separated by cinderblock walls that went up a few feet — high enough to keep animals in adjoining cages from physical touch.

The floor of the cubicle was concrete, and cool to my underbelly when I stretched out on my belly or side. There were a lot of flies.

Paddle fans suspended from the ceiling along the aisle moved the air about, and kept a wafting breeze that would tickle the hairs on my nose, causing me to sneeze abruptly from time-to-time.

Inside the compound were the mixtures of smells: the other dogs, the wall of small cages where small animals were kept. Like cats. Yuck. And the smell of PineSol and other cleansers.

My yard was mostly dirt, with a walked out trench along the fenced closures. Some grass and dandelions grew along where the fence touched the ground. There was a line of trees a few feet behind the yards that threw late day shade over the yards on that side of the aisle. I was lucky that mine was on the west side, and didn’t get the harsh splash and heat from the morning sun.

For those first days I recuperated from my orgiastic meal. I wasn’t too aware of my surroundings so much, and not at all of my fellow companions. I only vaguely sensed them as I went in and out of nausea — hearing them talk, like dull background clatter, or getting a brief whiff from time-to-time.

Why I was where I was had faded to a dim memory, which I dipped into from time to time during my dreams.

Mister Master. His large, angry face grown incredibly large — spewing curses and harrumping his fat body like an irate gorilla.

The kicks and the lashes and the hours on end chained to the elm tree in the back yard.

The dry, rusty water bowl, neglected for days.

My own feces, piling up in the small grassy lawn — which was always tall and unkept. Flies swirling in packs, alighting on my head and ears.

Bzzzzzzzzzz. Bzzzzzzzzz.

The echoing conversation between Mister Master and the mister of the animal shelter.

Thirty days.

Euthanasia.

The vague sound of the mister, leading other misters and misses down the aisle and back, who looked in on the various animals, asking echoey questions. Stopping at my cage and asking What’s wrong with him?

Thirty days.

Euthanasia. If you don’t want your pet euthanized, better not leave him here.

Nobody will take him. May as well euthanize him now.

It’s the law.

What’s wrong with him?

BAD DOG!

I awoke, startled, hungry and afraid. It was night, and I stood on wobbly legs and slowly stepped out into the yard.

The moon was waning — yet bright enough in the sky to illumine the tall oaks that bordered the compound. I lay down in the cooling dirt and shook my head to clear the cobwebs. The conversation resurfaced slowly.

Euthanasia?

Thirty days?

What day was it?

 

Copyright © by Lawrence S. Marsden, 22 May, 2014

 

 

Saga of a Rescued Dog: Chapter One

21 May

 

image

 

 

Saga of a Rescued Dog

Chapter One: The Present

by L. Stewart Marsden

BAD DOG!

I heard Mister Master scream as he entered the house. He had found my present in the front hallway, no doubt.

C’MERE, YOU MUTT!

Mister Master did not have a mute button. Everything he said — at least to me — was at full volume. Needless to say, I did not c’mere, but tucked my tail and skulked down the hallway to my hiding place underneath the stairway.

WHERE ARE YOU? COME OUT NOW!

So I scrunched into the tiniest ball I could, and however much I tried, my toenails made a scratching sound on the wood floor. Obedience to Mister Master was not one of my better traits.

I HEAR YOU! YOU CAN’T GET AWAY FROM ME! YOU ARE IN FOR IT THIS TIME!

I never got way from Mister Master. But I always tried. It wasn’t so much I thought he wouldn’t find me, but it delayed the inevitable. At least for a few sorry seconds. It didn’t matter in the long run, and I was always in for it whatever it was.

Mister Master found me and screamed THERE YOU ARE!

He put on one of his heavy work gloves and reached under the space under the stairway and grabbed me by the collar. I scratched deep marks into the floor in my attempt to resist, which only made Mister Master madder.

He fumed as he dragged me back down the hallway to the front door alcove.

DO YOU SEE THAT?

He pointed at my present, neatly piled on the floor a few feet from the door.

WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO SAY ABOUT THAT?

I’m not sure why he asks. He wouldn’t understand me if I did explain. And what I had to say was “If you hadn’t left me in the house for ten hours I wouldn’t have left you the present.” But that would only have made him madder.

So he shoved my nose into the present. I can’t begin to explain how awfully disgusting that is! And while he did that he repeated his angry statement:

BAD DOG!

I thought to myself, “Bad Mister Master.”

Then he took me to the back of the house and let me out into the back yard — which, by the way, was fenced in. Why he left me in the house in the first place was beyond me!

I cleaned myself in the unmowed grass and tried not to get sick from the smell. I love to smell things, but not that!

Mister Master stormed out into the back yard after a few minutes. He had the leash.

THAT WAS THE VERY LAST STRAW!

He hooked the leash to my collar, and dragged me to his truck, almost tossing me into the truck bed.

Then he jumped into the cab and slammed the door, and started the engine, revving it loudly. He jerked back down the driveway, tossing me about in the truck bed, slamming my body against the sides and the wheel covers. I was afraid of being tossed out of the back, which was protected by a webbed fabric gate. Not the strongest material where I was concerned.

Then we drove away from the house, reeling about corners, slamming to stops at intersections, and peeling out at green lights.

After a terribly long and frightful ride, Mister Master pulled the truck into a driveway where there was a one-story cinderblock building. A sign at the entrance to the driveway read County Animal Shelter.

He grabbed the leash and nearly tore my head off pulling me out of the truck bed. He dragged me toward the cinderblock building and through the glass front door into a waiting area.

An older, much kinder looking mister sat behind a tall counter, and was reading a magazine. He looked up at Mister Master and me, and seemed to size up the situation pretty quickly.

Problem with your dog?

Amazing! He didn’t shout!

HE’S A DAMN NUISANCE!

A nuisance? That all?

DONE WITH HIM. TIRED OF HIM CHEWING EVERYTHING AND CRAPPING ALL OVER THE PLACE.

Well, that’s generally what puppies do — chew and crap. You didn’t know that when you got him?

IT’S MORE THAN I CAN PUT UP WITH. CAN I LEAVE HIM HERE WITH YOU?

For a fee. We’re not a charity, you know.

HOW MUCH?

Fifty dollars.

FIFTY DOLLARS! DAMN! MAY AS WELL PULL OUT A GUN AND SHOOT ME!

Well, that WAS a thought I’d vote for!

We’ll feed him for thirty days and keep him safe. He’ll be put up for adoption.

WHAT HAPPENS AFTER THIRTY DAYS?

This is a country animal shelter. If an animal isn’t adopted over that time, we euthanize. So if you don’t want your pet to be euthanized, I wouldn’t leave him here.

GOT NO OTHER PLACE. NOBODY I KNOW WOULD TAKE HIM. ‘SPECT NOBODY WILL WANT HIM. MAY AS WELL EUTHANIZE HIM NOW, FOR ALL THAT MATTERS.

I dunno about that. We’ll wait the thirty days. It’s the law.

Mister Master pulled out his wallet and counted out the money begrudgingly, murmuring curses under his breath. I sat and watched the transaction, sensing perhaps a chance for a new life. I didn’t know what euthanize meant, and was sure it wasn’t good. But, even so, two weeks without Mister Master was going to be like eternal heaven for me.

THAT IT? ANYTHING ELSE?

Is he up on his shots? I see he has a tag.

YEAH. I TAKE GOOD CARE OF MY PETS AND MAKE SURE THEY’RE UP-TO-DATE ON EVERYTHING.

Except love, I thought.

Mister Master handed my leash to the other mister, grunted, and walked out of the door and out of my life. He didn’t pet me, or say good-bye, or even look at me once. He just walked out the door, got into his truck, and drove away.

Not that I minded.

What now? I thought, and watched the other mister come around the counter with my leash in hand.

He bent down to pick me up.

 

 

Copyright © Lawrence S. Marsden, 21 May, 2014