Mom here; Charlie and Dad are the storytellers; Mom is well… just Mom. The dowager queen,so to say, and I’m OK with this. I’ve never liked the spotlight; I work happily and quietly in the background. But today I’m charged with telling part of a story…(dad here; as well she should; she knows all the details, I just wander around in a haze, doing her bidding)
Yeah, right; anyway, a follower of Charlie’s page who lives in a small town southeast of the Casa contacted Dad late this past Thursday. She was faced with an emergency situation; her husband had passed away quite unexpectedly on Monday, and as a result, she needed to rehome several dogs immediately. (Before anyone even THINKS about using the “h” word, hoard, these were dogs that she and her husband had rescued in the first place, so cast no stones-dad).She asked friends and neighbors to take them in and no one was able to answer the need. As a last hail Mary, she contacted Charlie and Dad.
Dad was floored. Who would/could/should take these dogs in? In 2 days??? Like Dad always does, he shares this information with Mom (Yep, me) and asks if I would see what avenues they’d explored and what the situation behind having to rehome this brood in such a short time.
The woman and her husband were in their sixties when he passed, and his illness had left him unable to keep up with the needed repairs, so the home was in terrible shape, and the widow was going to have to move in with her only daughter immediately
Circumstances are hard and for too many, times are not forgiving.
I felt the urgency of the request and this stirred my soul. Now I was reaching out to no kill facilities, veterinarian offices and anyone else that might have connections. I looked up names, copied email addresses and phone numbers until late at night on Thursday. I was composing an email that would precede my phone calls the following day. Dad has a friend, Betsy, president of the Friends of the Animal Village, that said I should email each of these groups individually and so I did. I received emails the same night and following morning asking for photos and other information. I emailed back as much information as I had. I started calling at 8am the next morning. Several places said they didn’t have room. Others wouldn’t commit on such short notice (understandable). I finally reached the saving grace of these children, a local shelter that never has failed us before, and once again, stepped up to the plate and took in all five dogs. In the past, when we have had to suggest this shelter to others, we always try to donate at least enough to cover any adoption/vetting fees, but couldn’t come up with this kind of cash on such short notice.
If you feel so moved you can donate and all proceeds will go directly to the shelter to cover any expenses; these folks ROCK!
Last weekend, we were coming across the Arkansas delta, one of the most depressed regions in the United States. Industry has moved out, small farms have been consolidated into large conglomerations, and everywhere is the feeling of social decay. Well, from time to time, I get “feelings” that cannot be explained but neither cannot be denied. This time, it was to seek out the Humane Society of the Delta.
It was a grey, rainy day when we pulled into the muddy parking lot; the humidity in the air so thick that that the concrete floors inside the building were as wet with condensation as the ground outside. The hiss of two propane heaters chased the chill out of the small office. As we talked to the two directors, they told of pipes bursting during the recent cold snap, roofs leaking, and a recent horrible episode where some low life results of eating lead based paint while marrying their cousins had cut through the pens at night to get at the smaller shelter animals, so that they could be used as bait dogs.
When I hear things like that, I honestly think that I could kill such a person without a twinge to my conscience; I earnestly hope that I’m wrong, or at least that I’m never tested.
This particular shelter has over 250 dogs with only two full time and three part time employees.
Now I know it sounds like I’m painting a very depressing picture, but I’m not; the dogs were all fat and sassy and the shelter workers were as happy as anyone I’ve ever met. One even called herself a “missionary”, even though she made it known that she was a Buddhist. I noticed her watching for my reaction when she said it, but there wasn’t one; I get it. These people obviously have a mission in life: doesn’t having a mission automatically make you missionary? Kind of like the word ministry simply means “to serve”, not just “preach behind a pulpit and be the first to go downstairs and eat potluck”.
It may be that mine and your ministry is ensuring that these others can fulfill theirs? Who knows? I do know that we can make an immediate difference to these two shelters that so freely give, the Humane Society of Saline County that took in the five dogs that no one else would touch, and the Humane Society of the Delta, of which not enough could ever be said of their selflessness.
If you would like to donate to help out, I will be posting their info in the comments below, but I really want to help find a method that is recurring, where we can somehow help the places be self sustaining. I believe that such refuges are as much a national treasure as any museum or monument, and should be treated as such, for a society is judged on how it cares for the least of its inhabitants. In keeping with the theme of a Sunday post, the Bible says “as he do into the least of these, do ye even so to Me”; we can’t all do everything, but as mom bore witness Friday night, we can all do something.
We be of one blood, ye and I.