Monday, August 9, 2010

Animal Triumphs and Odd Stories....Monday Journal #2

--A few months ago at the Buddy Foundation, where I volunteer in the Dog area, feeding, walking and loving the dogs, we took in a black Pit Bull named Duchess, who had been terribly abused. 

As I spent time with her and she grew accustomed to me enough to look forward to my weekly visits, romping in the yard, sitting quietly or chewing a toy, I developed a fondness for this dog, a sweet and gentle creature who harbored no anger at her horrible mistreatment.  She forgave her tormentor through me, I guess, and treated me like a member of her pack.

Well, Duchess was adopted last week!  In a way, I wish I could have taken her myself.  But now I am happy that she found a caring couple of souls with a big yard and bigger hearts to show this terrific little animal the sweet life she deserves.

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Last week I read an item about a man who found out he had diabetes---in the most bizarre way I have ever heard.  Diabetics are prone to numbness in the legs and feet due to vascular disease, and small injuries often become serious enough to warrant amputation. 

A man in Michigan had fallen asleep after having had a little too much alcohol, and when he awoke, his big toe was gone...and he discovered that it had been consumed by his Jack Russell Terrier.

A kind of jaw-dropper, any way you slice it......

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I saw a sobering report last week about seven puppies who died in the cargo hold of an American Airlines flight out of Tulsa.  In reading several articles about this tragic event, I was surprised by how many animals perish this way.  More than that, I was surprised that animals are allowed to be transported like this at all.

When Maggie was still with us and we traveled, we made sure that some kind soul would stay with her, and allow her her routine in her own home. That's my rationale, too, for offering my services as an in-home pet-sitter.  I could not leave my special friend behind in a boarding cage.  And if we had to travel with her for any reason, we would take her in the car with us.  Although she was fidgety sometimes, she still was reassured by our presence, and we could see to her needs.

Maggie's presence is still felt strongly in our home.  The love I still have for her is expressing itself in a variety of ways, through volunteering at the shelter, reading articles about animal care or unusual incidents, or in making gradual contact with organizations like Mercy for Animals.  I took a big step this weekend by meeting with volunteers of this organization at a Chicago Market Days festival.  I will report on this in an upcoming post this week.  

Meanwhile, greetings to Mikael and Sarah.  


  1. Great stories Tom! It's so heartwarming whenever a shelter animal gets adopted, but particularly a Pit Bull. That's wonderful! But finding out you have diabetes by having your big toe chewed off by your own dog has to stand as the worst way to find out! So sad about the puppies, though. Interesting that I never knew that animals dying in cargo holds was such a problem. Good to know!

  2. Tom...So glad to see you here, I have missed you. I was also very surprised by my findings regarding dogs in airplane baggage compartments,often with disastrous results. You would have liked Duchess a lot. How are your pets these days?

  3. They are well! I've been taking them to the dog park every Sunday and they've been really doing well with their socializing with the other dogs. It's great to see them having so much fun and playing with other dogs. I've been enjoying meeting other dog owners and hanging out with their dogs, especially the beagles! LOL!