I swerved heard to the right and slammed on my brakes. “Oh My God, did you see that?” My car skidded sideways to a screeching halt. I looked over my shoulder into the moonless Texas night. “That dog didn’t even flinch when I almost ran it over.”
There it stood – all of twenty pounds, right in the middle of the intersection- frozen in fear. I scampered into the road where the white poodle-mix stood paralyzed in fear. “Here little guy.” I whistled, but it didn’t turn its head as if the dog had no clue I was there. When I touched its head, it reacted to my touch. I cradled it and ran back to my car as it shivered in fear- dazed and confused and very scared.
It took a bath plus some trimming of the matted fur under its belly to even figure out that the dog was a female. The cataracts in her eyes were dense and her hearing non-existent. Her thinning coat showed the discoloration where once a collar had been firmly in place. This dog had clearly been abandoned, the collar removed and had been left one the road to be run over.
She (now named Erica) probably found shelter and in a drain but the rain in Houston last week must’ve driven her out. Unable to defend herself or find food- Erica must’ve just wandered and waited for impending doom- A.K.A her destiny- to become Texas road-kill.
The decisions those a rescue worked makes are in play again.
-It is impossible to find an old blind and deaf dog a home.
-Is it more humane to euthanize Erica with dignity?
-Would the local Poodle rescue group take her?
-Will I end up being a dog-hoarder if I keep on saving these dogs off the street?
-How much can I afford in terms of vet bills for these abandoned dogs?
-Is my time and effort better used in rescuing more adoptable pets?
Here is my decision for today.
-Get her checked out by a vet for health issues.
-Give her one week to find a home while I foster her.
-Then shut my heart down. Don’t let her love crawl grow into my heart. Be blind to her
blindness and be ready for putting Erica down.
Am I a horrible person? Or am I better than the people who loved her when she was happy and healthy. Who made her a part of their awesome life when they needed Erica and discarded her like a used tissue when she needed them? People who couldn’t find it in their hearts to put her down humanely but to assuage their guilt would have her starve to death or be crushed by a car.
Those people are who they are. I’m not responsible for their soul. I’m responsible for mine. Truth be told- I’m just marginally better than them because although I couldn’t abandon a dog like they did- I will shut my eyes to her pain one day- maybe within a week. I will shut down my heart… Unless…
–Unless you are a bigger and better person than I am… Unless you have the heart I don’t have. Unless you can keep her or try and find her a home.
Please find it in your heart to help her and help me. Maybe someone can still treasure her as she once treasured her humans.
Erica’s old and deaf and blind- and she’s looking for a new job.