Laura posted this last year and only read it if you don't mind some tears, have tissues handy and own a dog. I use the latter not because I think that people who don't have dogs won't get it, but because though I read it last year and it made me feel undeniably sad, I don't think it brought me to tears. As an animal lover, I hate any and all animal injustice and believe me, I see plenty of injustices every day. I said that because I read Laura's repost of it tonight and cried like an idiot because now I have a dog to associate this with. Like putting a face with a name. I look at my Rhys and know that was his situation and would have been his situation in the end had we or someone else not fallen in love with him. His last family gave him up because a baby was on the way. So Rhys was the first baby but in his case, being a canine made him a throw away to these people. And despite the fact that their ignorance was my gain, it still makes me angry when I think of the situation through the eyes of my dog.
And I see dozens of stories like his and worse every week. Too many unwanted animals and not enough homes; not enough people to take a chance on a do-over dog but instead go to pet shops and breeders so they can start fresh with a puppy. It isn't that I have anything against reputable breeders (and many of them are not reputable so do your homework if you are going to go this route) and the people who chose to use them, but most people do not see what I see. They don't see the little Yorkie whose owner had landlord issues, trembling in the back of a kennel because he is terrified of all the barking and so confused as to what happened to life as he knew it. They don't see the Chow and the Border Collie who have grown up together but due to the current economy, their owner had to give them up and due to the economy, the shelter will probably have to separate them in order to get each one adopted out. They don't see the eager, hopeful year old pup who rushes to the front of her kennel for every person, desperate for affection and attention, or the three year old mixed breed, who passed his assessment with flying colors but two weeks later, the stress of shelter life causes him to snap and he is led from his kennel, no longer adoptable.
These are the sad stories of shelter life. Yes, there are happy stories too, like the purebred who went to his new home this week and as I watched him greet his new family, I teared up; both because he had been saved and also because so many others are not.
I say these things because I want people to understand my passion and for every one abandoned dog, there are five cats with the same story. No kitten should ever have to begin and end their life in a shelter, yet it happens every day to dozens. There will never be enough people to adopt them all, especially when so many refuse to spay and neuter. But for every one person willing to take a chance on a shelter animal, it is one less sad story shelters everywhere have to endure. We are all there for the love of the animals and with faith and hope that our educating the public will make a difference even to one animal.
In many cases, we have to wonder who really rescued who.